Has This House Become a Den of Robbers?

“Social Justice” is often used in religious circles, as a call to action.  Of course no one ever defines what they mean by the term.  Is there a difference between justice and “social justice”?  if so, how?  It is universally understood that “social justice” refers to a more left-wing interpretation of what Jesus taught, that is, to take care of the vulnerable, the weak, and the poor.  Those who promote “social justice,” more than likely, have an economic interpretation of the term, more akin to, say, income inequality.  The Bible is filled with many calls for justice; it does not qualify the term with an adjective.  In Micah 6:6-8 it states this: “O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God.”  In Isaiah 1:11-17 it states:  “Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean, remove the evil of your doings from before my eyes, cease to do evil learn to do good; seek justice, rescue the oppressed, defend the orphan, plead for the widow.”

What has this to do with abortion or pro-life?  Plenty.  What does it mean to do justice?  Do we do justice when we kill the unborn and call it “women’s health”?  Are we doing justice when we declare what is just only by what we feel is true and right, rather than what morality, truth and justice say is true?  Do we set ourselves up as our own god when we make these choices?  Again, the Bible here is informative.  In Jeremiah 7:1-15, the Lord says it this way:  “If you truly act justly one with another, if you do not oppress the alien, the orphan and the widow, or shed innocent blood in this place, and if you do not go after other gods to your own hurt, then I will dwell with you in this place.”

In our culture, abortion is legal up to birth.  In recent time, Dr. Kermit Gosnell, an abortion doctor in Philadelphia was convicted of murder, not for doing abortions but killing the newborn after delivery.  Here is why he was convicted:  “Jury finds Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell guilty of three counts of first-degree murder for the death of three babies that prosecutors said were delivered alive and subsequently killed. NBC News’ Chris Clackum reports.” This is how is was reported by NBC News.  Click here to read the story.  So it was plain to see that Dr. Gosnell was only convicted because he actually killed a baby after it came out of the womb. Had he killed the baby before extraction he would not have been convicted.  Now you can argue when life begins, but you cannot argue that a baby is not a human being until it comes out of the womb.  To do so, as many do, is intellectually dishonest and plain foolishness.  Are we doing justice when we kill unborn babies?  Are we doing “social justice” when we kill unborn babies?

Jeremiah 7:1-15 has this stern, but unmistakable warning:  “Will you steal, murder, commit adultery, swear falsely, make offerings to Baal ….and then come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, “we are safe!” only to go on doing these abomonations?  Has this house become a den of robbers?”  Verse 15 continues: “And I will cast you out of my sight, just as I cast out all your kinfolk, all the offspring of Ephraim.”


Do What I Say, not What I Do

After the death of Governor Mario Cuomo of New York this past week, the press was reporting on his controversial stand on abortion, even though he claimed to be a faithful Catholic.  His response was that, although he personally opposed abortion, he would not make a law banning it.  This is the position of liberal Catholics and Christians.   This position is also the most senseless, illogical and mind-bending position that shreds any sense of logic.  Cuomo defends his position by claiming that his pro-choice supporters are the same people who do the “social justice” that the Catholic Church promotes.  What?  As long as you do some good, you can do some bad and it’s ok?  By that measure Hitler did some good too.  He revived Germany from a defeated, starving nation to a booming economy; do we forgive him for the evil that he did then?

The magazine, First Things, has a fine piece on Cuomo’s position on abortion. Cuomo is apologetic about his position, stating  “that as a legislator he was not responsible for passing laws to protect those lives. In an address at the University of Notre Dame, he said: “What is ideally desirable isn’t always feasible, that there can be different political approaches to abortion besides unyielding adherence to an absolute prohibition.”  This is pure gobbledygook.  It makes no sense.  By this logic you could say that although murder is wrong, I would not want to legislate against it, because there are people out there who don’t think that murder is wrong, that it’s just “women’s health.”   Legislation is all about making value and moral judgements.  Why do we have a law against drunk driving?  After all, many people enjoy drinking. The piece on First Things debunks this reasoning in detail and is well worth reading.  Click here to read it.

Abortion and Pascal’s Wager

I became pro-life as an adult in mid-life – when I was finally intellectually honest with myself and acknowledge that the overwhelming evidence was on the pro-life side.  Why did it take so long to see the light?  I did not acknowledge that the other side had a good argument.  I ignored the facts so I could feed my beliefs at the time.  Once I was able to look at the facts and challenge myself, I had to conclude that pro-life is the most logical and correct view.

Another reason that forced me to consider the pro-life argument was my inner voice asking me how I would explain my position to God at the final judgment.  The more I thought about it the more my arguments were neither credible nor could they be supported by any evidence, whether scientific or theological.  Additionally, my church was strongly pro-life, how would I reconcile this?  If I disregard the church on this issue, then it would follow that I could also disregard the Bible or any other theological argument that I disagreed with.  In other words, I am the final judge, not the Bible and not God.  Not a good argument.

Now, what does “Pascal’s Wager” have to do with this? Some history first.  Early philosophers, and Church fathers St. Anselm and St. Thomas Aquinas have argued powerfully for the existence of God.  Anselm lived in the eleventh century and Aquinas in the thirteenth.  Thomas Aquinas offered five proofs for the existence of God in his renowned masterpiece Summa Theologiae, such as the argument from motion, the nature of efficient cause, etc.  These arguments are used to this day to argue for the existence of God. Both of these two men are intellectual giants in philosophy and theology.

Blaise Pascal was a French mathematician and philosopher who lived in the 17th century.   Pascal developed his “wager” as a response to the atheist who says that there is no God and that once we die that is the end; like a flower that dies.   Pascal’s complete text on this is difficult and beyond my task here.  To make it simple, here is what the wager states:

If you erroneously believe in God, you lose nothing (assuming that death is the absolute end), whereas if you correctly believe in God, you gain everything (eternal bliss). But if you correctly disbelieve in God, you gain nothing (death ends all), whereas if you erroneously disbelieve in God, you lose everything (eternal damnation).

Pascal argued that betting against God was a losing proposition. Regardless of any evidence for or against the existence of God, Pascal argued that failure to accept God’s existence risks losing everything with no payoff on any count. The best bet, then, is to accept the existence of God.  Most philosophers have accepted Pascal’s Wager argument.

As I related earlier here, I realized that my pro-choice position was tenuous at best – even before I had ever heard of Pascal.  The reason is very simple.  If you wrongly hold to your pro-choice view that abortion is acceptable and it is “a woman’s right to choose” whether to deliver a baby or to abort it (kill it) then, even if you don’t believe in God, you’ve gained nothing.  But, if you wrongly hold that the pro-choice position is correct, and there is a God, you risk facing the judgment of God at the final judgment.  Additionally, upon our death, this cannot be reversed.  Can you afford to take this gamble?

A person who is pro-choice, in my opinion, is like a person facing a mountain such as Mount Everest – staring at it from the bottom of it and saying:  “I see this mountain, but it’s not really there.”  Are you comfortable with this position?  Let’s look as some of the evidence for the pro-life position:

  • Science has confirmed that life begins at conception,
  • The Catholic Church has taught, from the beginning, that life begins at conception and is precious in God’s eyes and no one has the right to take it,
  • The Bible teaches that human life is made in God’s image and commands us not to kill,
  • The Christian Church, Judaism, and Islam all are nearly unanimously pro-life.

The pro-choice side makes a fatal logical error when they claim that abortion is a private matter and a “woman’s right to choose.”  The error is mistaking an objective claim for a subjective claim. [i]  The pro-life position deals with an objective moral claim – it claims that a human life is at stake.  It cannot be a subjective claim such as “a woman’s right to choose;” this is like saying I choose chocolate ice cream rather than vanilla. Moral claims are not subject to choice.  This is the fundamental mistake that everybody accepts without question.   A woman (nor anyone else) cannot choose to kill a human life, not even her own.  Would you accept the proposition that a woman can choose to kill a month old baby? What’s the difference?  The unborn is a human being in one location and the one-month-old baby is a human being in another location.  How can location make a difference?

I’m amazed every time someone makes the statement “a woman’s right to choose” such as we hear from pro-choice politicians.  Mayor Rudy Giuliani just made such a statement recently when asked about his pro-choice position.  No one ever thinks to challenge this absurd assertion.  Again, look at Pascal’s Wager – it also applies to being pro-life.  It is the right bet.  You cannot afford to be on the wrong side of this issue. Eternity is at stake.

[i] See Pro-Life 101 by Scott Klusendorf, p. 16, 2002, Stand to Reason Press, http://www.str.org

Can You Run That by me Again?

A typical, hackneyed response, by a “pro-choice” Roman Catholic, such as Vice President Joe Biden  is “I accept my church’s teaching that life begins at conception, but I’m not going to force it upon those who disagree.”    Can you run that by me again?  You believe that life begins at conception, which necessarily means that at conception a human being exists, but you will not interfere with the killing of  a human being?    It is a contradiction in logic, philosophy, science and everything else. Click here  and listen to VP Biden and Congressman Ryan describe their view on abortion during the Vice President debate of 2012.  What the Vice President is saying is that some human beings can be killed at will if one chooses to.  Secondly, he says that we cannot force those who disagree – what?   What universe are you from?  Every society in this universe has laws against killing human beings.  In the U.S.  we even have laws against killing animals gratuitously.  What the Vice President is saying is pure nonsense, yet this view is widely held in the liberal Catholic community, as well as with most liberal Christians.

The Vice President, in the debate refered to earlier, states that he’s “a practicing Catholic my whole life.”  As Lieutenant Columbo would say, “can I ask you one last question?”  What makes you a Catholic, if you say that you believe in the Church teaching but anyone who disagrees can do whatever they want and you’re ok with it?   How do you separate your private life from your public life?

Here is an example.  During slavery in the early 1800s, the vice president would have said, I believe that slavery is wrong, as my church says, but I’m not going to force it upon those who have different views.  This exactly what the Vice President is saying about abortion.  This is the insanity of the liberal mind.

Just the Facts Ma’am

Many of my liberal friends  often will bring up the death penalty in connection with my advocacy for the unborn.  As an example, a Facebook friend recently commented on one of my pro-life blog posts by asking “what about the death penalty?.”   I must say that such questions are puzzling.  Consider  the facts.  In the United States alone, on the average, there are 1.2 to 1.5 million babies killed each year by abortion.  If you look at how an abortion is performed, the baby is dismembered in the womb and extracted with scissors, piece by piece and the parts placed  on a tray.  The doctor then counts all the parts to make sure he got everything out. Check out my last blog post for a diagram of this procedure.

Here are some basic facts:

  • In the last 10 years 667 convicted criminals have been killed, by court order. Click here for verification.
  • In the same 10 year period, if you look at this chart, US abortions averaged about 1.2 million per year, for a total of 12 million babies dismembered  and brutally killed in the womb in the United States alone.
  • Since Roe v. Wade in 1973 through 2011 there have been 54.5 million babies killed, almost the entire population of a country such as Italy.

Here is the question:  If the fire hydrant in your front yard has been sheared off by a car and about 10,000 gallons of water per second is gushing out destroying your house, and there is also a drip, drip in your bathroom faucet, which problem would be most meaningful to you?  When you call 911, would you also say to the operator, oh, by the way, can you also send a plumber to fix the drip in my bathroom faucet too?

Abortion and the Moral Law

One of the most perplexing issues as a pro-life apologist is how my opponents on the pro-choice side can justify their position on abortion.  I’ve never heard one argument that follows any logic or any argument that is supported by any evidence for their cause.  All I ever hear is “I’m for a woman’s right to choose” or “a woman’s body is hers to control” or words to this effect.  Never are these arguments followed by evidence or logic to support the statement made.

Abortion has been an accepted part of our culture since the Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision of 1973.  Most of our universities, mass media and Hollywood accept and promote abortion as a right just like the right to drive and own property.  The unborn are always treated as a piece of tissue, akin to your tonsils– never a human life.  Pro-choice politicians of either party will tell you that they believe “in a woman’s right to choose.”  There are many reasons why our culture accepts abortion.  In this piece, however, I will deal with one of them – a denial of the moral law.

The pro-abortion side won a major cultural victory when they brilliantly were able to market their position as “pro-choice.”  Being “pro-choice” is a value-neutral term and is easy for most people to accept.  Who, after all, can be against personal choice?  But what does this choice mean?  John Horvat II explains in an article called “Beyond Pro-Life, Fighting the Culture War.  Horvat states:

And this “choice” means freedom from rules, morals or restraints.  An unlimited choice is what unifies the radicals of the Culture War.  Thus, they display a consistent unity favoring not only abortion but also any other practice – free love, homosexuality, bi-sexuality, transgender or any sexual deviation – that favors a raging sensuality.  In short, their unifying principle is this “freedom” which is actually a revolt against moral law ranging from a mild irritation to a rabid fanaticism.

I am not suggesting that this is true for all pro-abortion advocates, but it is true for most.  Most pro-choice advocates, I have found, believe in moral relativism – the belief that they and they alone can be the sole arbiters of what is right or wrong for them.  I have found that with pro-choice Christians, there exists a personal belief in their right to make moral judgments apart from the Church or any moral law.  All you have to do to verify this is to look at a Catholic, for instance, who is pro-choice, even though the Catholic Church condemns abortion in the strongest terms, or a liberal Protestant who goes against what his faith community teaches.

As  one who has been on both sides of this issue, I can testify that this description was eerily correct for me.  As I hearken back to when I was on the “pro-choice” side, one of the reasons was so that I would have the freedom to say, well, I may have been wrong but I felt that I was right at the time.  In other words, I was trying to set myself up so as to have “plausible deniability.”   I was convinced, in other words, by the moral relativism of the culture that whatever one thinks is right for them is right, and accordingly, no punishment would follow.

Much has been written about the “law written in our heart.”  The Bible, in Romans 2:15 states: “since they show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts now accusing, now even defending them.”  The law written in our hearts refers to the rules of proper conduct that all of us humans share inherently.  In other words, most of us would agree that we automatically know what is right and what is wrong even in the absence of any written law or teaching.  We instinctually know that to steal from our neighbor is wrong; to abuse children is wrong; to lie is wrong and so on.  J. Budziszewski has written two books on this subject.  One of them is titled What We Can’t Not Know.  In this book Budziszewski talks about the foundational moral principles that are the same for all, both as rectitude and to knowledge and that these principles are for everyone.  To say that they are the same means that at some level, everyone knows them:  The murderer knows that murder is wrong, the adulterer, that adultery is wrong, and the mocker that mockery is wrong.[i]

Budziszewski’s argument is as follows:  “However rude it may be these days to say so, there are some moral truths that we all really know – truths which a normal human being is unable not to know.  They are universal possession, an emblem of rational mind, and heirloom of the family of man.[ii] 

When it comes to abortion, I’m afraid that the pro-choice person knows that the unborn is human but refuses to acknowledge it, thinking that if they do not think about it or confront the reality, they can claim “plausible deniability.”  Having been pro-choice myself, I can testify that this was true for me.  In talking to my pro-choice friends – and I have many of them, some belong to my Catholic church, I can assume, with good reason, that this is their reasoning too.  Many, probably, would deny this allegation, but I believe that the denial would be for self-protection.

J. Budziszewski, in another book on this type of subject called Written on the Heart talks about the Natural Law.  He drives his point home strongly when he states: “From this perspective, most modern ethical thinking goes about matters backwards.  It assumes that the problem of human sin is mainly cognitive – that it has to do with the state of our knowledge.  In other words, it holds that we do not know what’s right or wrong and we are trying to find out.  But natural-law theory assumes that the problem is mainly volitional – that it has to do with the state of our will.  It holds that we know what’s right and wrong but wish we didn’t and that we try to keep ourselves in ignorance so that we can do as we please.”[iii]  The defense rests.

[i]  J. Budziszewski, What We Can’t Not Know, (Spence Publishing, 2003), p. 3

[ii] J. Budziszewski, What We Can’t Not Know, (Spence Publishing, 2003), p.19

[iii] J. Budziszewski, Written on the Heart, A Case for Natural Law, (InterVarsity Press, 1997), p.185

A Vote for a “Pro-Choice” Politician is a Vote for Abortion

It has been a well-known fact that in the Roman Catholic Church, there is no difference with the general population in their pro-abortion views and how they vote.  This is one of the saddest failures of the church today.  In 2008, for example, 54% of Catholics voted for Barack Obama, the most pro-abortion President in United States  history.  “Pro-Choice” advocates subscribe to what can only be categorized as language slight of hand by calling the killing of an unborn “a woman’s right to do with her body as she likes” or ” a woman’s right to choose,” or ” a decision between a woman and her doctor.”

If you analyze this type of language, this would be the equivalent as saying, I have the choice to kill my newborn baby, as long as I do it in private.  Scott Klusendorf, a well-known pro-life apologist, has an example that will hit home:  Suppose you are a young couple with a young child.  You’re doing dishes when your little toddler comes up behind you and asks, “mom/dad can I kill this?”  What do you need to know before you answer?  What is it?  If it’s a cockroach, you immediately say yes; if it’s his little sister your answer is a definite NO.  All of these sayings of the “pro-choice” crowd are the equivalent of justifying murder by changing what you call it.  If we call it “choice”  they say it’s fine.  But, abortion is the killing of a human being in an early stage of development.  Accordingly, if you vote for a politician who agrees with the earlier mentioned sayings such as “my body, my choice,” you are voting for abortion.  The Roman Catholic Church has been very clear on its position on abortion.  The Catechism of the Catholic Church calls abortion an evil.  Additionally, the Magisterium of the Catholic Church have specifically stated that a vote for a pro-abortion politician is a vote for abortion and is morally reprehensible.  Cardinal Burke has made a video stating just this.  Click here to view it.

As members of a church such as the Catholic church or any Christian church that follows the Bible, we have a responsibility to have politicians who hold our values.  To vote for a politicians who favor abortion rights is the same as voting for someone who, as an example, favors the killing of all babies under the age of two for instance.  By voting for such a person you are cooperating with evil and you will have the same blood on your hands as the abortionist.  The “pro-choice” advocate will say that “there are more issues than just abortion.  Yes there are, but life is the number one issue.  If you do not have life you do not have any other issue.  To those who hold this view I say this:  Let’s say that you like politician X; he/she holds all your philosophy or values, but he believes that a certain ethnic group is not human and can be killed at will, as long as it’s done in private.  Would you vote for this person?  What about all the other issues?  The position that abortion is not the only issue is another self-defeating fallacy – it cannot stand on its own logic.