Has God cursed Donald Trump, the man who claimed to bless Israel more than anyone else?
Just days before the election, Trump sought to reawaken and harness the love of his Evangelical Christians constituency for Jerusalem by removing political limitations on research cooperation between the United States and Israel and allowing Americans born in Jerusalem to choose to put Israel on their passports.
He brokered three normalization agreements in just more than a month between Israel and Arab countries.
But it seems that contrary to the biblical verse – “I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you” (Genesis 12:3) – God will not put the president back into the White House.
On Saturday night, the media announced that Democratic candidate Joe Biden had defeated Trump and would become the 46th President of the United States.
Although Trump has not given up and his statements have indicated he is still to take legal action over alleged election fraud, by nearly all indications, Trump is to become the first incumbent president to lose re-election since Republican George H.W. Bush in 1992.
Now, the question is: How will these Evangelicals, many who said they heard from God Himself that Trump would win a second term, come to terms with his likely loss?
“The rocks are about to move and Trump will be president no matter what you hear,” said Evangelical “prophet” Kat Kerr in an interview with Elijah List’s Steve Schultz. “He will sit in office for four more years and God will have His way in this country.”
Some Evangelical leaders, however, understand that this might not be the case. Still they say that their faith in God and their support for the land and people of Israel is unwavering.
“I absolutely believe in the principle laid out in Genesis Chapter 12,” said author Joel Rosenberg. “Yet, it is important to remember that God has multiple objectives that are going on simultaneously. … Only He knows which ones He is going to elevate at a single moment.”
Rosenberg cited the Book of Job, in which the main character is described as a righteous and upright man, yet God afflicts him with pain and suffering.
“That suffering was also a part of God’s objective to show Job how much he was loved by God and that he could trust God even when things were very difficult and going another way that he did not want – God was still sovereign and trustworthy,” he said. “God is never wrong. People can be wrong.”
Trump would not be the first pro-Israel president to be “cursed” by God.
Warren G. Harding, America’s 29th president, was a champion of Zionism. He signed the Lodge-Fish Resolution in September 1921 that endorsed the 1917 Balfour Declaration in support of a Jewish national home in the land of Israel.
“The signing of the resolution epitomized Harding’s deeply-held conviction that the Jewish people would inevitably return to the land of their ancestors,” explained Michael Freund in an article published last weekend in The Jerusalem Post.
In August 1922, he sent out Rosh Hashanah greetings to the Jewish people in which he wrote that this year the Jews would receive “definite assurance” that “their long aspiration for re-establishment of Jewish nationality in the homeland of this great people is to be definitely realized.”
Harding died on August 2, 1923 – less than one year later.
Before him, the country’s 16th president, Abraham Lincoln fought strongly against antisemitism, reversing an order in 1862 by Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant calling for the expulsion of all Jews from a wide swath of the South.
“I do not like to hear a class or nationality condemned on account of a few sinners,” Lincoln said.
Lincoln was assassinated on April 14, 1865.
“God changes times and seasons; he deposes kings and raises up others. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning,” it says in Daniel 2:21.
Pastor Trey Graham, head of the dynamic First Baptist Church Melissa in Texas, cited this verse in Daniel and said that God is bigger than any political race.
“He is never surprised by the results from a race. He raises up leaders in His time, according to His plan,” Graham maintained.
Graham said that Christians believe that God has a plan for America and, “a terrible president might be God’s plan,” Rosenberg added.
In the Book of Exodus, God calls Pharaoh his “servant.”
According to Rosenberg, God was using Pharaoh to prove his power to the nation of Israel and to show them that He loved and cared for them.
Likewise, God raised up King Nebuchadnezzar, who God also describes as “my servant” and then used the king to destroy Jerusalem and send the Jewish people into exile – “a punishment,” according to Rosenberg, which was for the Jewish people’s own good.
“God can use a range of leaders to accomplish some good things and some not so good things,” he said.
Trump was a most unlikely winner in 2016. But Christians believed he was elevated into his role as president by God.
They feel the same about Biden.
For example, Rosenberg said that Biden might be able to persuade the Palestinians to come back to the negotiating table, which would pave the way for a peace treaty between Israel and Saudi Arabia.
“I am not sure Trump could do that,” he said.
It is unlikely that Evangelical support for Israel will shift, as their support is rooted in theology and not politics.
“Trump did very good things for Israel and that is why he was favored by many Israelis,” Graham said.
“But all Mr. Trump did was to reinforce the promises God already made to Israel.”
He does not believe it is coincidental that the US announced normalization agreements in the last few months of Trump’s presidency. If American remains Israel’s best friend, then Israel is in a great position politically and diplomatically. On the other hand, if America changes course, then Israel is now in a better place to lean on others.
A change in the White House does not change God’s covenant, the Evangelicals understand.
“We voted for president,” said Graham, “not for King of the Universe.”
Header: A camel outside the Old City sports a ‘God Bless Trump’ banner in celebration of the US President’s declaration recognizing the city as Israel’s capital. (photo credit: RAFI KOTZ)
Source: Maayan Jaffe Hoffman – JPost