This is the podcast episode that scared me for the past 12 months resulting in disobedience on my part for far too long. And here it is! You can listen to the podcast above or read the transcript (including the links & sources) below. God Bless!
So back in late January, I was watching a political show and they were discussing the bill that was passed in New York state making abortion legal up to 40 weeks.
As discussions continued on the panel, a staggering statistic was brought up. According to the Abortion Worldwide Report, released by Thomas W. Jacobson and William Robert Johnson, there have been approximately 1 billion abortions conducted since 1920 (when abortion was first made legal in the Soviet Union).
Back in late January, I was watching one of my favourite news shows and they were discussing the bill that had just passed in New York state by Governor Cuomo making abortion legal up to 40 weeks.
1 billion babies whose lives were arbitrarily ended in the last 99 years. I wondered how different our world would have been with the influence of not only 1 extra billion people but their children and their children’s children. I
A member of the panel brought up a powerful and humbling point that has not left me in the months since.
When we think of the realities of the Atlantic Slave Trade, we tend to think something along these lines:
“Well, if I had been there when people were owning slaves, or if I had seen someone dehumanizing a person of colour, I would have spoken up. I would have definitely been among the abolitionists!”
Or perhaps when we are reminded of the horrors of the Jewish Holocaust during World War II, we declare to people:
“Well, if I had been in Germany, I wouldn’t have stood for Naziism. If I had been in Europe, I would have helped hide the Jews. I would have been among the people to stand up for what’s right!”
Despite the fact that these are very righteous statements, we need to remember that we have a huge benefit of hindsight. We’ve learned the stories of the heroes of history who risked anything and everything to stand up for what was right in the face of pure evil.
We get pumped up and motivated. Our imaginations run wild with the possibilities of what we could have done then and what we surely would do now if a similar situation arose.
But is that really true?
In light of the 1 billion abortions stat I just gave you, could you think of anything more diabolical that has ever taken place on this planet? What are we going to do to support the fight for the unborn?
I am going to be very transparent for a moment.
Until now, I personally have done very little. I do not want to get into fights and confrontation with people. I do not want to seem intolerant. I do not want to put myself out on the limb as one of “those hateful people.”
I have stayed silent. I have nodded. A few times, I’ve probably even forced an insincere smile. And yet I flatter my ego that I would have been an abolitionist if I had lived in 19th century America, or that I would have risked my life, and the life of my babies, to rescue the Jews from the Nazis!
What a dishonour to the brave, the righteous and the faithful who faced imprisonment, or torture, or the firing squad, or a train ride to a concentration camp for standing for the human rights of the vulnerable!
And yet I, and many like me, who can talk big to like-minded people, won’t risk the shame or scorn of faceless people on the internet for exercising my right to free speech.
This was a humbling moment for me, but a necessary one. And with all the love and grace in the world, I hope it may be for you too.
The African-American slaves and the European Jews were perceived by many as being sub-human. And as their rights were not considered worth protecting, then what moral dilemma could there possibly be enslaving them or exterminating them?
Does this argument sound familiar?
The Nazis claimed that the Germans’ rights were being infringed upon by the Jews. The Confederate constitution claimed that owning slaves was their right. These rights had to be upheld and when one dared to challenge them, they were punished!
How about that one?
It should sound eerily familiar, too.
In January, Justin Trudeau, when in Hamilton Ontario, answered a student’s question about free speech saying, “An organization that has the explicit purpose of restricting women’s rights by removing rights to abortion, the right for women to control their own bodies, is not in line with where we are as a government and quite frankly where we are as a society,”
To which Ben Shapiro, an American conservative political commentator, responded one week later at the March for Life stating, “Maybe they’re right. Maybe we today here are not in line with the rest of society. To which I say, ‘good.’ So were the abolitionists. So were the civil rights marchers. So were the martyrs in Rome and the Jews in Egypt. Righteousness doesn’t have to be popular; it just has to be righteous.”
At some point in time, I naively concluded that there wasn’t much that could be done in Canada when it came to abortion. There were several reasons for it, too.
- The fact is that there has been no regulation of abortion since the law was repealed in 1988. This means that for 30 years full-term abortions have been legal in Canada.
- Abortion procedures have been covered under Canada Health Act for decades.
- Many pro-life conservative MPs have made it clear that they are not in favour of opening the abortion debate to regulate the procedures, let alone pursuing the avenue to have the law repealed. There is a fear that a national debate of this kind could divide the country with serious long-lasting effects.
When I considered all of these things, I figured, “The liberals won this round and got their way. What more could they want, right?”
Wrong. It isn’t enough.
Now, they’re coming after our right to free speech so that they can silence us on this issue.
In Canada, the Liberal government has made strides to strongly discourage anyone from taking a pro-life stance. This was the case in the Wynne government in Ontario and has been the case of the last couple of years with the Trudeau government.
I included our prime minister’s quote in here, not to cause fear, but to call people to awareness. Apathy, ignorance and a zeal to appear as “tolerant” as our neighbours or co-workers will pull us down the wrong path.
I included Shapiro’s quote because I want you to be encouraged! Taking a stand now, as intimidating as that may seem, puts us on the right side of history.
It may keep us out of line with society as one ideological group sees it, but it puts us in line with our beliefs and principles.
What Canada needs is revival.
I do not believe that all pro-choice supporters or women who have had an abortion are evil, but the lie they’re believing in is. Which is why when you look at the advocates and politicians who promote this ideology, it’s hard to imagine how they could have crossed to the other side.
And yet it is this that proves that the opposition to life goes beyond the man or the woman themselves.
For “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
For how can the Prime Minister of a free country deny a pre-existing internship grant to applicants who refuse to agree with his views on reproductive rights?
How could a person support late-term abortion up to the moment of birth? Worse still, how could a human being propose legalizing infanticide requiring only one doctor to sign off? Hitler at least required three!
A supernatural problem requires a supernatural solution.
And on that afternoon in January, as I listened to the facts, the commentary, and my own emotions swirling in my brain, I stopped to pray. And I asked God, “what would you have us do? How do You look at all of this?”
Verses quickly came to my mind from the Gospels. I believe that these verses lay out clearly the response that Christians should have towards the abortion debate.
I am speaking to pro-lifers but more specifically, I am making an appeal to born again believing Christians.
We are the ones who have the Holy Spirit living in us.
Before we flip through the pages of the Old Testament to find verses about life and death to challenge the opposition, we first need to be rooted in what the Word of God says to us as believers. We need to be clear regarding the mandate that is on our lives as followers of Christ.
So let’s look at the verses. Two directives are given by Jesus regarding how we are to treat people; specifically people we might identify as our enemies.
The first one is that we love our enemies.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”John 13:34 & 35
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’ “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, “that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. “For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? “And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? “Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.”Matthew 5:43-48
The second mandate is commonly known as The Great Commission. We are to tell people about Jesus.
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”Matthew 28:18-20
We are to love our enemies; those who curse us, hate us, use us and persecute us.
We are to love them with a VIP treatment. And we are to share the gospel with everyone.
It struck me so hard. How does God view this situation?
He wants to see them saved.
I am not solely speaking of the unborn at this point.
Take a moment, and a deep breath if you need it, and picture the faces of those who you know to be champions for abortion; the politicians and advocates. Picture them, say their names in your head even.
Now give a thought to the abortion doctors, nurses and staff who work in their clinics.
Now think of the protestors; the women who wave hangers and tattoo scissors on their ankles. Think of the millions of women who have had abortions.
God loves them.
God loves them all.
God does not want to see a single one of these individuals perish. At the cross, Jesus died for their sins. The opportunity for salvation is available to them. They are no more disqualified than we were prior to our rebirth.
God wants them saved.
There is nothing wrong with feeling a righteous anger when we contemplate the cruelty of abortion.
But I challenge you, there is something wrong with followers of Christ heaping hate and condemnation on women entering abortion clinics.
There is something wrong when people take the law into their own hands.
There is something wrong when people declare contemptuous indifference at a woman dying as a result of abortion or consequently ending up unable to carry a child in the future.
These attitudes and behaviours are wrong.
Casting judgment is the easiest, laziest and most harmful thing that we can do. It may appease our inner-self, but it does an injustice to the gospel and the perfect finished work of Jesus.
We are the body of Christ.
We represent Him in the flesh.
We are the light of the world.
We are to reflect His holiness.
We are to show the grace and truth in which He came.
We are to love liberally yet with humility.
We are to invite the lost to meet Jesus.
But what about the judgement? What about the wrath and vengeance of God we’ve read about? Surely this would anger our Holy Creator!
One of the most important things for any human being to be aware of is how they view God and how they think God views them.
I’d like to read you a verse from Hosea.
“How can I give you up, Ephraim?
How can I surrender you, Israel?
How can I make you like Admah?
How can I set you as Zeboim?
My heart is turning over within Me.
My compassions are kindled.
I will not vent My fierce anger.
I will not again destroy Ephraim.
For I am God — not a man —
The Holy One in the midst of you,
And I will not come in fury.”Hosea 11:8-9
Oh, that one verse gets me every time I read it!
“I will not vent My fierce anger. I will not again destroy Ephraim. For I am God — not a man –.”
It is man who wants to see the mighty fall.
It is man who wants to see people pay the price for their failures.
It is man who thirsts to witness judgment.
But it is God who loves with an everlasting love.
It is God who is as merciful as He is righteous.
It is God who wants His beloved people restored to Him.
It is God who did not spare His own Son that we might receive all things.
It is God who was pleased to crush Him and cause Him to suffer for our sins.
Remember, Jesus took the punishment for the sins of the world; this includes abortion.
Therefore, no matter who you are, when you came to Jesus with repentance, your sins are washed away. Not because God went soft on sin, but because He poured His wrath and judgment hard on His beloved Son, so that all who believe in Him may be restored to the Father who created them.
We need to be very wise and intentional in how we respond to the abortion debate.
We need to be mindful of the sacrifice that was made for us. We need to remember Jesus’ commandments to love and bear witness.
So what does this mean in practical terms?
I said before that a supernatural problem calls for a supernatural solution. I quoted Ephesians 6:12 earlier which identifies for the church who we are really at battle with. The verses that follow list the essential pieces in the armor of God. I am going to focus on one of them; the sword of the spirit.
We need to pray.
And then we need to pray. And then we need to pray again.
The church needs to do more than call for a day of prayer. We need to launch a season of prayer.
Pray in the Spirit.
Pray knowing that it is Jesus himself who intercedes for us before the Father as our High Priest.
Don’t listen to people like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez or Kamala Harris who demean the value of prayer. In fact, NEVER make the mistake of underestimating its power!
The Word says that where two or more are gathered, He is there with them.
Add it to your personal prayer time, but seek out opportunities to pray as partners; pray as communities.
Pray not only that we will see abortion end in our lifetime, but pray for the salvation of everyone on the opposing side.
Pray for healing; especially for the women who consented to have abortions.
Also, pray for the people who have worked in the clinics and the hospitals assisting in the procedure.
Pray that they will know the grace of Jesus’ Christ.
This is the first thing.
Secondly, commit to reading and hearing God’s word consistently.
Ask God to help you to be disciplined in this area.
If you are going to commit to be a prayer warrior or assume any other position, you need to be built up in all the truth you can absorb. Sit at Jesus’ feet and receive from Him.
Thirdly, meditate on the following truth with focus and intention.
The battle is the Lord’s.
Flip back to the great battles fought and won by the Israelites and you will find this powerful theme; the battle is the Lord’s.
When Jesus’ died on the cross, He said, “It is finished.”
He conquered death.
He conquered hell.
He conquered the devil.
Greater is He that is in us, than He that is in the world.
The battle is already won, my friends!
Operate from a mental position of victory. The same Spirit that resurrected Jesus from the grave dwells within us.
Do not be tempted by fear or the overwhelm of the task. To every doubt and moment of anxiety, quote with confidence, “the battle is the Lord’s.”
Fourthly, and lastly, if you feel lead, ask God to give you an assignment.
Ask God to give you a divine appointment to love.
It could be committing to pray for the nearest abortion clinic to your home. Not so you can necessarily hang out in the parking lot, but so that every time you drive by it, you whisper a prayer.
Everytime you see people going in and out of the building, apply the blood of Jesus over them, the unborn baby and pray that their eyes will be opened to the truth.
Perhaps you could volunteer at a local charity that supports unplanned pregnancies or pregnant teenage girls.
Perhaps if you hear of someone in your social circle who has become unexpectedly pregnant, especially if she is not in a relationship with the father, go show that woman the love of Christ!
Provide for a need of hers whether its diapers or a practical baby care item, or even if it’s a promise for a hot meal or babysitting. Show that woman that a community will come and support her if she keeps her baby.
This list could go on. I am not going to challenge anyone to do anything specific. It’s the Holy Spirit’s role to counsel and assign action.
But I encourage you to pray for divinely-appointed opportunities to share the truth about abortion, but always (and I mean always) accompany those natural facts with grace-filled truth.
As citizens of a free society, we have the right to declare that abortion is evil. As Christians, we have a responsibility to declare that redemption is available through Jesus Christ.
I would like to close with one last passage that I feel captures the art of balancing the righteous truth and the merciful truth. It comes from 2 Peter 3:5-9 & 15
“But they conveniently overlook that from the beginning, the heavens and earth were created by God’s word. He spoke and the dry ground separated from the waters. Then long afterward he destroyed the world with a tremendous flood by those very waters. And now, by the same powerful word, the heavens and the earth are reserved for fire, being kept for judgment day, when all the ungodly will perish.
But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is long suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
…and consider that the long suffering of our Lord is salvation.”2 Peter 3:5-9 & 15
So, dear friends, don’t let this one thing escape your notice: a single day counts like a thousand years to the Lord Yahweh, and a thousand years counts as one day. This means that, contrary to man’s perspective, the Lord is not late with his promise to return, as some measure lateness. But rather, his “delay” simply reveals his loving patience toward you, because he does not want any to perish but all to come to repentance.And keep in mind that our Lord’s extraordinary patience simply means more opportunity for salvation, just as our dear brother Paul wrote to you with the wisdom that God gave him.
Thank you, my friend, for listening to today’s episode. I am praying for you specifically that in the days ahead you will be conscious of the love God has for you; you will be encouraged by truth of His Word; and that you will feel empowered, through His strength and grace, to love and support your family and community this week. Take care and God bless.