Baptism and Pro-Life


Today I baptized another child. In a little over two years, I have performed 14 baptisms in this mission congregation. Each baptism is special to me. I am humbled as I hold this, the smallest of God’s crowned creation called man. Also, I am especially moved by the love of a gracious God who can work the silent miracle of faith in the heart of a small infant. It is a baptism that reinforces that persuasion in me some call “pro-life.”

Columnist Robert Heard, while criticizing a pro-life veterinarian was quoted as saying: “A veterinarian … wouldn’t hesitate to do an abortion on a dog. Here lies the crux of the issue. Dogs are animals. The right-to-life believe humans are not part of the animal kingdom. We are special creatures, in their view, of an almighty force responsible for a universe in which our entire solar system is less than an insect.”

Mr. Heard was attacking Christians who defend life. But like the prophet Balaam, his curses were words of truth. A Christian’s motivation to defend life comes from his faith in the Creator of Life.

I confess that my pro-life persuasion springs from the same faith that fosters confidence in baptism. In baptism my hope does not rest in the decision to baptize, nor does it rest in whether the one being baptized can make some statement of faith. Instead, my hope rests in the Creator of Life who sent his Son to live and die and thus bring the forgiveness of sins even to little children. Baptism is then a means by which this forgiveness is brought to the child.

Jesus Christ redeemed and sanctified life human life through the sacrifice of his own life. Yes, I believe humans are special creatures in this massive universe. Our specialty does not come by virtue of cognitive skills or superior strength. Our specialty comes by the love of the Creator who redeemed us when we sold ourselves into the slavery of sin.

In the public’s eye, this view promulgated in the state and federal arena would violate the constitutional provision of separation of church and state. Therefore, in public debate, I don’t always talk about what God has done to make man special and deserving of life. I will use the historical, logical and medical testimony to protect life. But don’t be fooled. Even if history proclaimed abortion as historically acceptable if reason suggested abortion over life in many circumstances and if all medical evidence testified there is no life in the womb, I would still be pro-life because God made human life special. And when all the arguing is done that is where the case must rest.

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