Summary: Because the pre-born are people, they must be protected.

Taking Life Seriously

Jeremiah 1:5

Rev. Brian Bill

January 18-19, 2014

A lot of things happened in 1973, 41 years ago. I was a teenager with a face filled with acne and an appetite for adventure. Beth was a cute ten-year-old dreaming of her Prince Charming from the Dairy State. Notre Dame topped the college football rankings with a perfect 11-0 season. The “Sting” took home the Oscar for best picture and “The Walton’s” swept five Emmy categories. The price of gas was 40 cents, the minimum wage was $1.60, and a first-class stamp cost 8 cents. The Sears Tower opened, the Watergate Hearings were initiated, the Vietnam War ended…and another battle began.

41 years ago this Wednesday, in their Roe v. Wade decision, the Supreme Court declared war on a woman’s womb, resulting in the deaths of more than 56 million people. This decision has tragically altered the moral, medical and legal landscape of our nation.

Some pastors have chosen, for various reasons, to remain silent on this topic or to even approve of abortion. I don’t see either as an option. Where God has spoken, we must speak. My goal is not to be politically correct but to be biblically correct. We’re compelled and constrained to communicate God’s heart as clearly as we can, with as much love as we can. Proverbs 14:25 summarizes our purpose and our hope: “A truthful witness saves lives, but a false witness is deceitful.”

I submit that while abortion is, and should be debated politically, discussed emotionally, and described medically, at its primary roots, abortion is a moral issue, and as such, must be defined biblically. Randy Alcorn says, “We shake our heads in disgust at the German church’s tolerance of one holocaust while ignoring our own tolerance of another.” Pastor Matt Chandler says, “To be indifferent is to make us complicit in this tragedy.”

Tomorrow we recognize the incredible impact that Martin Luther King, Jr. had in helping to establish the dignity of every person, regardless of skin color. But we still have a long way to go to protect the greatest of all human rights – the right to life for the preborn. One quote from him is particularly poignant when it comes to this issue: “There comes a time when silence is betrayal.” I pray that as God’s people we will have the conviction to stand up on behalf of those in their mother’s wombs. Proverbs 31:8-9 compels us to do so: “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”

I see three watershed issues in our culture today – God as Creator, the definition of marriage and the dignity of the preborn. Not surprisingly, the Bible has a lot to say about each of these. I want to be upfront about why I choose to preach on this topic every January and at other times of the year.

• To equip us to think biblically about abortion.

• To mobilize us to respond with courage and compassion.

• To offer grace and forgiveness to those who have had an abortion. Did you know that half of all pregnancies are unintended and that by the age of 45, 1 out of 3 women will have had an abortion?

• To prevent some of you, or your friends, from getting an abortion.

• In short, I pray that this sermon ends up saving babies.

Have you seen the clip of the Home Depot employee who was standing near a shopping cart this week when a baby fell out? Watch how he responds.

→ Play Video

This brings new meaning to Home Depot’s motto doesn’t it? More Saving. More Doing. On this Sanctity of Human Life weekend, we affirm, along with thousands of other churches, that every person from conception forward is an image bearer of God, stamped with divine dignity and worthy of catching. It’s my prayer that there will be more saving and more doing done by each of us.

Before I arrived at my previous church a nineteen-year-old college student came to services one Sunday and heard a message on the sanctity of life. She was pregnant, her life was in chaos and she was seriously considering abortion, especially because her boyfriend was urging her to do so. As she sat through the sermon, she made the decision to give birth to her son. He was involved in AWANA, was saved when he was eight-years-old and I had the joy of baptizing him several years ago. A couple years ago I had both him and his mom come up on the platform at the end of a sermon on the Sanctity of Life to tell their story. The congregation rose to their feet and started cheering uncontrollably. Seth is now 16 years old and in high school.

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