Four years ago, I wrote Christians and abortion: Will Christians abandon God over abortion? The impetus for it was Disney, the state of Georgia, and proposed abortion legislation. Well, things have changed dramatically since then. Therefore, my new question for this update is Will abortion drive people away from Christianity?
I’ll keep much of the original text in here. Without it, the sense of how things have changed will be lost.
Updates from current news will be added.
And you’ll see why I switched from Christians abandoning God to people being driven away from Christianity.
The emphasis is twofold.
First, the idea of people being forced to act, driven away, because of our beliefs. In other words, are we reaching a point where we’ll abandon our current church/denomination because of their stand on abortion?
Second, will people abandon God altogether, or will they, as proposed above, just switch their current church to find one that supports their own beliefs? In other words, is abortion causing us to leave God, or just to switch to someplace that has the same view of God that we do?
Truth be told, there is still only one God in Christianity. And He’s explained Himself enough in the Bible for us to know where He stands. That begs a question about our search for a new church/denomination.
Why do Christians switch to a new church?
Do Christians look for a new church to find one that worships God in their image? Or are they looking for a new church to find one that follows God as He described Himself in the Bible? Either way, the most important thing in the search is that we take the time to look at the big picture of who God said He is. And it’s up to us to learn that, not to just follow someone else’s idea of God that makes us happy with our life as it is. The transformation that Jesus told us about must take place.
When I wrote the first a news headline read: Will Christians abandon God over abortion? It’s no longer available online. It was about Georgia’s proposed legislation (at that time) about making abortions illegal if a heartbeat is detected in the fetus / unborn baby / unborn person.
It did pass. However, it was also ruled unconstitutional. But then the U.S. Supreme court ruling allowed Georgia to revisit the ruling in their state. As a result, the Supreme Court of Georgia reinstated the state’s ban on abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat.
Therefore, while the law I originally wrote about four years ago was initially struck down, it is, as of now – March 20, 2023 – in place.
Here’s part of a statement from then Disney CEO Robert Igers:
“I rather doubt we will” stay in the Peach State, where such Disney subsidiaries as Marvel Studios have taken advantage of the most generous, uncapped production incentives in the nation to counterbalance the costs of such nine-figure superhero spectaculars as “Avengers: Endgame” and “Black Panther.”
“I think many people who work for us will not want to work there, and we will have to heed their wishes in that regard. Right now we are watching it very carefully.”
“If this highly restrictive legislation goes into effect, we will reevaluate our activity in Georgia. Similar bills – some even more restrictive – have passed in multiple states and have been challenged. This is likely to be a long and complicated fight and we are watching it all very closely.”
It’s interesting. Blaming the move on their employees. In case you missed that part, he said, I think many people who work for us will not want to work there, and we will have to heed their wishes in that regard.
Sure thing. Big companies all over the country, even the world, are heeding their employees’ wishes. Right. And the Brooklyn Bridge is for sale too.
By the way, here’s a statement from a Marvel exec on December 14, 2022.
Georgia’s film industry is on fire and despite the fact that Marvel is no longer filming any major movies in the peach state, Marvel’s Vice President says the studio is not “abandoning” Georgia.
According to reports, David Grant, head of physical production at Marvel, said the studio has no plans to stop shooting in Atlanta.
“I’d like to squelch a rumor that I’ve been hearing for months and weeks, almost on a daily basis. I keep hearing that Marvel is abandoning Georgia. I don’t know where these rumors start. It’s not true. There’s no basis to it,” said Grant, who has worked on Marvel films such as “Ant-Man,” “Thor,” “Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Doctor Strange.”
Check out the underlined part. I know where it came from. His CEO. So much for doing what the people want. But then, I’m also sure that not all people want the same thing either.
Is it really a “company” that decided to move because of abortion?
This is a bit anticlimactic, given that they didn’t move, but the realities behind my original version still apply.
If big companies listened to their employees, they wouldn’t be laying off so many of them. And they’d pay a living wage. And I’m sure that Disney’s going to pay for every one of their employees, contractors, and part-time people to move out of Georgia to wherever Disney decides to relocate. Let’s get real here. That’s not gonna happen!
Sure, the big stars will go wherever the $20 million dollars per movie is. Everyone else will be left unemployed. Forgotten. Ignored. They’ll be dumped in the trash heap of people left behind by too many big companies.
And so will many of the babies that are born if abortion is illegal.
Don’t get me wrong here. I’m not in favor of abortion. Only in very rare circumstances, for instance, rape.
But I do question, for all those who want to force a poor single mother to have a baby she can’t afford to feed, who’s going to help her? For the families that are going to have a child because who you want them to have him/her – who’s going to provide healthcare, food, education, Etc. to that child? Because the poor parents won’t be able to.
Sure, it’s easy to say the woman shouldn’t have become pregnant. But that’s irrelevant to the baby. The baby’s coming. And will need care. Further, if the child doesn’t have the proper upbringing, they’ll often end up poor and uneducated. While it’s nice and convenient to blame that on the mother, isn’t part of the problem because anti-abortionists often, or usually, want to prevent the abortion but do little if anything to help after the baby is born?
And that doesn’t even get to the issue of a baby who’s going to need expensive medical care. Even middle-class and some upper-class families can’t afford that. What makes anyone think a poor person can cope with it? Aren’t they most likely to end up on the street? Even then, how often will the baby grow up to be an adult, let a alone self-sufficient adult? Which of the anti-abortion people is going to stand up and help with that?
By the way, I’m including Bob Iger and other corporate leaders in there when I say “people”. Companies don’t make decisions like the one Iger is considering for Disney. People make those decisions. Then they try to hide behind them, saying it’s a corporate decision – or it’s because of our employees. No. It’s because that’s what the corporate leaders want.
Christians and Abortion
There’s someone else I address this to. Christians. Especially Christians supporting anti-abortion political candidates.
Why don’t you force them to include care for the babies and families that are seeking out abortion because they can’t deal with having the baby? Maybe it’s money problems, like because they got laid off by a big company that left them behind when the leaders went after greener pastures, or went to machines with no needs instead of people who have needs? Or these days, because they’re going to implement some AI solution instead of real people with real brains?
And why don’t you force them to provide counseling and other mental health care for those who need it, whether because of things that happened before the pregnancy or will happen afterwards?
Do you remember the Parable of the Good Samaritan? Oh yeah – and do you live it out?
The Parable of the Good Samaritan
10:25-28 pp — Mt 22:34-40; Mk 12:28-31
Lk 10:25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
Lk 10:26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”
Lk 10:27 He answered: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’’”
Lk 10:28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
Lk 10:29 But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
Lk 10:30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’
Lk 10:36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”
Lk 10:37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”
Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”
Does the parable of the good Samaritan have anything to do with Christians and abortion?
We must realize, this isn’t strictly about people who were beaten and robbed while traveling alone on a deserted road. The crux of the parable is the question Jesus asked: Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers? Given that the scenario of the man who was robbed was an example scenario, the question was really, Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the person who needs help?
Do you realize, if you’re Christian and you support extreme abortion laws, but provide no assistance for the people who will need it as a result of having the baby, that you are in this parable? Actually, you’re in it twice.
The first time a Christian who supports extreme abortion laws is in the parable is here – he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. Yes, you’re one of the robbers. For those people who, for various reasons, are forced to have a baby they cannot care for, you’re involved in robbing that family. Having the baby takes money they may not have. It takes emotional stability they may not have. You’re involved in getting that law passed. And then you walk away, leaving some of the affected people half dead.
The second time is this – saw him, passed by on the other side. Now, you won’t see all of the people affected. But it’s hard to imagine you never see any of them. When you do see a mother struggling to care for her child/children, do you ever wonder if it’s because of an abortion law that left them half dead? Do you ever reach out to help them? I don’t mean throw a couple dollars at them. I mean help – as in the Good Samaritan.
In the parable, the Samaritan helps someone he doesn’t know. Someone who’s in a very bad condition. And the Samaritan had nothing to do with the person being robbed, beaten and left half dead. If you’re the Christian who supported that extreme abortion law, you are partly responsible for some of those mothers who can’t care for their child. Isn’t it that much more of a responsibility to help? If not at the same time as passing the law, certainly after the impact has been seen?
For a Christian, what are the sin(s) from abortion?
Yes, abortion is a sin. I get that and I agree with it.
However, isn’t even wanting to have an abortion a sin?
5:25, 26 pp — Lk 12:58, 59
Mt 5:21 “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22 But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.
Even the act of wanting to abort the baby seems to be against God’s will. Seems like Jesus is calling even the thoughts the mother has about the unborn baby just as sinful as actually aborting it.
Don’t believe it? Consider this:
Mt 5:27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ 28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.
Do you see it now? The things we want to do are seen by God to be equal to the things we actually do.
Tell me – how will you prevent someone to think about having an abortion? Will you make it illegal to think about having an abortion? That won’t work. (Not yet anyway) But the problem is that unless you can prevent the thoughts, you have not stopped the mother from sinning. You have not prevented the mother from committing murder in God’s eye. That’s why you, the Christian, claim to be anti-abortion – preventing the sin – isn’t it? So this should be something you’re equally concerned about, shouldn’t it?
If you haven’t prevented the mother from wanting an abortion – exactly what have you accomplished by getting that anti-abortion law passed? Remember, this is a question about sin. And in that context, as we just saw, even wanting an abortion can be a sin. I know, we like to say that something’s not a sin unless we act on it. But do you really think that’s what Jesus said in those passages we just read? I don’t. I think it’s just a way to feel better about ourselves. To think we’re not that bad. And that means Jesus didn’t die for the things we thought about. Carry that forward some more, and ask yourself, do you believe it’ll be OK to call someone a fool in Heaven, because that’s not really a sin? And neither is lust in our minds. Or “just” wanting to kill someone, as opposed to actually doing it.
Have you also insisted that counseling be provided before an abortion? Have you, as a Christian who’s anti-abortion, offered to help? Or have you provided time and/or money to aid that mother who needs help to give the same care to her child as you give to yours? If not, what have you accomplished by getting that anti-abortion law passed?
Is there a role for Christians after an abortion?
Having said all that, even if help is offered, provided, and accepted, some will still have an abortion. What then? Are you insistent that Christian based post-abortion help be provided? You know, mental health issues. Support so the mother/parents can actually afford to have a baby? Or does your law drive them to an underground clinic where no one even knows it happens?
Tell me, what about the souls of those mothers? Whether the abortion happens or not, as we saw, even wanting an abortion is murder. As a Christian who is against abortion, are you there to support them? Are you there to let them know that God forgives them? Because, you know, God does forgive the mothers. Maybe you don’t want to. Maybe you don’t, plain and simple. But God does. The question is – will He forgive you, if you refuse to forgive them?
Remember The Lord’s Prayer? Near the end? Something about forgiveness? And do you realize that part of what Jesus said, when He told us how to pray, isn’t in The Lord’s Prayer? Here’s the who passage about forgiveness and temptation.
Prayer – Matthew
Mt 6:5 “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. 7 And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. 8 Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
Mt 6:9 “This, then, is how you should pray:
“ ‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
Mt 6:10 your kingdom come,
your will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
Mt 6:11 Give us today our daily bread.
Mt 6:12 Forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
Mt 6:13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.’ 14 For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”
We don’t pray the beginning or the ending of that passage. That makes sense, since they aren’t really in the prayer Jesus gave us as a template on how to pray. However, they are part and parcel of the prayer, since they provide very important information that should guide both our prayer and our actions in life. In this particular topic, notice especially this part: For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”
Ouch! Can you even imagine the impact of our actions/inactions on everything we just read? Have you ever even thought about it?
The Great Commission for Christians and Abortion?
The Great Commission
Mt 28:16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Worse yet, do we realize that Jesus, with the Great Commission, directs us to be His representatives in this life to reach all people? Including the woman who has an abortion. Including the woman who decided not to have an abortion, but still sinned against God by considering it? And including the baby who was born when the abortion didn’t take place?
All of them are victims of an abortion, whether it happened or not. And when we, as a society but maybe especially as Christians, make the abortion war so political and so polarized, are we not making that victimization even worse? Shouldn’t we be out there trying to prevent the abortions, in a loving way?
Providing assistance, both before and after? Acting like Jesus, in love? Isn’t that better than being like Satan, being the accuser, not only to God but very much in the face of the mothers, turning them away from God instead of towards Him?
As Christians against abortion, wouldn’t we be fulfilling our role as Jesus’ representatives on earth if we acted like He did?
The final analysis – Will abortion drive people away from Christianity?
I dare say, some Christians already have abandoned God over abortion. Maybe even a lot of Christians.
We have to ask ourselves some questions.
Is it more important for us to prevent abortions than to provide Christian assistance to the mother, whether the abortion occurred or not?
If there was an abortion, are we willing to help both the mother and the child afterwards?
Do we care about the conditions that led to considering an abortion in the first place?
Sometimes it’s about mental health. Other times it’s about lack of a job/money/healthcare. Do we care about those issues?
Other times, yes, it’s about convenience. Having the baby is considered by the mother as just plain inconvenient. Do we care about that? Like, does it concern us that one human being has so little respect for the life of another, especially when that other human being is growing in them? Are we willing to do something about that?
And yes, there are all sorts of reasons in between those two extremes. And yes, there’s rape, which is just plain awful and outside the bounds of either extreme – an extreme to itself.
But no matter the reasons, are there any that we’re willing to put our time and/or money into, rather than the abortion / anti-abortion war that sets people against each other, rather than trying to bring us together?
There’s all sorts of other questions I could ask, but I think you get the point. The bottom line is who is our God?
Have we abandoned the God of the Bible?
Or is our God the god of far-right politics? Is our God the god who wants to demonize anyone who considers abortion and send them straight to Hell? Or is our God the god of money, because we’re making a living on this abortion war? Maybe our God is the god of self-esteem because we figure we’re doing a good thing just by being anti-abortion and the heck with the collateral damage that comes with our stand? I’m sure I’ve left out some other “gods”, but again, you get my point.
Or is our God the God of the Bible? James wrote something that I often use when I write about teaching. I also point out that all of us are actually teachers. Even if it’s only because people are watching us, we teach people things. Christians in the middle of this abortion war are also teachers, regardless of which side we’re on. Here’s what James wrote:
Listening and Doing
Jas 1:19 My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
Jas 1:22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it—he will be blessed in what he does.
Jas 1:26 If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless. 27 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
We, as Christians, should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. That includes on this abortion debate.
We, as Christians, are also to look after orphans and widows in their distress. A number of those babies who are born after an abortion is decided against are likely to end up as orphans. Some will even end up abandoned and will die. Some of the mothers, because of the way aid is handled, will live like widows rather than get married – because they get more assistance as single mothers.
We, as Christians, need to remember those things as well.
Just one more thought. Do you remember when Jesus was asked about the greatest commandment? And He actually responded with two of them?
The Greatest Commandment – Matthew
22:34-40 pp — Mk 12:28-31
Mt 22:34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Mt 22:37 Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Jesus said to Love God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. And in the same way, Love your neighbor as yourself.
Tell me, if you were in the position of a poor pregnant woman at the end of her rope, and you – a Christian – were considering an abortion, what would you do? Would you look in the mirror and tell yourself that you’re an awful person and just deserve to go to Hell? Would you tell yourself that you just need to have that baby and if both of you live a terrible life, just deal with it? Maybe you’d tell yourself, this is all your fault and you deserve whatever comes with the baby? Or how about, tell yourself that you don’t care what happens, just have that baby?
I doubt it. You’d probably do something very different.
If you’re a Christian, that pregnant woman is our neighbor. And we’re supposed to love her just the way we love ourselves. We’re also supposed to love God. And lest we forget, that woman was created by God. As was the unborn baby. Do we love the woman and the baby as we love ourselves?
Or are we just out to prevent the abortion – because we think that’s all God cares about?
I don’t believe God cares only about whether the abortion happens or not.
God already knows whether the baby will be aborted. And He can handle it. He’ll be ready to welcome that unborn baby into Heaven.
And He’s prepared to forgive the mother, if she asks. But will she ask? Or does she need a Christian to talk with after the abortion, one of us, to help her get to the point where she’s able to ask? Maybe even you, the reader?
Conclusion – Will abortion drive people away from Christianity?
I have one final passage for you.
Love for Enemies – Luke
6:29, 30 pp — Mt 5:39-42
Lk 6:27 “But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.
Lk 6:32 “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ do that. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ lend to ‘sinners,’ expecting to be repaid in full. 35 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. 36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”
Sadly, people are being driven away from Christianity. And therefore, they are driven away from the God of the Bible. Away from Jesus. As Christians, we are told by the Word of our Creator that apart from Jesus, there is no salvation.
So, who’s driven away from Christianity? And how?
Anti-abortion, politically active Christians who are involved in trying to legislate away sin, I believe, have already separated themselves from what Jesus taught us. I don’t see the love. Especially not for people they consider to be enemies. Maybe enemies of themselves? Apparently they think anyone who isn’t hard-core pro-abortion is an enemy of God. But wait. Aren’t Christians supposed to show love to those people, in the hope they will also come to follow Jesus? So no, they aren’t leaving Christianity, but I can’t help but think they have left God.
Christians who aren’t hard-core anti-abortion, hopefully do not leave Christianity or God. We need to use God’s strength to stand firm. To continue to show Jesus’ kind of love to sinners. All sinners. And as I said, I do believe abortion is a sin. However, no sin is unforgivable except quenching the Holy Spirit. Jesus will forgive anyone who has an abortion if they honestly ask for His forgiveness. So why can’t we?
The people I feel the worst for are those who have an abortion and are driven out of the church because of it. They are among the people Jesus would eat with if He walked the earth today. The Gospel used to be good news for sinners. But now we too often turn it into a weapon against the very people it was meant to comfort and save.
I don’t want to hear Jesus remind me in the end,
Mt 9:12 … “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
All I have left to say is: If you’re thinking of having an abortion, find a place where truly loving Christians will talk to you with love. Help you. And pray for you, even if you go ahead with the abortion. Why? Because there’s a really good chance you’ll need their love even more afterward. Places like that do exist. I’ve written before about a place called Options, a women’s care center that serves the general area where I live. The people are awesome. If you’re in the Los Angeles area, their website is: https://optionswomenspregnancyclinic.com/ If you’re not around here, check out their site and find someone like them near you.
The thing to remember is that God loves all of us. He already knows what we’ve done. What we’re thinking of doing. And His offer of salvation is out there for all of us. Everyone. He loves us too much to leave us where we are. He wants us to be more like Jesus. The transformation we look ed at towards the top. And He’ll help all of us with that, as long as we’re willing to try.
So once again, if you need a place like Options, find one. If you’re not Christian, that’s OK. If, at any point along the way, you’d like to learn more about what Christians should want to be like, they can help you with that as well. But with way, Christian or not, they are there if you need/want them.
Image by congerdesign from Pixabay