By AMAC Member – Michael Gordon
I have two grown daughters who are pro-choice. I am not blind or ignorant of the overall issues and arguments regarding abortion, given I wasn’t always pro-life. Nevertheless, I am regularly attacked when I share my pro-life views. The typical rhetoric is I am your typical cisgender white Republican male who intends to force all women to give birth against their will. I am fully aware of all of the various reasons women seek abortions, such as: when women have been sexually assaulted; when the fetus has a fatal abnormality; when having a child will kill the woman; when women are in school; when women cannot afford a child; when a woman’s partner is abusive; when women do not have the support to nurture a child; when women are just not ready to be a Mom; when women are pursuing their dreams; and when women simply do not want a child.
I am disheartened by the anger and divisiveness in our country over this issue. While the Supreme Court did overturn Roe v Wade, I don’t necessarily consider it a victory or defeat for either side. Rather, the courts rightfully ruled that such matters should be decided by the voters at the state level. Even Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who firmly advocated for women’s access to abortion as a constitutional right, had prior to her passing, criticized the way in which Roe v. Wade established that
right. Ginsburg noted that Roe struck down far more than the specific Texas criminal abortion statute at issue in the case. “Suppose the court had stopped there, rightly declaring unconstitutional the most extreme brand of law in the nation, and had not gone on, as the court did in Roe, to fashion a regime blanketing the subject, a set of rules that displaced virtually every state law then in force,” she said. “A less
encompassing Roe, one that merely struck down the extreme Texas law and went no further on that day, I believe and will summarize why, might have served to reduce rather than to fuel controversy.” While I concede that eliminating Roe v Wade at the federal level adds further protection to an unborn child, it doesn’t prevent abortions from occurring. For example, I live in Florida. The Abortion law in Florida allows a woman of any age to terminate a pregnancy within the first 15 weeks of gestation. Beyond 15 weeks, if the woman’s life is considered to be in danger or if the fetus (unborn child) is considered to have a “fatal fetal abnormality,” two physicians may certify “the termination of the pregnancy is necessary to save the pregnant woman’s life” or avert serious irreversible impairment. Most of the 50 states in the USA and most countries have similar laws.
The statistics on abortion underscore that preborn babies are among the most vulnerable and helpless members of our society (over 65 million abortions in the USA since Roe v Wade). Abortion also effects the poor and minorities the most, which was the purpose behind the evil eugenics of Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood. According to the Centers of Disease Control, in 2019 non-Hispanic white
women had the lowest abortion rate (6.6 abortions per 1,000 women) and non-Hispanic black woman had the highest rate (23.8 abortions per 1,000 women). Abortion impacts the poor and minorities the most.
Married to a woman for 35 years and raising two daughters, I find it ironic that somehow, I don’t support women. I am not opposed to women’s rights and control over their body but rather an unborn child in the womb has his/her own body and should be allowed his/her own bodily autonomy. The value of human beings is not dependent on where they are, how tall they are, what race they are, what they look like, or how old they are. Each person has inherent worth because of who and what he or she is: a member of the human species.
When does life begin? When Roe v Wade was passed in 1973, the understanding of DNA and fertility was not widely understood. It is not a religious belief but a scientific fact that an organism exists after fertilization. This new organism has its own DNA distinct from the mother and father, meaning that it is a unique person. As the embryo grows, it develops a heartbeat (22 days after fertilization), its own circulatory system, and its own organs. From fertilization, it is a new organism that is alive and will
continue to grow and develop as long as nutrition is provided, and its life is not ended through violence or illness. Keith L. Moore, a world-renowned embryologist, has written several definitive books on embryology, and his scientific knowledge and experience are vast and beyond reproach. Moore states that “The zygote, formed by the union of an oocyte and a sperm, is the beginning of a new human being. Embryology textbooks are clear: life begins at fertilization. And the life that begins is not simply a continuation of the life of the sperm or egg cell. Rather, it is the life of a distinct, unique, new individual
who has never existed before in history and will never exist again. Nothing will be added to the new organism except nutrition, and it will continue to grow and develop until death occurs due to injury or illness.
For me, abortion is much more personal. I had lived a riotous lifestyle before I became a Christian at the age of 29 years old. In the story of the Prodigal son, the son asked for his inheritance early, the father gave it to him, and he left for a faraway country, where he “wasted his substance with riotous living.” Completely broke, the son finally reasons that he is better off being one of his father’s hired hands than feeding swine and eating from the same pig trough. The Bible tells us in Luke 15, while yet a great way off, his father “saw” him and was moved by compassion; and he ran and embraced him and kissed him and put a robe on him and a ring on his finger. The older brother was out in the fields. He didn’t see his father go out to meet his son because he wasn’t looking. He was looking at his work, what he was doing. But the father saw the son while he was still a long way off because he was looking for him. The moved heart (compassion) always follows the seeing eye (looking).
I was living in New York and painting houses with my brother in 1980. I met a girl and we started to date. She got pregnant. I remember it as if it happened yesterday. She came over to the house and told me she was pregnant. I was 22 years old, and she was 19 years old. She said she wanted an abortion. That her father would “kill her” if he found out she was pregnant. I was scared but I took her to the clinic. After the
abortion, she came back to my place and laid in bed for hours. She was in pain and emotionally distraught. She left my house 12 hours later and we never saw each other again. That aborted baby would have been a 42-year-old man or woman today. I put the whole episode out of my mind. Two months later I moved to Florida. Then in 1981, I met Kathy via a blind date. Kathy was studying to be a nurse. We fell in love. In 1982, Kathy secured a nursing job at a hospital in Orlando. I was living in Clearwater and would visit Kathy on weekends. In the summer of 1982, Kathy told me she was pregnant. I didn’t care. I was more than willing to marry her and have the child. Kathy wanted an abortion. She wasn’t ready to have a child and she said the baby was likely exposed to radiation at the hospital because of her work. I took her to the clinic and took care of her when we got back to her apartment. It was an emotionally painful time for both of us, but we continued our relationship, but we were both changed by the abortion, and we broke up 6 months later. That aborted baby would have been a 40-year-old man or woman today.
Years later I ran into Kathy at the local library. Like my wife and I, Kathy and her husband had become born again Christians in the mid 80’s. Kathy told me to read a book by Frank Peretti called Tilly. It was a story of what heaven is like for those we’ve lost, in this case our lost children through abortion, how they have nothing but pure love for us as they await our time to join them in heaven. In the Bible it says, “suffer the little children who come into me for this is the kingdom of heaven.” I wept uncontrollable tears reading that book. Even though I have been made whole by God’s forgiveness, these many years have not erased the pain I still carry in my heart from having been part of 2 abortions. When my wife got pregnant the first time, we were so excited. It was not a fetus in her stomach but a human life – our child with our DNA. When she had the miscarriage, we were devastated. We went from the wonders of being pregnant to losing our child. The miscarriage my wife and I experienced has been the experience of many other couples. Like all couples, we celebrated the good news of “being pregnant.” We were having a baby. This was not some fetus but our unborn child. The miscarriage was heart wrenching.
In Florida, I am grateful that they have a law that values the life of the baby inside a mother’s womb. In June 2014, the “Florida Unborn Victims of Violence Act” became law, which makes it a criminal offense to cause the death of, or bodily injury to, an unborn child during pregnancy. It is a law that protects a vulnerable population from injury: pregnant women. However, this law does not assert that the “fetuses” are persons in the eyes of the law. The law criminalizes any acts of harm committed against a pregnant woman by others, but the law does not criminalize nor interfere with acts committed by the pregnant mother or her decision to have an abortion.
God did bless us with two beautiful daughters, soon after our miscarriage. I labored, along with my wife all those nine months loving each of our children, doing everything we could to bring each to term. We love our daughters unconditionally and thank God for their precious lives.
I have lived both sides of this issue, but I have been redeemed from my past life. I have been the prodigal son in my own life, and I am now the father of prodigal children.
2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 …
Thank you for the eternal encouragement you alone can give. Your love never fails (1 Cor 13:8). You have brought home my own prodigal heart home, and I thank you that you will do the same for my children. “I love you, O Lord, my strength” (Psalm 18:1), and I praise you for the day when my children will love you too.
I want to close with a word of encouragement, especially to anyone who has been damaged by an abortion. God does not want you to go through life punishing yourself for your abortion or for any other wrong you have done. Jesus said to a woman who had lived an immoral lifestyle, “Your sins are forgiven. Your faith has saved you; go in peace” (Luke 7:47–50). Jesus was surrounded by women who were rejected by society but who found compassion, forgiveness, and hope in His love.
No matter what you (or I) have done, no sin is beyond the reach of God’s grace. God has seen us at our worst and still loves us. The apostle Paul was a murderer; he had participated in the killing of Christians. He called himself the “worst of sinners” (1 Timothy 1:15–16). Yet God not only forgave him, God elevated Paul to leadership in the church. There are no limits to the forgiving grace of God.
Having trusted in God to forgive me, I must also resist the temptation to wallow in my guilt, for I am no longer guilty. Accepting God’s grace does not mean pretending I didn’t do something wrong, but realizing that even though I did, I am now fully forgiven. Christ asks us to accept His atonement, not to repeat it.
The good news is that God loves you and desires to forgive you for your abortion, whether or not you knew what you were doing when you had it. But before the good news can be appreciated, we must know the bad news. The bad news is we are all guilty of many moral offenses against God, of which abortion is only one. “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
Sin is falling short of God’s holy standards. Sin separates us from a relationship with God (Isaiah 59:2). Sin deceives us and makes us think that wrong is right and right is wrong (Proverbs 14:12). The Bible says, “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
Jesus died on the cross as the only one worthy to pay the penalty demanded by the holiness of God for our sins (2 Corinthians 5:21). Being God, and being all-powerful, he rose from the grave, defeating sin and conquering death (1 Corinthians 15:3–4, 54–57). When Christ died on the cross for us, He said, “It is finished” (John 19:30). The Greek word translated “it is finished” was commonly written across certificates of debt when they were canceled. It meant “paid in full.” Christ died so that the certificate of debt
consisting of all our sins could once and for all be marked “paid in full.”
There is no righteous deed we can do that will earn us salvation (Titus 3:5). We come to Christ empty-handed. Salvation is described as a gift—“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast” (Ephesians 2:8–9). This gift cannot be worked for, earned, or achieved. It is not dependent on our merit or effort, but solely on Christ’s generosity and sacrifice on our behalf.
Like any gift, the gift of forgiveness can be offered to you, but it is not yours until you choose to receive it. There are cases where convicted criminals have been offered a pardon by governors but have rejected their pardons. Courts have determined that a pardon is valid only if the prisoner is willing to accept it. Likewise, Christ offers each of us the gift of forgiveness and eternal life, but just because the offer is made does not automatically make it ours. In order to have it, we must choose to accept it.
You may think, “But I don’t deserve forgiveness after all I’ve done.” That’s exactly right. None of us deserves forgiveness. If we deserved it, we wouldn’t need it. That’s the point of grace. Christ got what we deserved on the cross so we could get what we don’t deserve—His forgiveness. Repent and be saved. Turn to the Lord with all your heart. And once forgiven, you can look forward to being reunited in heaven with all your loved ones covered by the blood of Christ, including children lost through abortion (1 Thessalonians 4:13–18).
Reminder to all of us: We are called to love everyone always. That means loving and caring for the unborn, single mothers, those who have received abortions, and people who passionately disagree. 1 Corinthians 16:14 – “Do everything in love”
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