In January of every year, evangelical Christians and other social conservatives observe a Day for the Sanctity of Human Life. It is a day set aside to remember that there is an ongoing holocaust in America. Though abortion rates have dropped slightly in the past decade, there are still millions of babies aborted every year. Unfortunately, because this practice has been protected by law for well over three decades, it has become an accepted reality, even among those who oppose it.
I want to remind us that though abortion is a grievous reality, it should never be accepted by those who claim the name of Christ. How would we react if our government set up centers for human beings that functioned like animal shelters? These centers would collect unwanted children or would be drop off stations for unwanted children between infancy and age 18. There would be a 7 or 14 day period in which the children could be adopted, but if they were not adopted, they would be humanely executed. Such a thing would be horrific! We know that we would not allow something so heinous to exist in our communities. Yet this is exactly what our government and our culture does with unwanted unborn children, only without the period allowed for adoption and without a humane execution. In those two ways, pets are treated better than the unborn in our culture.
Now please know my heart at this point — I am not asking us to raise up in righteous fury and march against this practice (although such a reaction, and even more, is certainly justified). My goal is simply to move us to care, to keep us from being comfortable with a status quo that devalues and destroys human life as a matter of personal privacy and convenience. Every human being is sacred in God’s sight, from the moment of conception. We are His image bearers, and not one of us is an accident. It is God who opens the womb (Gen 29:31), and “children are a gift of the LORD; the fruit of the womb is a reward.” (Psalm 127:3) Every life, no matter how young or how old, possesses a divinely endowed gift of personhood and dignity that is valued far above any other creature in the created order, which is why God tells us, “You shall not kill.” (Exod 20:13)
Ultimately, we know that marches and political action campaigns can never truly change human hearts. Only the gospel can change people. Only hearts changed by Christ will appreciate and protect life as God commands. However, though gospel proclamation should always be the primary means by which Christians engage culture, we can and should be responsible citizens who do more.
We can pray that God will close our local abortion mills; we can pray for the salvation of abortion clinic doctors and staff; we can go and pray outside our local abortion clinic every Wednesday and Friday morning, when abortions are scheduled; we can pray for expectant mothers in crisis to look to Christ and to value life instead of considering abortion; and we can pray for sexual abstinence among the unwed and greater sexual responsibility among families who are incapable of supporting more children.
We can also take action to support crisis pregnancy centers. Few of our members realize that Morningview gives a small amount of support to our local crisis pregnancy center every month to support their labors in saving unborn lives. The center is called First Choice Women’s Medical Center and they assist crisis moms in so many ways in an effort to help them protect their unborn children. Life should indeed be our “First Choice.” More of our members could give through the church to support this incredible ministry, or many of us could give some of our time by volunteering there.
We can also vote biblically. Murder should never be endorsed by any culture at any time. Our elected officials are directly responsible for the laws that govern our land. When we consider a candidate for office, we should consider how closely a candidate’s position on matters of law aligns with Scripture. Those that align more closely should receive our vote. Particularly, we should weigh their position on the Sanctity of Human life. Some dismiss this as “single-issue voting,” but can any Christian honestly say that matters of the economy or the environment or international policy or social welfare carry more weight than the ongoing murder of unborn children?
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, we need to be people who support the main social remedy for abortion: adoption. It is wrong for us to condemn the practice of abortion without offering mothers in crisis the love and forgiveness of Christ. It is wrong for us to condemn the practice of abortion without being prepared to offer this important social remedy. If we are truly concerned about unwanted children, we will be the first ones to receive them into our homes and hearts and churches. Christians can have an incredible impact on culture by being foster parents, by adopting those in need, and by supporting others who share the burden to do the same.
As you pray for the end of the American holocaust, consider what God would have you do.