During the week, I came across an article written by a Facebook friend who, like me, regularly blogs on the wider cultural scene from a theological perspective and, unlike many who attempt to do similar, I usually agree with his pertinent and profound insights. He opened his latest blog, titled: “The Demonic and the President” with: “This week President Donald Trump officially started his 2020 re-election campaign in Florida (it seems as though the US political system is a never ending Presidential election – when do they get time to govern?!). His speech to 20,000 fans was widely reported. What was not so reported is the opening prayer from Paula White, a well known US televangelist and one of the President’s ‘spiritual advisors’. White’s prayer is astonishing” and then he proceeded to give the prayer:
“I pray for the spirit of the Lord to rest upon our president and let your favor cause his horn, his power to be exalted according Psalm 89:17. Lord, your word says in Psalm 2:1-4, why do the nations conspire and the people plot in vain. The kings of the earth rise up and the rulers band together against the Lord and against his anointed saying, let us break their chains and throw off their shackles … Father, you have raised President Trump up for such a time as this. “Let every demonic network that has aligned itself against the purpose, against the calling of President Trump, let it be broken, let it be torn down in the name of Jesus. I declare that President Trump will overcome every strategy from hell and every strategy from the enemy, every strategy. And he will fulfil his calling and his destiny.” He then followed this with an argument (check out the above link) why the prayer is biblically unsound.
It got me thinking along several lines starting with the above two verses that I often return to when considering prayer and an appreciation that politics aside those attending this Trump rally felt the need to pray in this vein. I felt disappointment that the brother in Christ who wrote this article and is well supported by other Christians and who usually argues so well for gospel truth and against the ungodly spirit of the age that has deceived so many Christians might have got it wrong on this occasion. I am saddened at the prospect, which I have seen elsewhere and often, when Christians are unable to unite in prayer because they are unable to agree fundamental precepts, meaning lost opportunities. I disagree with his view that Trump is not the Lord’s anointed. I believe he is and have argued so (see here) and the fact he disagrees likely has informed his reticence concerning Paula White’s prayer. As for Paula White, I too disagree with the “prosperity gospel” he alleges she preaches but this is likely one of the reasons he dismisses her prayer as heresy and those partaking as somehow complicit, as is his view that Trump is a bad person and a bad president.
I dislike criticising the prayers of other Christians as much as I do criticising Christian leaders who are faithful to the gospel. If I were to make this a habit it might be better not to join in with fellow Christians for fear of falling out, but given we are encouraged to unite together in prayer and there the Lord commands a blessing, we would be losing out on God’s blessing if we don’t. But just as I am uncomfortable with the criticism levelled against Paula White for her prayer, I have to confess that I am not entirely comfortable with her prayer either. I am from a section of the church that does not detect demons round every corner but I do sense what Trump is doing puts him up against the demonic, such as his calling out Molech and sacrificing children about to be or even having been born or those involved in satanic inspired sex trafficking that also leads to child sacrifice, and he especially needs our prayers.
The story of the Bible is God raises up leaders (including the bad ones and most mentioned were bad) as well as putting down leaders. While we are on the subject of Christians seeing Trump as some sort of Messiah, it should be stated that title belongs to Jesus Christ alone, yet God did tell Elijah to anoint two what turned out to be bad kings: Hazael and Jehu, who yet did what God required of them. I thank God every day that he has raised up Donald J Trump, with all his many well commented on faults, for such a time as this. I am pretty sure if it were me praying at his rally I would not be doing so in a way that might be construed that what he is doing is beyond criticism and is altogether what God wants, but I would ask God to protect him mindful just as Daniel prayed in Daniel 9, 10 there is an horrendous unseen spiritual battle going on behind the scenes,