The Law and Life (2)
“If men fight, and hurt a woman with child, so that she gives birth prematurely, yet no harm follows, he shall surely be punished accordingly as the woman’s husband imposes on him; and he shall pay as the judges determine. But if any harm follows, then you shall give life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.” Exodus 21.22-25
A crime against life
According to the Law of God, human life begins in the womb. This is the testimony as well of the rest of Scripture (cf. Jer. 1.4, 5; Ps. 139.13-16; Lk. 1.41-45).
Our text is deliberately not specific concerning the stage of development of the children who are forcibly ejected from the womb by outside violence. The aborting of an unborn child is a crime committed against life; justice has been upset, and restitution and retribution must follow in order for justice to be restored.
The present “pro-choice” mindset in America—which has only been revitalized by the overturning of Roe v Wade—is contrary to sound thinking. Consider the logic of this position: The basic idea is that a woman who becomes pregnant is free to choose whether to carry her child to term. That is, she is designated as the giver or terminator of the life of her unborn infant. This is not a question of “reproductive rights” or “sexual freedom.”
The underlying premises behind this agenda are two: First, it is taken for granted that a child in the womb, though a living being, is not a person to whom the rights and privileges of life apply. How that is determined is not clear; nor, for those who hold to this view, is it even important. It’s simply enough to say this is so.
Second, abortion advocates insist that a woman carrying a child is competent to decide whether that which is conceived in her womb should be allowed to come to life beyond the womb. That is, the assumption is that a woman seeking abortion is either omniscient or God. Precisely how any woman, or anyone else for that matter, has achieved such a level of competence, which neither scientists, philosophers, nor politicians today have attained, is both unclear and unimportant.
The god of convenience
Neither of these two premises is amenable to any kind of proof, whether scientific or otherwise. They are assumed arbitrarily, as acts of faith, and as matters of mere convenience, to accommodate the changing (declining) morality of the day.
And they continue to be unjustly enacted into law in various states, precisely because those who might have insisted on public policies grounded in better law—the Law of God—have not prevailed. Our failure to understand how just and righteous laws, laws revealed by God, should govern public policy decision-making has allowed the enthronement of the gods of convenience and material prosperity.
The god of convenience, ruling capriciously in the hearts of men and women, and supported by worshipers of the god of wealth—greedy, self-interested profit-takers in the guise of abortionists and abortion-rights advocates—is the putative lord of life and death where children in the womb are concerned.
This situation is an abomination in the eyes of God. And as we now see, merely changing a judicial opinion, even by the highest court of the land, has not dissuaded multitudes from believing they have the right to determine who lives and who dies in the womb.
We must not back down
Christians for a generation now have resisted the practice of abortion, rejecting the false premises of the pro-choice agenda and arguing for a definition of life more in line with the teaching of God’s Word. We have been right to do so, and we must not back down from this commitment. The present tendency in national politics is to focus on matters of economics as the lens through which to view social policy, and this creates a mindset antipathetic to an economy of justice and sympathetic to an economy of material prosperity.
And in the case of millions of unborn children, economic considerations on the part of abortion-seekers and abortion-providers continue to pervade the land. The overturning of Roe v Wade has not stopped the demand for abortion rights. Where devotion to convenience and an economy of material gain are joined, we cannot expect justice and neighbor-love to prevail.
Yet it is precisely devotion to this view of the economy which has made the practice of abortion as a matter of convenience so widespread.
Christians must insist that all political candidates seeking their support, at whatever level of government, be firm in their commitment to resist the present abortion regime and expose the lie of the pro-choice agenda by every available means.
But even more than this, Christians must remember that convenience and material gain are matters of the heart, and only as the heart of stone is replaced by a heart of flesh, where the Spirit of God writes the Law of God day by day (Ezek. 36.26, 27), will hearts begin to change toward the question of when life begins.
Put another way, example and evangelism are the ultimate keys to burying the abortion mindset.
The Law of God is holy and righteous and good. Abortion is unholy, unrighteous, and evil. If we want a just and loving society, we will worship God and obey His Law, and we will work to dethrone the god of convenience and to expose the folly and self-interest of all its followers. And we will look to God to explain the nature, meaning, and value of all lives.
1. What is the Gospel of the Kingdom of God? What about this Gospel is “Good News”? How would you explain the Gospel of the Kingdom to a neighbor, co-worker, or fellow student?
2. What is the role of prayer in changing the heart? Do you pray for your neighbors to this end?
3. Can we expect to see abortion become a good-riddance thing of the past apart from our personal example and work of evangelism? Explain.
Next steps—Preparation: Make sure you know how to explain the Good News of the Kingdom of God to the people in your Personal Mission Field. Practice praying the Gospel back to God—with gratitude and expectation—every day.
T. M. Moore
For a concise overview of the Gospel as Jesus and the apostles proclaimed it, order our book, The Gospel of the Kingdom, by clicking here.
What is the place of the Law of God in the Christian’s life? Our book, The Ground for Christian Ethics, answers this question and shows us again why Jesus taught us that keeping the Law is an indispensable part of our calling in God’s Kingdom. Order your copy of The Ground for Christian Ethics by clicking here. To gain a better understanding of how the Law of God applies in daily life, order a copy of our book, A Kingdom Catechism, by clicking here.
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Except as indicated, all Scriptures are taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.