On Sunday, President Trump made an unannounced visit to McLean Bible Church where David Platt, one of the most well known and respected pastors in American evangelicalism prayed for the president.
Politics aside, for Christians, we are called to pray for our leaders.
President Trump did not make any public remarks at the church service.
Franklin Graham had called on American pastors to make today a special day of prayer for the president.
Biblically, there are numerous passages which call on Christians to pray for leaders. 1 Timothy 2:2 says “I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.”
From Platt’s Prayer:
“God, we pray that he would know how much You love him. So much that You sent Jesus to die for his sins, our sins, so we pray that he would look to You. That he would trust in You. That he would lean on You. That he would govern and make decisions in ways that are good for justice, and good for righteousness, and good for equity, every good path.
“Lord we pray, we pray that You would give him all the grace he needs to govern in ways we just saw in 1 Timothy, chapter 2, that will lead to peaceful and quiet lives, Godly and dignified in every way.
“God, we pray for your blessing, in that way, upon his family. We pray that you would give them strength, we pray that you give them clarity, wisdom.
“Wisdom. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Fools despise wisdom and instruction. Please, oh God, give him wisdom. And help him to lead our country, alongside other leaders.
“We pray today for leaders in Congress. We pray for leaders in courts. We pray for leaders at national and state levels.
“Please, oh God, help us to look to You. Help us to trust in Your word. Help us to seek Your wisdom and live in ways that reflect Your love and Your grace, Your righteousness and Your justice. We pray for Your blessings on our president toward that end. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.”
I appreciate the content of Platt’s prayer. I don’t find it political. I think it’s a prayer which could really be made for any president.
I realize some will inherently take it as political that Platt prayed for the president. I think that’s an unfortunate sign of our times. I think there used to be a general respect for the presidency, and too many people today only have respect for the president when it’s the person for whom they voted.
Furthermore, I think Platt was an interesting choice. There have been times when President Trump has aligned himself with Christians with whom I have major disagreements due to watered down theological views. But David Platt is solid.
I also like that Platt is not a sychopant for Trump. He’s not glorifying the president.
There are those who question the president’s faith. I feel like that’s a difficult subject to offer speculation. Regardless of the faith and values of a president, Christians are still called to pray for our leaders. I know there are those who will say Trump was just using Platt for a photo-op. Even if that were true, it doesn’t change that Christians are called to pray for our leaders, and if given the opportunity to actually personally pray with and for the president, I think it was wise for Platt to take that opportunity.
Christians should pray regularly for the president, those in congress, the courts, our state, and local elected officials. Praying for those in government should not just extend to those with whom we agree, but to pray for wisdom for all who have influence in our government.
Josh Benner has a Master of Divinity from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He has served churches in Minnesota and Illinois. He enjoys writing about faith and culture. He lives with his wife Kari in St. Louis.