Original article written on December 12, 2020. The following is a revised reflection dated January 11, 2021.
Rev. Dr. Kenneth E. Harris
President and Professor of Biblical Studies, ETS
Pastor, Detroit Bible Tabernacle
On Saturday, December 12, 2020, I woke up at 1am. As I reflected about the death of Ruthie, my wife of fifty years, and the then over 300,000 Covid-19 deaths, it was overwhelming! I thought about the tens of thousands of families who have suffered the loss of loved ones. As of Sunday, January 10, 2021, the death count exceeds 374,000.
On Friday, December 11, the U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) slammed the door on the Trump administration’s effort to overturn the 2020 election in the Texas case. An astounding 126 members of Congress and 19 states supported the administration’s efforts. The SCOTUS action officially ended the mindless effort to trash the votes of millions of Americans because of alleged voter fraud. It was also the day the first coronavirus vaccine was approved by the FDA. It was a “good news” Friday that offered hope for tens of thousands. There was one problem: Trump had forty more days.
The number forty is significant biblically. In Genesis, it rained forty days after Noah built the ark. The ark then floated on the Flood waters for another forty days. Moses, Elijah and Jesus fasted forty days in preparation to do God’s work. Scripture records the Philistine giant, Goliath, who threatened Israel for forty days before being killed by young David. I thought, “What would be the response to forty more days of Trump nationalism?” After my initial reflections on these matters, I have some answers that include the following:
Black Lives Matter banners were ripped from black churches in Washington, D.C., by gangs of Trump supporters.
The criminally negligent mishandling of the Covid-19 response has deteriorated further with the assertion that infection and death statistics are inflated while thousands continue to die daily. To add insult to injury, the distribution of approved vaccines has been a disaster, with some supplies being destroyed. The term “post-Covid” will have to wait.
Congress has validated the Biden/Harris Electoral College victory.
As a result of the January 6, 2021 bloody, seditious and treasonous trashing of the Capitol building by Trump disciples, Republicans are abandoning the president – a little too late! The attempted insurrection and attack on our democracy, complete with Confederate and Trump flags, failed!
Trump disciples attempted to blame Black Lives Matter and ANTIFA supporters for the violence.
Two Georgia Democrats were elected to the U.S. Senate in run-off elections. The African American and Jewish senators-elect turned Georgia blue.
The Republican party lost control of the House, the Senate and the White House.
Senator Mitch “Moscow” McConnel has been dethroned as Senate majority leader.
There are bi-partisan calls for the removal of the president via impeachment or the 25th Amendment.
The president, Pennsylvania senator Josh Hawley, senator Ted Cruz, Donald, Jr., Rudy Giuliani and others face increased scrutiny for inciting violence.
TEN MORE DAYS?
As a black Christian, I am saddened by this whole experience. As Trump Evangelical supporters begin abandoning the President, it appears they have suffered from what MLK called “the tranquilizing drug of gradualism.” Yet, I am encouraged, hopeful and in awe of how God is allowing this narrative to play out - affirming God’s justice, righteousness and sovereign rule over church and society. Jesus Christ is still the Prince of Peace, Lord of Lords and King of Kings.
May God bless the Biden/Harris team as they prepare to lead our nation out of a season of darkness into a new season of light.