Mark D. Tooley on Paula White & God Appointing Kings and Presidents

Florida preacher and Trump spiritual adviser Paula White on Saturday clarified earlier comments implying Trump as president has special divine anointing.

When discussing Trump last month, Paula White controversially told 1980s-era disgraced televangelist Jim Bakker on his program: “It is God who raises up a king. It is God that sets one down. When you fight against the plan of God, you are fighting against the hand of God.”

Paul White on Saturday explained herself to the Religion News Association meeting in Nashville, as reported by Jack Jenkins:

“Do I believe that God raises up authority, do I believe that he sets one up and pulls one down? When I read from Genesis to Revelation, I do believe that,” she said. “So I don’t believe that just for President Trump, I believe that for President Obama. I believe that, had Hillary been in [the White House]—yes, I believe that authority is raised up by God.”

And:

“I believe that authority is raised up by God, and I understand that I don’t understand all things and what his purposes are,” she said. “He’s the sovereign God.”

Such comments are typically based on Romans 13:

Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.

So God ordains government for justice, but does He ordain and favor specific rulers? His sovereignty obviously permits all who attain authority, but allowance does not necessarily imply favor or blessing. All actions on earth and in creation occur only by His allowance, but not all, in fallen creation, are according to His will. God favors justice and mercy. Rulers may have His favor to the extent they heed His will.

So Saddam Hussein, Pol Pot, Mengistu, Emperor Bokassa, Idi Amin, Mao, Stalin and Hitler, among the most murderous rulers in living memory, attained power by divine allowance but certainly not by divine favor. Why God permitted their crimes is the same question as why does He allow evil. Humanity is allowed choices, including defiance of His will, often on massive scales, at least for a season. Genocidal rulers are horribly too often the result. We trust they ultimately are subject to His judgment, in this world and the next.

All of the above, except Mengistu, who lives in Zimbabwe in exile from his native Ethiopia where he exterminated so many, have left this world and faced their Creator, with perhaps many of their victims as witnesses. It is a fearsome thing to fall into the hands of the living God. His providence is such that even the evil those men wrought will be turned ultimately against the original intent, so that divine love and truth prevail eternally.

When Hitler survived the July 1944 assassination attempt, he boasted to Mussolini: “I regard this as a confirmation of the task imposed upon me by Providence”—and that “nothing is going to happen to me… [T]he great cause which I serve will be brought through its present perils and…everything can be brought to a good end.”

Hitler was maybe perversely right in understanding Providence had spared him, but, if so, it obviously was not for his vindication but only more completely to amplify the obliteration of his project. He would only die, by his own hand, within hearing of Soviet fire and conquest above his bunker, knowing his defeat was epically complete in a biblical sense. God did not anoint the Third Reich but He surely achieved its destruction, in 12 years, after unprecedented conquests and vast crimes.

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Source: Christian Post