Taylor: Another criticism of the pro-life movement is that it's "social gospel," and that instead we should just preach Christ and him crucified. In your mind, what's the connection between the gospel and working to end abortion?
Ensor: It is no small lesson that that the great missionary, William Carey, who labored to bring the Gospel to India, who translated the Bible into three languages over 40 furlough-less years, and portions of the Bible into some 30 dialects, also labored to end child-killing in India. The prolife legislation that finally outlawed the practice of throwing babies into the Ganges River to be eaten by alligators is called Carey’s Edict. The Gospel saves the innocent and proclaims good news to the guilty. They are not at odds with each other or Christ would not have pointed to the Samaritan and said, “Go and do likewise.” When we preach Christ and him crucified, we are proclaiming the extreme end to which God proves his love of human life; body and soul. That is why when Amy Carmichael (again in India) rescued an innocent young girl from a cult temple of prostitution, her ministry was transformed. She soon was rescuing dozens of young girls, opening orphanages and schools, and her gospel message rang with authority to the glory of God. But prior to this, she was one fruitless missionary.
So if I am sitting in a café sharing the Gospel with a lost friend (soul), and a car accident outside leaves a baby and a mother pinned in a car (body), and I stay seated doing my evangelism (soul), my message is distorted and unconvincing. But if while rescuing the young mother and baby (body), the car blows up and I am killed by shrapnel (body), my guess is my lost friend will weigh my gospel (soul) with great care. It is sophistry to make it more complicated than that.
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
John Ensor on Gospel and Pro-Life [SK]
My friend Justin Taylor recently asked John the following question: