( – promoted by mooncat)
I’ll say it again. God was Pro Choice in 1968, which is when
…Christianity Today published a special issue on contraception and abortion, encapsulating the consensus among evangelical thinkers at the time. In the leading article, professor Bruce Waltke, of the famously conservative Dallas Theological Seminary, explained the Bible plainly teaches that life begins at birth:
“God does not regard the fetus as a soul, no matter how far gestation has progressed. The Law plainly exacts: ‘If a man kills any human life he will be put to death’ (Lev. 24:17). But according to Exodus 21:22–24, the destruction of the fetus is not a capital offense… Clearly, then, in contrast to the mother, the fetus is not reckoned as a soul.”
—Jonathan Dudley, author of “Broken Words: The Abuse of Science and Faith in American Politics.”
Even casual students of the Bible have probably read this verse from 2 Peter 3:8: “Beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.”
But somehow Right Wing Evangelicals and their GOP leaders have persuaded themselves and their flocks that God has changed his mind in the last 40 years or so. The ways of God are hard to fathom, but I want to suggest here that this sudden sea change might have a lot more to do with Richard Nixon and Lee Atwater than any sudden dawning of spiritual light or moral conviction. One might even argue that religious doctrine supplied by two of the most corrupt political animals ever to stain the American landscape hardly meets the smell test.
Patrick Buchanan wrote a memo to Nixon advocating using the abortion issue to woo the Catholic vote. “If the president should publicly take his stand against abortion as offensive to his own moral principles … then we can force [Ed] Muskie [a failed Democratic presidential candidate in 1972] to make the choice between his tens of millions of Catholic supporters and his liberal friends.” The next week Nixon spoke of his “personal belief in the sanctity of human life – including the life of the yet unborn”.—Alan Bean, Abortion and White Evangelicals
Our current ‘controversy’ also owes a huge debt to Jerry Falwell and his so-called Moral Majority, who campaigned against Jimmy Carter (an actual Evangelical Christian) in favor of Ronald Reagan (who hated going to church and whose wife had a professional astrologer on retainer during the White House years). Falwell was also cozily in bed with the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, receiving millions in cash from that source to bail out his failing university. The Rev. Moon convinced thousands of cult followers that he was the physical incarnation of Christ – the New Messiah – and claimed their total allegiance on that basis. Hey, let’s talk some Bible here, shall we?
MT 7:15 “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.”
Falwell is also in large part responsible for bringing Roman Catholic dogma into Protestant thinking, and even Catholics haven’t always held the belief that life begins at conception.
[Thomas] Aquinas, the father of Roman Catholic theology, believed that life began at forty days but only because he mistakenly believed that’s when the unborn fetus was capable of intellectual life. ”Today, we know that the rudimentary organs are not developed until around ten weeks after conception,” Dudley writes, “and that the brain is not sufficiently developed to support sentient intellectual life until around six months after conception.”
For that matter, neither did St. Augustine – another bastion of the Roman Church. For Evangelicals, who lean heavily on the Old Testament for Biblical support, it’s also problematic that Jewish tradition holds that life begins at birth. My opinion is that it has to do with the breath of life. Unlike the anti-choice quotes, which mostly boil down to one sentence ( Jeremiah 1:5), the equation of Life=Breath is repeated endlessly in Scripture, starting at Genesis where God “breathed life into Adam”. The act of breathing, whether God’s or ours, seems to be a fairly universal definition of life in Scripture. But don’t take my word for it. How about an unimpeachable Evangelical source like the 700 Club?
We almost get a little spooky talking about the Holy Ghost, but the Hebrew word behind spirit is ruach, and it means “air in motion.” It is the same word for “breath.” It also means “life.”–Gordon Robertson, The 700 Club
I apologize in advance to LiA’s non-Christian and Progressive Christian readers for what may seem to be a religious diatribe, but facts are facts and one big fact is standing out there right now: white evangelicals are going for Mitt Romney ( a huge, proven liar) in a big way. I attribute a lot of this lukewarm support to the Pro Birth Agenda which has convinced God-fearing evangelicals, and in particular evangelical women, that a vote for Obama and the Democrats is a vote for Satan. It isn’t. It’s a vote against Nixon, Falwell, Lee Atwater, Karl Rove, Paul Weyrich and a host of other corrupt, non-believing political manipulators who want to use YOUR faith to promote THEIR agenda.
Their agenda isn’t yours, and it isn’t Christian. In fact, the Republican agenda is as far from the ‘red words’ as you can get.
If you are wavering towards Romney solely on this issue, please reconsider the history and the men behind it, and vote for what you know in your heart to be the best interests of 95% of the living Americans around you. Leave these personal moral choices where they belong – with those affected. It’s moral, it’s principled, and it’s by Golly American.
One of the photos in this article is human. One is an eleven week old elephant fetus. Can you spot the difference? If you can’t, should you be deciding these matters for everyone in the country? Think about it. Take all the time you need.