“Live as free persons, but do not use your freedom to cover-up for evil.” 1 Peter 2:16
At week 14, with his mainframe and all systems in place, God is now into detail work: Baby Chris’s facial muscles and brain impulses have him squinting, frowning and grimacing. He can suck and chew and suck his thumb. He is forming fingernails and toenails, eyelashes, eyebrows and body hair. He is no longer looks just generically human - he is becoming personally recognizable. From this point forward, his physical features will be his alone – a face like no other, the face that will be recognized by his mother, his face that will be the one imprinted in the minds of his beloved and his offspring - the face we will recognize in eternity, even in its resurrected body.
We frequently hear pro-choice advocates describing the unborn as “aliens,” and their mothers as “hosts.” The unborn are callously referred to as parasites. They are pronounced “not yet human,” and “non- persons.” Pro-abortion women rally for bodily autonomy, with cries of, “My body, my choice!” as if theirs was the only body concerned; as if theirs was the only body worth anything. And yet science has yet to discover a woman with two sets of DNA, two heads, four eyes, four arms and four legs and two sets of complete internal organs.
In pagan first-century Rome children were not considered human beings: the “preferred pronoun” for infants was “it.” They were the property of their fathers (nb not their mothers), who could reject them at birth and have them set out for death by exposure. In the days of American slavery, African-American slaves were counted as property, not people. The infamous Supreme Court decision we remember as Dred Scott, counted slaves as “3/5 persons” who could never become citizens, nor had the right to press a claim in court. “Parasite” and “sub-human” were the same invectives hurled at Jews by the Nazi propagandists in the months preceding the Kristallnacht and before the implementation of the Final Solution. Today, those same invectives and arguments are used to repress the right to life of the unborn. It has been described as the greatest human rights injustice of our time.
Human rights are not granted by earthly governments – they are endowed by God. “The Founders [of the American Republic] believed that natural rights are inherent in all people by virtue of their being human and that certain of these rights are unalienable, meaning they cannot be surrendered to government under any circumstances.”[i] And a 2017 Harvard Law Review article concludes that the persons protected by the 14th Amendment to the Constitution[ii] includes the unborn.
The unborn person is created by God for freedom, and it is the good news of the Gospel that sets all human beings free (Luke 4:18). Christ calls us to love our neighbors as ourselves (Mark 12:31) – surely that includes our unborn neighbors – who are created to become part of the Body of Christ, the One who sacrificed His own body to save ours from destruction. The unborn have the right to be protected from murder in the womb in the same way adults have the right to be protected from murder in their homes. They have the right to be born to hear the Gospel that is intended to set them free from their oppression.
“You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. The entire law is summed up in a single command: "Love your neighbor as yourself." Galatians 5:13-14
[ii] Craddock, Joshua, “Protecting Prenatal Persons: Does the Fourteenth Amendment Prohibit Abortion?”
Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, Vol. 40, No. 2, 2017, “No state, it declares, shall “deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”