Call To Die

Then [Jesus] said to them all, "If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it. (Luke 9:23-24, HCSB)

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Follower of Christ, husband of Abby, member of Kosmosdale Baptist Church, and tutor/staff member at Sayers Classical Academy.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Taking No Position is Sometimes Not an Option

[The following illustration is adapted from one I heard used by Dr. Russell D. Moore.]

Imagine a town in which a tradition of spousal abuse has been established. Acts of violence by husbands against their wives have, in this town, become the accepted rule rather than the despised exception. To its shame, this town has repealed laws against domestic violence, because, the courts have argued, there is a fundamental right to privacy concerning what occurs within the walls of each house. People throughout the town are passionately debating the situation, with some arguing for this right to "domestic privacy" and others arguing that wives should be protected against violence in their homes by law.

Imagine also that you are part of a group planting a church in this town. The church, of course, does not want to involve itself in any needless controversy, so some church planners are proposing that the pastors not address the "political issue" of spousal abuse. There are, of course, many other issues addressed by biblical principles and, it could be argued, we do not want the people of the church to be known as 'single-issue voters'.

It is easy to see the error in the above situation. Violence legally perpetuated by husbands against wives is such an important matter that any Christian confronted with such a thing must be ready to address it. To refuse to comment on this would be to give tacit approval to the status quo.

In the United States of America about 4,000 surgical abortions are performed each day. "Abortion" has actually become a kind of euphemism to indicate the process in which a baby, still in her mother's womb, is dismembered and suctioned out of her mother. This process is deemed legal on the basis of a mother's right to personal privacy.

Some churches have failed to address this issue. People consider abortion to be very controversial, and pastors do not want to offend potential members. There are many other issues that the Bible addresses, and some people think that to teach against abortion would tend to make a church focused on a single-issue to the exclusion of others. But we must recognize the offense of abortion, that it kills babies, damages mothers, and is an act of rebellion against God, who knits babies together in their mother's wombs (see Psalm 139:13). And our churches must address this issue or we are indeed giving approval to the status quo.

Certainly, the gospel is to be our focus, and so readers will question how a pastor can preach against abortion while focusing his listeners on the person and work of Jesus Christ. I would direct your attention to the sermon by Dr. Russell Moore, dean of the School of Theology at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, found HERE.



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