Dietrich Bonhoeffer once said, “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil; God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”
In Bonhoeffer’s time, the Jews were exterminated by a totalitarian Nazi regime. Today, the unborn are being slaughtered by an aggressive secular left.
In both cases, the church, for the most part, remained silent – and continues to remain silent.
So people like Bonhoeffer who stand up and speak out make a huge difference. Sitting silently and wishing bad things away is actually acting – for the evil that is ravaging the innocent.
This is why we believe it’s hypocritical for Christians to point the finger at Donald Trump for not saying anything after the Supreme Court decision last week to strike down a Texas law minimizing abortion. Many of the same believers refuse to stand up and speak for the unborn themselves.
When asked what we thought about Trump’s silence we simply responded, “We cannot expect political leaders to faithfully engage the spiritual battle over the shedding of innocent blood when many of our spiritual leaders refuse to address the issue from the pulpit anyway. Donald Trump’s silence simply mirrors the silence of the church as a whole for the past 40-plus years.”
We’ve pretty much heard it all from the evangelical community when it comes to abortion, and one thing is abundantly clear – the church in America will give lip service once a year for the unborn. But we simply plead the case of children to plead it, but never to win it.
So when a political candidate, who supposedly represents Christians (of course, Trump does not), fails to plead our pro-life cause we get all bent out of shape about it.
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The Word of God is abundantly clear about the church’s responsibility on this issue. Just one passage says, “Rescue those who are being taken away to death; hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter. If you say, ‘Behold, we did not know this,’ does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it, and will he not repay man according to his work?” (Proverbs 24:11-12)
News flash: We are our brother’s keeper. We have a responsibility to love others more than ourselves and to speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves. Nowhere in Scripture are we given an “out” on this sacred responsibility – even if it’s not popular.
“Not to speak is to speak.” Pastors, take note.
Our second president, John Adams, encouraged American pastors along these lines, saying, “It is the duty of the clergy to accommodate their discourses to the times, to preach against such sins as are most prevalent, and recommend such virtues as are most wanted. … If the rights and duties of Christian magistrates and subjects are disputed, should they not explain them, show their nature, limitations, and restrictions …?”
But today, many pastors won’t talk about the issues we face as a nation. And so, while we sit in silence millions of unborn children are ripped apart, limb from limb (literally).
Christians should never rely on a political leader to fix the problem, but instead should start doing the hard work in the trenches, bringing life and hope right to the places where moms feel they have no other choice but abortion.
The easy thing to do is tell our elected officials to speak up, but if we don’t speak ourselves we are actually speaking very loudly, giving hearty approval through our silence.
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