Published January 24, 2017

Paul's Epistle
"Pray For The President"

Here's something I've told to very few people. Back on election day, I prayed several times, of course, that God would intervene in the voting and that the outcome of the Presidential election would be in line with His will.

Immediately, in my spirit, I sensed the words, "I got this."  Frankly, I was a bit surprised by this.

Later, praying again that day and not thinking about what happened before, I immediately got the same reply: "I got this." I took this as a God-given reassurance that He is in control of this, as, of course, He always is. (What did surprise me was His use of a colloquial expression. But its meaning was clear: "I have this completely under control.")

The narrowness of now-President Donald Trump's victory and, some might say, the complete improbability of that outcome, confirmed for me that this was the Lord's doing. As Daniel said of the Lord, "He removes kings and raises up kings..." (Daniel 2:21). And, as Paul reminds us, "There is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God" (Romans 13:1).

Despite all the viciousness that had been brought against Mr. Trump in the campaign by his powerful political and ever-present media adversaries, Trump won. It reminded me of Zechariah's word from the Lord: "‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,' says the Lord of hosts" (Zech. 4:6).

In just the first few days of the Trump administration there have been very positive signs. I wrote earlier that his choice for vice president, Mike Pence, is a dedicated Christian who repeatedly has said he places Christ ahead of politics. Interestingly, Ralph Reed of the Family Research Council says there are more believers among Trump's cabinet choices than in any Presidential cabinet in history. About this, he said, "The enemy is not thrilled."

A Pew Research survey earlier this month found that more than half of all Americans (55 percent of Democrats and 52 percent of Republicans) felt that Christians will have much more influence in the Trump administration, with Christian beliefs valued much more highly.

Among things that Christians should find reassuring, President Trump has promised to...

The campaign rhetoric last year was divisive, to say the least. But in his inaugural address, President Trump said, "The Bible tells us how good and pleasant it is when God's people live together in unity. We must speak our minds openly, debate our disagreements honestly, but always pursue solidarity." He said no one in American society should be forgotten: "Whether a child is born in the urban sprawl of Detroit or the windswept plains of Nebraska, they look up at the same night sky, they fill their heart with the same dreams and they are infused with the breath of life by the same Almighty Creator."

Interestingly, President Trump's inauguration set a record for the number of prayers offered during the ceremony – six, by one count. Interesting, too, is the fact that one of the speakers, Franklin Graham, presented the Gospel without equivocation. Speaking to the hundreds of thousands in attendance and millions across the world watching on TV, Graham quoted at length directly from Scripture, 1 Timothy 2:1-5: "I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus..."

"Prayers...for all that are in authority." That is the key. President Trump and his administration will undoubtedly come under withering attacks from enemies, both political and spiritual. That's why Paul told Timothy that prayer for leaders is so important. Pray for the President's protection. Pray that he will be granted wisdom from God in all that he does. Pray that he will continue to assemble righteous counselors around him – and that he will heed their godly advice. Pray for wisdom as he works to reconcile segments of our divided society. Pray that God will bless America (as a nation and Americans individually) during the Trump administration.

At a special inauguration-eve prayer service in Washington, Rev. Patrick Mahoney of the Church on the Hill and director of the Christian Defense Coalition offered this prayer, which would be good model for ours: "We come together, as we have for all Presidents, to ask for Christ's direction, leading, guidance, protection and blessing over President Trump and his administration. We ask that he would turn to God for wisdom and strength and look to Him for every vital decision he will make. We also pray that God would ignite a spiritual awakening that would heal our nation."

And that is the key to resolving the nation's divisions: a spiritual awakening. Our divisions are not so much political as they are spiritual, because spiritual values inform political views. Just think how a true spiritual awakening throughout America would bring the nation together!

As Franklin Graham began to speak at the inauguration, he noted, "In the Bible, rain is the sign of God's blessing, and it started to rain, Mr. President, when you came to the platform."

Pray that Rev. Graham's words prove to be prophetic.

- Paul

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