Presumptive President-elect Joe Biden pledged not to “see red states and blue states, only to sees the United States” and quoted from the hymn “On Eagle’s Wings" as he addressed the nation in a victory speech Saturday night.
“I pledge to be a president who seeks not to divide but unify. Who doesn’t see red states and blue states, only sees the United States. And work with all my heart with the confidence of the whole people, to win the confidence of all of you. And for that is what America I believe is about. It’s about people. And that’s what our administration will be all about,” Biden said in his speech in Wilmington, Delaware.
While President Donald Trump hasn’t conceded defeat in the 2020 election, as his campaign has several legal challenges in states over ballot counting discrepancies, Biden called his victory “clear” and “convincing.”
“For all those of you who voted President Trump, I understand the disappointment tonight,” he said. “I’ve lost a couple of times myself, but now let’s give each other a chance. It’s time to put away the harsh rhetoric, lower the temperature, see each other again, listen to each other again. And to make progress, we have to stop treating our opponents as our enemies. They are not our enemies. They are Americans. They are Americans.”
Referring to the book of Ecclesiastes in the Bible, Biden continued, “‘To everything there is a season: a time to build, a time to reap, and a time to sow and a time to heal.’ This is the time to heal in America.”
He added, “Americans have called upon us to marshal the forces of decency, the forces of fairness, to marshal the forces of science and the forces of hope in the great battles of our time. The battle to control the virus. The battle to build prosperity. The battle to secure your family’s healthcare. The battle to achieve racial justice and root out systemic racism in this country.”
Biden also recalled his deceased son, Beau, a former attorney general of Delaware who died in 2015 from brain cancer.
“Folks, in the last days of the campaign, I began thinking about a hymn that means a lot to me and my family, particularly my deceased son Beau,” he said. “It captures the faith that sustains me and which I believe sustains America,” he added, referring to Americans who have lost a loved one through COVID-19 this year.
“And he will raise you up on eagles’ wings, bear you on the breath of dawn, and make you to shine like the sun and hold you in the palm of his hand,” Biden recited the lyrics of the hymn.
“And now together on eagles’ wings, we embark on the work that God and history have called us to do with full hearts and steady hands, with faith in America and in each other, with love of country, a thirst for justice,” he continued. “Let us be the nation that we know we can be. A nation united, a nation strengthened, a nation healed.”
Some Christian leaders and Republicans reacted to Biden’s declared victory on Saturday.
J.D. Greear, the pastor of The Summit Church in North Carolina and president of the Southern Baptist Convention, urged Christians to pray for Biden. “Join me in praying for @joebiden and our country. Pray for wisdom, justice, and truth. I pray for success in where he leads in what is righteous and right,” he wrote on Twitter.
Russell Moore, president of the SBC’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, also encouraged Christians to pray for Biden.
“No matter how you voted, now is the time to pray for the country and for our newly elected leaders in both the White House and the Congress,” Moore wrote on his website.
“If government or ideology is an idol for us then the stakes are always apocalyptic and existential,” he warned. “If we seek first the kingdom of God, then we can ask God to bring about good from our leaders — to hold them accountable when they don’t and to commend them when they do, without checking first with whether praying for such is to the advantage or disadvantage of whatever our temporal ‘tribe’ might be.”
Dwight McKissic, the founder and senior pastor of Cornerstone Baptist Church in Arlington, Texas, wrote on Twitter: “May our land be healed from the virus, unrighteousness, racism, elitism, classism, sexism, family division, devaluing human life, in the womb, and outside the womb. May humility, holiness, health, wholeness and joy return to the land. Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.”
Derwin L. Gray, the lead pastor of Transformation Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, warned Christians not to give “Messianic hope and expectation to any president, a Democrat or a Republican. You will be disappointed every time. Do not let the zeitgeist captivate you. Your captivation is reserved for Christ alone,” he tweeted.
Pastor Jack Graham of Prestonwood Baptist Church in Plano, Texas, said on Twitter, "America cannot heal as long as we approve of aborting millions of unborn babies and flaunting the moral laws of God without remorse or repentance."
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, a Republican, congratulated Biden. “I have prayed for our president most of my adult life. I will be praying for you and your success. Now is the time to heal deep wounds. Many are counting on you to lead the way,” he wrote on Twitter.
Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, wrote, “Ann and I extend our congratulations to President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. We know both of them as people of goodwill and admirable character. We pray that God may bless them in the days and years ahead.”
However, the pro-life group National Right to Life noted in a statement to The Christian Post on Saturday that both Biden and Harris were endorsed by NARAL and Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion business in the nation.
“In their release endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden, NARAL pointed out that a Biden/Harris presidency would ‘expand access’ to abortion. Biden would be the abortion president. He has pledged to promote abortion on demand and reverse pro-life laws and policies,” National Right to Life said.
Kristen Day, executive director of Democrats for Life of America,” said in a statement to CP that Biden’s win “is by no means a mandate to embrace extreme abortion policy, like eliminating abortion regulations or the Hyde Amendment.
“The Democratic Party should be thankful and attentive to those voters who had enough faith in Biden’s background and humanity to cast their ballot for the ticket despite their pro-life stance. The party should also be mindful of the negative effect the extreme abortion position had on congressional and down-ballot races, particularly in the south and middle America,” Day continued, noting that 81 candidates endorsed by Democrats for Life won their elections.