Posts Tagged With: March for Life

Why I March for Life

Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations” (Jeremiah 1:5-6, ESV).


The view from within the March for Life as we paraded up Constitution Avenue. Photo by Michael E. Lynch

I joined a contingent from my church and several hundred thousand others in the March for Life in Washington, DC, on Friday, January 27.

Why would I march in this event? Although my company provides adequate vacation time, it is still finite and some people may think I could use my days having more “fun.” Spending nearly 12 hours on a bus (round trip), praying outside the Supreme Court while a small handful of protestors taunt us, and then walking down a street in cold winter weather (the real feel temperature was around 32° that day, which was better than some other years) may be rewarding, but it is not always fun.

First, let us dispense with the standard liberal accusation about why we march: We do not want to oppress women. Probably about one-half (maybe even more) of the participants are female. Some admit that they had babies aborted when they were younger and they now regret that decision. The “women’s rights” argument for abortion would make sense only if another human begin is not involved. Saying abortion is only about women’s rights is like saying that the American Civil War was only about the properly rights of white southerners.

However, another life is involved. When a woman becomes pregnant, her body becomes a sanctuary for another life: A life God has entrusted to her, to nourish, protect, love, and nurture. I can think of no more noble calling than that. The Bible tells us that God speaks of the preborn as if they are alive, calling some to fulfill His purposes while still in the womb [Jeremiah 1:5-6; see also the stories of Jesus, John the Baptist, and Judah (the father of the nation of Israel)].

My son was born two months premature in 1990. After a few rough days when his fate seemed questionable, his condition started to improve. While his mother and I rejoiced about his healing, a very different scene unfolded at the incubator across the aisle from my son. A pair of twins had also been born prematurely, and one’s condition was deteriorating. The parents were saying their good-byes to the smaller boy as he was dying. Tears streamed down the father’s face (he was a tall, rugged-looking guy who I cannot imagine being normally prone to tears). We could not bear to watch. I know we had one thing in common with that couple: We loved our newborn babies, had awaited their births eagerly, and I am sure we would willingly give anything to have healthy children. I am sure none of us could put a price tag on our babies’ lives.

While we prayed for our son and watched that family mourn theirs, I could not help but realize how precious our children were to us. Yet, in much of the country, debate raged (and continues to rage) over whether it would be legal to kill these babies in the womb at that stage of development. Society says that these babies’ value is determined by their mothers. If Mommy wants to keep the baby, he or she is a precious gift from God; if Mommy does not want to keep the baby, he or she is an inconvenience, “growth,” or parasite.

The world becomes dangerous when we determine a person’s value based purely on personal opinions. In the early days of our nation, people of African descent were considered somewhat less-than-human and could be bought or sold with no regard to their best interests. In Germany during the 1930s and 1940s, “ethnically inferior” persons and people with handicaps were considered a cancer upon society, so any means deemed necessary was used to cleanse the nation. The list goes on.

So, I stand and march for life in defense of the most vulnerable in our society. I march to preserve the dignity and value of all human life, from conception until natural death. Last of all, I march in memory of those children whose parents, against their wishes and for reasons known only by God, did not have the pleasure of watching their children grow up in this world.

This post copyright © 2017 Michael E. Lynch. All rights reserved.

Categories: Christians and Culture, Current events, Politics | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

For Life

This week, I will travel to Washington, DC, with members of my church to join several hundred thousand other people from around the country at the March for Life. Contrary to what many mainstream media outlets will claim: hundreds of thousands of pro-life activists will participate (NOT just a few hundred or a couple thousand); they will a diverse group, not only a bunch of angry white men (many women, young people, and people of diverse races will be present); and it will not be restricted to a bunch of right-wing evangelical extremists (actually, I wish we had more evangelicals present, but the vast majority of participants will be Roman Catholic).

Why would I go? Why do I care about this issue? Why would I give up one of my vacation days to spend it on a long bus ride, followed by one hour praying outside the Supreme Court, followed by carrying a sign for maybe less than a mile down the street with a throng of other people, even though many politicians are trying to ignore us? Some may think it is a waste of time.

I will not be silent. Some people suggest that abortion is “a women’s issue” and therefore, as a man, I should mind my business. By that logic, the Nazi Holocaust was a “German and Jewish issue,” and the rest of the world should have minded their business. The Nazis also claimed their victims were subhuman, or at least a lower class of human, much as abortionists do. When innocent human life is at stake, silence is cruelty.

There are several reasons why I am passionate about this issue. One of those reasons was an experience I had in 1990. My son, Daniel, had been born two months premature and was less than one week old. His first few days in the neonatal intensive care unit were rough, but after about five days or so, his condition improved dramatically. His mother and I remain convinced to this day that the prayers of many friends and family members, assisted excellent medical treatment, brought miraculous results.

However, not all premature babies are that fortunate. Directly across from Danny’s incubator were two twins (I believe they were about three months premature). While Danny’s mother and I were visiting him, celebrating his remarkable turnaround, their parents arrived. They were not there to celebrate but, as we soon noticed, to say goodbye to one of their children. The father was a fairly tall, strong-looking guy, but as he went to the smaller baby’s bed and held his puny hand, his eyes welled up with tears. On the monitors, most of the baby’s vital signs had been declining. My wife and I could not watch; we left. Although we were no longer living their pain, we had endured a small taste of it when our baby was struggling. When we returned a few hours later to see our son, the bed across from his was empty.

That little boy did not experience the healing mine did, but he obviously had one thing in common with Daniel: both had parents who loved their babies, whose hearts ached to see them suffer, and who would probably do and give anything to see them recuperate and grow up.

Sadly, while we (my wife and I, and this other couple) were praying and hoping for healing, grateful for anything the doctors and nurses could do for our babies, millions do not share this passion. Thousands of babies are chopped to pieces, or chemically burned alive, in the uterus every day. In most states, it would be legal to kill a baby in the sixth, seventh—or even the final month—of pregnancy. The child’s fate is left entirely to the will of his or her parents.

Here were three babies, from two families, who were loved and cherished by their parents. From a purely objective perspective, these children were not worth more than other children, but their parents ascribed great value to their lives. Perhaps their only chance for survival was the fact that their parents loved them.

Are we willing to live in a society that determines whether one lives or dies, solely on the basis of whether another person — even a parent — deems them worthy of life. When the news reports about a child who was killed by his or her own parents (remember Casey Anthony?), Americans are outraged. Why should we be, if  parents have the right to choose whether a baby lives or dies?

Legalized abortion continues to bring new complications as it slides along its slippery slope. Several years ago, an article in the Journal of Biomedical Ethics proposed that “postnatal abortion” (killing a newborn) should be “permissible in all cases where abortion is.” Is there any significant moral difference between this and what Casey Anthony did to her baby, or what any other negligent or violent parent has done to a child?

Do any of us have a “right to life” which, according to the Declaration of Independence, is given to us by our Creator? Or, is our right to life in the hands of other people—perhaps people who place selfish personal agendas over the well-being of others?

I could probably write a few thousand more words on this subject, addressing it from biblical, theological, philosophical, constitutional, and other perspectives. However, at this time, I choose to leave it with this personal angle. Babies are loved or rejected; wanted or unwanted; planned or unplanned. But, each of those are a reflection of the parent’s soul, not a quality inherent to the child. I pray for a day when all preborn babies have a legal right to live because they bear the image of God. May we see a culture of life where this can become possible.

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Prayer, Fasting, and Spiritual Warfare

And He said to them, ‘Because of the littleness of your faith; for truly I say to you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, “Move from here to there,” and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you. But this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting'” (Matthew 17:20-21, NASB).

“Our Lord here taught us that a life of faith requires both prayer and fasting. That is, prayer grasps the power of heaven, and fasting loosens the hold on earthly pleasure” [Andrew Murray, January 21 reading in Andrew Murray Devotional (New Kensington, PA: Whitaker House, 2006), p. 52].

The Supreme Court of the United States handed down one of its most historic and controversial ruling 39 years ago today in Roe v. Wade. This ruling forced legalized abortion on all 50 states in our country, without regard for the will of voters, a plain reading of the Constitution (see the Tenth Amendment, for example), or the revealed will of God.

While many people think we should just accept “a woman’s right to choose” as a fundamental human right according to the laws of the land, a true Christian cannot do that. Fifty million Americans have been killed in the womb since 1973; when one recognizes that life begins at conception, it becomes obvious that this is a Holocaust that far exceeds anything Adolf Hitler dreamed of. As we have done every year since 1973, hundreds of thousands of people will be in Washington, DC tomorrow for the March for Life, speaking out for those who are killed before they have a voice. I, along with a large contingent from my church, will be there.

Pro-Life, March For Life 2008 US Capitol, US S...

March for Life 2006. Image via Wikipedia

Many Christians from diverse denominations will agree that this is the great social cause of our generation. However, many of them will seek the “easy” way of battling abortion. They will vote for a candidate who claims to be “pro-life” (without actually checking his track record to see if his actions line up with his campaign promises), in hopes that he will become the savior of the preborn. Sadly, this has been a failed effort for nearly 40 years, as supposedly “pro-life” politicians have sold out after their elections, compromised their values, and left us hoping for better luck at the next election cycle.

Scripture tells us that many of our conflicts are actually manifestations of a spiritual battle. Ephesians 6:12 tells us that we are wrestling not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual rulers, powers, world forces of darkness, and spiritual forces of wickedness. As a result, we do not rely on natural weapons of warfare, but spiritual ones, while defended by the whole armor of God (2 Cor. 10:4; Eph. 6:13).

This is especially true when we see our society turning further from its Judeo-Christian heritage to a value system that disregards God, religious faith, and traditional morality. Paul wrote his admonitions in 2 Corinthians and Ephesians to Christians living in a hostile culture. While we have not been fed to lions lately, hostility against Christianity has been skyrocketing in recent years in our society.

The simple fact about abortion is this: We cannot trust the government to overturn Roe v. Wade. While some people may think we are only one or two Supreme Court justices away from overturning that ruling, I believe we need three more pro-life justices. Elected officials have failed us before, and they will continue to do so. Even if Roe v. Wade were overturned, that would simply move the abortion battle back to the states.

Until people’s hearts and minds are changed about abortion, it will remain the law of the land. This is where spiritual warfare comes in. We need to begin with the simple weapons of spiritual warfare: prayer, Scripture, proclamation of biblical truth, etc. (For any pro-choice advocates who are reading this, abortion clinic bombings and other forms of violence are NOT forms of spiritual warfare. One cannot be pro-life if he actively seeks to kill or maim his ideological opponents.)

So, I encourage my friends and fellow laborers in the pro-life movement to saturate their efforts with prayer. I believe God is calling us back to a spiritual emphasis in the battle to defend life, and away from a politically-oriented approach. We have spent nearly 40 years wandering in a wilderness of choice and the culture of death. That time period is significant throughout Scripture, and it may apply to America as well. If we are willing to seek spiritual revival in our nation, we can see the hearts of Americans turned back toward a culture of life. Then, political change will follow spiritual and social transformation.

This is, after all, a spiritual battle. Legalized abortion reigns in this land because we have cast aside God’s values for self-centered goals. We cherish comfort, material goods, and freedom of choice. We value individualism (“be your own man”; “follow your heart”) and have rejected the call to follow Jesus. Sadly, this is true within the Church as well as among those who acknowledge that they do not believe in Christ.

So, we need to pray that people’s hearts will be turned to Christ. We need to ask God to change people’s hearts and minds about human life and dignity. We need to take a stand spiritually against the lying demons who have deceived millions into believing that life begins at birth and not at conception.

As we pray, we should be prepared to fast for spiritual renewal. As Andrew Murray noted, “fasting loosens the hold on earthly pleasure.” Perhaps we have been too committed to the gods of our society that we are unable to have any impact on the resulting abortion holocaust. We are not fully devoted to Christ and His call to advance His Kingdom, because we are too tied to the things of this life.

As we draw to God in prayer and fasting, He will give us strength to do spiritual warfare. He will give us a spirit of perseverance, so that we will not lose heart and give up. He will give us direction, so that we will know how to stand steadfast. Finally, He will turn people’s hearts and minds to Him, that they may acknowledge His will, repent of their self-centered values, and follow His Son.

Categories: Bible meditations, Current events, Politics | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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