First of all, then, I urge that requests, prayers, intercession, and thanksgiving be made in behalf of all people, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, (1 Tim 2:1-3) (NASB)
Many evangelical/charismatic Christians have been deeply disappointed by the election of Vice President Joe Biden. Many hold to various theories on how President Trump was cheated out of his victory. I don’t hold to that view and have written against it. But now I wish to discuss how even passionate Trump followers may be able to pray for Biden with a good conscience. First of course, we are commanded by scripture to pray for our governing officials (above). In the context of Roman and Judean governors Paul was talking about, these governors were not necessarily nice, often quite cruel, and at times came to their positions via assassinations and other nefarious means. Still, he commanded Christian to pray for them and their success so that Christians could live in peace.
Admittedly, this is difficult to do when the President is someone we dislike or mistrust. I recall a conversation with a fellow Christian while Obama was president. He steadfastly refused to pray for him or the success of his administration. I suggested that he pray for his wisdom, but it not be recognized until after he died. He would not even do that. Political passions can make biblical obedience tough.
But now that the electoral college has voted and Biden is the legal president-elect, there are certain things most Christian can agree in praying for him.
- We need to pray for his good health and that he finish out his term without any dementia setting in (as happened in Ronald Regan last year). If he dies in office Kamala Harris will be president and likely be much worse on Christian values and policies than Biden.
I now pray for Biden every night as if I were right in front of him, in faith laying my hands on his head and asking for excellent health for him and a brain regenerated and free of any form of dementia. I also pray for his heart. (I am 77 now and pray that for myself so I can continue as Christian historian and writer).
- Pray that Biden’s Christian faith flower and grow during his time in the White House. Many Evangelicals are suspicious of the Catholic faith, but most have seen via such joint projects as the yearly “March for Life” in Washington D.C. that many Catholics have a sincere biblical faith and often a powerful prayer life. Evangelicals can thus pray that those parts of Catholic doctrine and practice that are true to the Gospel grow in Biden, and that the White House have a Spirit-filled revival that will impact every decision made by the executive branch.
- Pray that Biden be anointed to bring reconciliation to our faction-divided country. No president can ever please everyone, but the divisions that have been let loose in the past years need a large dose of healing.
- Pray that the Biden administration be especially good at finding those areas of policy and legislation where both Republicans and Democrats can agree, as in rebuilding our infrastructure.
- Pray that his administration come up with a reasonable health insurance reform that will be acceptable to most Americans. This is especially difficult. Trump had two years of Republican control of Congress and Senate and could not do it. Indeed “Obama care” was a flawed and clumsy insurance plan, mainly because our medical care is flawed and clumsy. Pray for wisdom for Biden and his team to fashion a bill that will cover all Americans and not be ruinously expensive.
- Pray that we never again have an election where a large portion of the electorate feels they have been cheated of the true result of the election.