Consider these three words: truth, morality and reality. There was a time when many Americans believed in absolute truth, absolute morality and absolute reality. In other words, there was a time when we believed that some things were true and some things were false, regardless of one’s beliefs. That some things were moral and some things were immoral, regardless of one’s opinion. That some things were real and some things were imagined, regardless of one’s perspective.
Today we have relative truth (as in, “You have your truth, I have my truth”), relative morality (“It may be wrong for you, but it’s right for me”), and relative reality (“I am whatever I perceive myself to be”).
But from God’s perspective, nothing has changed. There is truth and falsehood, morality and immorality, reality and fantasy. And it is God’s unchanging Word, the Bible, that separates truth from falsehood, morality from immorality, and reality from fantasy. As Hebrews 4:12-13 states, “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.”
What, then, does God’s Word say about the controversial issues the media reports on?
Although the Scriptures do not explicitly address the issue of abortion, they do address God’s perspective on the baby in the womb.
We see that Rebekah, the wife of Isaac, was told that two nations were in her womb, pointing to the personhood and potential of her unborn children (Genesis 25:21-23; see also Jeremiah 1:4-5).
Similarly, John the Baptizer leapt in his mother’s womb when Mary arrived, with the baby Jesus in her womb (Luke 1:39-43; see also 1:15, where John would be filled with the Spirit even from his mother’s womb).
And verses like Psalm 139:13-16 speak of how the Lord carefully knit us together while we were still in the womb.
But are there verses that might point in another direction?
There are two main passages that often come up for discussion in this context, Exodus 21:22-25 and Numbers 5:11-31. But upon close examination, neither of them supports a pro-abortion position in the least.
The passage in Exodus, rightly translated, speaks of a woman delivering a child prematurely after being struck; in which case, if the baby dies, the one who struck her is guilty of murder. The passage in Numbers says nothing about abortion at all. And even if it did (which, to repeat, it does not), it would be an act of divine judgment for adultery, not a woman’s prerogative if the pregnancy was unwanted. No wonder, then, that the early church took such a strong stance on abortion.
When it comes to homosexual practice, there is not one positive reference to same-sex couples in the entire Bible—not one—whereas every single reference to marriage, family, parenting and relationships presupposes heterosexuality. This ranges from the command to honor one’s father and mother in the Ten Commandments to teachings on husbands and wives in the New Testament. Heterosexuality is presupposed, whereas any references to same-sex relationships are flatly and strongly condemned.
That’s why Biblical commentators and Biblical translators never questioned the subject until after the sexual revolution. That’s why both church and synagogue were in full agreement that homosexual practice was forbidden until radical changes came to modern society.
It is the world that has changed, not the Word. We stray from the Word at our own peril.
The same can be said when it comes to biological sex. God created us male and female, and there are no sexes or genders beyond that. There may be people who are confused about their sexual identity, in which case we should love them and help them rather than hate them or shun them. And there may be people with biological or chromosomal abnormalities (this is called intersex), in which case we should treat them with gentleness and compassion, just as we would someone with any type of disability. But under no circumstances should we change reality, affirming someone’s internal confusion. (Note that the vast majority of those who identify as transgender are not intersex.)
As for women who have had abortions (or men who have participated in abortions), along with those involved in same-sex relationships and those who identify as transgender, Jesus shed the same blood for each of them as for each of us. All of us come to the cross as lost sinners, all of us need God’s amazing grace, and all of us can be cleansed and forgiven and transformed. That is the power of the Gospel. That is the power of the blood of Jesus.
As the Apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians (after referring to adulterers and the sexually immoral and idolaters and extortioners and drunkards and slanderers and those who practice homosexuality), “And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:11).
And what happens when we deviate from God’s norm, based on the principle established at creation that everything reproduces after its own kind? We go from the categories of male and female to an infinite number of gender expressions, including multiple gender identities such as ambigender, bigender, blurgender, pangender, polygender, trigender—this list goes on with dozens of descriptors.
We go from male-female relationships to same-sex couples, same-sex throuples, and all other kinds of polyamorous relationships, including, straight, bisexual and gay individuals, all in a “committed” loving relationship.
Not only that, but because Biblical beliefs are considered the ultimate threat to homosexual activism, those who come out of the closet in the name of equality and tolerance now want to put us in the closet. Put another way, the increase of gay and trans rights means the decrease of Christian rights. “Tolerance” and “diversity” become one-way streets.
And when we embrace the “right” to abortion, we produce a culture of death rather than a culture of life, leading not only to the shedding of innocent blood in the womb but also to the diminishing importance of babies, children and the elderly. Birth rates plummet; children are no longer seen as gifts from God; motherhood is despised; and the elderly can be cast away. Perhaps the old will even be terminated at the will of the state one day. Why not?
It is imperative that Christian leaders, especially pastors, lay out the Biblical teaching on these critical subjects with both courage and compassion. As I have often said, we need hearts of compassion and backbones of steel. That’s why it is crucial that parents and educators give their children and students clear Biblical foundations. And that’s why, in all things, we need a fresh baptism of the love of God for those who differ with us.
America can only be saved and changed by the Gospel, and as much as we must advocate for good laws to replace bad laws, our ultimate goal must be the changing of hearts and minds through the power of Christ. With God it is possible! ©2023 Michael Brown
Michael L. Brown is the founder and president of AskDrBrown Ministries in Concord, North Carolina, and host of the daily radio show The Line of Fire.
Photo: Thomas J. Petrino/©2023 BGEA