Life saving, but not in the sea
He pushed the window open and said, “See that child there?”
I looked out and saw a boy of about three sitting with his back to us, playing on the grass. “Yes.”
“How much is that child’s life worth do you think?”
“Ah ... how do you mean?” I asked.
“What if someone were about to try and kill that child, what would it be worth to you to try and save his life? In other words, if it cost you something to try and save him, what would you be prepared to pay?”
I hesitated. “Well, I know what I’d like to think I would do in that situation, what I believe I ought to be willing to pay ... but whose child is it anyway?”
“Does it really matter?”
“No, no, of course not. But really, to be honest, if it were my own child then ...”
“Then you would be willing to pay a higher price than if the child were not your own?”
“Yes, I think that is true.”
“That is understandable. For now, let us say that neither the child nor his parents are known to you at all. So, what would you be willing to lose to try and save a child whom you do not know from being deliberately killed?”
“I notice that each time you say ‘try’ to save his life; are you suggesting that there is no certainty that my effort to save his life would be successful? Can you indicate what is the likelihood that-”
“No,” he said a little sharply. Then turning to look at me directly he went on. “Let us just say that in the circumstances I am thinking of, the child will certainly be killed if nothing is done to help him, but there is no guarantee that intervention will be successful. So, once again ...”
“Okay, well if I thought that I had a chance of saving his life, then I hope that I would do whatever I could to help, even if it cost me a lot.”
“A ‘lot’. How much is a lot? Would you risk injury or even your health to save him? Would you risk your reputation, if for some reason it should cost you that? Would you try to save him if it meant that doing so cost you money, a great deal of money perhaps, perhaps all of your money and possessions – whether that be much or little?”
The sound of laughter came clearly through the window as the child chased a butterfly.
He went on. “Would you risk your freedom even? Let us say that for some reason anyone who tries to save this child’s life risks being locked up for taking such action, they risk being locked up for a long time even. Would you pay that much? Think carefully now, but just take another look at him playing as you do so.”
I looked, then said slowly, “It would not be easy. I must confess that I would not want to pay costs like those you have mentioned. But even so, I do believe that every human life is truly precious, that that child has been made in God’s image. If it came to it, I do hope that I would be willing to pay such a high price to try and save him from a killer.”
“Now then, look again out of the window.”
When I did so, this time I saw dozens of three-year-olds running, laughing and tumbling on the lawn.
“Would it be an easier decision for you to make if it were 20 little children that you may be able to save rather than just the one? Would a high price be easier for you to bear if there were many children about to be killed? – 20? – 100? – or 1 000 even?”
“Yes, and no. In one sense the destruction of many innocent lives is a greater tragedy and therefore it is somewhat easier to accept the payment of a high price to try and avert such a slaughter. But then again, each life is of inestimable value, so whether one child or many, I think my actions should be much the same.”
“So you would pay a high price to try and save even one small child’s life?”
“I can say no more than, if such a situation arose, that I hope I would. Fortunately though, I expect that I will never find myself in such an improbable situation. After all, when is it ever likely to occur, here in present-day Australia, that a person would be at any risk of losing their reputation, or their money, or their freedom for simply trying to save one or more children’s lives from a killer?”
Once again he fixed his eyes on me, “How about today?”
It is a fact that every working day, 300 to 400 young children are deliberately killed in Australia. By abortion.
Some people claim to have difficulty accepting that a child carried in its mother’s womb is truly as much a child as a child outside the womb. Most Christians though profess to hold to the traditional Christian understanding that human life is equally as precious before, as after birth.
Therefore, those of us who hold this conviction usually regard abortion as being wrong: we believe abortion to be the deliberate destruction of a young child’s life.
But it is equally a fact that we do little, if anything, about such killing.
As suggested above, while most of us would admit to having some reservations, we would like to think that we would try to save a three-year-old from a would-be murderer, even if our efforts should prove costly to ourselves. Yet when it comes to actually protecting a three-month-old pre-born child from an abortionist, few have stepped forward to do so over the years.
Over recent years in Queensland a handful of people, under the banner of Protect Life, have been endeavouring to act in a way that they believe is consistent with the belief that the unborn child is of equal value to the born child. They have been non-violently placing themselves between the abortionist and their intended victim by sitting across the entrances to the abortuaries, thus trying to prevent people gaining access.
They have been arrested numerous times already, and, if subsequent trials go the same way as the first, they face increasingly severe penalties for their efforts to save lives.
So, what price is a child’s life worth?
This is not merely a hypothetical question for this group; but then, they think that it should not be a hypothetical question for anyone, especially Christians.
The biblical injunction about the right response to the slaughter of the unborn is clear: “Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter.” Proverbs 24:11.
Presbyterian minister and rescuer (in the USA), Joseph Foreman, wrote in his book, Shattering the Darkness,
“(Rescuers) rescue because it is right. They ask: ‘If it is right to physically save a life, then will I let a legal system make me act like it is wrong?’ In other words, ‘Will I go back to acting as if the unborn are no longer worthy of my protection?’ Whenever the legal system is through with its punishment, whether jail, fines, or probation, will they find us again physically standing between the abortionist and his tiny victim?
Will Christians ever learn? Learn what? Learn that it is right to join the state in its protection of murder? No. They will never learn this.
Rescue is the cutting edge of the Church’s compassionate intolerance toward legalised child-killing, even as taking up a cross is the Christian’s compassionate intolerance of evil in every arena. It is not a crusade. It is about laying down your life again and again and again and again until this and any other holocaust is over…
We will never transform our culture by politicking for a surface change in the law. Change will only come from the example of Christians who are not afraid to live what they believe- who would rather lose every church, house, and job they have than to go down in history as the Christians who presided over the greatest human carnage in the history of the world. Such Christians will never prefer to rescue their things instead of their neighbours.”
We know where the killing of the children is taking place. We know when it is happening. The question is, are we willing to pay the price that will be demanded of us if we try to rescue them? If not, why not? If so, then please contact us!
There is only so much that a handful of people can do. Every working day hundreds of young children are killed at openly operated abortion clinics around the country. (Just check your Yellow Pages under the listing Pregnancy Termination Services.) This has already been going on for many years.
Many more of us need to be acting today to save their lives. Yes, we need to be praying, supporting crisis pregnancy centres, lobbying, educating, etc, too, but we must be taking direct action to intervene now, just as all of us (hopefully) would intervene if hundreds of three-year-olds were about to be put to death.