Early one morning in 2011, retired Florida firefighter Mark Taylor was wrestling with another bout of insomnia. After years working at Orlando’s busy Station 2, Taylor struggled with depression, suicidal thoughts and symptoms of PTSD.

Taylor says he also was being visited by demons, angels, even God. And on that sleepless morning, God gave him a surprising prophecy: “The Spirit of God says I’ve chosen this man Donald Trump for such a time as this.”

“The Trump Prophecy,” a movie showing here and in 1,200 theaters nationwide Tuesday and Thursday, claims God’s intervention decided the 2016 election, not Hillary hatred, white anger, Russian interference or low voter turnout.

Producer Rick Eldridge says his movie has a clear purpose: “Our end goal is to get people in theaters and see a film that will reignite patriotism and call people to pray for our country and leadership.”

The film probably won’t change the minds of the many Christians who view Trump’s words and actions as the antithesis of Christ’s life and teaching. But it’s sure to please those who believe that the Trump administration is divinely ordained and that the administration’s critics are servants of Satan.

Woodland Park evangelist Andrew Wommack said Satan was keeping some Christians from seeing how God is using Trump for divine purposes.

“I do believe that there is a demonic deception that is blinding people,” Wommack said in a video and article published July 4 by the Christian Post.

And James Dobson, the Focus on the Family founder who now leads the Family Talk ministry here, pleaded with members of Intercessors of America last January to pray and fast to protect Trump, reported Newsweek.

“This country will be in serious trouble if they’re successful in impeaching this man,” said Dobson, who endorsed Trump.

Election just the beginning

Taylor says he has received 23 prophecies, and he predicts Trump’s victory is just the start of things to come:

• Trump will serve two terms and appoint five Supreme Court justices.

• The landmark 1973 Supreme Court decision on abortion in Roe v. Wade will be overturned.

• A “red tsunami” in November’s “most important midterm elections in American history” will help Republicans strengthen their hold over the House and Senate.

Within a few months, Taylor said in a Sept. 12 telephone interview, Trump will unleash “a wave of arrests against thousands of corrupt officials, many of whom are part of a massive Satanic pedophile ring.” Then, military tribunals that will “make Nuremberg look like a cakewalk” will prosecute and lock up thousands of treasonous Americans, including former President Barack Obama and other members of his administration, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and fired FBI director James Comey. (Taylor claims this process already has started, but the news media, which he called “the enemy of the United States,” is “not giving people the truth.”)

Taylor’s prophecies are on his website (sordrescue.com), and most mirror his conservative Christianity and key planks of Trumpism:

• Trump’s planned border wall (The spirit of God says, “The border, the border, is a 2000-mile gate, that’s flowing across with demonic hate. I will use my President to shut this gate and seal it shut.”)

• Trump’s campaign promises to surround him with “only with the best and most serious people” (“I AM putting together America’s dream team”).

• Energy. (God owns all the world’s oil and is orchestrating an “energy boom” to support U.S. independence).

• Russia (“The ties that were severed between America and Russia, will begin to mend” as the two nations partner to fight lSlS, the elite, the globalists and the illuminati).

Taylor also prophesies that Pope Francis will be the last pope after God exposes his corruption; that “the light from the full moon … agitates the demonic, and brings out the worst in people,” and that “the Illuminati and the Freemasons are using a special frequency to change people’s DNA in order to make them oppose President Trump.”

Although Taylor grew up in the Baptist church, his growing interest in spiritual gifts, including prophecy and speaking in tongues, led him into charismatic and Pentecostal groups. “I realized I was searching for a little bit more,” he says.

Taylor says he has not been part of a church for years, and churches are absent from the Trump prophecy movie. One of Taylor’s prophecies condemns churches with 501©3 nonprofit tax status. “Ninety-five percent of our churches (are in) a covenant with the kingdom of darkness,” reads the prophecy.

Taylor calls himself a “prophetic voice,” not a prophet, but a number of Christian scholars say that regardless of what you call him, Taylor is unlike the biblical prophets they have studied.

“You usually find biblical prophets speaking truth to power,” said John Fea, history professor at Messiah College in Pennsylvania and author of “Believe Me: The Evangelical Road to Trump.”

“The prophet Nathan condemned King David’s sin with Bathsheba. Nathan would never say what Trump’s court prophets have said: ‘I am going to give you a mulligan for this sin because you are going to appoint pro-life Supreme Court justices.’”

Brad Christerson, sociology professor at Biola University in Los Angeles, wrote about contemporary prophets and apostles in the 2017 book “The Rise of Network Christianity: How Independent Leaders and Changing the Religious Landscape.” He said he worries about the potential abuses of political prophecy.

“The followers of contemporary ‘prophets’ seem to have a high tolerance for error,” he said. “When bold predictions from prophets turn out to be wrong, as they often do, the prophets do not seem to lose support from the faithful, but move on and continue to make new predictions, many of which are used primarily to motivate the faithful to action, such as turning out to vote.”

Politics or prayer?

“The Trump Prophecy” movie unspools in three parts.

A slow-moving Act One tells the story of Taylor’s life and uses special effects to show demonic and angelic visitors.

Things pick up in Act Two. After Taylor shares his prophecies with author and activist Mary Colbert, she affirms their divine origin. Colbert energizes the film as she transforms Taylor’s words into a national movement by organizing a phone prayer network that attracted as many as 100,000 callers.

Act Three dispenses with drama for a dizzying series of talking heads. More than a dozen people offer 44 segments of conservative commentary. These experts agree: Trump is restoring American freedoms, promoting free market capitalism, and making America — and Israel — great again.

Asked if the film encourages viewers to vote, Eldridge answered, “Absolutely, but we don’t tell anybody how to vote in any way, shape or form.”

ReelWorks tried to buy ads on Facebook, but the social media company rejected them, saying the ads were political. Eldridge maintains the film is about prayer, not politics, and he charged Facebook with “censoring” his ads. A ReelWorks news release was headlined: “Christian Film Company Stands Up to Facebook in Modern Day David and Goliath Conflict and Wins.”

The film was produced with the help of faculty and students at Liberty University. Jerry Falwell Jr., Liberty’s chancellor, has called Trump a “dream president” for evangelicals, but some Liberty students aren’t so sure. Students launched an online petition titled, “Cancel the Liberty University Film Program’s Heretical Film Project.”

Two Springs-based religious leaders work with POTUS Shield, a group that rallies Christian “warriors, worshipers and watchmen” to defend Trump from impeachment, attacks from witches, assaults from the demonic left and fake news from the godless media. Lou Engle of The Call and Dutch Sheets of Dutch Sheets Ministries also embrace a dominionist theology that says God is preparing his faithful followers to rule the Earth.

“We’re called to rule! To change history! To be co-regents with God!” said Engle at a POTUS Shield event in Ohio last summer.

Radio host and Biblical scholar Michael Brown worries about the politicization of prophecy. “Not all opposition to the president is Satanic or conspiratorial,” says Brown, author of the upcoming book “Donald Trump Is Not My Savior: An Evangelical Speaks His Mind About the Man He Supports as President.”

“I do believe God raised Trump up to be president,” said Brown, “but I believe it is important to speak the truth to him with respect and honor, recognizing that while he does much good, he also does much harm. I call for his evangelical supporters to function as Trump’s ‘loyal opposition.’”

As for Taylor’s prophecies, Brown urges caution and says Christians should follow the advice in the New Testament’s 1 John 4.1: “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”

“Perhaps the Lord used Mark Taylor to prophesy the Trump presidency,” Brown says, “but that does not mean all current and future prophecies are also accurate. Each must be tested. Thankfully, we can test the prophecy about the ‘red tsunami’ in the midterms in the weeks ahead.”

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