Sometimes I read things that leave me mystified. I wonder if the people who say these things have any idea what message they are communicating about God. Today’s journey into Fundagelical shame and smiting territory comes from Intercessors for America. On the surface, it is a website/ministry devoted to praying for our countries leaders. Praying for our countries leaders is a good thing, I can support that. However, there is a definite Religious Right slant to the “prayer requests” as you get deeper into the website.
They put out a four-page brochure, called Immunized Against Effective Prayer, explaining why God isn’t answering the prayer to end abortion in America. Read their explanation about why God isn’t answering prayer below.
“And now, new evidence is emerging regarding aborted fetal tissue used to manufacture vaccinations that billions around the world have been inoculated with for decades. More than likely, intercessors praying for the overturn of Roe v. Wade have, unknowingly, been vaccinated with this very tissue. This revelation could provide some answers to why our breakthrough has not yet come. Our prayers concerning abortion have legal implications, not only in our nation but in the High Court of heaven. While we have been petitioning our Righteous Judge on behalf of these murdered children, the accuser of the brethren has been acting as prosecutor against the saints (Zech 3:1-4). By keeping us in the dark regarding the true source of these vaccinations, he has been charging us with complicity in abortion, thus disqualifying our spiritual authority in prayer. Until we are properly informed and answer these charges brought against us, our prayers will have limited effect.“
I was unaware that fetal tissue was used in the development of some vaccines. However, I don’t think this is why God isn’t answering the prayer. I doubt that many people who have received vaccines know that they were developed with fetal tissue. The logic behind their bold claim is that God is refusing to listen to our prayers, considering us unrighteous, because we have all participated unknowingly in abortion by accepting these vaccinations.
First, if I receive some benefit from the wrongdoing of others, doesn’t mean I participated in the wrongdoing. Medical students are trained using cadavers. These cadavers are gifted to medical schools. They are a great benefit to the medical schools. However, some of the cadavers are the remains of murder victims and suicide victims. Does this mean that the medical students, who are benefiting from the cadavers, are guilty of participating in murder and suicide? Students have no idea the past history of the cadavers other than they were donated to medical science. If we are willing to say that we are participating in abortion because we are receiving the benefit of medical knowledge and vaccines, from aborted fetuses, then we are all equally guilty of murder and suicide if we ever go to the doctor who derived medical knowledge and training from cadavers.
There’s also a Biblical reason why this doesn’t make sense. The logic of Intercessors For America is that God punishes us for things other people did. It doesn’t matter that we know nothing about it, someone else did something bad, and by a loose association, we are guilty. This comes from a misinterpretation of verses like Exodus 20:5. “You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,” In Fundagelical circles, a popular idea of generational curses has arisen. However, these verses need to be kept in the context of idol worship, and older generations are teaching younger generations to worship idols. The sin of idolatry is passed down through the generations because it is taught to the children and they participate.
Ezekiel 18:20 speaks to punishing children for sins committed by their fathers, “The one who sins is the one who will die. The child will not share the guilt of the parent, nor will the parent share the guilt of the child. The righteousness of the righteous will be credited to them, and the wickedness of the wicked will be charged against them.” In other words, if your father murders someone, children should not be put to death because of it. This was a prohibition against the idea of vendetta. Jeremiah also speaks about the time of the Messiah when “In those days they shall no longer say: ‘The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.’” (Jeremiah 31:29) This verse references an ancient proverb about the belief that parental sin could cause birth defects in babies.
Jesus answered this kind of thinking directly.
“As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned,’ said Jesus, ‘but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.'” (John 9:1-3)
Jesus corrected a false belief that God punishes people for sins they did not participate in. Intercessors For America is trying to assess blame for why the country hasn’t changed laws on abortion. Unfortunately, in their blame game, they send a message that God is an arbitrary God who punishes people for things they didn’t even know they were involved with. Is that really the kind of God we want to present to peopel?
I have another reason why prayers to stop abortion haven’t been answered. Maybe because we already got an answer and didn’t like it. God has already provided a way to eliminate abortion. It’s called comprehensive sex education and free access to birth control. You can read my blog post here and watch my vlog here on that topic. Comprehensive sex education and birth control access have already been proven to drop the unwanted teen pregnancy rate and lower the abortion rate to almost nothing. Our prayers have been answered, but Fundagelicals just say no.
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