> Articles from the Abolitionists of North Idaho > Should Crisis Pregnancy Centers be the pointy end of the spear in the Christian response to abortion in America.
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Today 3,000 small human beings in America were surgically dismembered in their mothers' wombs by assassins that the mothers paid to terminate the lives of their precious children. This year, like every year since 1973, another more than one million children will have their arms and legs ripped off in what should be the safest place on earth to live.
There are at least 700 and up to 1,800 surgical abortion centers, or child sacrifice centers, currently operating in the United States (depending on definition of terms and source). Worse, every WalMart and most local drug stores sell Plan B or similar drugs, called the morning after pill, containing a drug called levonorgestrel, which sole purpose is to prevent the implantation of a conceived human being into the uterine lining. That makes all of these stores also child sacrifice centers. You can read about levonorgestrel and its abortifacient effect here.
Human beings are made in the image of God from conception and have eternal souls from the moment of conception. We make a Biblical argument for that fact here. Many well meaning Christians say that abortion was around in Roman times, and yet Jesus never mentioned it, and the apostles never tackled it. Google that fact, and there is a lack of hard statistics to prove that assertion. In fact, the oath of Hippocrates from 400 B.C. included "and in like manner I will not give to a woman a pessary to produce abortion."
While there is some doubt as to how common abortion and infanticide may have been in Bible times, we do know the following from English and American history: According to Sir William Blackstone, the renowned 18th century English jurist, under common law, the abortion of a 'quickened' fetus was a 'very heinous misdemeanor.' At that time the penalty for misdemeanors could be severe; loss of a limb, confiscation of property or life in prison.
'Quickening' - when a pregnant woman first feels her child move - generally occurs in the fourth month.
After the American revolution, the states generally followed English common law in relation to abortion. While history is interesting, it does not negate the need for modern Christians to apply our Biblical knowledge and advanced medical and scientific knowledge to concede that the preborn are not just women's body parts, and that they are indeed unique and independent human beings made in the image of God from conception.
In America's Declaration of Independence, it was written "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
For almost two hundred years of American history the rights to Liberty or pursuit of happiness were denied to a whole class of people in a good portion of our nation - black men, women and children, first through chattel slavery and then through ongoing segregation through the civil rights era. Now, in our latter history, Americans have denied the right to life of a whole class of people, the preborn, through decriminalized abortion.
Decriminalized abortion is widely accepted and practiced. Fully 30+% of women have an abortion in their lifetime, and it is a majority of the US population that knows someone who killed their perborn child, paid for it, offered emotional support, gave a ride, or encouraged or demanded it. 36% of 1,000 women who got at least one abortion admitted that they attended church weekly or monthly at the time they killed their first child. It seems to be a little known fact that for the 43 years since Roe v. Wade, fully 80% of Americans have supported and continue to support "legal" access to abortion. The proof is here in the latest Gallup poll on the subject:
Yes, only 19% of Americans think abortion should always be illegal. That number was 22% in 1975 and has stayed within the statistical margin of error for the intervening 40 years.
Crisis Pregnancy Centers (CPC's)
When we ask Christians at various pro-life churches to tell us what they or their church are doing about abortion, the inevitable answer points to their financial and, in some cases, volunteer support for the local crisis pregnancy center, now sometimes called pregnancy resource centers. Locally in North Idaho, the two well known centers are Life Choices in Sandpoint and Open Arms Pregnancy Care Center and Real Choices Clinic in Coeur d'Alene.
Crisis Pregnancy Centers have been around since 1967, when the first states began "legalizing" access to abortion. In the United States there are at least 2,500 of these centers affiliated with one of three major national organizations, Care Net, Heartbeat International and Birthright International.
So, these crisis pregnancy centers have coexisted with legal abortion for almost 5 decades, outnumber surgical abortion centers about 3 to 1 and seem to be the leading response to abortion in America by the Christian Church. While abolitionists would not deny a legitimate ministerial need for support to women who are in difficult circumstances of pregnancy, we do want to examine and dissect whether CPC's should be the pointy end of the spear of the Christian response to child sacrifice in America. Has abortion on a mass scale ended with the existence and the ministries of the gospel centered CPC's, or is there much more needed in the Christian response to the plight of our preborn neighbors that are continuing to be slaughtered with wide support of the population and even amongst Christians?
This is the first part in our series examining the Christian response to abortion in America and the CPC's in particular. We begin it by presenting the following scenario:
If it suddenly was decriminalized for men to brutally beat and rape women, and two women in America were being brutally beaten and raped every minute, and the police were protecting the attackers, would it be a sufficient response to open a resource center for men who are considering beating and raping a woman?
Would we say the rapists are ignorant victims?
Would we say we need to just love the rapists and that the rapists should not be made to feel guilty for what hey have done and continue to do?
Would we say that what the rapists primarily need from the Church is the gospel presented to them?
Would we demand legislation that criminalizes rape of victims over 60 years old but keeps it legal to rape everyone else.
Is that establishing justice?
Or, would ignoring criminal justice be a travesty in this scenario? Would ignoring the demand for justice be UN-Christian?
If there was a major earthquake somewhere in your area, such that thousands were killed and emergency services were rendered unresponsive. If basic necessities like food, water and power and medical care were denied to the surviving population, would you say an appropriate Church response would be to establish one center in that city, staffed by a literal handful of volunteers, to offer some basic services and present to the population the gospel?
Or, would it be more appropriate to the circumstances, that all hands on deck that are able, step in and render actual physical aid to those with need - food, clothing, shelter, transportation, medical care and emotional and spiritual support?
Would we say that in dire emergency and national catastrophes that it becomes everybody's business to be personally involved regardless of their other responsibilities and ministries?