Common Objections to Starting a Pro-Life Ministry
1. I don’t have time to launch this ministry in my church.
“And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry” (Ephesians 4:11-12a). To the teachers of local churches, God gave you to the church in order to equip them for the work of ministry. You do not need to be the one to lead a pro-life ministry, but instead start preaching against abortion and pray that the Lord would raise up someone from your congregation to lead.
2. I don’t want to be political.
Our church is not fighting abortion because it is a political issue, we are fighting it because it is a biblical issue. It’s a justice issue.
Christians are to be welcoming and hospitable to all people. However, this does not mean that we do not call sinners to repentance. Isaiah 55:6-7 says:
“Seek the LORD while he may be found; call upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the LORD, that he may have compassion on him, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.”
This verse is almost verbatim what our sidewalk counselors say on the streets. We urge the women going in for abortions to run away from the abortion clinic; to run away from the sin of abortion, but instead to seek the Lord and find an abundance of compassion and pardon for sin. The Bible never teaches that there is pardon for sin outside of confession and acknowledgement of sin. Let us call men and women to repent of abortion, trust in Christ, and thereby be welcomed into the warmth of God’s love.
4. I don’t want this ministry to grieve the women in my church who have had abortions.
The reality that so many women in churches are grieving abortions is all the more reason to start a pro-life ministry. One aspect of this ministry could be post-abortion recovery groups which apply the Gospel directly to the sin and grief caused by abortion. One such study is Forgiven and Set Free.
Through the truth of the Gospel the women in your church can receive healing. But if the issue of abortion is avoided altogether, many may continue to secretly grieve alone. Further, the women in your church who regret their abortions would surely love for other women to be warned to not make the same mistake they made.
5. Pro-Life ministry just seems so intolerant.
Toleration of evil is not a virtue, but is instead a direct violation of Romans 12:9a which tells us to “Abhor what is evil.” May no one who names the name of Christ tolerate the death of millions of children caused by abortion.
6. Isn’t voting pro-life enough?
So long as abortion is still legal, there is always more work to do in defending the unborn.
7. My church is too small to start a pro-life ministry.
All you need is one faithful person to stand in front of the abortion clinic once a week to pray or counsel women for a couple of hours. For a couple of months, Immanuel only had two people going out on the streets. One or two is better than none at all.
8. Why not leave pro-life ministry in the hands of para-church organizations?
Praise the Lord for every organization that is taking a stand against abortion. Yet, abortion is still legal in our country and day after day there are women walking into abortion clinics with no one challenging their decision. There is no one to stand up for the children that await their death in the waiting rooms of many abortion clinics across the nation. Therefore, the ministry of the many faithful para-church organizations is simply not enough.
If local churches across the nation would integrate a pro-life ministry into their church, then on a regular basis there would be hundreds of people on the streets praying and talking to the women getting abortions at every single abortion clinic. Instead of para-church organizations going into local churches to recruit for their ministries (which is vital and necessary) the local church herself could train up people to pray fervently and to do sidewalk counseling. What an impact this could make.
Further, each pro-life ministry would be under the authority of her local church. Therefore, this ministry would actually serve to further the mission of the church and would also be kept in line with the churches doctrinal convictions. Each pro-life ministry would be like-minded because each would come from the same local church. And finally, this ministry would be a way in which church members could labor side-by-side and build one another up in the process.
And when the Lord answers the united prayers of his people across the nation, the watching world will not give the glory to a para-church organization but instead will be forced to acknowledge it is the God of local evangelical churches across the nation that has heard and answered the prayers of his people. Let us show the world how powerful our Lord is.
9. We already have an adoption ministry, isn’t that enough?
That is wonderful that your church already has an adoption ministry in place because an abortion ministry could fit nicely under this umbrella. It is clear that your church cares for the needy children, so it should be easy for your people to accept that the children who are most in need in America are those who are still in the womb.
10. The people in my church are pro-choice.
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2
If abortion is not addressed head on in our churches then our congregations will inevitably be conformed to the thinking of our culture, namely that abortion is not that bad and permissible in some cases. We are persuaded that if evangelical churches start preaching against abortion, going down to abortion clinics, confronting abortion personnel who attend their churches, taking in unwed moms, adopting children, and so on, the abortion industry will be destroyed. If you as a church leader or lay person are still thinking through your own personal convictions on abortion, please explore these helpful resources:
- Pleading the Case of the Unborn (sermon from Immanuel Baptist Church)
- Pro-Life Answers to Pro-Choice Arguments by Randy Alcorn
- www.lennartnilsson.com (Specifically: Scientific Images, A Child is Born)
- abort73.com (pro-life website detailing arguments for the pro-life position)
- The Silent Scream (ultrasound of an abortion at 11 weeks of pregnancy – graphic images; use caution)
- John Piper’s sermons on abortion
“Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable,
always abounding in the work of the Lord,
knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”
1 Corinthians 15:58