vs. Wade resulted in legalized abortion.
Although, most Baptists fall on the pro-life side of this issue, there
are those amongst their ranks who agree with the current law.
| Approximately 1,370,000 abortions
occur annually in the U.S. (Alan Guttmacher Institute). Of
these, 88% occur during the first 6 to 12 weeks of pregnancy. Women who
already have one or more children account for 60% of the abortions.
Almost half, 47%, are performed on women who have already had one or more
Furthermore, the statistics
support the argument that abortion is primarily a method of birth control.
The majority of women getting an abortion are young. 52% are younger
than 25 years old and 19% are teenagers. The abortion rate is highest
for those women aged 18 to 19 (56 per 1,000). In fact, 51% of women
who are unmarried when they become pregnant will receive an abortion.
Unmarried women are 6 times more likely than married women to have an abortion.
Finally, 67% of abortions are from women who have never been married.
Not only has the country been
divided by this issue based on the traditional differences between conservatives
and liberals, but even those amongst the Baptists have disagreed regarding
abortion. Most fall on the pro-life side. Refusing to be labeled
as "antiabortionists," their main argument has to do with their acceptance
of life beginning at conception (see Psalm 139 below). The rest of
the Baptists compose a minority who agree with the current laws along with
some who take a moderate approach which takes into account the exceptions
(life of the mother, rape, incest, fetal deformity).
The prayers below are updated daily. Please stop for a moment and
pray for those who are seeking God's will and guidence.
|| Although laws
began appearing in the United States as early as the 1820s, abortion had
been totally outlawed in every state by 1900. However, illegal abortion
continued to be practiced. By 1965, the states began to get tougher
regarding their abortion laws due to those being performed illegally.
However, various states allowed certain exceptions: to save the life of
the mother, in cases of rape or incest, or if the fetus was deformed.
In 1973 the Supreme Court
declared most existing state abortion laws to be unconstitutional. Thus,
the case of Roe v. Wade resulted in a decision that ruled out any legislative
interference in the first trimester of pregnancy and put limits on what
restrictions could be passed on abortions in later stages of pregnancy.
As a result, one of the greatest debates began amongst Americans and it
continues to this present day.
Other facets of this issue
that pro-life Baptists point to would include the use of abortion as a
means of birth control, the obvious moral implications, and the very real
concern that taking such a serious step toward any devaluation of human
life opens the door to take further steps in that direction (e.g. mercy
killing, assisted suicide, getting rid of the elderly, genocide, etc.).
Those who take a pro-abortion stance, have not been able to successfully
answer these questions.
A very small minority of
those who oppose legalized abortion have chosen to use violence to make
their point. If any of them claim to be Baptist, they would doubtless
be rejected by even those who agree with the current laws. Violence
is never an option, no matter what side of this issue one is on.
It is obvious that this issue
is not going to go away very soon. In the meantime, the topic of
abortion will continue to be a hot button amongst Bible believing Baptists.
thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb.
I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous
are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well. My substance
was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought
in the lowest parts of the earth. Thine eyes did see my substance, yet
being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in
continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them."
~ Psalm 139:13-16