The Church and Abortion
by Don Costello 5/11/2008 / Bible Studies
I think it is safe to say that a large percentage of the Body of Christ is indifferent to abortion. Some may be against it but on the list of important issues it is too far down the list to affect matters such as where to worship. But the truth is that because we are followers of Christ we cannot be indifferent to abortion. Under the Old Covenant if someone knew child sacrifice was occurring and they "hide their eyes" from it, Leviticus 20:4,5 says the LORD, "will set my face against that man, and against his family, and will cut him off" I realize that we are not under a Theocracy as Israel was, but on principle alone our heart should be as equally abhorrent of abortion as it is of child sacrifice. Proverbs 24:11, 12 can be applied to abortion in the same spirit. "If thou forbear to deliver them that are drawn to death, and those that are ready to be slain; If thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not, doth not he that pondereth the heart consider it? And he that keepeth the soul, doth not he know it? And shall he not render to every man according to his works?" Why then do we have hundreds of thousands of people within the "church world" that are advocates of child sacrifice? The only reasonable explanation I can come up with is that they are not born again and never have been, or they have left the faith.
Perhaps we can use the following as a guideline. Under the Old Covenant there were crimes punishable by death. For instance, in Leviticus 20:11 we read, "the man that lieth with his father's wifeboth of them shall surely be put to death." It is the same in Deuteronomy 17:2-5 where the crime is idolatry. "If there be found among youman or woman, that hath,gone and served other godsThen shalt thou bring forth that man or that womanand shalt stone them with stones, till they die." Yet under the New Covenant that individual is not stoned but is dis-fellowshipped. In 1 Corinthians 5:1-5 where fornication with a father's wife is mentioned and in 1 Corinthians 5:11 where idolatry is mentioned, the judgment listed is "taken away" in 1 Corinthians 5:2 and "put away" in 1 Corinthians 5:13, instead of the death penalty. The phrases "taken away" and "put away" are the same Greek word, "exairo", and it means "to expel or excommunicate". Included in this church discipline according to 1 Corinthians 5:5, the church was to "deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh" The desired effect was that the individual would repent and come back to the Lord. The only example in the New Testament where the individuals are named is mentioned by the Apostle Paul in First Timothy 1:19, 20:
"Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck: Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme."
Jesus himself discussed discipline during his earthly ministry.
Matthew 18:15-20 "Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witness every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican. Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered to gathered in my name, there am I in the midst of them."
What Jesus is saying here is that God in heaven will back up what is decided on earth when it comes to Church discipline, including removing the offending person from the fellowship. When dealing with "excommunication" as a tool in Church discipline both of these instructional sources of Jesus and Paul should be combined in the process. I cannot stress enough that ideally this is a temporary process to be merged with much prayer and love, intended to bring the offender to repentance and inclusion within the local assembly, though until the offender repents this is not possible.
In light of that, can we apply that same wisdom to the abortion debate within the Church? I think we can and must. Leviticus 20:2 clearly says those who engage in child sacrifice, "shall surely be put to death: the people of the land shall stone him with stones." Likewise in the same spirit they should be dealt with as fornicators and idolaters. Under the New Covenant, those who engage in promoting the philosophy of abortion as a choice or a constitutional right should be excommunicated from the Body of Christ.
Let's look at a couple of Old Testament passages that I believe can be applied to this argument. The first is Isaiah 57:3-5.
"But draw near hither, ye sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer and the whore. Against whom do ye sport yourselves? Against whom make ye a wide mouth, and draw out the tongue? Are ye not children of transgression, a seed of falsehood, Enflaming yourselves with idols under every green tree, slaying the children in the valleys under the clifts of the rocks?"
The prophet says those who slay children are "sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer and the whorechildren of transgression, a seed of falsehood." The phrase "children of transgression" is almost identical to the phrase, "children of disobedience" used in Ephesians 2:2 to describe those who live their lives, "according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh" in them. That is why they need to be expelled from the Church. They are not right with God and the system they are associated with is a religious whore. They are her "seed". This in effect links them with "the great whore" of Revelation 17. There are hundreds of thousands of believers who attend churches within denominations where the official position of that work is pro-abortion. In that case I would obey Revelation 18:4 that says, "Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." This helps answer the question of, 'Has the church placed herself under a curse by advocating abortion?' Yes!, and the church will be judged as a result! If we are attending a church that supports abortion rights and we are giving tithe and offerings to that work, we are partakers of her sins. It is an abomination for someone to claim to be a follower of Christ and be pro-abortion.
Another witness to this element is Ezekiel 16:35- 36, where God calls his people a "harlot" for engaging in child sacrifice.
Ezekiel 16:35, 36 "Wherefore, O harlot, hear the word of the LORD:
Thus saith the LORD GOD; Because thy filthiness was poured out, and thy nakedness discovered through thy whoredoms with thy lovers, and with all the idols of thy abominations, and by the blood of thy children, which thou didst give unto them;"
These passages put those who engage in child sacrifice exactly where God has said they are, in a group of people out of covenant with God. In a whore or harlot church, and therefore they need to be excommunicated out of the Body of Christ, until they repent.
The next passage I will list is Zephaniah 1:4, 5. This passage I believe can be applied to specifically ministers of the gospel who support abortion rights.
"I will also stretch out mine hand upon Judah, and upon all the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and I will cut off the remnant of Baal from this place, and the name of the Chemarims with the priests; And them that worship the host of heaven upon the housetops; and them that worship and that swear by the LORD, and that swear by Malcham;"
The Hebrew word used for "cut off" means not only "to destroy and consume", it also means "to covenant with". There is no question in my mind that this is a covenant keeping element charged to the LORD'S side of keeping covenant. In other words, God is going to destroy these Chemarims in his part of being faithful to his side of the Covenant. Chemarims were idolatrous priests who worshipped the host of heaven. They also included those who worshipped the one true God and also worshipped Malcham. Malcham is a variant spelling of Molech, the god of child sacrifice. This is supported by Unger's Bible Dictionary; Easton's Bible Dictionary; American Tract Society Bible Dictionary and Holman Bible Dictionary. So what they had was priests who worshipped Jehovah but also worshipped Molech. We have in our day a contemporary application of this in so called ministers of the Gospel who support abortion rights. The group is called the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, [RCRC]. Their official mission statement listed on their website says,
"The Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice brings the moral power of religious communities to ensure reproductive choice through education and advocacy. The Coalition seeks to give clear voice to the reproductive issues of people of color, those living in poverty, and other underserved populations. RCRC was founded in 1973 to safe guard the newly won constitutional right to abortion. The Coalition founders were clergy and lay leaders from mainstream religions, many of whom had provided women with referrals to safe abortion services before the Supreme Court legalized abortion in Roe v. Wade. The founders believed that there would be at most a ten year struggle to secure to secure the right to choose. In fact the struggle is far from over. It has changed and intensified, and the stakes are growing."
The so called clergy in this group are nothing more than modern day Chemarims, upholding modern day child sacrifice in the form of abortion on demand/a woman's right to choose. These Jews that Zephaniah wrote of worshipped the one true God and the false god Malcham or Molech, which involved child sacrifice. This is no different than modern day individuals, churches and denominations who profess Christ but at the same time defend abortion rights. It is clear from Ezekiel 20:31 how God feels about it.
Ezekiel 20:31 "For when ye offer your gifts, when ye make your sons to pass through the fire, ye pollute yourselves with all your idols, even unto this day: and shall I be inquired by you, O house of Israel? As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I will not be inquired of by you.
God does not hear the prayers of those who participate and support child sacrifice. They have polluted or defiled themselves. In Ezekiel 23:36-39 the LORD adds more to His indictment.
"The LORD said moreover unto me; Son of man, wilt thou judge Aholah [symbolic name for Samaria]and Aholibah [symbolic name for Jerusalem]? Yea, declare unto them their abominations; That they have committed adultery, and blood is in their hands, and with their idols have they committed adultery, and have also caused their sons, whom they bare unto me, to pass for them through the fire to devour them. Moreover this they have done unto me: they have defiled my sanctuary in the same day, and have profaned my Sabbaths. For when they had slain their children to their idols, then they came the same day into my sanctuary to profane it; and, lo, thus have they done in the midst of mine house."
Those who participate in child sacrifice commit murder, spiritual adultery and they defile God's sanctuary when they enter it. Does that mean that those who uphold the constitutional right of abortion are upholding the right to murder of the unborn? Are they guilty of spiritual adultery and of defiling God's sanctuary? Yes! Yes! and Yes! When all the Scriptural evidence is studied, the links between child sacrifice and abortion on demand are undeniable. The least the church can do is use the disciplinary tools God has given them to purge this evil from its ranks.
From this study we can summarize that a born again believer in Jesus in fellowship with him cannot be pro-choice/pro-abortion. It is impossible.
My name is Don Costello. Ever since I received Christ in November of 1976 I have had a passion to study and know God's word.My wife Melissa and I have 5 children.