When David Platt concluded his sermon during an afternoon service at McLean Bible Church in Northern Virginia on Sunday, the pastor thought he would have had a few minutes to himself for quiet reflection.
Instead, he was whisked backstage and given a
Unlike other pastors who have fiercely supported President Trump,
"The President of the United States is on his way to the church," he said. Platt, known for his nonpartisan approach to preaching, found himself making a tough decision church …. "
In a detailed letter posted on the nondenominational megachurch's website Sunday evening and shared by Platt to s Monday, the pastor wrote, "My aim is to endorse the president, his policies, or his party, but God's command to pray for our president and other leaders. .. "
The letter, which is addressed to Platt's" church family, "comes at a time when evangelicals nationwide are becoming increasingly involved
McLean Bible Church for two years, is best known for authoring the New York Times best -selling book, "Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream," according to the Christian Post, Platt has thus preached that the churches should not promote nationalism Platt served as the president of the Southern Baptist Convention's International Mission Board.
On Sunday, Trump caught Platt, churchgoers and reporters by surprise when he made the unscheduled 15-minute stop on his way back to the White House after spending the morning at Trump's National Golf Course in Sterling.
"Sometimes we find ourselves in situations that we did not see, and we're faced with a decision in a moment when we do not have the liberty of deliberation, so we do our best to glorify God, "Platt wrote in the letter.
 Trump, who appeared to be silent.
Trump, who appeared to be silent be wearing his golf shoes.
"In this city we have a unique opportunity to pray for leaders , He said, drawing laughs from the crowd and Trump. "We count it to honor to pray for any leader in any position.
White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement on Sunday that Trump went to the Church to "visit with the Pastor and pray for the victims and community of Virginia Beach." On Friday, a gunman was firing at a municipal complex in the coastal city, killing 12 people injured and others injured.
During the roughly five minutes Trump was left alone the shooting or its victims. Franklin Graham's recent declaration that June 2 was a "special day of prayer for the President, Donald J. Trump."
"Many of you may have seen that there what a call to, especially on this Sunday, pray for our president, "Platt said.
Trump and a man on the president's back
"We do not want to do that on this Sunday." ]
For the next several minutes, Plated a long prayer in which God to bestow Grace, mercy and wisdom on Trump. Platters also included prayers for other national and state leaders, including those in Congress and the courts.
When Platt finished speaking, people in attendance broke out in loud cheers. Trump did not make any comments, but shook hands with flat and mouthed "Thank you. , , I really appreciate it. "
Plattly wrote in the statement that when he was informed of trump's plans, he recalled a passage from the Bible that in part states, "I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgiving be made for all people,. , , for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. "
" Based on this text, I know it is good, and pleasing in the sight of God, to pray for the president, "he wrote.
Sunday is not the first time Platt has grappled with navigating faith and politics in the trump era. Former White House communications aide Cliff Sims told Christianity Today in February that Platt had been "conflicted" at a White House bed and breakfast.
"I think one of the reasons for this hesitation was because when pastors get involved in the political space in a public way, there are drawbacks and it can put pastors in a position where people suddenly view them through a political lens, "Sims said.
Trump's Victory in the 2016 White Evangelicals voters were left behind. But as recent Gallup data suggests, the Washington Post's Philip Bump reported in April.
Within the greater community of Americans who are self-described evangelicals, a In April, Vice President Pence, sent to evangelical Christian, faced a mounting protest by students from Taylor University According to FiveThirtyEight, it is attributed to two factors: the evangelical community is more diverse and Trump's actions as president.
] "His governing style is, in effect, forcing evangelical leaders to choose between embracing the white evangelicals who overwhelmingly support the president or distancing
While speaking at Sunday's service and in his letter, Platt repeatedly referred to the diversity of his members.
19659028] "We just talked about how what unites us in this room is not our ethnicity, not our background, our politics," he said.
Plaintiff wrote: "I love every member." 19659029] "I love every member of God, in a way that transcends political party and position, heals the racial division and injustice, and honors, "he wrote. "I do not want to purposely ever do anything that undermines the unity we have in Christ."