Op-ed

Commentary: Churches aren't angry enough about infanticide

The message of the church should be to mobilize

ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP/Getty Images


It's been two weeks now since New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) signed into law the Reproductive Health Act.

The Orwellian name for the Act hides the fact that it has nothing to do with "reproductive health," and everything to do with abortion. It's now one of the most expansive abortion laws in the country, allowing abortions to take place after 24 weeks for just about any reason in the state of New York.

Like most conservatives who are pro-life, I was horrified at the news and even more so when I saw the Empire State Building light up pink.

Most conservatives know that Roe v. Wade was the single worst Supreme Court decision since Dred Scott v. Sandford in 1857 and over 61 million infants have paid the price for it ever since.

The case for Dred Scott, much like Roe v. Wade, was poorly argued and unconstitutional. The point of contention was whether or not slavery should be expanded into Western territories through the means of popular sovereignty and whether or not African-Americans had the right to sue federal courts for their freedom. The Supreme Court ultimately decided African-Americans were not considered citizens under the U.S. Constitution but rather property, and the expansion of slavery into the Western territories commenced.

In Roe v. Wade, the court ruled 7-2 that a woman's right to choose to abort her child could not be criminalized by the state in most instances. In Roe v. Wade, the court erroneously applied the due process clause in the 14th Amendment to the decision to have an abortion, when it should have applied the clause to the child's right to live while in the womb.

In the Dred Scott case, the court ruled that the rights of slave owners trumped the rights of the African-American. In Roe v. Wade, the court ruled that the rights of the mother trump the rights of the unborn.

The court in Dred Scott's case cited the Fifth Amendment, which deemed slaves as property and dehumanized African-Americans much like the court dehumanized the unborn by way of the Due Process Clause under the 14th Amendment.

But what surprises me most about the abortion debate, especially when major laws get passed like the Reproductive Health Act in New York, is the silence from a place that ought to be on the front lines of the abortion debate: The churches.

The Sunday after the bill passed in New York, I sat in the pews like I do most Sundays. The sermon was about the power of prayer but there was no mention of what had occurred on Jan. 22 in New York. Not even a passing comment on it.

This spoke volumes to me. As believers, aren't we supposed to hate what God hates? I can't think of God hating anything more than the slaughter of innocent babies and the wrath he must have in store for a nation who not only sits idly by but cheers it on in the name of "women's rights."

Many Christians, of course, already hate abortion. However, we aren't mobilized on this issue at the local church level as much as we should be.

Every pulpit last Sunday and this Sunday should have been filled with anger, rage, and empathy for New York. It should have been a spiritual rallying call for Christians across the country, but it wasn't.

Fast forward to the following week and Democratic Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam is under fire from conservatives for a radio interview he did in which he casually endorsed allowing infants to die after they had been born.

Northam later claimed his comments were misconstrued but stood by them nonetheless. Later that week, an image of Northam in blackface surfaced in a school yearbook and the condemnation for the racist photo came like fury from the left.

In fact, many of his colleagues — including Sen. Kamala Harris (Calif.) and several prominent Democrats — were more upset about the photos than they were about a United States governor endorsing infanticide.

Meanwhile, another Sunday passed with virtual silence from most of the nation's pulpits.

Are we not hypocrites if this doesn't ignite corporate churches to mobilize in prayer and action and compel faith leaders to deliver impassioned sermons against it? With the advent of social media, sermons on how to take on abortion should be inescapable. Like never before pastors have the ability to reach both believers and non-believers through various mediums.

The stance on abortion should be known and the fear should be felt by believers the moment they walk through the church doors — especially after laws like these pass and comments like these are made by leaders in government.

Parishioners are spiritually starved when leaders in the church steer clear of "hot button" issues like abortion. It's times like these when the body of the church needs an unapologetic leader to hold steadfast to God's word no matter who it offends.

They should speak out boldly and offer guidance to an anaemic church body bludgeoned by dominant left-wing narratives that claim issues like abortion should be widely accepted and unquestioned by society.

Christians must realize that we have strength in numbers, but we failed last week because Cuomo set off a chain of events that will undoubtedly have irreversible consequences for Christians who fear God's judgment, our nation, and the unborn who won't get to pursue life and liberty.

Currently, the state of Rhode Island is considering the same kind of law and Vermont is contemplating a law that goes even further.

Who are we in Christ if we're not defending the most vulnerable in society and who are we as a church if we're not equipping believers to stand up for the innocent?

God is not silent about abortion and we shouldn't be silent either. Christians know we are set apart by God and created in his likeness for his purpose before we are ever born which means every life is inherently valuable and part of His divine plan.

The Bible says in Deuteronomy 30:19 that God has called "heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live."

The Bible again is clear about murder in Exodus, Romans, John, Deuteronomy and elsewhere.

And one of the strongest cases for the sanctity of life is in the book of Jeremiah 1:5: "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart," and in Exodus, which states that if two men are fighting and cause injury to a pregnant woman and causes a miscarriage, that person shall be fined.

God does not differentiate between life at conception and life at 24 weeks. To Him, life is sacred at all stages of pregnancy.

This includes pregnancies that have resulted from incest and rape. Deuteronomy 24:16 states: "Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor children put to death for their fathers; each is to die for his own sin."

Exodus not only tells us not to murder but it tells us to not falsely charge the innocent.

The false charge that has been placed on infants is that she/he has no inherent value inside the womb therefore isn't worth protecting nor saving even after exiting the womb. Another false charge society has placed upon infants is that they are an impeding burden to a woman whether it be for health reasons, financial reasons, and/or indignant reasons such as rape or incest.

This is not a call to chastise the church but rather a plea to leaders in the church to courageously stand against this issue loudly and to rally their church bodies to stand for what is right because laws like these have consequences for our nation and for idle believers.

I'm obviously not omnipresent like God but I have attended church services in the past that have blown passed major national news but the news about abortion — especially the latest and most radical abortion legislation coming out of Vermont — is different and cannot go unaddressed by the body.

One would expect a special call to action from the churches this week, calls to gather for prayer, community outreach to centers and pro-life organizations, or even dedicated podcasts and YouTube videos on how to combat a culture that has consigned millions of unborn infants to death.

I combed several church websites, tweets, and podcasts while writing this and hardly anything came up. A quick Google search for keywords like "abortion sermons" or "pastors who have condemned Virginia and New York's abortion laws" pulled up meager results.

A very few churches and religious leaders did speak out, including Carl Lentz., Rev. Franklin Graham and others, but these were the exception, not the rule. The vast majority of pulpits in America appear to have passed over the issue in silence.

The stance against abortion shouldn't be a footnote in American churches, it should be the norm.

One last thing…
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