Moving “Forward” In Obama’s America: How To Make This Nation Great

Obama Feeds America SC Moving Forward in Obamas America: How to Make This Nation Great

We Got What We Wanted

I am very proud of my Christian and Conservative friends and how they responded to the disappointing outcome of this year’s elections. What I perceived from them was not a spirit of bitterness or blame-shifting. Rather, much of what I heard and read displayed a sense of genuine hope, honesty, and determination. Obviously, we would have liked a different outcome with a different President. But if we’re truthful with ourselves and our beliefs, that’s not what we really need.

While I believe Mitt Romney could have led our country well in many respects, I am nevertheless realistic at our prospects. It’s impossible to know now, but I reckon that having Romney in office would do precious little to stave off the rising tide of extreme social liberalism. Why? Because a democratic Republic is by the people and for the people; and the people of the United States, by and large, are set on their course. John Adams is often quoted as saying, “Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” Yet despite claims to the contrary, 21st century Americans are an immoral and irreligious people.  In the words of Jesus, we are an “adulterous and sinful generation” (Mark 8:38).

Though conservatives have scoffed at Obama’s assertion that Washington can’t change from the inside, it’s actually true! And having strong, moral conservatives in office can do nothing to perpetuate a moral society on a people who don’t want a moral society.  There are enough Americans who will buck up against such leadership until that leadership capitulates or until they can elect new leaders who will promote their views.

The late Charles Colson wrote in 1989’s Against The Night: “We must remember that in a democracy, people get the government they deserve.” He went on to say, “American politics simply mirrors the loss of character in the American people. If the citizens are not willing to put the civic good above their own, they can’t expect their leaders to do it for them.”  In the quote’s context, Colson addressed a mentality among Americans that was “either totally illogical or completely selfish.” The polls of that day showed that a wide majority of Americans favored increased spending on government programs and that roughly the same number opposed higher taxes. Bearing witness to this fact over 20 years later, Mike Huckabee wrote on his Facebook upon the announcement of Obama’s decisive victory: “Tonight’s results only remind me that our country has slipped into a deeper state of dependence on government than I wanted to believe. Where the Goliath of government has grown, so too has our dependency.”

One could argue that we voted for the candidate who promised us the most “stuff”—free love, free welfare, free birth control, and the like. But I think it’s deeper than that. The fact of the matter is, Americans believe in Obama. They desire his vision. They share in his values. And still others who don’t agree with his values are willing to acquiesce in the name of affordable healthcare.

November 6th was certainly a pivotal election day in that it affirmed and cemented a moral/social path America had been traveling for decades. With Obama in the driver’s seat, we will mash on the gas moving forward, pardon the pun.

With Barack Obama reelected, expect to see a veritable onslaught against Judeo-Christian values. Policy speaks louder than promises, and Obama has made it very clear where he stands in the culture wars. Unprecedented advances will be made for gay activism, Planned Parenthood, and other decidedly radical special interest groups. Conversely, people of faith in the realms of church, state, business, and education will be compelled to violate their creeds and consciences through various mandates and court rulings. I anticipate a shocking suppression of First Amendment rights under an uninhibited, second term Obama administration. This is the world we live in, like it or not. It is post-Christian—and we have voted accordingly.

Moving Forward

So what then is there for us who strongly disagree with Obama’s vision, especially those of us who claim to be Christ’s disciples?

Whether or not we have a President who upholds our values, it should not affect our moral and sacred obligation to be “salt and light” in the world. I am partially glad that “our guy” did not gain the White House. It may have served to lull us into a false security, as it did in the Reagan era. As Christians, our hope was never in “our guy” to begin with.

No matter who leads this nation, this much remains true: life has to go on. Many of us are already heading back to our jobs, taking care of our families, and serving in our churches. Things may be harder in some ways, but we will make it somehow like we always have. Equally, I am reminded, as I prepare to lead an outreach at an abortion mill, that this too will go on. The outcome of the election could not change the fact that women have not only the legal right but the propensity to visit these places and terminate their pregnancies. There is still a world of hurt behind these “procedures”—a culture of fatherlessness, promiscuity, and selfishness. There is still a generation indoctrinated by years of cunning “pro-choice” rhetoric, repeated over and over again. Romney doesn’t have an answer for that.

Any woe of our society you can think of doesn’t have a political solution. Our Lord set the standard. He didn’t run for office. He didn’t picket or petition or hold rallies. He rolled up his sleeves and “went about doing good and healing all those who were oppressed by the devil” (Acts 10:38). You could say Jesus was a grassroots kind of guy. Jesus was a difference-maker wherever he went, and he beckons us to do the same! Real answers for this hurting nation require real work, real sacrifice, and real perseverance—on the part of the people, not the politicians.

Here is a challenge to my Christian and Conservative friends. It’s easy to cast a vote every few years; it’s harder to volunteer on a regular basis for years at a time. It’s easy to post online and argue about the issues; it’s harder to look someone you differ with in the face and speak the truth in love. It’s easy to berate abortion; it’s harder to plan adoption. It’s easy to point the finger at same-sex marriages; it’s harder to be faithful in our own marriages. It’s easy to condemn welfare as government handouts; it’s harder to invest in someone’s life to give them a hand up. It’s easy to trust in a charismatic leader to solve all our problems; it’s harder to hit our knees and surrender to Almighty God in the midst of our problems.

To the reader, I adjure you: go to God in prayer and ask Him “What can I do to make this nation great?” And then get up and do it.

Photo credit: Dan Jacobs (Creative Commons)

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Christ Among Other Christs: How Your Jesus Affects Your Worldview

Jesus Resurrection Life SC Christ Among Other Christs: How Your Jesus Affects Your Worldview

Who is Jesus?
As the avowed skeptic H.G. Wells confessed, “this penniless preacher from Nazareth is irrevocably the very center of history. Jesus Christ is easily the most dominant figure in all history.” Therefore, it is crucial in this study to establish a foundational understanding of the inimitability of Christ. We must know who this Jesus is that we’ve put our faith in. After all, no one wants to believe in a lie, right? To begin, we examine C.S. Lewis’ case that he (Jesus) is either a liar, or a lunatic, or the Lord, or— a more recent speculation, a legend.
Lewis invariably came to the conclusion that Jesus is the Lord, the Son of God. However, this was based on the assumption that the New Testament is the sole authority regarding Jesus of Nazareth. As early as the 18th century, scholars have begun to challenge his works, his words, and his person as depicted by the NT authors. Currently, Bart Ehrman, author of Misquoting Jesus, and a group called the Jesus Seminar have been adversarial to Christian scholars, while Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code has given the layman an assumed right to debate Christology.
To add to the confusion, the film Zeitgeist has persuasively placed Jesus in the same category as Osiris or Zeus— a mythological character; all of this is part of the growing “Christ Myth” movement.  It doesn’t stop there; there are cults such as the Mormons and the Jehovah’s Witnesses who (somewhat) follow the Bible, yet teach heretical views on Christ. The former claiming he is the spirit brother of Satan, and the latter says he is the archangel Michael. Muslims attest that Jesus (Iesa) was a prophet, a slave of Allah, and could not have been the Son of God.
The Baha’i faith holds that Jesus comes from a succession of manifestations of the one God (including Zoroaster, Muhammad, etc.) with Bahá’u’lláh being the universal manifestation. New Age teacher Deepak Chopra has written a book on the Third Jesus, “the cosmic Christ, the spiritual guide whose teaching embraces all humanity, not just the church built in his name.”  We have more obscure teachings from groups such as the Black Hebrew Israelites. They purport Jesus was a black man. We also have Catholic renaissance art that portrays Jesus as an Anglo. Wasn’t he Middle Eastern?
In recent years, many men have come and hailed themselves as Jesus’ second coming. José Luis de Jesús Miranda, out of Miami, Florida has now thousands of devout followers in his Growing in Grace Ministry. His goal is to establish the “Government of God” on the earth. The late Yahweh Ben Yahweh, born Hulon Mitchell Jr., had a large following who thought him to be the son of God. Rev. Sun Myung Moon claimed to be sent by God to complete Jesus’ works as in the book of Revelation.
That’s only to name a few of the Messiah claims, but wait- there’s more! Hollywood has also weighed in on the Jesus mystery. In 2008, Jack Black portrayed Christ as condemning of his own followers in a popular skit on Saturday Night Live, “Prop 8: The Musical.” Andrew Fleming’s film Hamlet 2 featured the offbeat musical selection: “Rock Me Sexy Jesus,” depicting Christ as a type of high school heartthrob. Franco Zeffirelli’s epic, Jesus of Nazareth, gave a more sober assessment of Christ’s character. Martin Scorsese, on the other hand, accentuated the humanity of Jesus almost to a fault, implying relations with Mary Magdalene in the film The Last Temptation of Christ.
Are you confused yet? We are just scratching the surface! What about the Gnostic Jesus from the Gospel of Judas, or the mild-mannered host of “Jesus and Pals” from the animated show South Park? What about The Secret author Rhonda Byrne’s Jesus who was in on The Secret all along? There are even preachers in protestant churches who have confounded views of Jesus Christ!
In this age, “we are currently offered Jesus defined as a political change agent, a street-corner Greek preacher, a zealot, a magician, a moralistic prophet, a confused Galilean peasant, a Marxist atheist, or an outright fraud,” and they are all renditions of the one historical Jesus of Nazareth.  Now I do not intend now to refute all of these conceptions because it doesn’t take a genius to refute them; many are mere parodies and are self-refuting. Even the scholarly rhetoric of Ehrman and the makers of Zeitgeist have been adequately met by the writings of James White, Lee Strobel, Daniel Wallace, and William Lane Craig, among other dedicated apologists. Numerous volumes of Christology have already been written. I can’t do the matter justice. But I said all of that to say this: “I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him. But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough” (2 Cor. 11:3-5, NIV).
Why Jesus?
Now why is there no one to say “I am the Buddha,” or “There is Muhammad, out in the desert”? No one cares to dispute the Zoroaster or lampoon Krishna on national television. Yet like a burgeoning celebrity who for a time can generate a buzz (whether positive or negative) with anything his name is attached to, so it has been with Jesus consistently since the time he came into the world. And like the tabloid rumors surrounding that celebrity, we put up with falsehoods about Jesus easily enough. More than put up with, we drink them down!
Look. Assuming Jesus existed, it is impossible for him to be both the Christian Jesus and the Muslim Jesus, or the Mormon Jesus, or Deepak Chopra’s Jesus, and so on and so on— you get the point. They all contradict each other. One Jesus must be the true Jesus, rendering all the others false. One may argue, “What if no one’s Jesus is the right Jesus?” Fair enough. And just an observation, but that parallels the agnostic argument, “What if no one’s religion is the right religion?” At any rate, you cannot ignore that in Jesus’ name, “millions curse, and in his name that millions pray.” Perhaps Jesus is religion, the binding that ties God to man; that, or an imagination. But in no other case has a fictional character influenced the world so radically, and I refuse to think that now.
How to Lie
Jesus said in the Bible “Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.” What is truth? In any context it is in, truth reflects reality. A lie is a perversion of the truth, and a deception is dependent on the truth. Any lie worth believing must at least resemble the truth, and every deception stood upon must contain some element of the truth. This is where we get the understanding that all religions are the same because they share commonalities such as love and faith. No belief system can get off the ground without common sense virtues (though some have gotten by while concealing that they really don’t contain these at all).
Using the example of love, I can demonstrate perversion— we live in a world where lust and love are ambiguous, where consent to self-destruction can be considered kindness. It doesn’t take much but to look at certain relationships around you (perhaps some of your own) to see that this is true. Something like love cannot be left to a postmodern worldview; what a mess that would be!
Now deception in faith is something else. One can fine-tune a doctrine or ideology to achieve the desired outcome, or hypothesis, much like a science experiment. In controlling the intake and selection of truth, they can develop a new truth. (The new truth is still a lie by the way.) Like science, there is an incredible amount of variables, mind-boggling actually. You deal, again, with notions of love, equality, and hope; the disposition of the potential follower; social and political climates; pre-existent orthodoxy, etc. In all this, there must be enough truth present to validate the idea. I, the author, hold that Jesus Christ is the foundation of all spiritual truth and righteousness. Therefore, it is not surprising that the inclusion of Jesus has gained standing in numerous belief systems. The Arabian messenger Muhammad could never have converted the Christians in Medina had he entirely denied Christ. The Bahá’u’lláh would have been an absolute fool to keep Jesus out of his hall of fame of deities. The Dalai Lama conceded that Jesus was “a fully enlightened being,” enlightened to the path of Buddhism no less. Having Jesus endorse The Secret could only help its credibility. Sadly, all these unauthorized endorsements only hurt Jesus’ credibility in the public’s eyes.
For the sake of objectivity— Fred Phelps, a believer in the biblical Jesus, is infamous for his picketing of military funerals and for his rampant hatred of homosexuals, the Jews, the Irish, and the Roman Catholic Church. Martin Luther, the beloved Protestant reformist, later on in his life wrote a treatise called: On the Jews and their Lies, which promoted utter scorn and brutal persecution of all Jewish people.
The problem is we do not physically have Jesus of Nazareth to confirm, “Yes, I approve,” or deny, “No, that’s wrong,” on any of these ideas. All we have is written records of what he supposedly said and did two millennia ago. But what if those accounts are not in line with our case? As Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen deduced in After the BallHow America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the 90′s, Famous Historical Figures are especially useful to us for two reasons: first, they are invariably dead as a doornail, hence in no position to deny the truth and sue for libel. Second, and more serious, the virtues that make these historic gay figures admirable cannot be gainsaid or dismissed by the public since high school history textbooks have set them in incontrovertible cement.                
Kirk and Madsen discovered their cause could be furthered by speculating that historical figures were proponents of said cause, whether they actually were or not. For the Gay Rights Movement, that could mean anyone from Socrates to Eleanor Roosevelt to Abraham Lincoln were really closeted homosexuals.
Now for Jesus and the wide spectrum of different causes that have attached themselves to him, there are no text books to draw upon. He is kept out of public schools. The most reliable witness we have today is the New Testament, which unadulterated contains a message that conflicts with every other religious and secular worldview. How then can this Jesus agree with our cause?
Custom Christs
Ironically, for a false Christ to have credibility, the real Christ must be stripped of his, something like a political smear campaign. It is a two-step process.First, the New Testament which testifies that he is the Son of God must be discredited. Magnify every perceived error in it (per Bart Ehrman) and exalt every conflicting testimony as a beacon of long-concealed truth.
Take the Gospel of Judas, which created waves in 2006 when Marvin Meyer’s translation of the Coptic gospel hit shelves. World Magazine noted the backlash: “The National Geographic Society handed anti-Christian forces worldwide a perfect supplement to the biblical skepticism already unleashed in Dan Brown’s novel, The Da Vinci Code.” In addition to refuting the biblical gospels, the alleged writings of Judas Iscariot ultimately depicted him turning over Jesus as a sacrifice to the demon god Saklas.
Even though “no evidence exists to suggest Judas as a possible author or the account as historically based” and “scholars now agree it is fiction”, the damage has been done.  Now the average skeptic has an open room to say “What about the Gospel of Judas? — or all the other books that aren’t in the Bible?” I don’t propose that any ancient works purporting to be Gospel should be ignored— on the contrary, they should be explored. When they’re explored, it doesn’t take long to separate truth from lies. When they aren’t, there is room to assume without knowing for sure. It can be like reading a newspaper headline without reading the actual story behind it and basing your judgment on that alone.
Secondly, his followers must be buried as backwards fanatics, immoral hypocrites, condemning bigots, violent despots, or all of the above. Regrettably, there have been numerous ministers whose conduct has made for a blemish on the reputation of Jesus Christ. One I’ve already mentioned, Pastor Fred Phelps, has created a false stigma around Christian evangelists with his highly publicized marches. As a street preacher, many have mistaken me for one of those “God hates fags” preachers. I’m not, and I want to remind you that Phelps’ church, Westboro Baptist in Topeka, Kansas, has only 70 members, 61 of whom are related to Phelps. They do not represent the 42% of Americans who attend church regularly. Furthermore, his radical views are not upheld by the [orthodox interpretation of] the Bible, the historical Church, or the teachings of Jesus Christ.
In the case of John Hinckley Jr., who shot Ronald Reagan in 1981, his obsessions with Jodie Foster as well as J.D. Salinger’s novel The Catcher in the Rye are well documented. In no ways is the credibility of either Foster or Salinger tarnished by the reproach of Hinckley. Why, then, has Jesus become a disobliging caricature in the public eye? With Jesus of Nazareth becoming among the most heralded figures in world history, it was inevitable that a few bad eggs would claim to be one of his own. Rather than regarding each man as accountable for his own actions, the brunt of the blame has largely fallen on Christ himself. He is no longer defined by reality, but by speculation and unqualified spokesmen.
This gives people permission to formulate their own Christ. They reason that the “Bible is corrupt and the Christians are way off”, but they want a sense of spirituality, a form of godliness. They now have free range to dictate a Christ to their liking. You ask them what they believe about Jesus, and you get a different answer from each one. It doesn’t always begin so flippantly; some people actually seek earnestly. They simply don’t find Jesus in any church they attend. In no Christian self-help book or television ministry can Christ be found. The New Testament Jesus gives a message of love, peace, forgiveness, and acceptance. They find only backbiting, hypocrisy, and more treachery than in some secular institutions. The power of unmet expectations can crush a man. They begin to echo the sentiment of Gandhi: “your Christians are so unlike your Christ.” Disillusioned, they decide that Jesus cannot be Lord.
If Jesus is not Lord, then there is no consequence to dismissing his words— he’s not real. They may scoff at his harder sayings. “He sounds like a cult leader! Jesus would never say that!” The cross may very well have been a metaphor for life’s struggles, and the resurrection an illustration of perseverance. “It couldn’t have been literal, why would anyone have to die for my sins? That’s barbaric!”   
             
It seems New Agers will accept Jesus the didactic teacher and not Jesus: Judge of the living and the dead. Muslims will accept Jesus the Messiah and not Jesus the Son of God. Even some professing Christians will accept Jesus the Savior, and not Jesus the Lord. Hence, the greatest numbers of false Christs exist in the minds of men.
God of the Christians
For the sake of brevity, we’ll narrow our study down to one Jesus; John the Beloved’s Jesus who said concerning himself, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” This is he who the Christians have worshipped for ages, of whom Pliny the Younger observed: “They sang in alternate verse a hymn to Christ as to a god.” Lucian of Samosota wrote of this phenomenon: “The Christians, you know, worship a man to this day— the distinguished personage who introduced their novel rites, and was crucified on that account.” Mind you, these were secular historians.
The Church Fathers, save for a few rapscallions, converged on Christ’s deity—Paul’s disciple Clement called Christ “the Scepter of the Majesty of God.” Ignatius, a disciple of John, wrote, “Our God, Jesus the Christ, was conceived of the virgin Mary according to the dispensation of God…” These men who were mentored by the first Apostles held firmly to the doctrine of his divinity. Most of these witnesses predate the Council of Nicea by over 300 years. I don’t write this to try to convince you of Jesus’ deity; that’s not something I can personally do. I bring them into account to drive home the fact that Christians worship Jesus! They believe he is God! They always have and always will! Over 69,000,000 Christians have been slaughtered on account of this testimony and would not recant! Please explain to them that Jesus was “a good man who helped a lot of people.”
“Christian” was a derogatory term coined by Greeks in Antioch, to say these people were imitators of this man they call Christ. (Gentiles, at large, only knew Christos as a name, unaware of anything concerning the Jewish Messiah.) So Christians are to be following in Jesus’ example; regardless if they do or not, they’re supposed to.
To summate: Christians hold his words as authoritative, his life as the high standard of human conduct and faith in him as absolutely essential. You cannot be a Christian unless you believe these things; there is no way around it. With that, Christians must also believe in both the Old and New Testaments of the Bible, heaven and hell, and telling everyone about Jesus. This has rubbed a lot of people the wrong way, but it goes hand in hand in believing Jesus as our Lord and Savior.
If he was not, then his death would be numbered along with tens of thousands crucified by the Romans and would have been insignificant outside of its immediate context. If he was not, then most of his teaching would have been considered malarkey and would have to be highly allegorized to hold any relevancy in this modern age. If he was not, then his following would have been extinguished before long, like the others who came and went and were thought to be the hope of Israel.
But none of the above has been the case for Jesus. Christians in every age have found sufficient reason to call Jesus both Lord and God. “Therefore, in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail. But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God.”
I realize that I may not have answered any of the objections you had about Jesus. I may have only raised more questions. Good, that’s great!
I feel ignorance is one of our biggest enemies. Christians may be accused of blind faith and Liberals of blind skepticism. At any rate, I hope to have whetted your palate for the truth! And truth, I remind you, is rooted in reality, not opinion. It won’t always be the most accommodating or politically correct, but it’s there and you can’t wish it away.

Photo credit: Fr. Stephen, MSC (Creative Commons)

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The Most Important Political Issue Of Them All…

Abortion Protestor SC The Most Important Political Issue Of Them All...

Planned Parenthood = Legal Infanticide

This election year, I have heard President Obama and other Pro-Choice candidates criticize their opponents for avowing to defund, or otherwise oppose, Planned Parenthood. I don’t know if the President is aware of this, but defunding Planned Parenthood is actually music to the ears of many voters, including myself. Pro-choice candidates who are wise will downplay the abortive aspect of Planned Parenthood while boasting about its non-abortive services, such as cervix cancer scans.

The bottom line, however, is that true to its namesake, Planned Parenthood is in the business of providing abortions, period. Planned Parenthood gives women and couples the option to plan parenthood by resolving unplanned pregnancies with abortion. Abortion is the termination of a pregnancy by necessarily killing the fetal infant. In fact, Planned Parenthood is the largest provider of abortions in America, on average conducting over 300,000 procedures each year. Almost 98% of pregnant women who go to Planned Parenthood for counseling receive abortions.

Planned Parenthood is not the only game in town. If the President were adamant about providing low-cost cancer screenings, prenatal care, and the like, there are many agencies that do that—without providing abortions! If defunding Planned Parenthood is wrong, I don’t want to be right. And I don’t want to be complicit in the slaughter of children, by either my vote or my tax dollars.

For some, the topic of abortion is so weighty their entire vote hinges on it. Are you a “one issue” voter? Are Christians and other Pro-Life advocates harping on secondary issues while ignoring the weightier matters of economy and healthcare? Are we imposing our values on a society that doesn’t need them? The matter at hand is bigger than Planned Parenthood. The abortion debate is possibly the biggest issue affecting the future of this nation, literally.

Abortion is Not a Real Answer

Let’s look at the greatest factor behind abortions—not rape and incest (which account for a tiny minority)—but simply unplanned pregnancy. The prospect of having a child is a pivotal event in a woman’s life. Under some circumstances, a pregnancy can be a very frightening prospect for a woman, and understandably so. It can appear as a death blow to her education and career goals. Pregnancy out of wedlock can mean utter isolation from her family, friends, and church circles. Pregnancy could drive away even the father of the child, leaving the woman to fend for herself. Others see pregnancy as consignment to a future of poverty and struggle for both the woman and her child. No doubt there is a deep root of fear and despair behind many abortions.

If abortion is really the response of fear and hopelessness, shouldn’t we call it into question? After all, don’t we do some very irrational and regretful things when we are the most fearful and anxious? Abortion is by no means a viable option for a woman dealing with an unplanned pregnancy. It is quick, but not a painless solution. The real answer to unplanned pregnancy will call everyone involved to do some real searching, make some real changes, and take some real action.

The following inventory is not intended to be comprehensive in describing every person’s role, nor is it exhaustive in outlining every possible scenario. But, God willing, it paints a picture of a future hope for those in seemingly hopeless situations.

The Mother: Ultimately, the burden of an unplanned pregnancy will fall on the mother; there is no way around it. She will need to make sober, well-informed decisions for herself and her baby from a posture of faith and hope, not fear and despair. The baby living inside of a woman is so uniquely connected with her. When the child is born, he or she will share some of the mom’s features. As the child grows and develops, the mom has the opportunity to shape the child into the man or woman they will become in a way no one else can. There is so much to look forward to and be hopeful for! It is my prayer that women facing crisis pregnancies will come to know the great love they have the chance to experience with their child.

The Father: Fathers have a sacred obligation to guard and guide their families. The very presence of a father can serve to alleviate so much of the pain and stress of an unplanned pregnancy. Regrettably, men can be counted on less and less in this fatherless culture of ours. Nevertheless, the absence of the father does not have to be a death sentence for the mother or child. This is a very troubling issue, which would be the topic of another discussion.

Extended Family: Parents, grandparents, and other relatives will need to fight through any disappointment they feel regarding the pregnancy to come around the mother with support and love. We all know the ones who love us the most can also hurt us the most but also help us and heal us the most.

Church: Studies have shown that over 70% of abortions are performed on professing Christian women. Women in churches may feel especially ashamed and alienated when their taboo behaviors are exposed. Fornication and abortion are certainly sinful according to the Bible, but the same Bible calls us in the Church to gently restore those who are caught in sin (Gal. 6:1). Churches need to be places of mercy and restoration—safe environments—for those who have made such poor decisions. Remember James’ exhortation that pure religion is to look after orphans and widows in their distress (Jas. 1:27).

Not-for-Profit Services: It boggles my mind that any center majoring in abortions would be the first option for a pregnant woman. There are so many wonderful organizations and ministries that offer comprehensive help for women, both during and after their pregnancy. Free counseling, support groups, prenatal care, job placement, and even baby showers are out there to be found for women dealing with pregnancies.

Abortion is Playing God

Abortion is not only the most hopeless outlook for a pregnancy, but it is also the most prejudiced. Think about it. Abortion passes judgment on the unborn child, who hasn’t done one thing good or bad; nor can he put a word in edgewise. It tells him that because of his father’s failure, because of a struggling economy, because of his chromosome count, or because of his mother’s immaturity, that he can never prosper or succeed in life. All hope is lost, and the best this child can hope for is an early death. It is not our place to make such judgments on the unborn; abortion is playing God. Read what the psalmist said to his Creator:

(Psalm 139:13-16) You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.

In light of this, proponents of abortion essentially usurp God and tear out the pages of His book regarding individual lives. Abortion writes the story of death for millions of unborn children (and of pain and regret for their mothers.) But who are we to make such predictions? Are we really telling women that it is impossible for them and their children to overcome adversity? What kind of message does that send to this generation? Here are but a few “abortion candidates” who thrived when it was expected they would flounder if allowed to live.

Justin Bieber was born in spite of others urging his then 17 year old mom to abort the pregnancy. Love or hate Bieber’s music, did he not defy the bleak expectations that he would be nothing but poor white trash?

Tim Tebow was expected to be a stillborn, and abortion was recommended to his mother, Pam Tebow. Nevertheless, she carried on with the delivery on the basis of her faith convictions. Today, her son is not only an NFL quarterback but a committed follower of Christ, providing a role model of faith and integrity for young men.

James Robison, evangelist and founder of Life Outreach International, was conceived through rape. His mother was poor, and his father was violently unstable. Even the staunchest conservatives would acquiesce to an abortion under these circumstances. However, James Robison’s life has served to reach the poor and hurting of the world. His outreach continually provide help and amnesty for those caught in human trafficking, clean water wells for African villages, and vital medical care for young children in the Third World, to name a few of the ministries he’d helped found.

Perhaps you’ve heard this parable. A man is praying and asking God, “Why isn’t there a cure for cancer? And why is there so much war and oppression?” To which God replies, “I had a doctor in mind to invent the cure, but she was aborted. And I had a great leader who was to bring peace and diplomacy in the world, but he, too, was aborted.” In point to fact, over 50,000, 000 children have been aborted in the U.S. since Roe v. Wade—think 50 million destinies! For the wide majority of abortions that occur in black communities, there is a Martin Luther King and a Rosa Parks being aborted! There’s another James Robison out there, who has the potential to help so many but is not given the chance!

People who are not God should not try to do things only God does. For one, we are not omniscient but ignorant. We are not benevolent, such as God, but prejudiced. Our ignorance and prejudice make us horrible deciders of who is fit to live or not.

What will be Our Legacy?

Don’t let the Pro-Life issue take a backseat to the economy and education. If we lived in the days of the slave trade, would we back the pro-slavery candidate who had the best healthcare plan? If that generation was shortsighted enough, there may still be black slaves in America today. If we are as shortsighted today, our future looks just as bleak.

“The ultimate test of a moral society,” wrote Dietrich Bonheoffer “is the kind of world it leaves to its children.” We will have to give an account to the next generation as to why their brothers and sisters, cousins, and classmates are not there with them. We can only tell our kids, “Killing [your peers] in the womb was the best we could offer them.” What does that communicate? That we let them down and let the world go to hell in a hand basket.There are not enough jobs for people to raise families. There are not enough churches welcoming them. The schools are too backwards. The streets are too violent. The fathers are too selfish, and the women are too weak to parent them. I can’t accept that dreadful inheritance for my children.

My wife is due to deliver our firstborn, Jeremiah, any day now. What will I tell him when he is a man? I want him to know that his father and mother believed that every person is made equal in the image of their Creator. That we believed in a good God who has a good purpose for every life he’s made. That when we come together in “faith, hope and love” that men, women, and children can overcome any adversity. That his parents, and others alongside them, took a stand and did not bat an eye at injustice.

I adjure you, friend. Don’t be deceived. A people who can so callously, expediently, and legally slaughter their own young is not blessed, will not prosper, and cannot stand. We are tampering with foundational issues. I believe Mother Teresa said it better than I ever could:

America needs no words from me to see how your decision in Roe v. Wade has deformed a great nation. The so-called right to abortion has pitted mothers against their children and women against men. It has sown violence and discord at the heart of the most intimate human relationships. It has aggravated the derogation of the father’s role in an increasingly fatherless society. It has portrayed the greatest of gifts — a child — as a competitor, an intrusion, and an inconvenience. It has nominally accorded mothers unfettered dominion over the independent lives of their physically dependent sons and daughters… And, in granting this unconscionable power, it has exposed many women to unjust and selfish demands from their husbands or other sexual partners. Human rights are not a privilege conferred by government. They are every human being’s entitlement by virtue of his humanity. The right to life does not depend, and must not be declared to be contingent, on the pleasure of anyone else, not even a parent or a sovereign.

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