Trump and ‘the Multitude of Words’
By Hal Lindsey
Recently, President Donald Trump made statements many Christians found troubling. They were upset when they saw headlines like; “Trump Proclaims Himself ‘The Chosen One.’” That headline seems to be describing someone with a messiah complex.
But if you went on to read the story beneath the headline, you saw that he was talking about US trade with China. That doesn’t sound messianic at all. It sounds like a guy who wishes his predecessors had fixed a problem. But they didn’t, and now he has been “chosen” to clean up their mess. Saying you’re chosen to fix the trade problem with China is hardly the same as claiming to be the messiah.
I’m more concerned by something that came over the President’s Twitter account on August 21. He retweeted a message originally sent out by radio host, Wayne Allen Root. He tweeted, “Trump is the greatest President for Jews and for Israel in the history of the world, not just America, he is the best President for Israel in the history of the world… and the Jewish people in Israel love him like he’s the King of Israel. They love him like he is the second coming of God.”
Root did not say Trump is “the second coming of God.” He said that the Jewish people in Israel love him in that way. But it’s a weird choice of words. The phrase “second coming of God” would seem to have little meaning for any Jew who has not accepted Christ. He might ask, “When did God leave?”
But Christians know that God the Son, Jesus, came to earth as a man. He then left, promising to return. When He returns, it will be His “second coming.” Because He is God, someone could call His return “the second coming of God.” The phrase “King of Israel” also carries a powerful meaning for Christians. That title belongs to Jesus. Root professes to be a Christian, so why would he use such loaded words?
And why would Donald Trump forward them to his own Twitter followers?
Some of the criticism has been unfair. Turkish-American broadcaster, Cenk Uygur, said, “Can you imagine if Barack Obama called himself the second coming of God?” Do you see the lie? Trump did not call himself “the second coming of God.” He retweeted someone else saying that the Jewish people of Israel love him as if he were “the second coming of God.”
But the President set himself up for such derision when he retweeted Root’s ridiculous and loaded statement. President Trump uses Twitter to direct the media conversation in America, and it’s very useful to him. But sometimes he shoots from the hip. In this case, he clearly did not think through the implications of Root’s tweet. I think he saw the beginning of the tweet about him being a great president for the Jews, and immediately decided to retweet it.
Words are powerful, and they can be dangerous. James 3 compares the tongue to the small rudder steering a massive ship. That power can be used for good, or ill. In verse 6, James warned, “The tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity.”
Proverbs 10:19 says, “In the multitude of words sin is not lacking, But he who restrains his lips is wise.” 1 Timothy 2:2 admonishes us to pray for those in authority. No matter how you feel about the president, pray for him — pray especially that he will have wisdom in how he speaks.
Let’s also pray for ourselves in this area. According to a study at the University of Arizona, Americans speak an average of 16,000 words per day. That’s a “multitude of words.” A suggested prayer would be along the lines of Colossians 4:6, that our “speech always be with grace.”