Today we continue our series of bulletin articles looking at why abortion is wrong. So far, most of my articles have focused on verses in the Old Testament that condemn the practice. This week I want to show that abortion is wrong because the New Testament also understands that those in the womb are people too.

When Mary the mother of Jesus became pregnant, she went and visited Elizabeth: ‘At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea, where she entered Zechariah’s home and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!”’ (Luke 1:39-45).

John the Baptist’s ministry has already begun – in the womb!  His job was to point people to Jesus Christ as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. He said later: ‘You yourselves can testify that I said, ‘I am not the Christ but am sent ahead of him.’ The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete. He must become greater; I must become less’ (John 3:27-30). John was the friend to the bridegroom, Jesus, and as his friend delighted in the sound of his voice. And we see this happen even as a baby in the womb. John leaps in the womb thereby telling Elizabeth that someone very special has just entered the house – albeit inside Mary. Although in an odd location, John is very much a person.

Therefore to abort an embryo like John is to kill a person. But is the abortion of a person an unforgivable sin? No. Through repentance of your sin and trust in Jesus’ death for your sins you can be forgiven for any sin, including the wrongful termination of another human.

Do you recognise that abortion is wrong because John the Baptist was leaping for joy in the womb?

Joel Radford.