12th January 2017
So, I’ve been trying to think of a biblical response to the nomination and then election of Donald Trump as POTUS. It has been interesting to me that parallels with various biblical characters & types have been drawn. Cyrus – the pagan emperor who restores the worship and homeland of Gods people. Samson -the wrecking ball whom God uses for his purposes. The second beast of revelation – an antichristian empire / tyrant … a quick internet search will reveal a wealth of options.
If Trump were a Samson-type, it would be comparatively simple for us to respond – we don’t like his character, but we do like what God achieves through him. If he were an antichrist-type, we should, could, must resist. If he were a Cyrus – type, it would simply be a case of emploring his mercy and enjoying his benevolence. Sadly whilst all of these types fit to some degree and none of them fit particularly closely.
Watching Trump’s shenanigans over the past few days & reflecting on his rise to power, it struck me that there is a crystal clear type-picture of the president elect in the bible. A person who lashes out with pride, blurts out rage and folly, prefers his own brand of made-up-on-the-spot wisdom to the counsel of experienced advisors etc etc. It’s not an antichrist character and it’s not a saviour character, not even a historical character. It’s the fool-type of the wisdom literature. Look for the word fool in the Old Testament book of Proverbs and you’ll see what I mean. The outlook for people who honour fools is not good.
LIKE TYING A STONE IN A SLING IS THE GIVING OF HONOUR TO A FOOL Proverbs 26:8
The big problem is that there is no simple response to the handling of the fool-type, especially the empowered fool-type. Fools have to be handled with wisdom – patient, prudent, peacable, discreet wisdom. I’m hoping that the GOP will find some wise people to surround the president elect, to speak wisdom to his folly, but that’s a massively tough task. The fool-type revisits his folly regularly, he also appoints his own advisors.
The advice of the book of Proverbs for fools themselves is comparatively straightforward though:
GET WISDOM. THOUGH IT COST ALL YOU HAVE Proverbs 4:7
EVEN FOOLS ARE THOUGHT WISE IF THEY REMAIN SILENT Proverbs 17:28.
Hopefully I’ve misread DT. Hopefully there’s something I’ve misunderstood. Maybe there’s a genuinely coherent plan behind the knee jerk tweets and blustering populism. But if not, maybe the president elect needs to revisit the biblical wisdom literature for some sound advice.