By all accounts, it is a momentous day in the history of the United States. The Supreme Court ruling overturning what is known as Roe v Wade – the 1973 ruling which found a “right” to abortion on demand in the United States Constitution – has been prayed for, fought for and longed for, by so very many. God has been gracious to make this aspect of the abortion issue moot – for the time being. We are justly grateful. At the same time, we need to look at what this really is, what it is not, and what it may or may not mean.
Some things today’s decision is NOT:
First, it is not a declaration that abortion is illegal.
It is not a declaration that abortion is murder.
It is not a declaration that abortion is immoral.
It is not a declaration that abortion will be outlawed in the United States.
It is not a guarantee that something similar to Roe will not be found in subsequent Courts through other arguments.
It is not free from challenges. They can and will come. And unless I miss my guess, in massive waves.
For all of the above to be true, there is infinitely more thought, work, prayer to be done. The battle for the sanctity of human life in the womb is not even remotely over. And in our increasingly secular society, I fear the decision will be controverted by some other means. God willing, perhaps not.
It means abortion rights advocates will become increasingly vocal, virulent and maybe even violent.
It means pro-life advocates will be disdained more, and perhaps attacked more openly.
What the decision does NOT MEAN:
It does not mean the United States has averted the judgment of God regarding the millions whose deaths we already sanctioned since 1973.
It does not mean the nation has in any way, shape or form, repented nationally from the murderous sin of abortion.
It does not mean we are somehow a more Christian nation.
It does not mean that as a nation, that we have suddenly become more moral.
Something today’s decision IS:
It is a finding, that the original decision by the Supreme Court was bad law. That it was reasoned poorly.
And little more.
Some things today’s decision MEANS:
It means that some lives will be wonderfully saved during the (probably short) time before the pro-abortion forces regroup to focus on increasing the role of pro-abortion states (like New York) and access to them.
It means states like New York will make abortion a much more massive industry than it already is. Remember, the Supreme Court cannot (or ought not) rule on the basis of what its members think or feel is moral or immoral – it rules on Constitutional legality. We must not confuse the 2. They impact one another, but are not one and the same.
Now for 2 Chronicles 34.
Don’t get me wrong here, America is not “God’s nation” the way Israel was. That line of thinking is clearly un-Biblical. God has only instituted one nation as His own in history, and that is the Jewish nation. Over application of how God dealt with (or may still deal with) Israel to ourselves is exegetical nonsense. And the source of some grave misunderstandings.
That said, we do see Biblically that God does deal with individual nations. So it is 7 people groups in Canaan God marked out for destruction due to their sin – prior to Israel’s conquest of them. Destruction due to their unrepentant immorality on many fronts – not just idolatry. Among the worst of those being the practice of sacrificing children to appease their “gods.” A thing God found most abhorrent in Israel when it began to adopt those same practices in her decline.
Now God is His grace is seen to give Israel several kings over her history, who brought in sweeping reforms to rid the nation of its idolatry. Names like Asa and Hezekiah head the list. But none was as zealous, thorough and devoted to God in those reforms as was king Josiah. The accounts of his passion to serve His God with all fidelity, and to lead his nation in a restoration to serve the true and living God rightly are equaled by none. And God took notice.
Here is my point: For all the reformation and perhaps even revival which took place under Josiah – God also told him this: “Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel…because your heart was tender and you humbled yourself before God when you heard his words against this place and its inhabitants, and you have humbled yourself before me and have torn your clothes and wept before me, I also have heard you, declares the LORD. Behold, I will gather you to your fathers, and you shall be gathered to your grave in peace, and your eyes shall not see all the disaster that I will bring upon this place and its inhabitants.’ ” 2 Ch 34:26–28.
Note first, that the reversal or Roe v Wade, as good, glorious and right as it is – is not even remotely akin to our nation (or our leadership especially) humbling ourselves before God in repentance. This, isn’t that. For true Christians, there is a connection, but it is still not the same. America has not repented, it has addressed a point of bad law.
Note secondly, that even though Josiah’s reforms were sweeping and pervasive – they did not stop the judgment that God had already pronounced for Judah’s sins – but did, mercifully delay them. And I pray that may be the very same for us. But I do not think so. Not as it all stands as it is.
I am no prophet nor the son of a prophet. I cannot say with any certainty, but it seems to me that when the US codified Roe v Wade, we set ourselves under the judgment of God in a way that will not be reversed in terms of our nation. I “think” we signed a national death warrant that day That is not to say there weren’t lots of other heinous sins of which we were guilty – though flimsily hidden under the false veneer of our Leave-It-To-Beaver moralism. But the wholesale slaughter of babies in their mother’s wombs for whatever god was served other than the God of Heaven, is so closely allied to the idolatrous act of “passing their sons through the fire” that it cannot be ignored. And in sheer numbers, we have far outstripped either the pagan nation’s or apostate Israel’s actions.
Now does that mean we just give up the ship? NO!
Now is the time to pray and work for a season of revival as never before. To seek the Lord for sweeping repentance IN the Church first, that our nation may be blessed as a whole. To plead for a season of refreshing and revival greater even than that under Josiah’s reign. That God may be pleased to give us yet another reprieve before that great and terrible day of His judgment arrives. Perhaps our God in His infinite mercy will be willing to say something similar to Believers in our generation as He did to Josiah: “Behold, I will gather you to your fathers, and you shall be gathered to your grave in peace, and your eyes shall not see all the disaster that I will bring upon this place and its inhabitants.”
But either way – let us seize the moment this Supreme Court decision brings to national awareness – as a catalyst to press even further in Christ’s Kingdom personally, Church wide, and hopefully, nationally. That our neighbors may be blessed, that Christ may be glorified, and that countless among the lost will be brought to saving faith in Jesus Christ.