December 13, 2018

We are blessed to live in a country with many freedoms, including life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We are considered a model for others to follow—and our freedom is coveted. (God gave us free will, another freedom, but that freedom, especially, has been abused.) Our republic was originally based on Christian values and ideals. Yet, we look around us today and wonder what has happened? The lack of civility is shameful. The lack of respect for human life is horrible and intolerable. How did we get here? I see this as “sin unchecked.”

We need the Law as a mirror to see ourselves and our sin for what it is. Even more importantly, we need the Gospel—God’s grace—to assure us of our forgiveness through Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.

Narcissism is nothing new under the sun—and it appears to be here to stay. When it all becomes about “me,” it changes our whole perspective from what Christ has done for us to what we can do for ourselves. Yes, we have the freedom to make it all about “me”; however, remember the Apostle Paul’s guidance to think of others better than ourselves—a model all Christians should follow. What happens when you do that? I think you will find that you’ll feel even better about yourself when you experience the joy of doing for others and not just for “me, myself, and I.”

I was told recently by a prominent theologian in the life arena that all of the problems in America today stem from the legalization of abortion. That seemed a bit broad; however, after I thought about it for a while, it made perfect sense. Abortion-on- demand claims to give everyone “the right to choose and control their own bodies” (forgetting all about the life and body of the unborn child). It comes down to people wanting the right to do as they please rather than following God’s will. Be it abortion, end of life, bioethics, human trafficking, sexuality, or gender identity, the arguments are no different than that of the abortion argument. It’s about the “right to choose” even though it can be contrary to God’s Word and hurts others. In some cases, it even means killing others.

I continue to be amazed by how many people have been swayed by the “I have a right” argument. After all, we have been taught at an early age that we need to be “tolerant” above all else (and it’s often “tolerate or else!”). Too many feel it is better to never talk about life issues so they can’t be accused of discriminating and being intolerant, and if we avoid talking about the life issues, we can’t be accused of being political. (The life issues do show up in political agendas, even though they should have nothing to do with politics and everything to do with Scripture, which is very clear about life.)

Our 2019 Life Sunday theme is From Age to Age the Same, based on the words from Isaiah 46:3b-4. If we have any question about when in life God gives His support, these verses should clear that up. You “have been borne by me from before your birth, carried from the womb; even to your old age I am he, and to gray hairs I will carry you. I have made, and I will bear; I will carry and will save.” Yes, these powerful words make it very clear that God is with us from conception to old age and natural death. He also proclaims that He made us, and He will bear, carry, and save us, carrying the whole burden of salvation. (We can try to do it all ourselves, focusing on our rights, but that can often result in a lack of respect for God’s will for our lives.)

Let’s use our voices to share the message of life from Scripture. Let’s avoid being silent for fear of repercussions based on worldly ideas. May we use our voices to speak boldly, using God’s Word, seeking the help of the Holy Spirit in speaking with gentleness and respect, and knowing the outcome is not up to us as we are just messengers.

As we are confident our Lord and Savior is with us From Age to Age the Same, we have nothing to fear and everything to gain when hearts are reached and our freedom is not squandered. May your voice be heard as you share what is true through honoring God’s gift of life.