As I write this blog, I know that there is the possibility that some people are not going to like what is being shared but I believe this is what I need to share.
In our world today, certain words or topics have become major “hot-button” issues. Just the mention of these (and they may differ from country to country, state to state) cause people in some instances to become incensed to the point that no normal conversation is able to be had.
In other instances, people can look at issues and have a discussion that may result in them deciding to agree to disagree. In some cases, these conversations have an emotional element to them because of the topic, but even then, people are able to talk about things in a respectful manner. Though I must admit. this seems to be getting to be less the case as you hear and watch people discuss whatever item is on the burner at the time.
In this blog, and the next, we are going to tackle a very highly-charged issue. We are going to talk about the life of the unborn child and the issue of abortion. Just that word and the topic itself can cause tension between opposing sides. In some ways, we understand it because we are talking about the issue of life itself.
I would like to first address some things from the view of my role as a pastor and a follower of Christ. There is a concern that when a pastor speaks about a particular subject, that he may be crossing the line politically. In other words, we (ministers) should not speak on this particular subject, or certain others for that matter, because, after all, this is a political issue and you may be in danger of losing the church’s tax-exempt status by discussing it openly.
Having consulted with the Pacific Justice Institute (check them out if you get a chance) regarding this topic we are looking at, I learned that the issue is that pastors cannot endorse or oppose candidates or political parties by publicly using their speaking forum to do so. Having said that, the government has not limited a pastor or church from talking about issues such as abortion, etc.
With that in mind, and with the recent passing of a new abortion law in New York, I decided that it was time to speak out, first and foremost, from what I believe the Bible says about the life of the unborn to the fact that in my humble opinion, abortion is not a political issue by and large.
We have made it such with legislation such as Roe vs. Wade. And I am not saying that we should never legislate morality (we deal with crime, etc., in the court systems), but to me, this issue and many others go way beyond politics.
This is a moral and social issue, and most important, a Biblical issue. We are talking about life. What God says about these things trumps (no pun intended) what any government entity may claim about this. Of course, a person’s view on many issues in our culture revolves around our view of God. Though we could discuss the philosophical side of why I believe abortion is wrong, I will stick to what God’s truth, the Bible, says about children, life, etc.
We will look closer at the Biblical record in our next blog, but I want to mention a few things before finishing up this article.
** We are not here to shame someone who may have had an abortion. God’s grace and mercy reaches out to anyone who has gone through a situation such as this. Many people live with guilt after making a decision to abort a child, but God’s love and forgiveness extends to any person who asks. There is nothing any person can do that is outside of God’s forgiveness.
It does not matter the issue, God’s grace can change our lives, rid ourselves of the guilt we may be carrying and transform us from the inside out. I would encourage you to read the book of Ephesians and Titus, chapter 3. These are just two examples of where we see what God does in the life of any person who surrenders their life to Jesus Christ by faith.
** Regarding the idea that what is in the womb of the mom is subhuman, a blob, not viable, etc., and not a human being, we will see in our next blog that anything less than acknowledging that the life in the womb is a child is contrary to the Biblical record.
Not only that, and I realize that even though there are doctors and those in the medical profession who say that it is not a viable human in the womb, many in the same field hold to the view that life begins at conception, which lines up with the Bible’s statements about the beginning of the life of the child (Ps. 51:5).
** I am not worried about someone not liking what I have to say. Though I pastor a church, and I write this, yes, as a leader in a local body of believers, I am speaking more so as a believer in Jesus Christ that desires to teach the Word of God, regardless the topic. People reading this do not have to agree with me, but that will not stop me from speaking out.
My goal in writing is, and has been, to teach the Word of God the best I could to all who are interested, and sometimes that means tackling difficult and opposite viewpoints on things. And since this particular topic of abortion is front and center in our culture right now, I am not going to hide from it. It may be that we will have to agree to disagree on what I say.
** It is important that we be sensitive to others when speaking on a subject, no matter the topic. I think we can share our view with both humility and a dose of grace. That would deal with any topic that we are discussing.
Having said that, it does not mean that a Christian worldview, which I espouse and teach from, should be held in check or not shared because of how some people may perceive what is said or have a strong reaction to what is stated.
We should be willing to evaluate things without getting caught up in the news approach we see often on television or hear on the radio, a constant putdown or ridiculing of a different perspective on things. We must not lower ourselves to that approach when we disagree on things. I find it interesting that often the one opinion or thought people do not want to give consideration or credence to is the Christian worldview.
In that view, the Scriptures are what we use to form our thoughts on life. As we read the Bible, we learn that God is truth (John 17:3), so if we are Christ-followers, we need to see what God has to say directly, or by principle, on cultural and social issues taking place in the world today from the revelation of Himself He has left to us, the written Word of God.