Hey let’s turn in our Bibles to Exodus chapter
20. And the title of my message today is, “Hot Button Issues.” Hey you want to know what the nonbeliever’s
favorite verse is. First of all let me tell you what it isn’t. It is not John 3:16.
There was a time when just about everybody could recite John 3:16. Perhaps along with
the Lord’s Prayer or Psalm 23 from memory. No longer. Most people don’t know John 3:16.
The favorite verse of nonbelievers is Matthew 7:1. I doubt that they even know what the
reference is but they like what it says. And they will usually say it after you say something
like, “Well you know what I don’t think that is right.” Now here is their favorite
verse. “Who are you to judge me? Doesn’t the Bible say, ‘Judge not lest you be judged.’”
How many of you have heard that before? And you think, “Well what do you say to that.”
Well wait a second. Understand that that verse is not telling you you should not make judgments.
Because in other passages we read that we as believers are indeed to make evaluations,
to be discerning, and yes to make judgments. In fact the Scripture even asks the question,
“Are saints not worthy to judge even the smallest matters?” And the Bible also tells
us, “Judgment begins in the house of God.” We are to judge. But we are not to condemn.
And that is really by the way a better translation of that verse would be condemn not lest you
be condemned. I am in no position to condemn a person. But I am in a position to make judgments
about things, about situations, about viewpoints, and even about people to some degree. “Judge not lest you be judged.” This is
said by people who don’t like it when we dare to have a world view. I find the most
narrow minded people around are the ones who claim to be the most broad minded. Don’t
you? Those who claim to be the most accepting are often the most unaccepting. Because when
a Christian has an opinion on something the nonbeliever will say, “Well how dare you
say that? Who are you to make that evaluation or that judgment?” For instance here is something we hear a lot
from nonbelievers. All religions essentially teach the same thing. Right. How many of you
have heard that before? Let me just say anyone who says that doesn’t know anything about
the great religions of the world today because if one thing is clear it is this. They do
not teach the same thing. And this has been illustrated quite effectively
in the news in the last couple of days. We all know about what happened to Tiger Woods.
And he offered what has been described as his mea culpa in a press conference that he
held and he acknowledged his infidelities and he accepted responsibility for what he
had done and he said in this statement that he made, and I quote, “that he had actively
practiced his faith from childhood but obviously had lost track of what he had taught.” And
that faith, Tiger reveals, is Buddhism. Tiger was raised as a Buddhist you see and he is
saying, “I have strayed from my faith but I am going to get back to it now.” Well here is the problem with Buddhism is
they do not believe in a personal god that is there to forgive a person. Now you make
a statement like that. Buddhists do not believe that there is a personal god who can forgive
people and some people will jump right down your throat and say, “Well how insensitive
and unkind of you to say that. Who are you to say that about Buddhists?” Wait a second.
That is not me. That is not unkind. That is what Buddhists say about themselves. In fact after Tiger made this statement a
Buddhist leader in New York City said, quote, “Buddhists do not believe in a personal
god and there is no one to forgive you.” There you have it from well a Buddhist. A
director of a meditation center in New York City said, quote, “If redemption is defined
as being forgiven by a god that is outside of ourselves Buddhists don’t believe in
a god that is outside of ourselves.” So I bring this up to point out how absurd
it is when people say all religions teach the same thing. Well Christianity and Buddhism
certainly don’t. Buddhism says there is no personal God there to forgive you. Christianity
says there is a personal God there to forgive you who sent His Son to die on the cross and
pay the price for your sin so you can indeed be forgiven. A Boston University professor on Buddhism
told the press after Tiger Woods made his confession, quote, “You have the law of
karma and no matter what Woods says or does he is going to have to pay for whatever wrongs
he has done. There is no accountant in the sky wiping sins off your balance sheet like
there is in Christianity.” End quote. Accountant in the sky? Well that is not exactly how I
would describe God but yet he had one part of it right. There is in Christianity the
offer of the removal of sins indeed. Commentator Brit Hume’s had the audacity
to suggest that what Tiger Woods really needed was a relationship with Jesus Christ. And
this was considered very controversial. In a roundtable discussion with other news people
Brit Hume’s said of Tiger. “He said he is a Buddhist. I don’t think that faith
offers the kind of forgiveness and redemption that is offered by the Christian faith so
my advice to Tiger would be Tiger turn to the Christian faith and you can make a total
recovery and be a great example to the world.” End quote. That is called a Christian world
view. That is a believer who is obviously seeing things through a biblical lens. Well
as Brit Hume’s said it, “You go ahead and see what happens. Say the name of Jesus
and all hell will break loose.” And indeed it did among his peers and columnists and
others. In fact one commentator said of that statement by Brit Hume, “The fact that a
journalist, and I use that term loosely as it pertains to Hume, would go on a national
news show and put down another high profile individual’s faith to tell us all that religious
bigotry and bigotry as a whole is a growing problem in this country.” Religious bigotry?
Why is it bigoted to express an opinion about your faith? Actually what he said Buddhism
was accurate. What he said about Christianity was also accurate. But yet because he dared
to express an opinion he is called a bigot. This is the kind of culture we are living
in today where if you day to say something is right or wrong you are labeled intolerant,
bigoted, hateful, a hater. So with that backdrop in mind let’s deal
with some of the most controversial topics in our culture today. We could identify them
as hot button issues. Abortion, capital punishment, homosexuality, self-defense, and the use of
force. Now before we deal with these topics I am
going to ask a favor of you. And that is that you respond biblically and logically not emotionally
because sometimes when you say the things that I am about to say some will have a kneejerk
reaction and they will say something along the lines of, “Well my god would never do
thus and so.” And remember in our study in the Ten Commandments we have already realized
that when we come up with quote “our god,” which is really our self that we are worshipping
it is not a god at all but it is having another god before Him you see. So let’s just say
what the Bible says on these topics so we can think about them properly. Because that
is what this series is called. World View. Because world view is how we see life around
us. And we want a biblical world view. Everyone has a world view. Everyone believes something.
Even those that say they don’t believe anything actually believe something. The question is
is your world view biblical or isn’t it. What is a biblical world view? It has been
defined by John McArthur in his book Think Biblically as this. Quote. “The first will
be.” It is based on two major presuppositions. “The first will be the eternal existence
of the personal transcendent triune creator God. Second the God of Scripture has revealed
His character, purposes, and will in the infallible and inerrant pages of His special revelation
the Bible, which is superior to any other source of revelation or human reason alone.”
Simplified. There is a living God and He has revealed Himself in the pages of Scripture.
Therefore we as believers accept the fact that we have absolute truth from God. We develop
our Christian world view from what the Bible teaches. Period. The objective is not to conform
the Bible to the changing culture but to conform the changing culture to what the Bible teaches. So let’s deal with some of these issues.
Capital punishment. Self-defense. Is it ever justified? What about homosexuality? Why is
it wrong? And is it possible that a person is born that way? What about the family? What
is it? What isn’t it? And then we will talk also about abortion. Are you awake yet? Fasten your seatbelts.
It is going to be a bumpy ride. We are looking at the Ten Commandments. Remember they are
divided into two groups of four and six. Not as some would think five and five. The first
four have to do with my relationship with God. The final six have to do with my relationship
with people. The first four commandments we have already looked at together. Commandment
number one. You shall have no other gods before Him. Commandment number two. You shall have
no graven images. Commandment number three. You shall not take the Lord’s name in vain.
And finally commandment number four. You shall keep the Sabbath day. Now we come to commandment number five. Verse
12. Exodus 20. Honor your father and your mother. Honor your father and your mother.
And all the parents said amen. It is about time. Before a word is spoken about how to
treat others God starts with the family. I don’t think anything can bring greater pleasure
than our family. Few things can give us as much pain as our families. Kids have problems
with parents. Parents have problems with kids. Sometimes people will say, “Well man I came
from a dysfunctional family.” Yeah. Welcome to the club. Welcome to humanity. My question
is who doesn’t have a dysfunctional family. I came from a dysfunctional family and I am
the head of a dysfunctional family. And let me add one other thing. My wife and
I, who have been married 36 years, have irreconcilable differences. Thank you for your applause.
We have irreconcilable differences. She is neat and I am messy. She is sometimes late
and I am usually early. She is cute and I am fat. These are irreconcilable. Why? Because
she just gets cuter and I keep getting fatter. Now that is not something we would ever dissolve
our marriage over. I am just pointing out everybody is dysfunctional. Everybody has
irreconcilable differences. I am tired of these statements being used to excuse people
who disregard what the Bible says. The family is so important. Our very existence
as a society depends on the success of the family. Maybe that is why Satan hates it so
much and tries to undermine and destroy it. It has been said, “A family can survive
without a nation, but a nation cannot survive without the family.” And yet there is such an attack today on the
family. In fact the Bible tells us that one of the signs of the last days would be a breakdown
in the family and a disrespect for parents in particular. 1 Timothy 3:2 says, “Men
will be lover of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient
to parents.” Here is God’s Word for a culture. Here is God’s Word for a society.
Here is God’s Word for us. Honor your father and your mother. Notice it says honor your
father and mother. It does not say honor your father and your father. Or honor your mother
and your other mother. Or honor your mother and her live-in lover. Or her partner. Or
whatever. We tamper with God’s template at our own peril. Of course there is a movement afoot to redefine
marriage and family today. Media and modern culture are pushing for same sex marriage.
The normalization of homosexuality is gaining momentum and movement today. And by the way
let me add this. This is not merely a political issue friends. This is a moral issue. This
is a biblical issue. Ok. Don’t say, “Well you know I have my politics and you have your.”
No. No. Well I don’t know what your politics are. I don’t really even care about your
politics that much. But I will tell you this much. This is a clear cut issue in Scripture
and you are either going to think about it biblically or you are not going to think about
it biblically. But the Bible is very clear on this topic that homosexuality is not in
God’s order. It isn’t. And the Garden of Eden He brought a man and a woman together.
It was Adam and Eve. Not Adam and Steve. God is not anti-gay. God is anti-sin no matter
how it is expressed. And He loves all people and wants them to come to repentance. And
someone will say, “Well you are homophobic to say that.” I hate homophobe. I hate anything
phobic. You know you speak out on anything and you are something phobic. You know you
are critical of alcoholics you are a drunkaphobic. You speak out against cats. You are a cataphobic.
Well you speak out against what I am saying in Scripture so you are a bibleaphobic. So
there. Or a Christaphobic. Listen. I am a sinaphobic. No matter how sin expresses itself
God deals with it. Let me make a statement that some will not
agree with but they are wrong. Ok. Here it is. I know I will get letters. [email protected]
That’s email. You ready. Here is the statement. You are not born gay and alcoholism is not
That is so insensitive. That is so mean. That is so harsh. That is so judgmental. That is
so biblical. Why do I say that? You are not born gay. No you are not. You are born a sinner.
And I will acknowledge that as a person who is born with a sinful nature you might be
attracted to members of the same sex. Certainly that can happen. And I would also acknowledge
that as a person who is born a sinner you might be more prone to issues of addiction.
Some people if they touch alcohol or get involved in drugs they become addicts. Ok. So there
are certain people that are perhaps more vulnerable in those areas. But having said that all of
these things can be overcome by the power of the Holy Spirit. I have met people who
were addicts who no longer are and are now under the control of the Holy Spirit. I have
met people who are homosexuals that are now living a heterosexual lifestyle. If you are
born gay how do you stop being gay if you were born that way. Answer. You weren’t
born that way. You were born a sinner in need of a Savior who can change you and help you
to live the life He has called you to live. That is the answer. But in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 it says, “Don’t
you know that those who do wrong will have no share in the kingdom of God? Don’t fool
yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who are idol worshippers.” We have dealt
with that already. “Adulterers, prostitutes, homosexuals, thieves, greedy people, drunkards,
abusers, swindlers—none of these will have a share in the kingdom of God.” Listen.
The Bible does not give a confused statement on this topic. There is no confusion on the
issue unless your confusion is with the Bible. Romans chapter 1 verses 22–27 lay it out
as plainly as it could be laid out what the Bible teaches on this topic. God’s order
is for the family to be a man and a woman. A husband and a wife. Faithful to each other.
We need to respect that and give it the honor that it deserves. How I thank God for the couples that have
stayed together and raised their children in the way of the Lord. If you came from a
family where mom and dad stayed together and raised you as a Christian you need to really
thank them. I remember when I was a kid growing up I came
from a divorced home and we moved around a lot and people would soon find out I didn’t
have a dad. And that was considered scandalous back in the 20s. I am not that old. Actually
the 50s and early 60s. “Oh your mom is divorced. Woe. You don’t have a dad.” Now it is
considered curious if you have a mom and a dad together. Your mom and dad are together
and you live with both of them. What is wrong with you? You know someone will ask me sometimes when
I am with my wife, “Well how long have you been married?” We will say 36 years. It
is like their jaw drops to the ground. For starters my wife looks like she is 36. And
then secondly they notice how fat I am. Second reference to that. Oh I have a third reference
for it actually. Because the word Hebrew for honor your father and mother means to be heavy
or to give weight. See. That is what it is all about. Now but it doesn’t mean it that
way. What it means is this is a weighty thing to be a parent. You know to put it in 60s
vernacular this is heavy dude. No. Really. There is a lot of responsibility that goes
with being a parent. Honor your father and your dad. Give them the recognition they deserve
for their God-given authority. Respect and esteem and value and prize them as gifts from
God. Even when they say that one thing that every kid hates to hear from their parents.
“Mom why can’t I go and do thus and so?” “Because I told you so.” “Uggh. But
why? “Because I said so.” Oh I hate that. Yeah. You watch. One day you will be saying
it too. It makes me laugh when people talk about raising
kids who have a one-year-old or a two-year-old. I love to see them dispensing them parental
advice. You know what my advice to you is? Shut up. You don’t even talk to me until
you have had a teenager and have lived to tell the story and you will understand the
advice of Mark Twain who said this about raising a teen. Quote. “Things run along pretty
smoothly until your kid reaches 13. That is the time you need to stick them in a barrel,
hammer the kid down nice and snug and feed them through the knothole.” Then he adds,
“When they turn 16 plug up the knothole.” That is right. Ok. Kids listen up. You are to honor and obey
your parents. That is what the Bible says. Colossians 3:20–21. “Children obey your
parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord.” Or as the Phillips translation
puts it, “And you children your duty is to obey your parents for at your age this
is one of the best things you can do to show your love for God.” This is hard though. Because sometimes kids
will look at their parents and think that they don’t know what they are talking about.
How could you say that to me? Why won’t you let me do this thing? What is wrong with
you? Again, to quote Mark Twain. He said, quote,
“When I was a boy of 14 my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the
old man around. But when I got to be 21 I was astonished at how much he had learned
in seven years.” It reminds me of a magazine article I read
years ago that describes how a child sees their parents as the years pass. And this
is specifically about dad. At four years old the child says, “My daddy
can do anything.” At seven they say, “My daddy knows a lot.
A whole lot.” At eight they say, “My father doesn’t
know quite everything.” At 12, “Oh well naturally my dad doesn’t
know about that either” At 14, “Dad is so out of date.”
21. “Dad is so lame.” At 25. “Dad knows a little bit about it
but not too much.” Age 30. “Let’s find out what dad thinks
about that?” Age 35. “Well before decide let’s get
dad’s idea first.” At 50. “I wonder what my dad would have
thought about that.” And at 60. “You know what? My dad knew literally
everything.” You might ask the question, “What about
if my parents are not Christians should I still honor them?” The answer is yes you
should. Honor your father and mother. In fact that may be the way that you win them to the
Lord. Listen to this. The hardest people to reach are members of your own family. Your
mom. Your dad. Your brother. Your sister. Your extended family as well. Listen. Even Jesus did not reach His whole
family before His death and resurrection. And who was a better example than Jesus Christ.
He never did anything wrong. Can you imagine being one of Jesus’ siblings and having
Mary lecture you? “Why can’t you be more like Jesus? Look at how your brother behaves.
Look at how respectful He is. Look at how hard He works. Be more like Jesus.” “But
mom He is like perfect.” “I want you to ask yourself a question young man before you
make a decision you ask yourself this, ‘What would Jesus do?’ Here is a little bracelet
to wear.” “Mom I don’t want to wear it. WWJD. No mom.” Jesus was perfect. But
yet it wasn’t until He died and resurrected that His mother believed. Yeah so if you have nonbelieving parents obey
them. “Well what if they tell me to do something that is a sin before God?” Like what? Making
your bed? Cleaning up your room? Taking out the trash? Doing your chores? Doing your homework? Now needless to say if your parents would
ask you to do something that is unbiblical you are not required to do that. If your parent
were to say, “You cannot believe in Jesus Christ” it is ok under those circumstances
to disobey them. Because sometimes one law supersedes another. It is like when the apostles were told it
was illegal to preach the gospel. They said, “Well sorry guys but we must obey God and
not man.” So God is your ultimate authority. But under other circumstances obey your parents
and honor them as much as you can. Because guess what? One day you will get a little
bit older and you will get married and you will have kids and you will find yourself
saying the things you promised you would never say. You will find yourself saying to your
child before you can catch yourself, “What? Do you think I have a money tree somewhere?
Oh I see. If all your friends jumped off a cliff would you jump off too?” “I can’t
believe I just said that. My mom used to say that to me. My dad used to say that. “You
know we didn’t have it so easy when I was a kid.” Oh no. Yeah. Well what a joy it is when parents see their
children walk with the Lord. As we are told over in 1 John, “I have no greater joy than
to know that my children walk in truth.” Commandment number six. Verse 13. “You shall
not kill.” “You shall not kill.” Now we live in such a violent and murderous culture
today. It is awash in violence and killing. Over two million people a year become violent
crime victims. Listen. A better translation of this verse would be, “Thou shall not
murder.” Murder would be the better translation of the word instead of kill. This commandment
obviously forbids the taking of another human life for no justifiable reason. Time doesn’t
allow me to go into it but suffice it to say that the Bible does not condemn all killing.
A careful reading of Numbers 35 reveals that there is a difference between killing and
murder. Now all murder of course is killing but not
all killing is necessarily murder. There are times when death is permissible though not
desirable. You say, “Like when?” How about self-defense? How about if someone breaks
in your house with the intent of killing you and your family? Do you have a right to defend
yourself? Are you just going to stand there and say, “Oh praise the Lord.” Yeah. I
will say, “Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.” That’s right. “Oh that’s
not scriptural.” Isn’t it? When Jesus sent His disciples out to preach the gospel
He told them to take a sword. Why should they take a sword? For shish cabob? You defend
yourself with a sword. That is why. They had every right to defend themselves. As do you.
Self-defense. When we were struck by these murderous terrorists
who attacked us that is justifiable. When we try to stop people who are bent on taking
innocent lives that is justifiable. Someone will say, “Oh no man that is wrong because
all killing is sin and if we kill them then we are just as bad as they are.” That is
so stupid to say that. You know you call that moral equivalency. “Well all killing is
wrong.” Not necessarily you see. Let me ask you this. Was the United States
wrong to stop the Nazis from eradicating the Jewish people from the face of the planet
in World War II? Was that a just cause? Yes it was. There are times when war. It is not
desirable. But we have to do what we have to do to defend human life. God has established
lives to govern a culture by. And those that break those laws will face repercussions.
And they know it. God has even established the police and the military according to Scripture.
Romans 13 says, “The authorities do not frighten people who are doing right, but they
frighten people who are doing wrong. So do what they say and you will get along well.
The authorities are sent by God to help you. But if you are doing something wrong of course
you should be afraid for you will be punished. The authorities are established by God for
that very purpose. To punish those that do wrong.” When you are breaking the law you hate cops.
And you are paranoid every time you see a cop. “Oh it is the man. The man. The fuzz.
The pigs. The heat.” You know when you are driving along. “Oh slow down.” CHP. “Slow
down.” Why do you slow down? “I am going too fast. That’s why.” Now see if you are doing right you don’t
have to worry. “Hey it is a police officer.” I am not saying wave at them. You don’t
them to come and, “Oh you want a ticket.” No. They wouldn’t do that. But be respectful
of what they are doing. I have spent a lot of time with police officers.
I am a chaplain with the police department. I have done ride alongs with them on a number
of occasions. It is funny when you just go out in a public place with a cop in uniform
how people react. You walk into a coffee shop. There is a cop with a badge. Got the mace.
He has got the gun. He has got the doughnut. All the cops are like, “Yeah. I have been
placed here by God. You better shut up. I will cuff you.” So it is amazing how people
react though. They are sitting there. They look. Why? Because he represents the law.
He has been placed there by God. As has the military. Does that mean that everything
a police officer does and the military does is always right? No. But does that mean that
these are institutions established by the Lord Himself? The answer is yes. Well wait. What does it mean to not murder?
The word murder could be translated to dash in pieces. Understand this. The word that
is used here for thou shall not murder in Exodus 20 never describes the death of an
animal. Nor does it describe the death of an opponent in war. Nor does it describe the
death of capital punishment. And by the way, you may disagree with me on this, but I will
state my position. I believe in capital punishment. And I believe the Bible teaches it. There
are good people on both sides of this debate. So I would not say a person is not a believer
if they disagree with me on this position. I respect someone who sees it differently.
But I personally believe the Bible teaches capital punishment. Genesis 9:6 says, “You
must execute anyone who murders another person for to kill a person is to kill a living being
made in God’s image.” Now we are assuming of course that that person
would be guilty beyond any doubt whatsoever before they were sent to be executed. But
the ironic thing is often you will see those people having their vigil, their candlelight
vigil for the person who murdered a family or murdered a child or did some horrible crime
deserving of capital punishment and they will be praying and they will be holding signs
that say, “Thou shall not kill.” And I am like but that is not what it means. It
is thou shall not murder. That is the person that murdered in there. Here is the funny thing. I have met people
that are against capital punishment but they support abortion. That makes no sense to me.
So effectively they want to destroy the innocent and spare the guilty. See I want to spare
the innocent, the preborn child and punish those that are guilty of a penalty like that. And let’s deal with that topic now. Abortion.
Sometimes people say, “Well this is a controversial topic.” Is it? Controversial among whom?
Any time anyone says there is a lot of controversy among theologians. I have heard this said.
I won’t say who said it. But someone. It doesn’t matter really. But so many have
said it. But they said, “Well you know even theologians debate when life begins.” Really?
What theologians are those? I really don’t know many theologians that debate when life
begins. Now if a theologian believes in the Bible I know what they will believe and what
they will say. If they don’t believe in the Bible then I am sure they will come up
with something else. But let me say the Bible does not give an
unclear word on the topic of when life begins. Life begins at conception. Not at birth. It
begins at conception. This is absolute. Listen to David’s words as he spoke of being in
the womb. Psalm 139:13. “You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit
me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your
workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in
utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I
was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before
a single day had passed.” Showing that God has a plan for each of us even before birth.
God says in Jeremiah 1:5, “I knew you and formed you in your mother’s womb. Before
you were born I set you apart and appointed you.” Notice that God says, “I formed
you in your mother’s womb.” Each child is created by God and should be given a chance
to live. God does not say, “I waited until you were born to have a plan for you because
you are not a human yet. You are just a mass of tissue.” No. God had a plan before the
child was out of the womb. Max Lucado said, and I quote, “You were
deliberately planned, specifically gifted, and lovingly positioned on this earth by the
Master Craftsman.” End quote. You see I was conceived out of wedlock. I
wasn’t planned. I wasn’t meant to be. I am so glad my mom didn’t get an abortion
as she easily could have done. But I was brought to term and allowed to live my life. Every
child has a right to live. “Well what about the mother’s rights?”
The mother’s right is to protect the child. There are no illegitimate children. Every
child is legitimate in the eyes of God no matter how they were conceived. Despite this abortion is effectively used
by many as a form of birth control. Since the passing of Roe v Wade in the early 70s
50 million babies have been aborted. I wonder if one of those babies would have grown up
to find the cure for cancer. Or if one of those babies would have been the President
of the United States. Or one of those babies would have been a great preacher. Or one of
those babies would have done something to help our world. But we will never know because
they were silenced. Stopped. Abortion has grown into a 500 million dollar a year industry
in the U. S. And it takes in 10 billion worldwide. And here is something that is rarely discussed.
When girls get abortion, and many of them get repeated they go back again and again
for abortions later on they experience a much higher depression rate than other girls and
attempt suicide far more often than those who did not get an abortion. It is not the
answer. If you have conceived a child and it is possible marry the father and raise
the child. If you can’t do that then raise the child as a single mother. If you can’t
do that then carry the child to term and give it up for adoption. Abortion is never the
answer. But we will find ways to describe a preborn
baby. We will call them fetuses. Embryos. Globs of cells. Uterine contents. Products
of conception. And my favorite. This is a phrase that is actually used. Not trying to
be humorous. Potential human beings. Oh really? What else would they become? Potential human
beings. Well they might turn into a horse. You never know. No. It is a human being. A
preborn human being. Listen to this. It is more than a potential
human being. It is a human being with incredible potential. Made in the image of God. That
is what it is. I don’t know who is going to hear this message.
Because it is here and later it will be on radio and it will be on podcasts or however
people listen to it. But there might be some mother somewhere that will hear this that
has a child in her womb and she is thinking of an abortion. And I would just say for any
woman who has a child and you are thinking about this go get a sonogram. The reason I
say that is a sonogram is this technology where they can effectively take a photograph
of the child in the womb and they can do video now as well and with the new imaging and so
forth you know you can really see what the child looks like. And studies have found that
of those women who were considering abortion and then went and got a sonogram 90% of them
decided against the abortion because it just became real to them those are not uterine
contents. That is your little baby right there who has every right to live. What about if the mother’s life is in danger
it is asked. As though that is supposed to excuse all abortions. Well the mother’s
life is in danger. Or she thought it was in danger. Or could have been in danger. Well
what about that? Well what about that? Is that an acceptable risk? Let’s just say
you are a mom. You found out you are pregnant and the doctor said to you, “If you carry
this baby to term there is a possibility you could die giving birth.” “Oh then abort
it.” What? Wait a second. Let me ask you a question. As a mother if you saw your child
running across the street and a car was coming toward your child would you put your life,
your body, in the way of the car, and push your child out of the path to save them? “No.”
Why not? “Well a mother’s life was in danger.” No. The child’s life is in danger.
The parent lays the life down for the child. Not the other way around. Any proper parent
would do that. And I might add. They would do it instinctively. They wouldn’t have
someone to give them a little sermon on it first. It would just be kneejerk. Oh. Save
child. Do whatever it takes. So what if the mother’s life is in danger?
Well how about this? What if they tell you your life is in danger and you have the baby
anyway and then you live through it? Then everything is good. Like what happened with
Tim Tebow. You have heard of him. Tim’s parents were Christian missionaries in the
Philippines in 1987 when Pam, Tim’s mother contracted amoebic dysentery the leading cause
of death in the country. She was pregnant with Tim her fifth child at the time. She
was very dehydrated and very sick. They did not have access to the best medical care and
a doctor told her to abort the baby. The reason being that the powerful medication she would
need for her own problem of amoebic dysentery would kill the child. So don’t do it he
said. Abort the baby. And she decided to carry the baby to term. Her and her husband prayed.
And the boy survived. And the mother survived. And they both recognized this was a gift from
God. Well Tim is now a strapping 6 foot 3, 240
pound 2007 Heisman Trophy winner quarterback at the University of Florida. Not only that
but Tim Tebow is a bold witness for Jesus Christ and speaks up for his faith. Didn’t
he have a right to live? Now someone listening to this message might
say, “Well you know Greg it is fine what you are saying but you have made me very uncomfortable
today because I have had an abortion. So what about me? Have I killed an innocent human
being?” Actually to be truthful you have. Yes you have. “Well what now?” What now?
You need forgiveness. And the same God that tells you not to do something has made a way
for you to be forgiven. He doesn’t offer you karma. He offers you forgiveness. And
the Bible tells us in 1 John 1:9, “If we will confess our sin, He is faithful and just
to forgive us our sin and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” See God can cleanse
any sin. And we can say, “Well I never had an abortion. I have never murdered another
person.” And we feel pretty good about that. Or, “I have never committed this other sin
you mentioned.” Yeah. But wait a second. We have all broken these commandments in some
way, shape, or form. Case in point. Jesus takes this commandment
we are looking at right now and He refers to it in the Sermon on the Mount and He says,
“You have hard that it has been said, ‘You shall not murder.’ But I say unto you that
if you are angry with your brother without a cause you will be subject to judgment.” Have you ever hated anyone? Have you ever
hated anyone so bad you wished they were dead? “Oh no. Not me.” Let me rephrase the question.
Have you ever driven on a freeway in Southern California? Come on now. Let’s be honest.
“Well I have a strong dislike for certain people.” And if that person were to walk
into the room your blood would just start to boil. “Oh I hate them.” Do you? 1 John
3:15 says, “Anyone who hates his brother is really a murderer at heart.” “You mean
it is as bad as murdering.” Here is what it is. It is a sin before God. And this is
something God says if you have this attitude you are committing a sin as well. So we can feel good about not murdering but
have we every hated anybody. The Bible tells us in Ephesians 4:31, “Get rid of all bitterness,
rage, anger, harsh words, and slander and all kinds of malicious behavior. Be hind to
each other. Tenderhearted. Forgiving one another as God in Christ has forgiven you.” The
Bible teaches we are to love not hate our enemies. Love them. And forgive them. See we all need God’s forgiveness today.
I am not standing here today as some pompous preacher looking down on everyone saying this
is what you ought to do. We are all sinners. We have all broken God’s commandments in
some way, shape, or form. We all need forgiveness. We all need help. And He offers it graciously
and lovingly if we will come to Him. And in closing maybe you have never put your
faith in Jesus Christ. You don’t know what it is to have the hope of eternal life. Or
maybe you have come in here today loaded down with guilt. Maybe you have had an abortion.
Maybe you literally killed someone. Maybe you have a heart filled with hatred. Maybe
you have had another god before Him. Or something else. Whatever it is you are aware of your
sin. But God doesn’t make you aware of that sin to drive you away in despair. He makes
you aware of that sin so you will run into the open arms of Jesus who says, “I love
you and I will forgive you. If you will acknowledge your sin, call it what it was, don’t make
excuses for it, turn for it and put your faith in Me I will pardon you completely.” Because
Jesus on the cross shed His blood for you and died for every sin that we have all committed.
And He will give you His complete forgiveness today if you will come to Him now. We are going to close in prayer and I am going
to give you an opportunity to get right with God. To come to Christ. Or if necessary to
return to the Lord because you have gone astray. Let’s pray. Father thank You for Your Word
to us. It has been a bit uncomfortable at times and hard perhaps for some. But truth
is truth and we believe it and we accept it. And Lord there might be some that have been
made aware of their sin. They feel guilt right now. They feel deep sorrow. But yet Scripture
tells us that godly sorrow leads to repentance. And I pray that they will find forgiveness
in You now.”