One of the biggest news stories today is the much anticipated birth of a giraffe. Yes, April the Giraffe is past due, and many people are watching live around the clock. April the Giraffe has her own website and is being filmed on a livestream feed from her own YouTube channel where millions of people are watching live from around the world to see her give birth. April the Giraffe not only has a website and a YouTube channel, but she also has a GoFundMe page. Not only can you follow April the Giraffe on social media, you can purchase apparel in her name to raise money for the Animal Adventure Park in New York.
As we consider the frenzy created by a 15-year old pregnant giraffe, what can we learn from this whole event in our culture? There are some good lessons to observe about our culture along with some blatant inconsistencies. What if April the Giraffe had an abortion? Would her abortion be newsworthy? If giraffe life matters, why does human life continue to be devalued in our modern society?
Giraffe Life Matters
When big news stories online, on the radio, and on the television all point to a pregnant giraffe in New York, it’s clear that giraffe life matters. Has anyone asked if April is pregnant with a blob of cells or a real living giraffe calf? Is that a relevant question worthy of our consideration? Soon enough, it will happen. April will give birth to a giraffe calf, and when that calf falls out onto the ground where hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people will be watching live—it will not come as a shock to anyone that a real living giraffe was in April’s womb.
As the whole world watches with joyful anticipation for April to give birth, not one argument is being made that the “thing” in April’s womb is something other than a living giraffe. In fact, everyone across the board seems to agree that April is actually carrying a real giraffe calf. On the Animal Adventure Park’s website, they are using the language of “calf” in reference to April’s pregnancy. In their “Things To Know” section on the website, it clearly states:
The calf will weigh around 150lb and will be about 6′ tall at birth.
If everyone agrees that a giraffe is pregnant with a real giraffe calf and not a blob of cells, why is there such a raging debate in our society about human life? In 2009, an undercover study was done to point to the inconsistent lies and counsel given by Planned Parenthood to women who were seeking medical advice and potential abortions in their clinics. In one such case, an abortion doctor said, “A fetus is what’s in the uterus right now. That is not a baby.” Dr. Polhaska, the abortion doctor, claimed, “It’s not a baby at this stage or anything like that.” Polhaska also claimed an abortion will be “much safer than having a baby…You know, women die having babies.” 
You can see much of the same in the firestorm controversy of Planned Parenthood that erupted in 2015 on the website of The Center for Medical Progress. The Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) is the largest abortion provider in the U.S., performing nearly 330,000 abortions per year.  This accounts for 32% of the total 1,058,000 abortions per year in the U.S., or about 1 in 3, according to the latest data.  According to Dr. Deborah Nucatola, former Senior Director of Medical Services for PPFA (Hawaii Medical Director, Planned Parenthood), as of 2014 Planned Parenthood performed up to 40% of U.S. abortions.  We’ve proven that animal life matters to us, but we must face the question about human life. Does human life really matter to us?
A Question to Consider
What if a special announcement was made by the zoo keepers at Animal Adventure Park stating that a decision had to be made about the expected calf and the pregnancy of April the Giraffe. Suppose the zoo keepers announced that after a lengthy meeting with their staff, they decided that in order for April the Giraffe to be truly happy and fulfilled in the future, she would need to be released from the responsibilities of a calf to care for which would give her added freedom to live life. Therefore, in the best interest of April the Giraffe, the staff decided that her pregnancy would need to be aborted.
What if the abortion of April’s calf was captured live as millions of people watched on the Giraffe Cam? Do you think there would be outrage or support? What would be the response by PETA? How long do you think it would take before Animal Adventure Park was shut down? How would our culture respond to such a decision? It seems obvious that giraffe life matters to our culture and that such a decision would lead to a massive fury of outrage.
What if something far worse was happening as you read this article? What if a similar thing was happening to a human rather than an animal? What if little babies were being killed in professionally operated and medically licensed clinics just a few minutes from the Animal Adventure Park where everyone is anticipating the delivery of April’s calf? The reality is, just a few miles down the road from the location of Animal Adventure Park in New York, babies are being murdered. It’s not a big story. It’s not making a big stir. In fact, I called one of the abortion clinics not far from the zoo and found that they’re accepting appointments for this week.
While we’ve been taught to value the life of animals, we’ve likewise been taught to devalue the life of humans. We live in a culture of death in 2017. With all of the technology available to us—including 3D and 4D ultrasound imaging, we continue to support the legal termination of life in the womb. It has become normal to us. Why should we question the choice of the mother, right?
It may be the legal choice of the mother in America to remain pregnant or to terminate her pregnancy through abortion, but her choice doesn’t negate the fact that a pregnant mother has a living human in her womb. Technology and just plain good logical sense will tell you that a pregnant woman is carrying a living baby in her womb. The dark side of politics and medical practice in our modern age has attempted for many years to avoid the reality of life in a human pregnancy.
Sometimes we find ourselves, as it were, sitting in a room with an oversized and obvious elephant that needs to be addressed. Today, we have a pregnant giraffe in the room with us. The pregnant giraffe isn’t April—it’s abortion. This pregnant giraffe deserves attention from lawmakers, politicians, the medical community, and every human being in our culture. Not only does giraffe life matter, but so does human life. I’m not opposed to people watching a giraffe and celebrating the birth of this calf. However, it should concern us when our culture celebrates the birth of a giraffe but has lost the ability to weep over the murder of unborn babies.
Today a little less than 3,000 babies will be killed in America through legal abortion while we seem to be more interested in the birth of a giraffe.
Yesterday, I preached from Romans 13:8-14 on Sanctity of Human Life Sunday. The overall goal of the sermon was to point to the abnormality of the culture of death that’s sadly become a normal reality for our children.
The village of Tomtor is a Russian village in one of the coldest places in the world – the Omyakon valley. The Tomtor village is the coldest permanently inhabited settlement in the world. Temperatures plummet to -71C, so cold that airplanes cannot land there in winter. Interestingly enough, the children who are born into this village life learn to eat reindeer and survive the frigid temperatures. They grow up believing their life is normal, when in all reality, it’s abnormal to be that cold. Until they are taught otherwise, in their little circle of life, they think their lifestyle of surviving the cold is a normal thing.
As our children grow up in our educated, progressive, advanced, and sophisticated culture of America – they are taught that it’s a normal thing for a mother to murder her unborn child in an abortion clinic for under $500. They grow up hearing celebrities and actress like Jemima Kirke publicly sharing her abortion story. Kirke claimed that aborting her unborn baby helped her through unfortunate economic circumstances. The mainstream culture of America praises such decisions, and celebrates it under the banner of “reproductive freedom” and “equality of women.”
If not taught otherwise, our children will grow up believing that abortion is normal, when in all reality there is nothing normal about a mother killing her baby. If we don’t teach our children the truth, they will leave our homes and go off to the university where they will sit in classrooms taught by liberal professors who will continue to brain wash them with lies. Peter Singer, a professor at Princeton said “the life of an adult pig deserves protection more than that of a new born human baby, and . . . the parents should be free to kill their young children already born if they deem them unacceptably disabled.”
The culture of death is abnormal, and Jesus taught us to love our neighbor as ourself. Paul picked up that same truth and encouraged the church at Rome to do the same thing. His main emphasis was love – which fulfills the entire law. The flow of the argument is as follows:
If you love God supremely (with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength), you will by natural progression love your neighbor as yourself. Until you obey the first table of the law, you cannot move on to the second table. The first table of the Ten Commandments is focused on loving God. The second table is focused on loving your fellow human. Love is the key.
If you love your neighbor, you will not steal his wife, murder him, steal his possessions, or covet his possessions. Love is the opposite of taking advantage and abusing your neighbor.
The church must wake up as time is progressing. Christ is coming soon and the church must not be sleeping.
The church must put off the works of darkness and put on Christ.
As we consider these words, we can easily see how loving our unborn neighbor is important. We must not allow our unborn neighbor to be taken advantage of and murdered without speaking up. We must tell the truth to law makers, politicians, and the general public. We must likewise start by educating our children that the culture of death that surrounds us is abnormal.
Teaching our children to avoid sexual immorality and drunkenness is more than a check box. It’s one clear way to love your neighbor. Practicing such sinful lifestyle choices places unborn children at a significantly higher risk of being aborted from the day they are conceived. We must labor to teach our children holiness and this prevents unwanted pregnancies and will ultimately reduce the number of abortions.
Furthermore, as we stand in the gap for the unborn, we must be honest with ourselves and with those we love. There is a better way. There is a better alternative than abortion. Yes, abortion is murder, but the church should likewise talk openly about the beauty of adoption. The culture of death is abnormal, but for the culture of adoption to be absent from the local church is likewise abnormal. Do we truly care for the orphans? Do we truly care for the unborn? One way to fight this battle is by promoting and building a culture of adoption within your local church.
Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider, performed 327,653 abortions in one year (2013-2014). The United States government gave Planned Parenthood $528.4 million dollars in that same time period. Although the largest abortion provider in America has been caught in scandals and proven to be careless with human life – they are still funded by tax dollars and they still operate legally in America.
No matter what President Obama or other politicians say – if you don’t love your unborn neighbor, you are no different than the priest and Levite who passed by the injured man on the side of the road without showing him mercy (Luke 10:25-37). If you claim to love God but you refuse to show mercy to your unborn neighbor, your religion is hypocrisy.
Yesterday, before Congress, Ms. Cecile Richards of Planned Parenthood testified regarding the troubling allegations that have surfaced in recent weeks in form of a series of videos that have exposed their practices of selling human body parts for financial profit. Below you will see some of the testimony and some of the recent documented lies of Planned Parenthood.
Full testimony by Ms. Cecile Richards before Congress on Tuesday, September 29th 2015
Ms. Cecile Richards is questioned by Trey Gowdy
Ms. Cecile Richards claims the videos were highly edited
Yesterday, the 8th Planned Parenthood video has been released. Once again, the issues are clearly presented. The organization that receives 50 million dollars from the United States government annually is guilty of murdering little unborn babies and selling their body parts. It’s time that we respond in this nation. Our response should be to outlaw the barbarous act of baby murder.
Trichotomy: A Beachhead For Gnostic Influences – While working through some questions for our upcoming pastoral staff Q&A, I ran across this article by Kim Riddlebarger on the issue of Trichotomy vs. Dichotomy. I don’t agree with every point in this article, but it was quite helpful as I worked through the issues.
Zambian Reformed Conference – This week the 26th annual Zambian Reformed Conference is being held in Zambia, Africa at the Lusaka Baptist Church. Preaching in the conference is Joel Beeke, Steven Lawson, Voddie Baucham, Conrad Mbewe and others. If you would like to listen to the sermons, you can find them on the Lusaka Baptist Church website.
Should Women Wear Head Coverings? – Benjamin L. Merkle describes the cultural implications and theological implications related to women wearing head coverings. He writes, “But Paul’s argument from creation in 1 Corinthians 11:8–9 is not directly given to mandate women must wear head coverings. Rather, his argument from creation explains how man is the image and glory of God, and how the woman is the glory of man. Christian women are not required to wear head coverings today when praying, since the symbol of a woman’s head being covered is different today than it was during the time of Paul (at least in many cultures). Consequently, Paul’s argument from creation is only indirectly linked to the need for head coverings.”
Sex is More AND Less Important Than You Think – Trevin Wax points out the cultural problems with sex and rightly describes what God expects from His church. He writes, “The Church must not only say that sex is serious, but also show this to be the case. To ‘put sex in its place’ means that Christians will need to take sexual sin more seriously than our culture does.”
Target to Move Away From Gender-Based Signs – Denny Burk points to a recent news story that reveals the cultural agenda to move away from gender distinctions. He writes, “We’ve gone from traditional gender distinctions being outmoded to being “harmful”? Is it really “harmful” for the Barbies to be in a different section from the G.I. Joes?”
In recent days, we’ve been bombarded with graphic undercover videos detailing the mutilation of babies for profit by Planned Parenthood – an American government funded organization that brings in over 1.2 billion each year. The outrage is necessary, but were the videos necessary to cause the outrage? With advanced science and technology in the most advanced nation in the world, should we really need an undercover video to stoke the fires of our hearts over this issue?
Yesterday, as we continue to await the release of the fifth video in Planned Parenthood scandal, the Senate was in session to deliberate over the issue and to call for a vote to defund the government sponsored organization. Several things happened as the American public awaited the answer from the Senate floor. A video was released by Hillary Clinton supporting the organization and this comes after she was recorded as stating the recent videos were “troubling.” Late yesterday afternoon, the vote came in and the push to defund Planned Parenthood failed. The vote was 53-46. Although the majority of votes were in favor of defunding Planned Parenthood, it requires a 60 vote minimum. Why do politicians continue to support Planned Parenthood?
Popularity Transcends Morality
Politicians are very slippery on these issues, especially during a political season. In the latest video by Hillary Clinton, she openly stands with Planned Parenthood calling it a vital part of American health care. Clinton, like many politicians, defend the actions of Planned Parenthood by avoiding their actions and focusing on health screenings and other “positive” treatment options that are provided by the organization. The fact is, until the American public stands for life, the politicians who represent the American people and depend on their vote will continue to support the baby mutilating organization known as Planned Parenthood.
Their Eyes Are Blinded
Cecile Richards, Planned Parenthood president, told NBC News, “This wasn’t an effort to discover wrongdoing. This was a three-year effort to create wrongdoing and it was unsuccessful.” Many people embrace what she said as truth. They firmly believe that crushing little babies above and below certain areas in order to preserve the targeted organs for sell is not morally wrong. Melissa Ferrell, director of research, Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast, in the latest Planned Parenthood video, stated that “Intact fetal cadavers at 20-weeks is just a matter of line items.” She went on to talk about being able to provide 18-22 week neural specimen without any problem. How can people sit and casually discuss the barbaric mutilation of babies over a meal or coffee, and the answer is simple – their eyes are blinded and their consciences are seared so that what they do seems normal (2 Corinthians 4:4; Romans 1).
In the days of the Judges, every man did what was right in his own eyes (Judges 21:25). Today, in America, the general public and leaders continue to do the same. We are living in a time when Cecil the lion matters more than the selling of body parts from mutilated babies through abortions performed by Planned Parenthood. A man named Jake Fishman wrote a letter to the editor of the New York Times defending the actions of Planned Parenthood by stating, “an amputation, a colectomy or even open-heart surgery, where the surgeon has to break through the breastplate” can be considered barbaric. Just like that, many people miss the point. Heart surgery and amputation is about preserving life – not taking it away.
Politicians and law makers continue to do what seems right in their own eyes. Rather than taking a stand for unborn human life, they continue to create loopholes, protect Planned Parenthood, and sponsor the barbaric murder of unborn babies. The sanctity of life matters. It matters more than other issues that take the cake in the political conversation. Just how will the Republican politicians answer the Planned Parenthood question during the debate this Thursday? How will they try to evade the issue? It’s time that the American people listen and vote to uphold the sanctity of human life. It’s time for us to weep for babies – not lions.
The Pulpit Is Impotent
When we have many pastors who are unsure if calling abortion sinful is crossing the line in their role as pastor, it’s no wonder the people in the pews are confused. When there is no prophet in the pulpit who will stand and tell the truth, the people will be led astray by popular opinion. Men will not teach their families to oppose the barbaric practices of abortion when the Word is not proclaimed faithfully. Little girls will be raised to think that an “unwanted pregnancy” is merely an inconvenience that needs to be dealt with in order to pursue academic, athletic, and as Hillary Clinton calls it, “family planning” goals. The way in which this unwanted pregnancy is dealt with in the abortion process is nothing less than murder. It’s a barbaric practice that needs to be outlawed in our land.
The calling to preach the truth involves the mandate to tell the truth. To preach the Word of God means to tell people what God has to say regarding the issue of life, the sanctity of life, and the sin of murder. We need a prophet in the pulpit who would be willing to call out to Washington like John the Baptist did with Herod. How would John the Baptist address the open practice of abortion for profit in America? What would Paul say if he walked out of the subway into the grass of the Washington D.C. lawn and started preaching the truth? If asked, what would you say about abortion? Do you know what the Bible says?
As Christians, we don’t fight against flesh and blood (Ephesians 6). We are in a spiritual war. However, the church of Jesus Christ cannot sit back and remain silent on these issues. We must stand firm, preach the truth, and seek to change culture by the gospel. Standing upon the clear teachings of Scripture regarding the sanctity of life is essential. For far too long, the church has remained silent or muzzled on this issue. Until the American people see the importance of preserving life and protecting the unborn babies – politicians will continue to support this bloody organization. Justin Taylor has provided specific information on how to contact your representative in Washington and make your voice known over this issue. You can visit his article over on the ERLC site.
Psalm 139:13-16 – For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.  I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.  My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.  Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.