As we consider the fact that Roe v. Wade has been overturned, I want to set the tone for how we should be thinking.
In the book of Esther, Mordecai asks Esther, “And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” As Christians we need to have those kinds of thoughts about the life issue. It is “for such a time as this” that God has brought us into His work, to stand up as He would have us to. God has called us for such a moment as this to stand up for life!
In the book of First Chronicles the author reminds us that the Sons of Issachar “understood the times and they knew what to do.” It's important as Christians that we “know the times” and “know (what God is calling us) to do.”
I had been saying for months before Roe v. Wade was overturned, that the “church’s hand is about to be called.” Simply put, the church is going to have to prove in a greater way that we are truly pro-life. It is now time to excel at “walking the walk” more than “talking the talk!"
With Roe v. Wade overturned, the church is now going to be called upon like never before for help in caring for mothers and babies. It must be understood that caring for mothers and babies should have never been an “extracurricular activity,” but rather it should have always been the “core” of what we're called to do. (Lorna Bius, who heads up Mission Georgia, was the first to bring this to my attention.)
The book of James (1:27) reminds us that “pure and undefiled religion is to care for the orphans and the widows…” This kind of ministry is not new! This verse demonstrates that the Church is to be the “safety net” in our society.
On several occasions, I have stood with Suzanne and Rachel Guy in front of an abortion clinic encouraging women and men to choose life. In many cases, when these women are asked why they are there, they indicate it is because they felt like they had nowhere else to go. The church must step up and make sure that these women know the Body of Christ (the Church) is where you can go first for help!
There's no doubt that this issue begins first and foremost with loving care for mothers and fathers who find themselves in difficult situations with unplanned pregnancies. Since Georgia’s heartbeat bill has become law, almost all abortions have been outlawed after approximately six weeks of pregnancy. This means that life will become a much more favorable alternative to women facing challenging circumstances.
It’s important that the churches show love through serving and meeting needs in the community. Consider providing things like help for women and men who have had a post-abortion experience; tangible help for childcare and housing; provide discipleship and friends to walk alongside of them; baby showers; help with prenatal diagnoses; partner with Pregnancy Resource Centers, and post-abortion healing ministries. Each of these are great opportunities to minister and share the gospel and love of Christ. The churches should be the safety net when it comes to caring for those in need.
This whole process of loving and caring begins with proper biblical teaching on sexuality and the proper role of marriage and family in the lives of all people. Unconditional love will be at the center of what the Church must express no matter what the circumstances are regarding mothers and babies needing to be cared for. This kind of love is what gives greatest evidence to the love that Jesus demonstrated toward us by what He did on the cross.
We demonstrate that same kind of love to mothers and babies who are needing help, so that they know they have many reasons to believe that abortion should be unthinkable! People going through difficult circumstances in their life need to be reminded again that the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ is the place to go find help and care and love during their most difficult times of life!
So much of the difficulty that we find today in our culture is because, practically speaking, we have lost the family in America. We need to understand that as goes the family, so goes the nation! For example, all the issues that we are facing today related to abortion, foster care and adoption go back to the breakdown of the family.
We hear a lot today about making America great again. We must also understand that we need to make families great again, marriage great again, parenting great again, and we must also make men great again. We're finding today that men play a key role in our homes and many of the problems that we're seeing are because of fatherless homes. We need loving, sacrificial male leadership in the home now, more than ever! Parenting based on Biblical principles would go a long way in helping with the needs related to abortion, foster care, and adoption.
And finally, it is essential that Christians engage the culture, politics, and government policy. Though Roe v. Wade has been overturned, the issue of abortion is still not over! The fight for mothers and babies will now be moved primarily to the state level. And in some ways, the issue will be even more intense.
God has called every Christian to be “salt and light” (Matt. 5:13-16) and he has called Christians to be salt and light in every area of life. God wants us to be active in every area of life because Jesus is Lord of every area of life!
We are reminded in the book of Proverbs (29:2) that “when the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; but when the wicked baereth rule, the people mourn.” If God's people do not get involved, we're going to have a lot more “mourning” on the way. If we want a nation where there's rejoicing, then those who know the Lord must engage the culture, politics and yes, government.
The fight for life is now going to be more intense on the state level. Now is not the time to back down. Now is the time to stand up. Now is the time for the church to release the “salt and light” into our culture. Lives are depending upon us!
Mike Griffin is the Public Affairs Representative of the Georgia Baptist Mission Board.
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