The Murderous Worship of Self
These three syllables pack about as much controversy, emotion, and upheaval as about any three can. And for those following the news, “abortion” took to the headlines as our nation marked the passing of the 39th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade.
Weighing in, our nation’s executive leader offered some blogosphere bubbling words on the historic milestone (see hyperlink within quotation for more):
Much can be said about abortion, and much has been said by those who champion the protection of human life and who faithfully seek to militarize and mobilize the church towards action in what is arguably (“arguable” by some, but inarguable to me by Scripture’s conviction of my hear) the greatest genocide in history. I would love to refer many to John Piper, Albert Mohler, Paul Washer, and even the always-talked-about Mark Discoll, for thorough teaching on how the Christian should approach this calamity.
But what I would like to meditate on today regarding Obama’s quote is well summarized by Piper – what does the sacrifice of abortion say about our culture? Although Piper’s definition in the hyper-linked video above might not adequately cover every situation the word would be used, Piper defines “sacrifice” as “giving up one thing in exchange for something better.” Operating from this cost-benefit perspective, we basically have two options on the table: option 1–human life; option 2–as Obama defines it, “the same rights, freedoms, and opportunities…to fulfill their dreams.”
What are these “rights, freedoms, and opportunities?” Obama perhaps helps define these earlier by affirming his support that the Supreme Court protects a woman’s “health and reproductive freedom.” No one will argue that pregnancy isn’t an extremely taxing- and even body composition transforming- endeavor. But, there is a very pointed difference between abortion for “health,” and abortion to save a life. What then are these “health” issues Obama discusses? Well, pregnancy and its popular accomplices (morning sickness, discomfort, back pain, etc) could very severely aggravate a woman’s pre-existing health conditions (i.e. toxima) in a way that could very well make life very miserable. But do these threaten the life of the mother, or will they in any way really leave her debilitated or disabled after her delivery? No. Although I can’t pretend to imagine the pain of childbirth (although perhaps if I pray for kidney stones, I’ve heard that I might come close…), it is ultimately great physical pain and inconvenience (which in our pleasure seeking and pain avoiding society, are increasingly becoming the greatest evils imaginable…. ) that a woman endures sacrificially for the sake of her child. But in most cases, it is not her life itself that is threatened by most abortions. So, what is this “woman’s health” that must be Constitutionally protected? Essentially, the right to a pleasure-maximizing and pain-eradicating lifestyle, the right to live a life where love and preservation of self is the greatest good. A life where sacrifice and service are hauntingly absent.
Now, what of this“reproductive freedom?” Well, I don’t think this one needs much explanation. According to the Guttmacher Institute, an organization dedicated to researching reproductive health, nearly half of all pregnancies among American woman are unintended. About 40% of these result in abortion. Now although certainly many “unintended” pregnancies happen in marriage, I believe I am not on foolish grounds to say that “reproductive freedom” is really “sexual freedom,” a perceived “right” spawned from the sexual revolution and the development of feminist ideology.
How emotionally disturbing is the reality that, in the eyes of many in our nation- freedom from (albeit great) pain and the liberty to gouge one’s sexual appetite- is better than the preservation of human life?
As much some rigid fundamentalists and the Islamic regions of the globe label America as a “Judeo-Christian” country (or at least, recognize that these were the dominant influences on the nation in its formative decades), it seems clear that a biblical worldview is sorely absent from American society. The self sits far more supremely on the throne of worship. And perhaps just as ugly as the site of an aborted fetus, is this chilling snap-shot of how self-serving and self-worshiping our society has become.
In thy timing and in thy will, O Lord, Maranatha.
 I would especially recommend John Piper, whose life as a pastor has courageously modeled the kind of consistency and conviction that shows that a Christian who really believes abortion to be murder is responsible to act on that knowledge (www.desiringgod.org )
 Various sources estimate that the number of situation pertaining to the later account for less than 1% of all abortions (http://www.epm.org/resources/2010/Feb/20/what-about-woman-whose-life-threatened-pregnancy-o/)
 Interesting that woman24 and under account for 68% of all abortions, and the average marrying age of an American woman is 25.6 according to the US Census Bureau.