Platt, Prayer, and the President

This past Sunday was a controversial one as the president of the United States showed up unexpectedly at the church of Pastor David Platt and asked for prayer. The president was invited to the stage where Platt prayed for him in view of the congregation.

I won’t spend a lot of time on this and I won’t get too political because that is not the purpose of this blog. However, I don’t understand some of the backlash Platt has received over this. Most of what I’ve seen has come from unbelievers and from more liberal Christians, but some of it comes from unexpected places.

As James White points out in a recent episode of the Dividing Line, it’s not like Platt was praying for the success of an anti-Christian policy. He was praying for the president, as well as for multiple other politicians, not by name, but generally.

His prayer was scripturally based and I think modeled prayer for a president and other leaders very well. He prayed that his decisions would be good for justice, and for righteousness. Now, whether you believe the current president is making decisions like that, we certainly ought to be praying for him to make these decisions, to be wise in leadership.

A person does not have to like Trump as a man, as a politician, you don’t even have think he’s saved in order to pray for God to guide him. In fact, I would venture to say that if you disagree with the man or his policies then that is all the more reason to pray for him. God has placed him in the position, which does not mean that Trump is infallible, but it would be wise that we pray this man use his office wisely.

1 Timothy 2:1-2 actually tells us we ought to pray for those in authority so it isn’t mere opinion that President Trump ought to be prayed for, as any other leader regardless of our opinion of them. As James White points out in a recent episode of the Dividing Line, it’s not as though we are supposed to pray for the success of policies that might contradict biblical principles, but when an individual asks for prayer, we pray for that individual.

Regardless of where one stands on whether Platt should have prayed for him in front of the congregation, I hope some are reminded that petitioning the Lord for the wisdom and salvation of our leaders is something we ought to be in the habit of doing, not just on Sunday, but often.

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