Just before the election, I signed the “Economists Against Trump” open letter. Trump’s rejection of globalization is based on fallacies, and while I hope there is less domestic regulation in a Trump presidency I fear that on net, the rejection of globalism and the potential erosion of reasonably robust political institutions in the West will leave us poorer than we would otherwise be.
If we’re lucky. If we’re really fortunate, Trump’s nativism and anti-globalism are blocked at every turn and we only get comprehensive domestic reform, big cuts to government spending, and elimination of distortionary taxes like the corporate income tax. A man can dream.
In the grand scheme of things, we have no meaningful reason to worry because God is on the throne and because there is nothing we can do to frustrate His intention. We see this in Genesis 35, to use just one example, where God calls Jacob and renames him Israel, saying that His purposes will be fulfilled through Israel and his descendants. This is striking because Jacob was conniving, scheming, and cowardly–and was used by God not because of his virtue but in spite of his lack thereof.
The God of “Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” is a God who is sovereign over deeply flawed people. He remains sovereign over all creation, and whoever occupies the White House won’t change that. As Paul points out in Romans, this doesn’t mean we should sin all the more that grace may abound. Rather, it shows us that our holiness, as an expression of God’s holiness, is not a duty whereby we’re helping God but the privilege of being able to mirror His character.