Proverbs 24:10-12 says, “If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small. 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?”
As the church in America continues to be apathetic over abortion—the slaughter of unborn babies by the thousands every day—many evangelicals are wandering off into myths. You may have encountered a few who either would not vote for Trump or did vote for Biden, and one of their reasons was this: “The number of abortions go down when a Democrat is president.”
Last month, a video pushing this idea was presented by Phil Vischer, creator of VeggieTales, and his podcast co-host Skye Jethani, drawing from an article written by The Dispatch editor David French. The video entitled “What About Abortion?” received glowing praise from popular pastor Derwin Gray, World Vision president Rich Stearns, and comedians Jim and Jeannie Gaffigan.
Last week, Thabiti Anyabwile of Anacostia River Church in Washington D.C. said it is a “fact” that “abortions have actually gone down under Democratic Presidents.” This week, Jonathan Merritt, editor for Religious News Service, reported as a “fun fact” that “abortion rates drop most sharply under Democratic presidents.” He mocked pro-lifers by congratulating them on Joe Biden’s “win.”
But to borrow a word from Biden, this statistic is malarkey. The policies of pro-abortion Democrats kill babies, not save them. Biden has said he would make a woman’s right to murder her child “the law of the land” and promised he would sign executive orders to reverse every one of President Trump’s pro-life policies.
Yet many professing Christians are allowing themselves to be duped by the lie that this doesn’t matter, and they are even participating in this deception. Some actually believe it is a good pro-life strategy to vote for a pro-abortion Democrat.
Pastor Matthew Lyon of Reece Road Baptist Church in Severn, MD told me this was one of the reasons he voted for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. “Biden will pursue policies that will reduce abortions,” he said, and added, “Abortions go down under Dem. presidents.” So convinced was he that Joe Biden will save the lives of unborn children, he said to me, “You seem to care more about a candidate’s beliefs than actual lives.” This pastor is judging others by this bogus stat.
If you want to end the slaughter, you do not go out and vote for it. Here are three more rebuttals to this nonsense idea that the abortion rate goes down when a Democrat is in the White House:
1) Correlation Does Not Equal Causation
A popular graphic going around social media says, “If you want to prevent abortions,” vote Democrat. It shows abortion going down about 4% under Reagan and both Bushes, but as much as 30% under Clinton and Obama. It’s on the internet, so it must be true! Throw “Center of Disease Control” on there, and make it look like science. But these figures are not only wrong (abortions did not fall 30% under Clinton or Obama), even Snopes acknowledged there’s no correlation in the abortion decline with a Democrat in the White House.
Allie Beth Stuckey on her program Relatable pointed to a humorous study that compared a decrease in the divorce rate in Maine with a decrease in the consumption of margarine nationwide. The graphs look exactly the same. So should we logically conclude that when Americans consume less margarine, the divorce rate in Maine goes down? Obviously, that correlation would be foolish. Margarine does not cause divorce. Likewise, pro-abortion Democrat presidents do not cause a decrease in abortions.
But if there is no correlation between who’s in the White House and the number of abortions, then surely a Christian can vote for Biden, right? No. That would be more foolish than equating margarine with divorce.
The Bible says, “The Lord abhors the man of bloodshed and deceit” (Psalm 5:6). A Christian should not vote for any political candidate in favor of baby murder, which is what abortion is. Abortion is not a stat line or a political talking point. It is a holocaust, the mass murder of unborn children—three thousand per day in the United States, about a million babies per year.
In the words of the late Dr. R.C. Sproul, “Any candidate who supports abortion by law has completely abrogated his responsibility as a governor by failing to protect and maintain the sanctity of human life. So, I will not ever vote for a candidate for any office, including dog-catcher, who is pro-abortion.”
2) The Abortion Rate is Highest in More Liberal States
The President does not make legislation—legislatures do. Those states that are the most liberal or controlled by Democrat legislators are the states where the number of abortions per pregnancy are the highest. Consider that in the 2016 election, 9 of the top 10 states where the abortion rate is highest all went for Hillary Clinton, the Democrat candidate for president, while the 10 states where the abortion rate is the lowest all went for Donald Trump, the Republican candidate.
Yet even when it comes to the state level, some evangelical teachers want you to believe that it does not matter whether you vote Republican or Democrat. In Vischer and Jethani’s video, Jethani makes the following argument:
“Let’s look at two states, one red and one blue. Between 2011 and 2014, Texas passed a number of laws restricting abortion. As a result, abortions declined by 28 percent… Delaware, a blue state, did even better. Between 2014 and 2017, Delaware improved access to healthcare for its poorest residents. As a result, abortions in that state declined by an encouraging 37 percent.”
This is a deceptive argument. The number of abortions per 1,000 women ages 15-44 in Texas is still less than in Delaware, who has the tenth highest abortion rate in the country. And the decline in the number of abortions was not due to blue-state policies improving “access to healthcare,” as Jethani would have you believe. “Healthcare” to a Democrat means more abortion, not less. The reason for the decline in Delaware was because of pro-life efforts in the state and easy access to abortion outside the state.
In 2015, a Wilmington abortion clinic was legally forced to stop performing surgical abortions (that’s a euphemism for killing babies) thanks to the actions of the Delaware Family Policy Council. The clinic later closed its doors permanently. In 2017, Planned Parenthood of Delaware also shut down. This saved the lives of hundreds of children. But it’s also likely that many of the abortions that would have occurred in Delaware happened somewhere else.
Delaware is the second smallest state after Rhode Island. Think about where Delaware is located. Maryland, New Jersey, and Washington D.C. are within a few minutes drive, and Dover to New York is less than 180 miles. These are the top four states (counting D.C. as a state) where the abortion rate is the highest—ridiculously high. It is estimated that one out of every six babies killed by abortion in the U.S. will be murdered in one of these four places.
When states vote in Democrat legislators who enact pro-abortion legislation and policies, the number of babies murdered in that state goes up. When states vote in Republican legislators who enact pro-life legislation and policies, fewer babies are murdered.
Permit me to draw an even more direct correlation—Where you find a religious, church-going people made up of mostly families and committed marriages with a mom and dad in the home, abortion is almost non-existent.
The goal is not to reduce abortion. We must abolish abortion. It is murder, and murder is illegal. An unborn child is a human being, just as deserving of the same constitutional rights that a full-grown adult receives. Justice for unborn children should be the same as justice for adults, for that is what the Bible says. Contrary to popular belief, the Bible does call abortion murder (see Exodus 21:22-25). We, you and me and up through society, must view unborn children as people and abortion as murder, and our laws must reflect that.
3) There Are Other Reasons for the Decline
Here are four reasons that the abortion rate appears to be declining, and none of these reasons have to do with putting a Democrat in the White House:
A) The abortion pill.
Abortion pills are easy to get. A person can get them over the internet. Your local Walmart sells them. A friend of mine in Kansas used to work for a Walmart Market (a grocery store, not the big Supercenter). He said that in one month, they would sell as many as 30 abortion pills. That’s one single store in a small red state community. Your town might not have an abortion clinic, but you may have a pharmacy where they sell abortions over the counter. These do not get counted in abortion statistics (David French said the abortion pill numbers are taken into account, but the Guttmacher Institute article he linked to said they cannot quantify the data).
B) The efforts of pro-life groups.
As evidenced in the Delaware story above, some areas see a drop in abortions just through the hard work of those who want to protect life—individuals, churches, pregnancy centers, adoption agencies, and other ministries. But we must be careful here; just because an effort is called “pro-life” does not make it inherently good. Here in Texas, legislation was introduced to abolish abortion and make it illegal, but it was opposed by “pro-life” groups and politicians, including pro-life darling Abby Johnson. To think, abortion might be illegal in Texas if it weren’t for pro-lifers!
C) The acceptance of LGBTQ behavior.
Homosexuality is on the rise, another reason the abortion rate may have gone down. In case you don’t know, two gay men can’t get pregnant. A recent article in The American Conservative pointed out that 30 percent of American women under the age of 25 identify as LGBTQ. “The U.S. fertility rate is at a 35-year low,” says Rod Dreher, “and there’s no reason to think it will rise.” The culture’s embrace of Sodom and Gomorrah is anti-family, and God will judge America as much for this sin as for the blood on its hands.
D) The statistic is not accurate anyway.
Here’s where I land: I don’t believe the statistic showing a decline in abortions is trustworthy. As I said, abortions in a pill aren’t even counted. States are not required to report abortion data to the CDC. Abortion is one of the most unregulated medical services. There are more regulations for a hair salon than there are for an abortion clinic. Most of the abortion data you hear comes from the Guttmacher Institute which was started by Planned Parenthood, America’s number one abortion provider. Do you really think we can trust baby murderers to tell us how many babies they murder?
Planned Parenthood uses these stats in different ways, depending on the audience. If the audience is more feminist, PP will say that the closure of clinics has resulted in making it harder for women to get their “healthcare” (a euphemism for “baby execution”), in order to drum up support for more money and more clinics. If the audience is unsettled by abortion, PP will say that the work they do provides more resources for women thus resulting in fewer abortions.
Don’t believe me? Here’s a pro-abortion site saying exactly that—without Planned Parenthood, abortions would be 15% higher. If you will vote for a Democrat for president believing there will be a reduction in abortion, you may as well pony up the cash for a Planned Parenthood abortuary to be built in your neighborhood. Also, I have a bridge to sell you.
Abortion doctor Bernard Nathanson, co-founder of the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL), openly admitted, “We fed the public a line of deceit, dishonesty, a fabrication of statistics and figures. We succeeded because the time was right and the news media cooperated… We unashamedly lied, and yet our statements were quoted as though they had been written in law.”
Yet it is the Guttmacher Institute, a pro-abortion organization, that David French, Phil Vischer, and Skye Jethani have referenced and countless others have repeated to argue that abortions go down under Democrat presidents. My beloved brothers and sisters in Christ, do not be deceived!
The number one thing we can do to change the hearts of people is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus gave His own life, dying on the cross for our sins and rising again from the grave. Whoever turns from their sin and follows Jesus will not perish under the judgment of God but will have everlasting life. As 1 John 5:12 says, “Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.”
To transform a culture of death into a culture of life, we must point others to the One who gives life. Without the gospel, we have nothing. Caring for babies and single moms is good and necessary work, but if we aren’t sharing the good news about Jesus, we’re just giving them a comfortable seat on their way to hell. There is forgiveness for sins, even the sin of abortion (or voting for Democrats for abortion), by faith in Jesus Christ our Lord.
We must teach from the Bible what it means to be born again—no longer walking after the pattern of this world but transformed to have the mind of Christ (Philippians 2:1-11). Pastors must preach from the pulpit what the Bible says is good and what is evil (Romans 12:9). Abortion is murder (Exodus 21:22-25). Sex outside of marriage is sin (Colossians 3:5-6). On account of these the wrath of God is coming (1 Thessalonians 4:3-8). Repent and believe the gospel (Mark 1:15).
Most ministers are not doing this. Andy Stanley, pastor of one of the largest churches in the country, has said he will not preach against abortion because it’s too offensive. When Hillsong pastor Carl Lentz (recently ousted for adultery) was asked on The View if abortion is sin, he said that’s not his call—to rave applause. Beth Moore, one of the most influential women teachers, will passionately decry heirarchy, patriarchy, and white supremacy, but you’d be hard-pressed to find one word about abortion. Babies are being slaughtered by the tens of millions, and preachers and teachers are largely silent.
Too many Christians, though they may call themselves pro-life, think about abortion the way Vischer and Jethani talked about abortion in their video—they don’t define it, won’t call it murder, women who get abortions aren’t thought of as murderers, it’s framed politically, the Bible is not the authority on the subject, nor is the gospel shared. Therefore, what’s the big deal in voting for pro-abortion Democrats if it doesn’t affect abortion anyway?
I agree with Samuel Sey that maybe the reason many Christians so readily believe things like, “Abortion rates decrease under Democrat presidents,” is to justify their apathy about abortion. Stop being stupid believing stupid things that result in stupid actions—or stupid non-action. Stop saying, “Behold, we did not know this!” You know. Now do something about it.
Repent before God. Do not be weak in these days of adversity. Hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter, and hold fast to the gospel of Jesus Christ.