Friday, October 7, 2016

Real Abundant Life Begins with Jesus

A response to the following article: My thoughts in RED

Why “Pro-Life” Is A Harmful Misnomer / @JenniferGBird  / 10/6/16
..there is so much on the line. 

Yes. On the line are two lives (the mother and the baby) A baby is not a potential life. Q: At what point is the baby alive? God has answered this question:

Genesis 4:1,17, Deuteronomy 32:18, Psalm 51:5-6, Psalm 119:73, Psalm 139:13-16,
2 Samuel 11:5, Hosea 9:11, Matthew 1:18, Luke 1:15, 31, 41,43-44, Galatians 1:15
Death in the womb (in order to have death in the womb, there first had to be life!)
Job 10:18, Jeremiah 1:5, Jeremiah 20:17, for Further Study
·        God forms life:  Psalm 119:73; Psalm 127:3; Psalm 139:13-16;
·        God knows man intimately: Job 10; Psalm 139; Isaiah 49:1,5:
·        Related Scripture: Genesis 4:1,17; 21:2; 29:32-35; 30:5, 19, 23; 38:3-4
·        Penalty for death of the pre born - Exodus 21:22-23 (compare with Exodus 20:13 and Genesis 9:6)
  • Human sacrifice MUST ALWAYS be condemned - Leviticus 20:2-5
What I would like to respectfully suggest is that the “Pro-Life” conversation about how to handle an unplanned pregnancy ought to include more than just the life of the fetus.  

 It does. It includes the risks of abortion to the woman. The increase risk for future miscarriages (25% of women cannot carry to term after one abortion due to cervical tears), the increase in breast cancer after abortion (380% increase for African American women after one abortion), the relationship with the baby’s father (70% breakup in 30 days, 95% in two years)

Of course the fetus is living, and can be given the time to develop into a viable, vibrant child (if all goes well).  

Biblically, as well as biologically, the unborn is alive and a person at the moment of conception  

But the fetus is not the only living thing in this equation.
I have listened to many “Pro-Lifers” give their understandably passionate reasons why they are against terminating a pregnancy. But I have yet to hear any of them talk about the life of the mother as a factor.  

A visit to a crisis pregnancy center like Gateway would help folks see that the woman’s life is the focus. Everything that we do centers around the woman’s entire life experience, including her physical, mental and spiritual health. 

Removing the humanity of the unborn from the discussion reduces John 10:10 to Jesus supplying our ‘wants’ but neglects the focus of the verse ‘our needs’. Women deserve better.         
Jesus fully understands women and knows that the ‘short fix’ solution enslaves them to lives of guilt, physical pain and the consequences of a ‘poor, uninformed choice’.
It seems to me that caring about these questions qualify as being “pro-life”:
  • Is the woman (& her partner, if applicable) financially stable?
  • Does she have the means to have good pre-natal health care?
  • Does she have the finances to be able to feed a child, clothe a child, provide health care and all the other things needed to rear a child well and safely?
  • Is she in a personal situation to be able to make room for this child in her life?
  • Is it her desire to have a child?
  • Is bringing a child into the world right now the best thing for her and her contributions to society? 
All of these are circumstantial and situational. Focusing on the above questions leaves out the real needs women have. 

Fulfillment of our desire when it conflicts with God’s intentions dooms us to consequences. Women have been bearing the consequences of uninformed choices for decades. 

Those who perform abortions (almost exclusively men) love the argument that a woman’s autonomy is the focus. This allows for the neglect of the real after-effects of abortion on a woman’s mind and heart. 

A woman’s true needs, physically and spiritually are the concern of a loving God.

When the conversation is focused solely on the potential life of the fetus, what is being implied is that women really are, first and foremost, baby-makers.  

The implication of baby-makers is a great ‘talking point’ that deflects the conversation away from a woman’s real needs, allowing her often to be a fulfiller of a man’s (“I’m not ready to be a father”, “Abort this one and we will have another one when we’re ready”)

Please take a moment to think about that, if you haven’t before.
I am not trying to deny the role that women have in perpetuating the human species, not at all. I am simply saying that only talking about the fetus in this conversation completely overlooks important, quite relevant factors in the life of the woman, all of which is relevant to the quality of life for all involved.

Quality of life for the woman MUST include her spiritual, mental and physical health. 

If we can allow the factors of the woman’s life and situation to be a part of determining whether it is desirable, or even ethical, to let a pregnancy continue, then we are taking seriously what Jesus is attributed with saying, in John 10:10. “I came [into the world] that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” 

The implication of following this reasoning forces the woman to make ethical choices that have disastrous consequences not only for her child but her own life. 

The one who promised ‘life’ in John 10:10 offers spiritual life, but the presumption is that physical life is not sacrificed to achieve it; otherwise, our faith is man-made, man-centered.

I am pro-choice because I am pro-life, in the bigger picture sense. The bigger picture must go beyond personal freedom of choice to moral responsibility that leads to decisions consistent with the life promised by Jesus.

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