“There are those who argue that the right to privacy is of a higher order than the right to life. That,” he continued,“ was the premise of slavery. You could not protest the existence or treatment of slaves on the plantation because that was private and therefore out of your right to be concerned.” This passionate reverend used to warn: “Don’t let the pro-choicers convince you that a fetus isn’t a human being. That’s how the whites dehumanized us… The first step was to distort the image of us as human beings in order to justify what they wanted to do and not even feel they’d done anything wrong.” – Rev. Jesse Jackson (before he ran for president).
Over the past forty two years, abortion has ended the respect Americans once had for human life. Not only has this loss of respect had a profound impact on the euthanasia and health care debate, but I believe it has also led us down a slippery slope of all sorts of debauchery and has an impact on crime: if ending human life is acceptable before birth, why isn’t it acceptable afterwards?
Abortion is not merely a poor choice or ethically unwise; it is sinful. In Exodus 20:13, it is written “You shall not murder.” Human life is sacred because man bears God’s image (Gen. 9:5, 6) (See also Be the Person God Called You to Be. Christians ought to actively expose and oppose it as a moral stain on our country and participate in the political process. God, help us not to be neglectful of our duty to speak out boldly on something so important!
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
– Martin Luther King Jr.
For Rev. Laura Young, executive director of the Ohio Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice and a United Methodist minister in the West Ohio Conference, apparently killing babies is a blessed event. When talking about her stance on abortion, Young said, “There is a reverence for life that happens in this clinic. And the decision to get an abortion is often a really, really, spiritual decision. Even if someone personally wouldn’t get an abortion, they should at least understand this.” In the name of tolerance and loving your neighbor, Rev. Young calls for clergy to become more vigilant in the political process of keeping abortion legal.
“But now I see that the prophets of Jerusalem are even worse! They commit adultery and love dishonesty. They encourage those who are doing evil so that no one turns away from their sins. These prophets are as wicked as the people of Sodom and Gomorrah once were” (Jeremiah 23:14).
Saying someone is “as wicked as those who lived in Sodom and Gomorrah” is a serious condemnation. Sodom and Gomorrah’s sin was so grievous that the Lord rained burning sulfur over both cities, destroying the people, the towns and the land around them (Genesis 19).
It is our job to recognize false teaching like that taught by Rev. Laura Young, and Jeremiah shows us several characteristics common to false prophets:
- They may appear to speak God’s message, but do not live according to God’s Word.
- They make you feel good about God’s love, but rarely talk about sin, judgment and the real reason Jesus died on the cross.
- They subtly encourage listeners to disregard parts of the Bible that disagree with our culture’s accepted lifestyles.
- They tend to be self-serving and arrogant, concerned more with pleasing people than obeying God’s Word.
Jeremiah’s descriptions are helpful, but the best way for us to recognize wrong teaching is to spend time studying God’s Word. When we spend time learning the Bible, we know God’s truth when we hear it.