Monday, January 22, 2007

On Abortion

Thirty-four years ago, in what has become the most famous decision in Supreme Court history, seven American citizens declared abortion to be legal. They found a new right in the fourteenth amendment, a right that had been unknown for the previous 110 years since its ratification. This new right paved the road for the abortion of 45,000,000 babies in the time since January 22, 1973. Today, some 3,500 babies will be "terminated," 3255 simply for reasons of convenience (93%).

In modern America, we have a culture that has separated marriage, sex, and children. We want one without the other two, and sometimes two without the third. Too many people view motherhood as the punishment for having sex.

What's the hope? Must we sacrifice another generation to the gods of convenience and self-gratification? How should we respond?

We must value all life.

According to the biblical evidence, God recognizes the humanity of a child long before its birth. Unborn children, at whatever stage of development, are individual persons with all the rights afforded to other humans. Because an unborn child is in the image of God, we must acknowledge the sanctity of his life. Medically speaking, the unborn child is just as human as a born child is. Therefore abortion is the taking of human life, and is condemned as the sin of murder. Abortion is not the answer to the problem of unwanted pregnancies.

Human life is a gift from God, and its origin in biological terms reflects the order of creation. Specifically, at the point of conception the one-celled human zygote is a person in the fullest sense, an image-bearer of God deserving the same respect and protection that we should afford all human beings.

We must not rely too heavily on government.

The overturning of Roe v. Wade is a constant discussion in political circles. Each election cycle brings it to the forefront again. Court nominees are asked their position on the case under of the guise of searching for a position on stare decisus. We must realize that overturning Roe v. Wade would not outlaw abortion. It would simply return the laws of abortion to the individual states. Then each state could make its own decision about abortion.

Without question, Roe v. Wade should be overturned. But we must realize that will not solve the abortion problem.

We should be consistently protective of life, even in cases of rape, incest, or the life of the mother?

Cases of rape or incest are an easy answer. A child is no less a child because his father is an idiot. While rape and incest are horrible crimes that should be punished to the full extent of the law, it does not provide an excuse to murder the baby produced by that sinful act. We should support the victims of these crimes, including the ones who have not yet been born.

In cases of the life of the mother, it is somewhat ethically more challenging. Some would argue that we should never sacrifice two lives for the sake of one. We should abort the baby rather than risk the death of the baby and mother both. It seems more consistent with biblical teaching to honor both the life of the mother and the baby by leaving them in God’s hands with the best medical care available. God is the one who gives life and takes it. We should not play God with the lives of the mother and baby.

We must be willing to love as Christ loved and get involved in the lives of those in need.

We must provide alternatives to abortion. We need to focus on adoption. I am convinced that, in most cases, a baby is better off being raised by two mature and loving parents who adopt him than by a teenage mother. By bringing loving, Christian couples together with unwed mothers who do not want their babies, we can provide a great service that honors life.

We must provide care and support for unwed mothers. This includes counseling, teaching, and helping to provide for their needs. The gospel of Jesus Christ calls us to do no less. It will require an investment of time and energy, of emotion and sympathy, and even of finances. By reaching out to help these mothers, we can model the love of Christ and honor the life that God gives.

We must teach and model biblical purity. The easiest way to solve the abortion problem is to teach the Bible’s view of marriage, sex, and children. Too often, we have separated those things. By raising young men and young women who see sex honored as God’s gift in marriage, and children as the blessing of God, we can remove the need for abortion.

We must realize that changing laws will not fix the problem. We must strive to change hearts through the message of Jesus Christ. Only Jesus can change our views through the gospel that restores dignity and preciousness to all of life. Picketing will likely do little. Action will do much.

For those who have had an abortion, the great news is that there is forgiveness in Christ. His death for sin covers even the sin of abortion. You need not live in guilt. You can experience the grace of forgiveness.

For those contemplating abortion, please consider your other options. You do not need to go down this road. If you do not want to keep your baby, there are loving, Christian couples who would love to adopt your baby and raise him in a godly home.

For God, all life is sacred because all life is created in his image. As we saw in the Bible, unborn children are clearly recognized as humans and are treated as such, even in the law. As we view life from God’s perspective, it should cause us to honor life just as God does. We must let him be the taker of life, just as he is the giver. We dare not play God on our own, even if we might be inconvenienced.

3 comments:

Scott Aniol said...

Hey, I made the ultimate statement and had a baby on Monday!

Larry said...

You had a baby??? I let my wife do that. I was too much of a wimp.

Seriously though, congrats. That's wonderful. Is this your first? (I can't remember.)

A new life is an incredible gift from God.

Scott Aniol said...

Yes; our first. Our midwife is "Christian" (Romanist, I think), and reminded us of the date and that we were making a statement by having a baby!

And yes, my wife did all the work. ;)