Sometimes when we’re confronted with commenting on a sensitive issue, there’s a tendency to sort of ease into it gently, but we’re not choosing that route this time. Today we’ll just jump headlong into one of them. Tomorrow has been designated “Sanctity of Life” Sunday for 2023. Multitudes across America will pause to remember and reflect on the millions of innocent babies that end up as medical waste in some abortion clinic. We join these people in celebrating the fact that the number of babies killed by the industry of death in this country is decreasing in many states. We applaud the courageous defenders of truth and life who work tirelessly to challenge and dismantle the false claims that abortion is just the removal of a mass of unnecessary or undesirable tissue, or that it’s about “women’s health” or “freedom of choice.”
Adding to the Victim List ~
We’ll also remember that innocent babies aren’t the only victims of abortion. We’ll also pray for all those who participated and later came to regret their decision. Multitudes report that the impact of their “choice” extended far beyond the event itself and that their lives have been irreversibly altered. Testimonies abound from women and girls who at a time when fear, anxiety, and desperation made them most vulnerable, they felt pressured, manipulated, and sometimes coerced to submit to a “procedure” they didn’t really understand.
Our goal is not to generate another article devoted to addressing the false claims made by the pro-abortionists. Others have done a masterful job of that. Volumes of data have been published exposing the lies that undergird the abortion industry and unveiling the facts that its proponents work feverishly to obscure. We have a different objective. Our offering, in recognition of the day, is to highlight some of the implications woven into the term, “sanctity of life.” Doing that requires us to look back to the point where life made its original appearance.
A Broader Purpose ~
From the moment life flowed into that divinely fashioned mound of clay, the Living God who made it also set it apart for Himself. The magnificent creature that arose was designed to be God’s visible and tangible expression of who He is. In addition to that, this new being and others like him were destined to be a primary source of intimate, interactive fellowship with and for the One who made them. In spite of the rebellion, and throughout the saga of redemption that would follow, God ordained that this form of life be treated differently from all the others – and seen as belonging uniquely and exclusively to Him.
And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. (Genesis 2:7 NKJV)
But God’s special attention touches more than the miracle of life itself. “Life” is essentially spiritual, but when God decided to share it with the world He created, He didn’t just blow it out into the atmosphere to float around like some kind of cloud. He first fashioned a vehicle specifically equipped to house it. The life God created would forever be identified in conjunction with the body that received it. Together they would reveal to the world the unique identity that they represent. Not only did God equip our bodies to function as a residence for the spirit that animates us, He also designed them to be a residence that He himself would share, and there is no greater statement of sanctification that could be applied.
Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? (1 Corinthians 6:19–20 NKJV)
Terms and Conditions ~
If the sanctification of life includes the body in which it dwells, would it not seem reasonable that the methods and conditions of transmitting that life would also garner special attention from God? Indeed, that same sanctification was implied when He created a partner for Adam. Not only were Adam and Eve set apart as distinctively sanctified, but so was the special relationship between them. God ordained that the union between a male and female would be the method by which life was transmitted, and their relationship with each other was to be set apart from other relationships. As He declared in the beginning:
Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. (Genesis 2:24 NKJV)
Nevertheless, because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband. (1 Corinthians 7:2 NKJV)
So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. (Ephesians 5:25–29 NKJV)
And speaking of reproducing the life we were given, that process results in another relationship that God set apart as special to Him – that of parents and their children. The Living God who created us refers to Himself in parental terms and gives special instructions both to parents and the children they would produce.
Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you. (Exodus 20:12 NKJV)
And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4 NKJV)
A Broader Undertaking ~
The simple point we want to make is this. If we are to seriously undertake the mission of restoring the “sanctity of life” in this country, we must recognize that it involves much more than shutting down abortion clinics. I rejoice every time I hear news that clinics have closed, or that abortions have decreased in some state or locality, but the abortion process doesn’t begin at the clinic. In every case, there are missed opportunities to save them and potentially defensive maneuvers that someone didn’t notice.
My objective is not to affix blame or point fingers. We need encouragement, not more condemnation. It’s obvious that we can’t single-handedly shut down an abortion clinic, but . . .
- We can use our influence to encourage young people and/or their parents to dress and behave in ways that don’t lead to inappropriate sexual activity.
- We can raise our voices against pornography and the many ways it’s promoted.
- We can stop supporting entertainers who make their living promoting sex and ungodly ideas.
- We can vote for those who will uphold God’s definitions of justice and righteousness. We can start seeing ourselves as God does and clean up our own “temple.”
- And we can pray for the kind of love that will give us the courage to engage those around us and access every avenue available to make our voices heard.
God didn’t just sanctify “life” in general. He sanctified yours. He sanctified mine. He didn’t just sanctify bodies as a category, He sanctified the one we have individually. He didn’t sanctify relationships as a demographic classification, He sanctified those we’re personally involved in. And He never has and never will examine how people handled His sanctified things in some broad, generalized way. He’s going to get up close and personal with you and with me.
May God help us to acknowledge “Sanctity of Life” Sunday in ways that might, indeed, include our own part toward making a difference.
“TWEETABLES” ~ Click to tweet and share from the pull quotes below. Each one links directly back to this article through Twitter . . .
- “Not only did God equip our bodies to function as a residence for the spirit that animates us, He also designed them to be a residence that He himself would share, and there is no greater statement of sanctification that could be applied.” @GallaghersPen (Click here to Tweet)
- “If the sanctification of life incl’s the body in which it dwells, wouldn’t it seem reasonable that the methods and conditions of transmitting that life also garnered special attention from God? That sanctification was implied when He created a partner for Adam.” @GallaghersPen (Click here to Tweet)
- “If we are to seriously undertake the mission of restoring the “sanctity of life” in this country, we must recognize that it involves much more than shutting down abortion clinics. The abortion process doesn’t begin at the clinic.” @GallaghersPen (Click here to Tweet)
- “God didn’t just sanctify “life” and relationships in general. He sanctified yours & mine individually. When it comes to examining how we handled His sanctified things, He won’t do it in some broad generalized way. He’ll get up close and personal with you and with me.” @GallaghersPen (Click here to Tweet)
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© 2023 Gallagher’s Pen, Ronald L. Gallagher, Ed.S. All rights reserved
It’s right there, isn’t it brother? Yet how few will see it in your words, in His Word. Our lives are not ours, we are made for Him. Yes, the free will He gives us provides the opportunity to reject Him; He gives us the choice for forfeit our lives (our eternal souls) if we choice sin over salvation. To summarize my takeaway from your post, it’s that “we must again see to recognize God in life itself. Many have become so blinded by this world, they can no longer perceive His light.” How I pray that God can use folks and you and me to shine His light into that darkness. Darkness can never overtake light. As to the “Sanctity of Life Day”, I can’t say that I’ve heard of that before, and will endeavor to spread your and God’s message of hope tomorrow. As I sit here and think about the sanctity of life and how our lives (all life [human, plant, animal, etc.]) reflect God, I couldn’t help but ruminate on these pervasive thoughts.
Have you ever wondered how a newborn instinctively knows their parent? Or how they instinctively know where to seek nourishment or to grab onto a finger of their caretaker, parent, or shepherd? I believe with all that I am it’s because God designed life to seek Him, to trust and seek Him, and to glorify Him, as we’re supposed to (as you so aptly put it) recognize that “life was designed to be God’s visible and tangible expression of who He is.” If some don’t think this is true, look at things in the natural world around you. For me, I see God in livestock and the way a mama cares for, and sometimes mourns the loss of, their calf. How a kitten will instinctively seek nourishment from its mother, and how a mother recognizes their offspring long after they’ve been weaned. All of nature cries out to the glory of God, if we’ll just take the time to notice it.
Another insightful, encouraging, and love-laden rebuke of this world my friend. Thank you for “taking me higher” this morning. God’s blessings to you and your family.
Thank you so much (again), Brother, and I totally agree with your point that nature itself resounds with the declaration that God exists, and that His designs are an exposition of divine genius. I find it astounding that so many medical doctors deny that the miracle of reproduction wasn’t the product of intelligent design and believe that the wonder of life is nothing more than the result of a bunch of totally random chemical accidents. Babies aways grab my attention. I love to watch them regardless of the species. There’s just something powerfully compelling to see little replications of their parents. I think everyone who has an abortion because their baby is inconvenient ought to have to watch the procedure and see the little body being torn apart. The truth is that if what really goes on in the devil’s world was displayed in broad daylight, it would be a lot less appealing. There’s a reason for him being referred to as the prince of darkness. But thank God for guys like you who live out Jesus’ declaration that we are the light of the world. I love the fact that our task isn’t to seek out the darkness it’s always hovering around at the edge of the light. Our job is just to shine wherever we are. We’re seeing more and more evidence that God is doing something special. Our church’s auditorium and balconies were totally full for two services last week. Three overflow areas overflowed and we had to set up chairs in the lobby and hallways. One of our grandsons and his girlfriend, along with others, had to watch it on their phones in the parking lot. We’re adding another service this week to accommodate the crowd. Mrs. Diane and I are encouraging everyone we know to keep praying because Jesus seems to be cleaning up and renovating His Church, at least in some places.
Anyhow, as always, your response this morning brought another welcome dose of encouraging spiritual nourishment. Please pass our love around to the Cross-Dubya family.