Full question: Why is abortion such a line in the sand for Christians–why can’t I be left alone to make my own choices for my own body?
- The opening story about a child found in a box on the road should cause us to give unborn children the benefit of the doubt and the right to life
- We know that protecting human life is honorable and right
- Science has shown us many individual characteristics are evident soon after conception; they are distinct human beings that deserve our loving protection
- God created us in His own image and Jesus said we should care for “the least of these”
- Our constitution was founded on principles that all humans were created equally (not that we’ve done a good job displaying loyalty to this opening statement!)
- Those who have participated in abortion in the past can come to God and find His forgiveness, grace, the promise of a new life and a far better future
Mittelberg presents a true story about Arnie Skeie finding a child in a box in the middle of the road and Arnie’s response. Arnie was driving with his young daughter when he decided to stop and take a look at the box. Fortunately for the little boy inside, Arnie made the right choice and saved a life.
The Importance of the Issue
- Mittelberg shares the story of their first child being born almost 3 months premature, a tiny baby. He reminds us that we get to make a lot of choices about harmless actions, but no one (male or female) “has the freedom to squash another human life, no matter how small or hidden.”
- The number of abortions every year in our country is greater than the combined number of people killed in all the wars this country has participated in. Over 50,000,000 unborn Americans have been killed in the past forty years. (See this factsheet on the National Right to Life website.)
- The overview of abortion procedures is presented in this section…I’m not going to retype them here, simply appalling, but I appreciate the information and how it is presented.
Scientific advancements have given great insight into the entire gestation process…truly amazing! In the first four months:
- genetically unique: all human chromosomes are in place (from day one)
- beating heart
- own blood type
- all internal organs
- independent brain waves
The unborn child can kick, swim, turn her head back and forth, make facial gestures, grasp objects and even have dreams.
Even the owner of Oregon’s largest abortion clinic admitted: “Of course human life begins at conception.”
Hypothetical Story Illustrates a Good Point
- Suppose someone broke into your house, left a baby in your family room, then fled the scene. What would you do? Would you call a doctor and have the baby destroyed, thus removing the unwanted child from your home? I don’t think so! Everyone involved would be guilty of murder, even though the existence of the child was not yours, not wanted and “not your fault.”
- See this article from 10 years ago: “Statistics show that 84 percent of women decide against an abortion after seeing an ultrasound of their baby.”
- Former director of a Planned Parenthood clinic resigned her post and became a pro-life advocate after seeing the ultrasound image of an abortion actually in progress. “I could see the whole profile of the baby of thirteen weeks…I could see the probe…I could see the baby try to move away from the probe.”
Many people who are not Christians respect the Bible for its teaching on morals.
- God made us in his image Genesis 1:26-27
- The Ten Commandments highlighted the importance of human life Exodus 20:13
- God Knew us from the Womb Psalm 139:13-17
- God’s condemnation of abortion is implicit in his other declarations
- Jesus charged us with the care of “the least of these” Matthew 25:42-26
- Bible writers believed in life at conception Jeremiah 1:5, Luke 1:41-44, Galatians 1:15
Our Declaration of Independence includes this in the opening statements:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men.
- Individuals matter over and above the state and therefore deserve the right of freedom and the government’s protection.
- The U.S. Constitution declares that “no state shall deprive any person of life, liberty or property without due process of law.” As a country,
- we have failed African-Americans by denying liberty,
- we have failed Native Americans by denying their property and
- we continue to deny life to those unborn.
- “We cannot afford to wait for history to prove us wrong about the unborn.” (See Link: http://amzn.com/0764220500).
If There’s Any Doubt
Perhaps we can ask this question:
In light of all the information from science, Scripture, and the civil rights due all human beings, how sure are you that this is not a human life worthy of our full protection?
Truth Plus Grace
Remember, “let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.” Colossians 4:6. We have a God that longs to forgive and heal. His grace is given in abundance! Romans 5:20
Tips for Talking About This Issue
Remember that this is a deeply personal issue for many. Follow James’ advice wisely, “be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry” James 1:19.
- Use a story like the one at the beginning of this chapter to help people realize they should give unborn children a chance
- Speak boldly, but with gentleness and respect 1 Peter 3:15-16
- Avoid inflammatory terms: it’s one thing to believe abortion is murder, it’s another thing to be accused of murder.
- Remember that there is an abortion industry that has convinced many that this procedure is like removing “lumps” not an intentional act of murder
- Remember that people will often resist changing their views on issues until God changes their hearts. Don’t make agreement on this issue a prerequisite to salvation.
- God’s way is to “conquer evil by doing good” Romans 12:21
Questions for discussion
- Have you ever had an experience similar to Arnie’s? If so, did you “give the benefit of the doubt”? How did it work out?
- How well-known do you think the scientific data is about the amazing and early development of unborn children?
- Are there practical steps that should be taken to make that data better known?
- Reread the Psalm 139:13-17 passage. How does it make you feel about God’s attitude toward you? toward unborn children?
- How do you think the United States is doing in terms of applying its foundational principles of being “created equal” and “endowed with certain unalienable rights” to all human beings?
- What are some dos and don’ts–whether listed in this chapter, or others you can think of–that you think might help as you talk to others about this important question?