Howdy y’all! So I’ve been chomping at the bit to write this post with all the abortion stuff going on in the news. But alas, I had to discipline myself to hunker down and study for my final exam in my history of cults class. Which by the way was a really good class. My professor went through a sweeping overview of ancient heresies that have plagued the church and showed how they played out in modern times. For instance, Jehovah’s Witness is simply a modern expression of Arianism where Christ is believed to be a subordinate creature/creation of the Father. Anywho, interesting stuff that I probably need to write another post on, ha. If this little clip left you eager for more, get yourself a copy of Christianity and Its Competitors by James McGoldrick. At some point, I should probably do a review of that book.
Anywho, abortion. So as I’ve been watching the news on this subject, I don’t know about you, but my emotions have been on a rollercoaster. New York was just too much between the announcement that it’s now legal to murder full-term babies, and hey why not just let the mom decide if her baby lives or dies while he/she is kept “comfortable” after they are born? At least it’s consistent with their thinking. This in addition to the lighting up of One World Trade Center pink to celebrate. Come on now, we need to be consistent, so it should’ve been a redder hue for all the blood that has been and will be shed in the name of convenience and autonomy.
Though one good thing that came from this, actually several, are the more conservative pro-life leaning states getting fed up and passing heartbeat bills like they’re going out of style. And Missouri, just makes me beam. The state health department is currently in a legal battle with Planned Parenthood over the renewal of the mill’s business license. If Missouri wins it would be the first state to have zero abortion mills ie buh-bye Planned Parenthood, hasta la vista murder mill.
I don’t think I need to go through the main arguments against abortion since God has instilled his law into all human hearts to know that murder of human beings in or outside the womb is wrong. It’s just a matter of one side suppressing the truth to justify their law-breaking. This is especially true with the knowledge of how the “fetus” is a certified human being from the moment of conception with a developing body and soul. Actually the soul thing was brought up in my cults class and is interesting to think about. Pelagius yep, he’s where the Pelgagian term stemmed from, believed that God created each soul and infused it into the body at conception. So Adam’s sinful posterity being passed down through ordinary means is avoided and therefore, man can essentially be perfect in this life if he really wanted to be. Augustine was of the traducian mindset that everything is just passed down from the parents. Still generally interesting to think about how a soul comes about in conception.
Distracted again, sorry. Go read McGoldrick’s book, it’s really good! Abortion arguments. Apologia Church out in Arizona has been showing up at local city council meetings A LOT to talk about ending abortion, and the kids are even doing it! It’s so great to see them speaking out while the camera pans to the mayor and other elected public servants (yeah remember your job is to serve the public, not yourselves) playing on their phones because they don’t want to hear it. More of this everywhere por favor.
If tomorrow every pro choice person turns pro life and agrees that abortion is murder and needs to end, but no one repents and trusts Christ in the process for the forgiveness of their sins, it would be a failure overall.
The one thing I will say about arguments against abortion is that they need to be consistent. This is why some Christians are not happy with the pro life movement, because it’s full of compromises like victimizing the mother who is an accessory to the murder of her child, and getting bills out that propose murdering babies at an earlier stage of development rather than later. Don’t get me wrong, a victory is a victory no matter how small, but even with these heartbeat bills there will still be babies getting murdered who don’t have a heartbeat.
Being consistent in this instance is defining life at conception. Therefore no murders at any time during the pregnancy, not even the first day Plan B aka “morning after pill”. No murders, no exceptions. Zip, zero, zilch! I know the thinking can go along the lines of, “Well that’s nice in a perfect world, but it ain’t gonna happen in this one so we go for incrementalism.” Whether abortion becomes illegal or not is not the main issue. The truth is the truth and, like the gospel, it needs to be proclaimed and sought after regardless of the expected outcome. Though I believe Alabama did define life at conception in their law which is great.
Another area where some of these pro life bills fall flat is “except if pregnancy puts the mother’s life at risk” or “in cases or rape or incest”. I tell ya, you give sinners any leeway, and they’ll run a million miles with it. I know this because I am a sinner saved by God’s grace that still struggles with sin. So in thinking about this, rape and incest are out as justifications for abortion, because logically the child is receiving the death penalty for the crime of the father. Also, it should then be ok for kids outside of the womb to be prosecuted for any of their father’s crimes. Make sense? No. Good.
I’m not being dispassionate, because there is emotional trauma involved in these situations. However, it’s still not an excuse for murder and even if the child does get murdered, the mom still has to deal with emotional trauma from that. I haven’t watched his talks yet, but apparently Ryan Bomberger who was conceived in rape and adopted (two biggies the pro choice movement hangs onto for justification of abortion) has written and spoken about it.
So this leaves us in the areas where the discussions and thinking should be centered around. There are obviously only one and a half scenarios where the baby’s life would have to be ended in a womb. Ectopic pregnancy is the one (unless I’m not up to date on something that has been found to keep the baby alive in this scenario), and mom having cancer is the half. These are far from the majority of reasons why abortions are performed. Plus in these instances I wouldn’t call ending the baby’s life as murder.
I labeled cancer as a “half” scenario, because there are a ton of variable factors in this one. There are instances where the mom who didn’t find out she had cancer until she was pregnant went full term and her and baby survived. There are instances where mom and baby don’t survive. If the baby’s life is ended so the mom can start chemo, there’s no guarantee the mom would survive the cancer anyway. If the mom doesn’t take chemo while pregnant and tries to go a natural route, I’m not sure if that would be healthy for baby either. Usually on that path, you have to take high amounts of whatever natural source you’re using. Either way, let’s stop wasting time making exceptions for inconsistent emotional situations and focus on how the lives of mom and baby can best be preserved in these two scenarios. The wording of these laws should likewise follow, because “the mother’s life in danger” can be open to all kinds of interpretations.
Every situation in life worth discussing, is a discussion ripe for the gospel.
Finally the gospel—what I really wanted to write about. Sorry, I just had to get all that other stuff out of my brain first. So in a lot of these abortion discussions I’m seeing from both sides, well first, I’m not seeing discussions. Just each side yelling their arguments at each other and no one listening to anyone. This is not productive. With highly emotional topics like this or any sort of debate, there’s a way to go about it to make it productive regardless of whether either party changes their minds. In the end, a good conversation means both sides listened to one another and genuinely considered/responded to what they had to say. Greg Koukl’s Tactics is a great methodology for how to have good conversations.
Finally, the gospel. Though good conversations are part of sharing the gospel, so I at least was getting warmed up on this subject. But seriously, the gospel. I’m not seeing it inserted into abortion discussions from the pro life or Christian peeps in general. If tomorrow every pro choice person turns pro life and agrees that abortion is murder and needs to end, but no one repents and trusts Christ in the process for the forgiveness of their sins, it would be a failure overall. Earthly life is important, but eternal life is more important. God’s glory even more important than both.
This is kind of like the “good works don’t share the gospel, words do” argument I wrote about. In this case, words are being used, but not the words of eternal life. As I argue in my previous post, good works can set the stage for the gospel to be proclaimed but they don’t actually communicate the gospel. When a Christian just presents the pro life (and hopefully biblical) arguments against abortion and then stops, they have set the stage, but ignored the main event of sharing the gospel.
It’s important to note that souls are at stake on both sides of this issue. Not everyone is a Christian who is pro life. So whether we’re discussing the abortion issue with a pro-life, non-Christian or a pro choicer, eventually the convo needs to get around to the gospel and that individual’s need for Christ as their savior as much as possible. If your time is limited, shorten the pro life convo and get to the gospel quicker. Also notice that I said “individual”. In just thinking about abortion as a political or social issue to get charged up about, concern for the individuals involved get swept under the rug. Perhaps not the baby, but the mother, and often times father, who want to murder their son/daughter in the womb need Christ like any other sinner.
On the other hand, If you’re speaking to a pro-choice Christian, they are either not saved or need a gentle correction to align their thinking back to God’s Word. By the way, being gentle doesn’t mean not saying what needs to be said. It comes down to the motive behind what you are saying. Correcting in gentleness also applies to the screaming unbelieving mom in your face giving you the middle finger, because you offered to give her an alternative to allowing her baby to be murdered in her womb. 2 Timothy 2 is a good reminder of this especially verses 24–26: “And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will” (ESV).
Each conversation is going to be unique and circumstances may not allow the gospel to come in, but it should always be the end goal in the back of your mind. This is the only thing that will truly convince a non-believer’s heart of God’s truth while pointing an erring believer back to it. Every situation in life worth discussing, is a discussion ripe for the gospel. In the big end game of life, saved souls and God’s glory are the ultimate goals. 🐘