“You must not murder.” v.17
January 22, 2012 was the thirty-ninth anniversary of the ruling in the case of Roe vs. Wade, which marked the beginning of the legalization of abortion in the United States. Since then and according to a Barna Group survey of 2009, over 50 million babies have been murdered at some point during the pregnancy. The number is evidently higher, since the survey dates of three years ago. What started with what I firmly believe was a misinterpretation of the Ninth Amendment’s reservation of rights to the people, became a means to legitimize the killing of the innocent.
Last week I spent quite some time researching the history of abortion laws in the United States, as well as browsing Pro-Choice and Pro-Life websites. I found out that in 1900, all States of the Union legislated abortion as a common crime. I was dismayed at the attack against life displayed in Pro-Choice websites and I was even more astonished to read some of the testimonies of women and their reasons for deciding to terminate their pregnancies. I came across news that made my heart cringe: the headlines were from an article published on Lifesitenews.com: “Shock: 40% of New York pregnancies aborted.” You can read the entire article in the link below:
The picture that you see in the beginning of this devotional is of the Memorial of the Missing; a monument that the Mississippi Baptist Convention put together as a visual reminder of what this country is doing. The monument is filled with fifty million pennies. Fifty-million. This number is equivalent to the total population of twenty-five of our fifty states combined. Wow! What a visual. As this beautiful nation proudly took the stand as the most powerful country that ever existed, its people has been slowly deceived and drifted away from the Truth and the very principles that made it great. In the name of progress, individual right to privacy, or whatever else one’s mind might use to justify the act of abortion, mothers of America may have allowed the killings of future presidents, governors, preachers, teachers, doctors, you name it. In reality, we have allowed the murder of a great part of our future.
The Law and the Lord
Our passage in Deuteronomy is where God’s laws were given to the people. The Law was given to us in order to display God’s holiness, as well as to protect us from evil, heartaches and disappointments. As strange as it sounds to some people, the truth is that God gave us His Laws out of love alone. Perfect, protective love. If we honestly go down the list, we will realize that if we violate any of the Laws given to Moses, the result will inevitably be heartache and pain. I’m still to meet an adulterer who is full of God’s joy and peace. I don’t know any children who dishonor their parents who don’t end up having at least one child rebelling against them. And I dare say that 100 % of the women who have allowed their babies to be aborted will deal with recurring guilt; even if they don’t know the Lord as their Savior. And those who boast that they don’t feel guilty at all are either lying or have chosen to bury their guilt and strive not to think about it.
Now, you will find Christians and even pastors these days who will argue against God’s Laws, stating that we are under a new covenant – one in which grace rules above everything. According to these people, grace has ended the importance and relevance of the Law. Oh, my friend, what a subtle, satanic disguise of grace. Yes, we are under grace and it has certainly set us free from the burden of the Law (which we could not fulfill on our own strength) and from the guilt of sin (since Jesus paid for all our sin debt in full on Calvary.) However, Jesus Himself never dismissed the importance of the Law. As a matter of fact, in Matthew 5, He emphasized the eternal relevance of the Law in its minute details:
“Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:17-19 (NASB – emphasis added)
In Jesus’ own words – we are never to dismiss the Law. He is the Lord of the Law. He gave it to us and He is unchangeable. So is His Law. As a matter of fact, under the new covenant of grace, He expects even more from His children. Regarding murder, for instance, this is what He said:
“You have heard that the ancients were told, ‘YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT MURDER’ and ‘Whoever commits murder shall be liable to the court.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell.” Matthew 5:21-22 (NASB – emphasis added)
Matthew Henry, an English commentator of the Bible and minister in the 16th century perfectly summarizes the relationship between Jesus and the Law:
“Jesus came to o fill up the defects of the Law, and so to complete and perfect it. If we consider the law as a vessel that had some water in it before, he did not come to pour out the water, but to fill the vessel up to the brim; or, as a picture that is first rough-drawn, displays some outlines only of the piece intended, which are afterwards filled up; so Christ made an improvement of the law and the prophets by his additions and explication.”
Now then, What about Grace?
Here’s the truth about grace:
God’s grace imparted upon salvation is His power to transform our lives and empower us to live a godly life. Grace is not a trump card which allows us to do whatever we want to do. It’s quite the opposite of that. Grace enables us to live like Jesus, because through grace we have received His nature:
“For of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace. For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ.” John 1:16-17 (NASB)
Simply put: grace does cover our sin, but over and above, it became, upon salvation, the divine authority within our hearts which gave us power to live the life that God called us to live. When we understand grace, we live in victory over the dominion of sin. Even though we will still sin until the day God calls us home; we cannot claim that sin has a stronghold over us unless we allow it to, by either compromising or ignoring the tugging of the Holy Spirit in our hearts when we sin.
Walking the Walk
So the question is… how can we, Christians in this country, go to church on Sunday and nod our heads in agreement with the standards in God’s Word, raise our hands in worship and adoration to a holy and perfect God and yet, turn the blind eye for what others are doing; even condoning their behavior as God’s Law is broken and distorted? You may say you never do that. But here is one plain (and very unpopular, I’m sure) thought: as you cast your vote on Election Day, do you check if your candidate stands for abortion or same-sex marriage? Like it or not, when we passively watch our legislators sign laws that go against God’s principles, we are compromising. You can use the justification you want, but the truth is that God cannot bless a government that acts against His Laws:
“For My people have forgotten Me, They burn incense to worthless gods And they have stumbled from their ways, From the ancient paths, To walk in bypaths, Not on a highway.” Jeremiah 18:15
And as preachers across the nation compromise God’s truth using the banner of grace, they bow to immorality without consequence. This is what God thinks of them:
“But as for you, you have turned aside from the way; you have caused many to stumble by the instruction; you have corrupted the covenant of Levi,” says the Lord of hosts.” Malachi 2:8
Are you absolute about your convictions? We must be! The reason why legislations such as the legalization of abortion have passed in a country which was unmistakably founded on principles of Scriptures is one only: someone compromised. One person at a time, we have slowly turned away from the beliefs by which our founding fathers have staked their lives and fortunes on. We have been pretending that we don’t see it and justifying our political and personal choices as “separation of church and state.” What a lie! Anyone who really thinks that way should do some research on what Thomas Jefferson really meant on his letter to the Danbury Baptist Association where he mentioned the concept. It absolutely does not mean that we must separate our beliefs from the way we govern our country.
As we play the “see no evil, hear no evil, say no evil” game, God’s words are stern regarding our passive approach:
“If you fail under pressure, your strength is too small. Rescue those who are unjustly sentenced to die; save them as they stagger to their death. Don’t excuse yourself by saying, “Look, we didn’t know.” For God understands all hearts, and he sees you. He who guards your soul knows you knew. He will repay all people as their actions deserve.” Proverbs 24: 10-12 (NLT – emphasis added)
It is time for us, who Jesus Himself called the light of the world and the salt of the earth, to start changing the future for our children. May we start a revolution for righteousness! May we stand up and voice our hearts, minds and souls! May we claim America and our future back to the Lord!
Come back to righteousness, America! Come back to the Truth that made you great!
And if your heart is stirred by these words, my friend, I invite you to share this message of Truth. Not my truth, but God’s, found throughout His wise, loving and perfect Word.
So – go ahead! Forward it or click “like it” and share it with your world.