Rachel mourning and she cannot be comforted.

By Roger Carswell - I want to share something which lies heavily on my heart.   Alexander Solzhenitsyn said: “If I were called upon to identify the principal trait of the entire twentieth century, I would be unable to find anything more precise than to repeat once again, ‘Men have forgotten God.’”  If you want evidence of this, please read on.

About 500,000 men died in the most horrific circumstances at Passchendaele in 1917.  General Haig never regretted his drive for victory.  But until his dying day David Lloyd George was haunted by the thought of his own weakness in not stopping it.

A similar number of people were killed during and after the invasion of Iraq.  Tony Blair has said that he knows he will have to give account on the Day of Judgement for every lost life.  And on this issue he is right.  If he really believes that he should be trembling every moment of the day.

Just over fifty years ago Liberal politician David Steel introduced the abortion act, and since then 9,000,000 unborn babies have been killed in England and Wales.  They had been given life by our loving Creator and were wonderfully developing safely in their mother’s womb when a doctor and parent concurred to destroy the earthly life of that little boy or girl.  Every Member of Parliament and each member of the House of Lords who voted for that Act of Parliament will have to give account to Almighty God as to what they did. Her Majesty the Queen who gave her Royal Assent to the Bill (in contrast to the King of Belgium who abdicated for a day so that he would not have to give assent to the same bill in his country), as well as every doctor and nurse, every parent and participant will one day stand before a holy God with the blood of unborn babies on their hands.  The media, which has blocked the message against abortion thus perpetuating the wickedness of our country, is equally complicit.  For many, though not all, the availability of abortion reinforces the notion that sin’s consequences can easily be negated.  This leads a person to abandon their lives to godlessness, selfishness and hedonism.

The least safe place to be

The least safe place to be in England, Wales and Scotland is in your mother’s womb.  I understand there are more laws protecting birds’ eggs in their nests than there are protecting unborn children.  Human beings are deciding whether another human being shall have the right to live, or should die.  And, despite the fact that life is a precious gift from God, millions of people across our land have made the conscious decision that a child should die. I believe that the Abortion Act of 1967, followed by John Major’s secularising of Sunday, and then David Cameron’s introduction of homosexual ‘marriage’ have been the three major blows that have left the influence of Christian standards in our nation reeling.  We Protestants have been all too silent on the abortion issue and it has been left to some Roman Catholics to raise a voice in protest.

After the terrible Dunblane massacre in 1996, when 16 children and one teacher were killed in their school, Rev. Ian Paisley referred his fellow M.P.s to verses in Matthew’s Gospel.  The baby boys in Bethlehem had been killed by King Herod’s soldiers and then we read a quotation from Jeremiah, ‘A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, weeping and great mourning: Rachel weeping for her children, refusing to be comforted, because they are no more.’  Poor Rachel, the mother of Joseph and Benjamin, or should that be Benoni – son of her sorrows – died giving birth to him.  If she would weep then, how much more should we, today?  How God must grieve over the wanton wickedness of mothers (and their partners) who for whatever reason dare to defy their Maker and choose to destroy rather than defend the most vulnerable in our society.

I am sure that the theory of evolution, which has brainwashed our nation into believing that humans are just a chance collision of atoms, has contributed to the ease in which people have accepted abortion.  Conception of a child is from God – see Ruth 4:13 and 1 Samuel 1:6.  We read in Psalm 139:13 & 15, ‘For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb … My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.’  So any attack on human life is an assault on the life-giving God.  An unborn child is a person.  David, in Psalm 139, uses personal pronouns to describe the living, unborn baby, who is not merely a disposable part of a mother.  There is a God-given sanctity to all human life. 

A nation ripe for judgement

In my private prayers for our nation I often wonder whether revival could come to our nation when such wickedness is happening in our NHS week after week.  One fifth of all pregnancies in the UK end in abortion.  Britain has some of the most ‘liberal’ (rather, evil) laws in the world.  200,000 babies a year are aborted here, out of the 40-50 million worldwide. Is our apparent lack of fruit in evangelism and the general declining congregations in most churches connected with the fact that the people we are seeking to reach, willingly go along with a gross act of evil, rarely even thinking that they are wrong or that our nation is rejecting God who both gives life, and who has given us word?  We know that God is merciful, and yet Britain is surely ripe for judgement when we are so violently shaking our fist in God’s face, refusing to listen to His clear, clarion voice.  After Manasseh’s terrible reign of idolatry and shedding innocent blood, God said that He would bring calamity on Judah (2 Kings 21:10-16).  Is our nation to be exempt from judgement?

We are not to be Old Testament prophets denouncing the sins of the nation, yet I find it totally perplexing that subsequent to the days of Francis Schaeffer Christians and Christian leaders have remained largely silent about so great an evil.  Once again, the world has been intimidated Christians into silence, as we have accepted what has become status quo in our nation.  I thank God that dear George Verwer has campaigned against abortion.   Maybe we have bought into ‘the woman’s right to choose’ argument.  Of course they have that right, but it should be made before there is conception, not afterwards. Our rights and freedoms are always limited by the effect they have on others, so let us ask the question whether the unborn children – half of whom would grow to be women - have the right to choose.

Having said all this, I am very conscious that the blood of Jesus covers all sin.  So a woman, or for that matter a doctor or nurse, who has gone along with abortion can find full forgiveness and the removing of guilt when there is repentance and faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross for them.  God is not a harsh God.  He is a God of grace, and shows abundant mercy to those who call on Him.  Everyone who has been involved in abortion, at whatever level, is a person loved by God, and for whom Jesus died. The Psalmist prayed words which are open for anyone to pray: ‘Cleanse me with hyssop and I shall be clean; wash me and I shall be whiter than snow.’

And at the risk, of appearing to appease the horror of abortion, I am reminded that God, who never ordains evil, nevertheless overrules it to bring out of it good. God gives an eternal existence at the moment of conception.  Little babies in the womb are created by God and given an eternal dimension to their lives.  If their lives on earth are brutally cut short I personally am convinced that they go to be with the One who said, ‘Let the little children come to me, for of such is the Kingdom of Heaven’.  That does not justify the evil practise but it does honour the Lord who delights to give life, both here and in eternity.

I believe that the church should dare to speak out on issues which may not enhance our popularity, but it will seek to arrest a nation careering to judgement and hell.  We should lovingly press those with influence to protect the unborn child, and oppose any weakening of the law.  I long that Christians would, where necessary, open their homes and help those caught in the dilemma of what to do with a ‘surprise’ pregnancy. Someone I know well opened her home to a pregnant woman, allowing her to sleep on her bed, while my friend slept on a mattress.  Though she did not know her well, through church and social services, a couple was eventually found to adopt the baby.  

Surely we should make this wickedness in our land a cause for prayer, and earnestly ask the Lord to turn around the situation.  Maybe at this very moment, you could just stop, bow and ask the Lord to intervene to change the situation.  If Rachel was inconsolable about her loss so long ago, have we any right to sweep this outrage under the carpet today?