Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Can a person be pro-life without being 'saved'?

A friend asked me the following question:
"Do you know of anyone who is pro-life who needs salvation?"

I thought that was a very good question. The answer is a resounding "Yes!" The biblical doctrine of General Revelation reveals that all human beings have a guilty knowledge of the truth about God & sin. J. I. Packer wrote a great definition of General Revelation. Take a look:

This being true, anyone & everyone is inherently 'pro-life', but because of human depravity, we prefer & 'worship the creature' (ourselves, our lover, our freedom, our lusts, our sexual pleasure, our money, our job, our power, our education, our reputation, our position of 'favor' with others, etc) rather than the Creator.

A friend recently showed me a blog for pro-life atheists & agnostics. Muslims are often pro-life. Buddists have a pro-life philosophy. Even witches (Wiccans) are theoretically pro-life (The Wiccan Rede/Credo says
'Do what you will as long as it harms none')

Since God has given us a conscience that tells us right from wrong, everyone knows it is wrong to murder an innocent person. The Bible teaches that, without exception, in their God-given conscience, inside every person lies understanding that murder is sin & abortion is evil.

Romans 1 explains: 18For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
19Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.

20For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

21Because that, when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

32Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

Romans 2:14-15 says:

For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)

Tragically, there are professing Christians earning a living by shedding innocent blood. Nearly every time we minister at the abortuary we meet sexually immoral women who identify themselves as 'Christian'. They 'say' they have salvation in the Blood of Jesus. They are sincere in their belief that they have been saved from hell. Most of these workers of iniquity are what Jesus called 'tares' & 'goats'. False converts. False brethren. This is why it is so important to communicate the whole counsel of God regarding sin, righteousness & the judgment to come. This is why it is so important to bring biblical gospel truth WITH mercy to the perishing at the death mills. Mercy without truth is not mercy at all. It is man-centered humanitarianism. Vain philosophy. Empty modern therapeutic tradition does not have the power to save souls from the power & penalty of sin. It is mere flattery & it is dead. It may help direct a mother away from killing her baby because it is 'reasonable' to accept support & avoid intentionally harming your own flesh-and-blood. However, only the Word of God is ALIVE; "For the Word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart." Hebrews 4:12

So, even though Muslims, atheists & any sort of sinner (& even false converts) can be pro-life & can, by God's common grace, offer mercy & love & convince a mother not to murder her pre-born child, their reasonings cannot touch her soul & bring it alive. Only the Spirit of God, through the Word of God does that. The Geneva Study Bible notes on Hebrew 4:12 explain: "... the nature of the Word of God, so powerful that it enters even to the deepest and most inward and secret parts of the heart, fatally wounding the stubborn, and openly reviving the believer. ['Word of God' means] the doctrine of God which is preached both in the law and in the gospel. He calls the Word of God living, because of the effect it has on those to whom it is preached. He calls the seat of emotions 'soul'. By 'spirit' he means the mind."

The People's New Testament explains how the Word of God is the Word of LIFE & those who refuse to hear & obey & suppress the knowledge of divine truth are condemned by it. This happened to God's own chosen people, the Israelites, who were kept from the promised land: "... because they refused to hear the Word of the Lord. If we could enter in, we must take heed to the Word. It not only gives life, but slays, as was the case with the Israelites who fell in the wilderness... [The Word of God - the Law & the gospel] reaches the very fountains of life."

The Holy Spirit admonishes us to resist any movement or program that puts the Word of God in second place. There is & according to the explicit will of Almighty God, NO substitute for bringing salvation to lost women & men.

"For the Word of God - Preached, Heb 4:2, and armed with threatenings, Heb 4:3. Is living and powerful - Attended with the power of the living God, and conveying either life or death to the hearers. Sharper than any two - edged sword - Penetrating the heart more than this does the body. Piercing - Quite through, and laying open. The soul and spirit, joints and marrow - The inmost recesses of the mind, which the apostle beautifully and strongly expresses by this heap of figurative words. And is a discerner - Not only of the thoughts, but also of the intentions." ~ John Wesley

It is not enough for Christ followers to merely be what the world might call 'loving' & nice. An atheist can be nice. In fact, I have a few pro-abortion friends who are very 'nice' people. They bake cookies for their neighbors. They take Veterans to their doctor's appointments. Abortionist Randy Whitney volunteers at a soup kitchen every month. Genuine born-aain believers have a duty to teach & preach the living Law & the Gospel of Word of God.

The Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary expounds on this life of the proclamation of the Word described in Hebrews 4:

"Such diligent striving (Heb 4:11) is incumbent on us FOR we have to do with a God whose "Word" whereby we shall be judged, is heart-searching, and whose eyes are all-seeing (Heb 4:13). The qualities here attributed to the Word of God, and the whole context, show that it is regarded in its JUDICIAL power, whereby it doomed the disobedient Israelites to exclusion from Canaan, and shall exclude unbelieving so-called Christians from the heavenly rest. The written Word of God is not the prominent thought here, though the passage is often quoted as if it were. Still the word of God (the same as that preached, Heb 4:2), used here in the broadest sense, but with special reference to its judicial power, INCLUDES the Word of God, the sword of the Spirit with double edge, one edge for convicting and converting some (Heb 4:2), and the other for condemning and destroying the unbelieving (Heb 4:14). Revelation 19:15 similarly represents the Word's judicial power as a sharp sword going out of Christ's mouth to smite the nations. The same Word which is saving to the faithful (Heb 4:2) is destroying to the disobedient (2Co 2:15, 16)...
quick-Greek, "living"; having living power, as "the rod of the mouth and the breath of the lips" of "the living God."

powerful-Greek, "energetic"; not only living, but energetically efficacious.

sharper-"more cutting."

two-edged-sharpened at both edge and back. Compare "sword of the Spirit . Word of God" (Eph 6:17). Its double power seems to be implied by its being "two-edged." "It judges all that is in the heart, for there it passes through, at once punishing [unbelievers] and searching [both believers and unbelievers]" [Chrysostom]. Philo similarly speaks of "God passing between the parts of Abraham's sacrifices (Ge 15:17, where, however, it is a 'burning lamp' that passed between the pieces) with His word, which is the cutter of all things: which sword, being sharpened to the utmost keenness, never ceases to divide all sensible things, and even things not perceptible to sense or physically divisible, but perceptible and divisible by the Word...
piercing-Greek, "coming through."
even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit-that is, reaching through even to the separation of the animal soul, the lower part of man's incorporeal nature, the seat of animal desires, which he has in common with the brutes; compare the same Greek, 1Co 2:14, "the natural [...-souled] man" (Jude 19), from the spirit (the higher part of man, receptive of the Spirit of God, and allying him to heavenly beings)...
and of the joints and marrow-rather, "(reaching even TO) both the joints (so as to divide them) and marrow." Christ "knows what is in man" (Joh 2:25): so His word reaches as far as to the most intimate and accurate knowledge of man's most hidden parts, feelings, and thoughts, dividing, that is, distinguishing what is spiritual from what is carnal ... in him, the spirit from the soul: so Pr 20:27. As the knife of the Levitical priest reached to dividing parts, closely united as the joints of the limbs, and penetrated to the innermost parts, as the marrows (the Greek is plural); so the word of God divides the closely joined parts of man's immaterial being, soul and spirit, and penetrates to the innermost parts of the spirit. The clause (reaching even to) "both the joints and marrow" is subordinate to the clause, "even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit."...whereby each (soul as well as spirit) is laid bare and "naked" before God; this view accords with Heb 4:13. Evidently "the dividing of the soul from the spirit" answers to the "joints" which the sword, when it reaches unto, divides asunder, as the "spirit" answers to the innermost "... The Word's dividing and far penetrating power has both a punitive and a healing effect."

"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished to all good works." II Tim 3:16-17

I will leave you with this beautiful commentary of holy encouragement from
Matthew Henry:

"Let us labour, and quicken each other to be diligent in duty. The Holy Scriptures are the word of God. When God sets it home by his Spirit, it convinces powerfully, converts powerfully, and comforts powerfully. It makes a soul that has long been proud, to be humble; and a perverse spirit, to be meek and obedient. Sinful habits, that are become as it were natural to the soul, and rooted deeply in it, are separated and cut off by this sword. It will discover to men their thoughts and purposes, the vileness of many, the bad principles they are moved by, the sinful ends they act to. The word will show the sinner all that is in his heart. Let us hold fast the doctrines of Christian faith in our heads, its enlivening principles in our hearts, the open profession of it in our lips, and be subject to it in our lives."

Together for Life & Eternity in 2010,
Patte Smith
Sanctuary Ministries

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