Watchmen On the Wall - FRC

Prayer Targets: Pres. Trump; Brett Kavanaugh; Senate Hearings; 31 Days of Prayer for Our Nation


July 11, 2018

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. Galatians 6:9

Dear Praying Friends,

Mark Galli (Bio) is Editor-in-Chief of Christianity Today. He studied history at UCSC, earned an M.Div. from Fuller Seminary, and worked toward a Ph.D. at U.C. Davis. A Presbyterian pastor for 10 years, he became a journalist and served in editorial posts at several Christian magazines: Leadership, Christian History, Christianity Today, and The Behemoth. He is author and co-author of over a dozen books. These excerpts are from his 131 Christians Everyone Should Know.

"So enormous, so dreadful, so irremediable did the [slave] trade's wickedness appear that my own mind was completely made up for abolition. Let the consequences be what they would: I from this time determined that I would never rest until I had effected its abolition."

In the late 1700s, when William Wilberforce was a teenager, English traders raided the African coast on the Gulf of Guinea, captured between 35,000 and 50,000 Africans a year, shipped them across the Atlantic, and sold them into slavery. It was a profitable business... By the late 1700s, the economics of slavery were so entrenched that only a handful of people thought anything could be done about it. That handful included William Wilberforce.

Taking on a purpose -- William Wilberforce... grew up surrounded by wealth...He wasn't a serious student... Yet Wilberforce had political ambitions and, with his connections, managed to win election to Parliament in 1780, where he formed a lasting friendship with William Pitt, the future prime minister. But he later admitted, "The first years in Parliament I did nothing -- nothing to any purpose. My own distinction was my darling object."

But he began to reflect deeply on his life, which led to a period of intense sorrow... His unnatural gloom lifted on Easter 1786... He had experienced a spiritual rebirth.

He abstained from alcohol and practiced rigorous self-examination as befit, he believed, a "serious" Christian. He abhorred the socializing that went along with politicking. He worried about "the temptations..." at the endless dinner parties, which he thought were full of vain and useless conversation: "[They] disqualify me for every useful purpose in life, waste my time, impair my health, fill my mind with thoughts of resistance before and self-condemnation afterwards."

He began to see his life's purpose: "My walk is a public one," he wrote in his diary. "My business is in the world, and I must mix in the assemblies of men or quit the post which Providence seems to have assigned me." ...

Under the influence of Thomas Clarkson, he became absorbed with the issue of slavery. Later he wrote, "So enormous, so dreadful, so irremediable did the trade's wickedness appear that my own mind was completely made up for abolition. Let the consequences be what they would: I from this time determined that I would never rest until I had effected its abolition."

Wilberforce, initially optimistic... expressed "no doubt" about his chances of quick success. As early as 1789, he and Clarkson managed to have 12 resolutions against the slave trade introduced -- only to be outmaneuvered on fine legal points. The pathway to abolition was blocked by vested interests, parliamentary filibustering, entrenched bigotry, international politics, slave unrest, personal sickness, and political fear. [Eight more of his bills] were defeated from 1791 to 1805.

When it became clear that Wilberforce would not let the issue die, pro-slavery forces targeted him. He was vilified; opponents spoke of "the damnable doctrine of Wilberforce and his hypocritical allies." ... One friend feared that one day he would read about Wilberforce's being "carbonated [broiled] by Indian planters, barbecued by African merchants, and eaten by Guinea captains."

His antislavery efforts finally bore fruit in 1807: Parliament abolished the slave trade in the British Empire. He then worked to ensure the slave trade laws were enforced and, finally, that slavery in the British Empire was abolished. Wilberforce's health prevented him from leading the last charge, though he heard three days before he died that the final passage of the emancipation bill was ensured in committee... Its passage was "one of the turning events in the history of the world."

The End of Abortion in our Day -- The radical left has made abortion their battle cry in the war they have declared on President Trump's appointee to the U.S. Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh. They want to preserve the Supreme Court's 1973 ruling in the case of Roe v. Wade, made with utter disregard for the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the faith, history and traditions of the American people. The macabre Supreme Court decision declared open season on unborn babies in America. It was a radical departure from biblical truth and morality. Bible believers knew that abortion was the killing of unborn babies.

Thank God that there were men and women, boys and girls, who, like William Wilberforce with slavery, swore never to rest until abortion was abolished in America. Those pro-life Americans, like Wilberforce, pressed on despite apathy in the churches, lack of courage among leaders in the church and political establishment, hostility, even laws designed to defeat their cause, and even to prevent them from counseling abortion-minded women to dissuade them from abortion. Against every kind of intrigue, lawsuits, even the use of taxpayer dollars to subsidize abortion operations, the pro-life movement has not only grown but is now a strong majority of Americans. The pro-lifers endured. People who were 18 year-olds when Roe was decided are now 63 years-old. We have aborted over 60 million babies. But during the past ten years, there have been more state laws restricting abortion.

Now pro-life Americans, together with others who value the original meaning of the Constitution, have a champion in the White House, a majority in Congress, and a chance to have a firm, pro-life majority in the U.S. Supreme Court for the first time since Roe. We need to know that any true constitutional conservative, any true originalist, will endeavor to interpret the Constitution as the Founders intended, and not as liberal activists have reinterpreted it. No true constitutional conservative will defend abortion. Tony Perkins wrote yesterday,

By now, Americans have all learned a thing or two about Brett Kavanaugh, the man who will almost certainly replace Justice Anthony Kennedy on the U.S. Supreme Court... Like a lot of conservatives, we had our favorites from that list. But [we know] everyone it included was solid, thanks to a group of serious constitutionalists who reviewed the candidates beforehand... Anyone who doubts Kavanaugh's bona fides should keep in mind: this president has an exceptional track record on the judiciary. We've watched this White House restore balance and boundaries to benches across the country at a pace no other president has matched. And unlike his predecessor, those record-setting confirmations continue to be of men and women whose loyalty is to the plain text of the Constitution. Our hope and prayer is that Brett Kavanaugh proves himself to be of their same mold. For the time being, we have to trust President Trump's judgment -- a benefit of the doubt that, based on his previous nominees, he's earned (see About the Kavanaugh Nomination).

  • Heavenly Father, we pray "Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven." It was President Trump's prerogative to make this decision, may we trust you Lord, that you heard our prayers, and were able to guide the president in his decision. May we pray for Brett Kavanaugh as he endures a trial by fire in the Senate judiciary hearings. May our senators and all Americans get to see this man's heart and mind. And may You, Sovereign Lord, who know him intimately, guide the Senate in their inquiry. Help us to pray, and please prevent the savagery that some on the far left want to see in these hearings. Rather, may the truth be known, and may that truth be made manifest to the American people. Lord, govern the hearings and govern each Senator's vote we pray. In Jesus' name, Amen (2 Sam 23:1-4; Ps 72:14;103:19;Pr 21:1; 30:11-14; Ecc 8:1-7; 9:13-18; Mt 6:9-10; Rom 8:26; 1 Tim 2:1-2).

Day 11 - "31 Days of Prayer for our Nation" -- Thanks to all who took part in Call2Fall on Sunday, July 1. We have heard from churches and families across the nation who observed this vital time of 2 Chronicles 7:14-like prayer -- on our knees. If you missed it, please resolve to take part next year! But it is still not too late for you to unite with thousands across America who are praying daily for our nation throughout the month of July (many are fasting), in the same spirit as Call2Fall. We need a "Call2Fall" every day in America. Once a year is not enough!

FRC has partnered with the National Day of Prayer and Awakening America Alliance to do that, in a concentrated way, beginning with Call2Fall through until the end of July. It's called "31 Days of Prayer for My Nation." Dr. Ronnie Floyd, pastor of the Northwest Arkansas' Cross Church and President of the National Day of Prayer, has suggested that God's people need to create a "rhythm of prayer" throughout the year, including the National Day of Prayer, Call2Fall, 31 Days of Prayer and other designated prayer days throughout the year (see and hear Dr. Floyd explain it, HERE). The "Rhythm of Prayer" concept can help us to "pray without ceasing" throughout the year (1 Th 5:17).

  • Father, thank you for these efforts to jumpstart Your people to pray. We pray that the time will come in America when all our churches will be called, as you said they would, "a house of prayer for all people" and that we will see the fruit of that prayer across America and the Nations! (1 Chr 16:8-36; 2 Chr 7:14; Ps 133; Is 56:1-7; Jer 29:11-13; Gal 6:9; 1Tim 2:1-8)

Thank you for praying!