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Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Here is a good critique of Jim Wallis' recent interview with the Boston Globe.
No matter how you slice it, Wallis is dodging the fundamental moral issue at the bottom of the abortion debate—that a person can kill an innocent human being with the protection of the law at any point during gestation. Wallis’s rhetoric indicates that he thinks he has staked out some “middle place” between the Democrats and the Republicans. In reality, he hasn’t. His position in this interview is no different from the hackneyed line made famous by former President Clinton—that abortion should be “safe, legal, and rare.”

Calling on the Democrats to press for a “reduction” in abortions is just plain silly in light of what’s at stake. If abortion really is the taking of innocent human life, does it make any moral sense simply to call for a “reduction” in abortions while keeping it protected in law? It makes about as much sense as calling for a reduction in pedophilia while keeping pedophilia protected in law. The point is that if abortion is an affront to human dignity, then the laws (or Supreme Court decisions) that protect it are immoral and should be overturned. The only moral position is the one that seeks to protect the unborn in law, but apparently Wallis thinks this to be an “extreme” position.

What is perhaps even more astonishing is the fact that Wallis speaks of what “most Americans” want as if it provided some kind of norm. It may be true that most Americans don’t want to outlaw abortion, but it also may be true that most Americans are wrong. It is precisely for this reason that most Americans need to hear a clear word about the moral status of abortion. In other words, they need a prophetic word from Christians about what God thinks about abortion. Does Wallis seriously believe that God occupies the “middle place” on this question?

One thing is certain. God is not indifferent about the slaughter of the innocents. If that is not clear to people now, it will be on the Great Day. Shouldn’t faithful evangelicals be about making this truth plain in advance of that day? If Wallis wants to have a “prophetic voice,” he’ll have to do much better than this. This kind of talk is shamefully anything but prophetic.


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Darius' book montage

The Cross Centered Life: Keeping the Gospel The Main Thing
Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God
Overcoming Sin and Temptation
According to Plan: The Unfolding Revelation of God in the Bible
Disciplines of a Godly Man
Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem
When Helping Hurts: Alleviating Poverty Without Hurting the Poor. . .and Ourselves
The Prodigal God: Recovering the Heart of the Christian Faith
Respectable Sins
The Kite Runner
Life Laid Bare: The Survivors in Rwanda Speak
Machete Season: The Killers in Rwanda Speak
A Generous Orthodoxy: Why I am a missional, evangelical, post/protestant, liberal/conservative, mystical/poetic, biblical, charismatic/contemplative, fundamentalist/calvinist, ... anabaptist/anglican, metho
Show Them No Mercy
The Lord of the Rings
Life at the Bottom: The Worldview That Makes the Underclass
The Truth War: Fighting for Certainty in an Age of Deception
Cool It: The Skeptical Environmentalist's Guide to Global Warming
The Chronicles of Narnia
Les Misérables

Darius Teichroew's favorite books »