David Platt, the pastor at McLean Bible Church, a mega-church in Northern Virginia outside of Washington, D.C., posted a statement
to the church’s website attempting to explain himself to his congregation after he prayed for President Trump when the president unexpectedly stopped by the church last Sunday.
In his letter Platt said, “Sometimes we find ourselves in situations that we didn’t see coming, and we’re faced with a decision in a moment when we don’t have the liberty of deliberation.”
What is there to deliberate? If the President of the United States shows up at the altar of a Bible believing church, any pastor who professes to preach the Bible prays for him — unapologetically and without qualification. Why? Because the Bible says to pray for our leaders, and the pastor is in the business of teaching the Bible.
It’s irrelevant if that President’s name is Trump, or if it had been Clinton, Bush, or Obama during their presidencies. Politics should be left in the parking lot.
Platt isn’t alone, political correctness is a pervasive epidemic that’s effectively leeched its way into the church. “Thou shall not offend” has increasingly become the unwritten eleventh commandment among many spiritual and evangelical leaders across the board.
In a nod to the PC culture, many churches have begun relying on feedback to determine their Biblical trajectory, rather than relying on the Bible to lead their church and determine the church’s trajectory.
If their "internal polling" tells them their church doesn’t like certain issues in the Bible, often times the pastor dodges those issues. Eerily reminiscent of politicians on the campaign trail.
Platt’s "internal polling" clearly told him he had some melting snowflakes in his congregation, so he set out to do damage control with his letter.
After Platt explained that he shared the gospel with the President backstage prior to praying for him, he said, “I wanted to share all of this with you in part because I know that some within our church, for a variety of valid reasons, are hurt that I made this decision.”
Whoa. Valid reasons? No — there are absolutely no “valid reasons” for Bible-believing Christians to be hurt when a pastor prays for anyone. And the offended parties should be careful, it’s long drop from that high horse they’re riding.
What’s even more baffling is that Platt legitimized that sanctimonious attitude. It’s not a pretty picture the church is painting of the Christian faith.
Ironically, Platt, who’s the former president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s International Mission Board, wrote a book called “Counter Culture.” Yet, by pandering to Christians offended by the Bible, he’s inviting our popular and depraved culture to invade his church. There’s nothing counter about coddling a culture of people who are offended by the Bible.
If you find yourself in need of a safe space from Biblical theology after parking yourself in the pew of a Bible church on Sunday mornings, follow the exit signs. You took a wrong turn.
No pastor should ever justify to his congregation why he prayed for the President of the United States, or anyone else for that matter, who walked through the doors of his church.
Jerry Falwell, Jr. raised some eyebrows this week when he took a shot at Platt on Twitter in a rather crass and now deleted tweet. Arguably, he could have made better use of the 280 characters Twitter allots him to more effectively communicate his point. However, his underlying message was essentially, do what’s right.
Platt’s predecessor, Lon Solomon, famously asked his congregation the same question every week during his sermons — “So what?”
In that spirit, when faced with Christians offended by their pastor praying for the leader of the free world, Platt’s only response should be — “So what?”
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