2024 Election

Trump Meets Franklin Graham at the Border, Both Bow Their Heads in Prayer


By all accounts, Donald Trump’s visit to the border on Thursday couldn’t have been more different from Joe Biden’s.

For one, Trump went to one of the worst spots on the border, giving the American people a more honest look at the current immigration crisis, whereas Biden went to Brownsville, Texas, where the amount of immigrants apprehended in a week doesn’t compare to the number coming through Eagle Pass, Texas, in a day.

For another, the people Trump ran into were decidedly different than the politicians and carefully curated residents Biden met with during his sanitized border visit.

While boarding their planes in Del Rio, Texas, Trump ran into Pastor Franklin Graham, president of the Samaritan’s Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.

Graham shared a photo of their meeting on his X profile, captioning the photo by saying “Look who I ran into at the border today! @realDonaldTrump was a great encouragement to many here.”

Other users then retweeted photos of Trump and Graham praying together on the runway, with captions such as “Never know who you are going to run into on the runway at Del Rio TX airport ….to have a Peaceful moment,” and “Our nation desperately needs Jesus.”

Now, what exactly was Pastor Graham doing in that part of Texas?

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A quick look at his Facebook clarifies the purpose, with photos showing events hosted by Graham and his organization in Eagle Pass and Del Rio, where, he says, “hundreds of people found what their hearts had been searching for. They responded to the invitation to confess their sins. repent, and ask Jesus Christ into their heart and their life.”

Likewise, in Eagle Pass, Graham said that, despite “a cold north wind” blowing during the event, “hundreds of hearts warmed to the truth of God’s love and the Gospel.”

Now, though people seem to respond positively enough to Graham’s tweet of himself and Trump on the runway to retweet the photos, not everyone seemed thrilled with this meeting, especially on X.

One anti-Trump X use decided to throw in his two cents, commenting “Two of America’s biggest SCAMMERS!,” while others critiqued Graham on a moral and religious basis, commenting sentiments such as “Jesus taught to welcome and love immigrants and strangers.”

Regardless of how you feel about Graham in particular, many of these comments are missing something crucial about the exchange between Trump and Graham.

The meet-up was not a pre-planned publicity stunt.

Rather, as the evidence on Graham’s Facebook page suggests, Graham was already going to be in the area for a specific purpose, a trip probably planned well before Trump even announced his border trip.

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Even if you disagree with him on certain matters of doctrine or his approach to evangelization, his clear zeal for evangelization and bringing people to Christ should be commended, not viewed with suspicion.

Graham first recognizes that, in addition to praying for our leaders, we need to be praying almost constantly, offering up all our thoughts and works to God, not just praying before meals and before bed.

But perhaps the most important lesson this meeting illustrates is the moral imperative we as Christians have to pray for our leaders, regardless of how much we like or support them.

Yes, even Joe Biden.

Since, as Paul says in his letter to the Romans, “For there is no authority except from God,” we Christians then must offer “supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings … for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life,” as Paul says in his first letter to Timothy.

Not that we can’t criticize our leaders — we absolutely should, and ensure they know when they’ve failed to live up to Christian standards of leadership.

If nothing else, can’t we be grateful that we have a presidential candidate willing to listen to men of God?

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Ella Ford is a mother of two, a Christian conservative writer with degrees in American History, Social and Behavioral Science and Liberal Studies, based in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area.

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