"Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter."
-- Proverbs 24:11
Rescue! When we are in trouble, in need of help, we need to be rescued. When we have been injured in a car accident, we need to be rescued. When someone has a heart attack and is rushed to the hospital, they need to be rescued. When a house is on fire, the people trapped inside need to be rescued. There are so many rescue systems in place for us, and so many of them are funded by our tax dollars. Our government makes sure we can be rescued.
But that is not the case for preborn children. In fact, the opposite is the case. For preborn children, our federal government has refused to fund a rescue system. Instead, it uses our tax dollars to fund organizations that carry out their killing. And at the state level, abortion expansion is underway in states like New York, which just passed a draconian law permitting abortion until the moment of birth. Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion business in the United States, killed more than 330,000 children last year – and received over half a billion taxpayer dollars annually from the federal government in the process.
The massive sums of federal funding to Planned Parenthood and other abortion businesses and partners come via the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, or HHS, an executive branch department that has branded itself as a pro-life entity under President Trump. However, the current HHS has done much more talking than acting in the service of the President's pro-life agenda.
With numerous written affirmations of its pro-life ethic, HHS appears to have radically shifted its posture toward abortion since the historically pro-abortion Obama years. However, one is hard-pressed to find evidence that those written promises and beliefs have culminated in any tangible action to date, roughly two full years into the Trump presidency.
Make no mistake: my concern is not for politics. It is for justice – justice for the unreached, underserved abortion-seeking woman, and justice for her preborn child targeted for profitable destruction by an industry built to kill. Infidelity to biblical principles, I urge the church in our nation to rise up and speak out on behalf of these victims, calling our government officials to a higher standard.
And leading voices in the church are doing just that. They are calling on HHS under our pro-life President to push for the funding of a rescue system for those oppressed by abortion. One of those pastors, JD Greear, president of the Southern Baptist Convention and pastor of Summit Church in Raleigh, stated:
A just and righteous government speaks up for the marginalized and those who cannot speak for themselves. There is no group more voiceless than innocent children in the womb. We must continue to care for women in difficult circumstances while also preserving life for all.
Bishop Patrick L. Wooden of the Church of God in Christ (COGIC) echoed Rev. Greear's words, saying:
Brothers and sisters: You and I do not have the right as Christians to abide by the government-sanctioned mass destruction of an entire people group. It is our duty and our privilege as American Christians to hold our government leaders to account for the protection of all Americans, especially the most vulnerable.
The conviction of these church leaders is unflinching, but it is also rare. It is past time for our Christian leaders – all of them – to awaken from our stupor, recognize the genocide that is raging outside our front doors, and put our biblical commission into tangible action. We must rescue the oppressed – and we must do it now.
Rev. Sean Martin is the national church outreach director at Human Coalition.