I was shocked yesterday to read an article published by the Independent Website, Independent Voices Page. Ann Furedi is making a case for a removal of all legislation around abortion. But her core reasoning for this change of legislation is shocking to me.
Ann says, “Abortion should be recognized for what it is – a safe and necessary healthcare procedure that, usually, is no more complicated than many of the minor procedures carried out in general practice….Abortion is safe and it should be available as easily as contraception for women who need it….why have a law at all?”
Abortion has become safe for the mother – it is not safe for the unborn baby by definition. Why have a law? To protect the rights of the unborn baby – that is why. Do they not get a say in all of this? Do they not have any rights?
The response may come – the fetus does not have the same rights as the mother. Well – I think what the Bible reveals about God’s perspective may challenge our society’s perspective.
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart” Jeremiah 1:5, NIV
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:13-14, NIV
I’m sorry – but God loves the mother who is in a difficult position, the woman who has suffered unspeakable trauma and finds herself pregnant. And the mother who is caught short…and wishes she could wind the clock back a few days.
He also loves that developing person.
So the case that Ann Furedi is making seems SO contrary to God’s perspective on human life…it is breathtaking.
How should one respond? I think our response should be marked by two attitudes:
1 – Forthrightly Standing Up for the Voiceless One
God does not make a distinction between fetus and baby. All he sees is a conceived person.
And yet – I am a realist. I know the pressure on GPs today. And I know that the number of children aborted each year is climbing in the West. They are the silent suffering voiceless minority. This is the holocaust of our times.
It is important that the woman’s position is heard and understood. But that developing person has needs too. Clearly their physical needs are being provided by the woman carrying them – her body’s systems are nurturing them from conception onwards. But their right for respect and value needs to come from outside. From our society and the laws and the caring organisations that adhere to them.
Yet it’s not society that determines the value of anyone – whether it be a developing baby or a young woman. That job is God’s. And he stands up for these voiceless ones. And I think he firmly calls followers of Jesus Christ to do the same.
2 – Showing God’s Grace and his Forgiveness Unconditionally to EVERYONE Involved
Perhaps we have seen the way that Abortion Clinics and their staff are sometimes persecuted by aggressive folks who seem to lack discernment or empathy for the people who work at the Clinic and visit there.
I think God’s heart for everyone involved was captured by Kathy Troccoli in a song she wrote called, “A Baby’s Prayer”. The song cuts thru all the shouting, and all the raised emotions in the Abortion Debate. It gives a small voice to that voiceless invisible child whose future is to be cut cruelly short. It touches the heart of the God who created that child in the first place.
But if I should die, before I wake,
I pray her soul you’ll keep.
Forgive her Lord she doesn’t know,
That you gave life to me.
This is the heart of it. Life is a God given gift to each of us. Let us do what we can to nurture and support each other through that life. Whether my life is just starting in the womb, or whether you already have some decades under your belt.