President Donald Trump buoyed Christians' spirits last spring with a strong and decisive call for a return to God and a restoration of religious liberty at the 2017 National Day of Prayer.
President Trump will likely again appeal to the evangelical supporters who put him in office because of his commitment to their faith issues.
In my book God and Donald Trump, I note that Trump, just three months into his term, chose the 2017 National Day of Prayer to announce an executive order to help neutralize the effect of the Johnson Amendment and promote free speech and religious liberty.
Last year's National Day of Prayer cemented in many Christians' minds that this president was committed to the issues important to them. In fact, one of the first indications that President Trump would be very different from President Barack Obama in matters of faith came on Inauguration Day. To begin his presidency, Trump invited four evangelical ministers, a Jewish rabbi and a Catholic archbishop, representing diverse racial and ethnic communities, who prayed for the president and for America.
This was the largest number of prayers ever offered at an inauguration, and it was an indication that the new president understood the importance of faith to the people of this country. He wanted the occasion to be a statement of his administration's support for religious freedom.
Clearly Donald Trump had tapped into the heartfelt beliefs and emotions of his supporters. He understood their concerns, and he was listening to their cries for help.
Trump offered heartfelt words in his 2017 National Day of Prayer Proclamation, stating:
"We are united in prayer, each according to our own faith and tradition, and we believe that in America, people of all faiths, creeds, and religions must be free to exercise their natural right to worship according to their consciences. We are also reminded and reaffirm that all human beings have the right, not only to pray and worship according to their consciences, but to practice their faith in their homes, schools, charities, and businesses in private and in the public square free from government coercion, discrimination, or persecution. Religion is not merely an intellectual exercise, but also a practical one that demands action in the world. Even the many prisoners around the world who are persecuted for their faith can pray privately in their cells. But our Constitution demands more: the freedom to practice one's faith publicly."
Trump communicated that he was committed to standing for religious liberty in that proclamation. And thus far in his presidency, he has made good on those promises.
To learn how Trump has stood for Christians since the beginning of his presidential campaign, be sure to read my book. In it, I give an inside look at the Donald Trump campaign, election and the presidency, including how he engaged with evangelicals and other faith groups to claim victory.
Steve Strang is the founder of Charisma Media and president of Christian Life Missions. He is also the author of the best-seller God and Donald Trump. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook. Click here to subscribe to the Strang Report podcast, and here to sign up for the Strang Report newsletter.
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