Should the church support the total abolition of abortion?
FERGUSON: There’s only one consideration that I think orthodox Christians have ever had in mind regarding abortion, and that is the possibility that one life threatens another. That Is an area in which I think Christians have had a genuine disagreement. That involves very sensitive and difficult issues ethically in the life of Christians. Although there has been disagreement about what to do when one life threatens another, there has been absolute homogeneity throughout history on the value of life. For example, the early Christians stood united against the taking of human life because it is contrary to the law of God.
The political leaders in my country have recently said, “We do not have enough people in this country.” In other words, we cannot continue to function at the level of social order, social security, pensions, health, and so on because we don’t have enough people. It clearly has not even crossed their mind that, in the last decade or two, my country has aborted approximately the population of our third-largest city. God gave us all the people we needed, and we are tasting the fruit of our wickedness.
I don’t think there is anything more clearly indicative of the perversity of our contemporary society than the lightness with which our society takes this issue. It’s such an expression of our willful blindness.
PARSONS: I want to be very careful because I and any one of us could spend the rest of our time today talking about this.
I cannot understand why anyone, let alone any self-professing Christian, could not and would not support the complete abolition of abortion. It is one of the greatest sins that has ever been committed throughout the history of civilization. We as churches, families, and individuals need to be working against this. We need to continue to call the church to act and to call governments to act. We, as God’s people, need never be silent on this. We cannot be silent on this.
We also need to be fully prepared for what may come if someday abortion is made illegal in any country. The truth of the matter is that most churches and most families aren’t ready for that. We need to be mindful of children who are born and how we might care for them. We need to be mindful of how they might be adopted into our homes and churches. We need to be a people who are putting our money where our mouths are, and most of us are not doing that to the degree that we should. We need to be putting a lot more money into the ministry of not only helping to save the lives of the not yet born but also ministering to their mothers and the men involved in their lives.
There’s a lot more that we all could say about this. It is one of the most vexing and angering sins in the entire history of civilization. R.C. used to say that slavery—the buying and selling of human beings—was once the greatest sin, but abortion has become the number one sin of humanity.
This is a transcript of Sinclair Ferguson’s and Burk Parsons’ answers during our Made in the Image of God event and has been lightly edited for readability. To ask Ligonier a biblical or theological question, just visit Ask.Ligonier.org or message us on Facebook or Twitter.