It almost seems as if Trump saw the critical posts and decided, on the 14th green at Trump National Golf Club, to show up at a church somewhere and receive prayer.
Today was the day that conservative evangelicals, on orders from Franklin Graham, were supposed to pray for Donald Trump. After his round of golf at his country club in Sterling, Virginia, Trump stopped, unannounced, at McLean Bible Church in Vienna, Virginia. David Platt, the pastor of the church, prayed for him. According to Google Maps, McLean Bible Church is 10.9 miles from Trump National Golf Club. It is an evangelical megachurch.
Here is a taste of a report from MSN News:
Trump walked on stage at the church wearing khaki pants and a jacket over his polo shirt and holding a golf hat. He stood alongside pastor David Platt, who noted that there had been calls from Christian leaders to pray for the president on Sunday.
“We don’t want to do that just on this Sunday,” Platt said. “We want to do that continually, day in and day out. So I want to ask us to bow our heads together now and pray for our president.”
The pastor went on to offer a prayer for the president and other political leaders.
“We know we need your mercy. We need your grace. We need your help. We need your wisdom in our country,” he said. “And so we stand right now on behalf of our president, and we pray for your grace and your mercy and your wisdom upon him.”
The pastor added that he was praying not just for the president, but for “leaders in Congress,” “leaders in courts” and state leaders.
The president did not make remarks on stage before departing.
Read the entire piece here.
Platt is the 40-year old pastor best known for his best-selling book Radical: Taking back Your Faith from the American Dream. He has degrees two degrees, including a Ph.D from the Southern Baptist New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He held a leadership role in the Southern Baptist Convention (president of the SBC’s International Mission Board) before resigning in 2018 to focus more fully on his pastorate at McLean.
Platt’s prayer was the kind of stuff most evangelical pastors do every week when they pray for those in governmental authority. Trump does not spend much time around these kinds of evangelicals (non-court-evangelicals). I am guessing that Trump expected something a bit more political and perhaps more rooted in the culture wars.
Platt prayed that Trump would be an agent of justice and righteousness. He made it clear that “the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom.” He did not come across as a sycophant, nor did he mention, as Franklin Graham did, that Trump’s enemies were demonic. I am sure we will hear more about this, but I wonder if Platt was caught off-guard by Trump’s visit. I think he did a nice job considering the circumstances.
Back in July 2018, Platt preached about Christianity and politics at McLean Bible Church. Read all about it here. It appears that his prayer for Trump was consistent with what he preached in this message.
Here is what happened today: