Pray for Rishi

Yesterday, we gained our 57th Prime Minister. The day was interesting not only for the length of his predecessor's tenure, but also because of the man himself. Mr Sunak is the youngest PM since Pitt the Younger; he is the wealthiest we have ever had (joint 222nd richest in the land) and he is the first from an ethnic minority other than Ben Disraeli. This belies the allegation that much of British Conservatism is prejudiced (it also boasts the first ethnic minority MP and every female Prime Minister so far). Still, some Christians might be concerned that our government is now led by a Hindu, who even swore his oath of allegiance on the Bhagavad Gita, one of that religion’s sacred writings. Hinduism with its polytheism and animal worship is not a faith with which we have any common ground. Seventh century Penda of Mercia, after whom Pendle Hill may be named, was our last polytheistic ruler.

I suspect we have had few genuine Christians in Number 10 during our history. Theresa May, William Gladstone and Spencer Perceval spring to mind, but by and large, the rest were either quietly godless, or enjoyed a form of godliness, but little else. Regardless of his wealth, his idolatry, his 'ahem', smarminess, Mr Sunak is still deserving of our prayers. When Paul instructs Timothy in 1:2:2 to intercede ‘for kings and all who are in authority’, he had pagan emperors and governors in mind. We are not commanded to approve, much less vote for those in power, but we are commanded to support them in prayer. Pray for Rishi, that he and his cabinet govern well, and that both he and they might come to know the higher Governor to whom they shall give account.

Image by Mathew Browne from Pixabay