40th Annual Sanctity of Life Sunday

Today, January 21, 2024 is the 40th annual Sanctity of Life Sunday. While Christians use the day to pray for the unborn and the political climate that surrounds the subject, many are not aware the annual event originated in the White House. It was upon the 10th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision that then President Ronald Reagan wrote an essay on the subject of abortion.  In the essay, he addressed the divide in the nation that the decision had caused.  Not a political divide, but a spiritual one.  He felt that there is no question that the Founding Fathers gave no thought to this subject, but politicians had placed the full weight of the subject in the Founder’s words.  Since the 1973 US Supreme Court decision ruled that the Constitution of the United States generally protected a right to have an abortion, the country has become even more deeply divided now because the subject has evolved to find its way into political, moral, spiritual and ethical decisions all of us deal with today.

After marking the 10th anniversary with his essay, the following year Reagan issued “Proclamation 5147 — National Sanctity of Human Life Day, 1984.”  The proclamation designated Sunday, January 22, 1984, as National Sanctity of Human Life Day. President Reagan wrote, “I call upon the citizens of this blessed land to gather on that day in homes and places of worship to give thanks for the gift of life, and to reaffirm our commitment to the dignity of every human being and the sanctity of each human life.”  He went on to issue the proclamation each year on the third Sunday in January until he left office in 1988. George H.W. Bush continued the tradition, as did George W. Bush. The practice was discontinued during the presidency of Bill Clinton.  It was President Clinton that gave the country his thoughts on the subject by stating abortion should be, “safe, legal, and rare” in 1992. In a political sense, he sought to move the issue away from the moral stigma that was associated with it.  What he didn’t realize was that his simple phrase (some say he made up on the fly), would become his Party’s position on abortion, as Presidents Barack Obama and Joe Biden did not issue a pro-life proclamation as President Donald Trump did each of his years in office.
What once was a moral subject, has now been embraced as political. Gallup reported in February 2023 that Americans are more dissatisfied with U.S. abortion policies now than they have been at any point in the past 23 years, and those who are dissatisfied are three times as likely to prefer less strict rather than more strict abortion laws. https://news.gallup.com/poll/470279/dissatisfaction-abortion-policy-hits-high.aspx?

Presidential candidate Trump backed this up last week when a voter at a Fox News town hall said, pro-life and protecting "every person's right to life without compromise," was her top issue. He answered: “I love where you’re coming from, but we still have to win elections. They’ve used this— you know, we have some great Republicans and they’re great on the issue. And you would love them on the issue. And a lot of them have just been decimated in the election. Decimated."  And he is correct. Christians have ignored the theological truth concerning the subject and have allowed the politicians to fight the battles we should have been fighting. Now, the subject is political, but the weight of our choices will always be moral.  

Looking back at the 1983 warning Regan gave in his essay, his words should break our hearts.  He writes: “The real question today is not when human life begins, but what is the value of human life? The abortionist who reassembles the arms and legs of a tiny baby to make sure all its parts have been torn from its mother’s body can hardly doubt whether it is a human being. The real question for him and for all of us is whether that tiny human life has a God-given right to be protected by the law—the same right we have.”

Today we have politicians that will not answer honestly when asked about the basic biological differences between men and women.  We now have a sitting Supreme Court Justice that would not answer that question when asked during her confirmation.  We have university presidents that defend their academic crimes on the basis of race, not integrity.  Legislators champion the feelings of grown adult men over the rights and protection of innocent young girls.  Are these the type of people we want making decisions of this importance for us?  Reagan warned us in his question, “What is the value of human life?”  Think about it, we will spend billions of taxpayer funds to search the universe for signs of life, but when we ask politicians not to spend our money on eliminating life through abortion services like Planned Parenthood, we are attacked on all fronts.   https://scitechdaily.com/searching-for-signs-of-intelligent-life-in-the-universe-technosignatures/

If we want to approach this argument as a legal issue, Exodus 21:22-25 gives a full description of how God views life in the womb. If we want to make this a State issue, 31 states give full recognition to unborn victims of violence. https://www.nrlc.org/federal/unbornvictims/statehomicidelaws092302/

If we care to remind ourselves what the Bible has to say about how God views life, yes, we all can quote Genesis, that we are made in His image (that should be enough. Watch today's sermon), but what about before we arrive, this side of the womb?  Realize that Jeremiah, David, Isaiah, Paul, John the Baptist, Job, Adam and all the Saints reference their own life before they took their first breath? (Jeremiah 1:5, Psalm 139:16, Isaiah 49:1, Galatians 1:15, Luke 1:41, Job 31:15, Genesis 2:7, Ephesians 1:4). Long before the courts weighed in, the Bible acknowledge the sanctity of human life in the womb.  Why have we allowed this issue, like so many others, to be handled by the politicians?  The truth is simple and shameful, we didn’t want to get involved. Like so many issues, if it doesn’t directly concern me, why should I be concerned?  The answer, because like all of the other issues, they have a way of coming back on us.  When Clinton made his “safe, legal, and rare” quote in 1992 it came across as something both parties could get behind, and they did.  At one time the religious groups were strongly opposed to abortion, but since that election cycle in 1992 we have seen public support and the number of cases increase.  People are always looking for an excuse to go with the current populous flow.  What was once “safe, legal and rare” is now expected to be on demand and for any reason. If people will allow this to happen to human life, what else are they capable of?  At one time God destroyed the earth because every desire of the human heart was evil.  I cannot think of anything much more evil than having no opinion on the sanctity of human life.  We can no longer sit on the sidelines of this issue.  Use today to thank the Lord that you were allowed to see another day of life and for the ability to fight for those who would like the same chance as we were given.  
Serving the Savior,
Bro. Jonathan

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