In an interview Friday with a Christian cable network, Vice President Pence made a startling revelation. The president is the one who encourages each meeting begin with prayer.
Pence, who has previously said, ’President Trump Is a believer and so am I,’ continues to say the President is seeking the Lord as a new Christian with a focus on prayer. He reiterated those sentiments in statements to CBN News.
“I’ve lost count of the number of times that the president has nudged me, or nudged another member of the Cabinet and said, ‘Let’s start this meeting with prayer.'”
Insights like those of Pence may be the main reason what’s happening behind the scenes inside the White House is having quite a bit of spiritual impact on America’s policy making. Something that hasn’t happened for a very long time.
It has been widely reported how Christians have unprecedented direct access with President Trump. It has led to consistent prayer among Cabinet members. Pence says there is prayer going on inside the White House all the time, not only on the National Day of Prayer.
“There’s prayer going on on a regular basis in this White House. And it’s one of the most meaningful things to me, whether it’s public meetings or not, he told Brody.
Details of Trump’s faith experience have been slow to come out but have been verified from respected leaders across the Christian community from Franklin Graham to
Trump’s authenticity as a new believer in Christ was not something evangelicals were particularly confident about when he was running for president. His quotation of “Two Corinthians” made many wince with a smile and other examples of his vernacular didn’t exactly fit with “Christian speak” so common in the Christian community.
For some that made them doubt the voracity of his conversion. For others, it shed light on what they said was a relatable moment of a new believer still on the “milk” of the Word. Supporters believed it was an unscripted moment that showed a rough and tumble, brash and crude New Yorker coming to grips with a new personal faith and all that meant he had to learn.
If it had been a “fake” moment they said, it would have been written for him and rehearsed to perfection.
Trump’s imperfect quotation of the Bible, then, showed he was just like any person learning God’s Word.
Trump and forgiveness
With a new accusation of infidelity that occurred a decade before Trump ran for president, Christians that doubt Trump’s sincerity are being forced to ask themselves a question: “If salvation hinges on forgiveness, does that apply to President Trump for sins committed before he became a believer?”
If the answer is no then there are deeper problems in the Christian community than they would admit.
The question has arisen again after adult-film star Stormy Daniels’ interview on “60 Minutes” alleged sexual encounter with Trump in 2006.
The incident and its impact between President Trump and Christians was explained on CBS news.
“If it was something that happened in the White House while Mr. Trump was president, it would have changed the dynamic completely,” CBSN news anchor Leslie Sanchez said. “But because these things happened prior to him becoming a born-again Christian or really coming to faith asking for grace, a lot of people feel that it’s a different conversation. And they dealt with it before voting for him as president of the United States.”
Sanchez says many look to grace, acceptance, forgiveness and that everyone is flawed.
Proof in the pudding
The president’s policies continue to be the driving force of his support–not his personality, tweets or animas for Hillary Clinton. For those closest to him, there’s proof in the pudding.
“I’ve been with this president in the Oval Office, with religious leaders, when people have asked to pause for a moment of prayer and the president readily embraces that,” says Pence. “I think he’ always very humbled and grateful by the support of believers … And we understand the role of faith in the life of this nation, and the American people I think can be encouraged to know that in President Donald Trump, they have a leader who embraces and respects and appreciates the role of faith and the importance of religion in the lives of our families in communities in our nation and he always will.”
Others have also not been shy about their support for the president as he support Christians in the culture war like no president has done before.
At least 70 percent of white evangelicals approve of Mr. Trump’s job performance while 26 percent disapprove, according to CBS News polling held March 8-11, 2018.
In 2017, Franklin Graham tweeted:
One of the signs of Trump’s commitment may be in the policies he’s pushing. On Thursday he signed an executive order setting up a new faith-based office in the West Wing.
The new executive order expands upon a religious freedom executive order signed last year. Vice President Pence says it makes sure all levels of the federal government are partnering with faith-based groups on various federal programs.
“This is really about making sure that as we develop policies for the country, that we are always making room for those inalienable rights, the free exercise of religion that Americans cherish,” the vice president explained.
Praying for the Peace of Jerusalem
Praying for peace in Jerusalem is also on the hearts and minds of many Christians–at least those that know their Bibles. The administration is preparing for the new embassy in Jerusalem to open this month. Pence said he recently saw photographs of some of the finishing touches being put on, and he says the White House is still finalizing plans about the American delegation.
“When we open the American Embassy in Jerusalem, we will in a very real sense end this historic friction, we’ll embrace reality,” the vice president said. “And President Trump and I believe that in doing that, that peace in the region becomes more possible.”
One of the biggest threats to Israel is Iran. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently pointed to thousands of Iranian documents showing how he says Iran had been lying for years about the extent of its nuclear program. This comes as President Trump is prepared to decide whether the United States should essentially pull out of the current Iran nuclear deal.
Pence says the United States has confirmed the authenticity of the materials that Israel obtained.
“Despite what Iran said for years, (that) they had never attempted to develop a nuclear weapon, clearly here are volumes of evidence that prove that Iran was in a headlong rush up unto and past the beginning of the 21st Century to develop a nuclear weapon,” the vice president said. “And that is obviously going to color our evaluation of the Iran nuclear deal.”
While policies continue to come out of the administration elicit great applause from the American public. It hasn’t been the same for the late night comedians. But in the long trail of history, it will not be the jokes that are remembered, but the policies that are transforming the nation.
Vice President Pence says he and President Trump are remaining focused on their goals for the administration and the American people.
And doing it as imperfect humans wrapped in prayer.
–By Dwight Widaman and wire services