On October 12, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul stood inside Judson Memorial Church, named for the great missionary Adoniram Judson, and held a press conference touting the state’s doling out of $13.4 million to abortion providers to further advance abortion.
In a grotesque display, Gov. Hochul made the audacious, blasphemous claim that God is on her side.
Speaking to the congregants, she commended them “for inspiring us, and letting us know that God is out there on our side as we continue to make sure that women have the rights that are God-given rights…”
Let’s be clear, the brilliant archways and stained glass windows can’t cover up the decades-old spiritual rot of Judson Memorial, which lost any resemblance to the faith of the missionary for whom it is named long ago. By the 1950s the church had become a cathedral for progressive dogma and in the 60s, began helping women receive abortions illegally. That’s the inspiration Hochul was talking about. So while Judson could hardly be thought of as a church at this point, its claim to be one still makes this repulsive press conference all the more hideous.
Hochul’s religious language didn’t end with claiming God supports abortion. She also claimed that “light does prevail over darkness. And while there has been a dark pall cast over our nation in the aftermath of the overturning of Roe v. Wade, let that light continue to shine right here in the State of New York.”
“All of you, the doctors, the advocates, the champions, the elected officials will look back at this time and know, will be able to tell your children and grandchildren: I stood up. I stood up against what was happening, the assault on women’s lives. You carry the torch that has been passed to all of us. It’s our responsibility. It’s our moral responsibility to continue to fight… And we’ll be that beacon of hope. We’ll be that safe harbor for women all across this nation.”
The Left loves the separation of church and state until they are trying to use religion for their own purposes. Let a pro-life politician invoke God as the reason for their opposition to abortion, for example, and they’re charged with being a Christian nationalist attempting to establish a theocracy and enslave women. Let a church oppose LGBT policies and they’re a right-wing political group.
But a left-wing politician standing in front of a church congregation saying that God is for abortion? Well, nothing to see here.
Abortion rights advocates don’t so much want “bodily autonomy,” but total autonomy. At the core of the issue is the belief that people should be able to do whatever they want and have no consequences for it. And make no mistake, a consequence is exactly how many on the left see babies. Just consider how Stacey Abrams responded to a question from an MSNBC interviewer regarding voters’ concerns about inflation and the economy:
“Having children is why you’re worried about your price for gas, it’s why you’re concerned about how much food costs. For women, this is not a reductive issue. You can’t divorce being forced to carry an unwanted pregnancy from the economic realities of having a child.”
Rather than seeing a baby as a human being, pro-abortion advocates see a baby as a negative consequence. A barrier. A shackle. Having a baby stops a person from having the control they thought they had over their lives. If there’s anything humans hate, it’s being told that they aren’t allowed to do everything they want. The serpent’s lie to Adam and Eve in the Garden was that God’s command was stopping them from having something good, something that would put them in charge.
“The serpent said to the woman, ‘You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’”–Genesis 3:4-5
His lie worked and man has been fighting against God’s control for all of history. Yet it is God who is supreme and He is over us (Psalm 22:28). Our choices do have consequences, and, ultimately, we must answer to Him in judgment (Romans 3:20-23, 6:20-23, 1 Peter 4:5)
Rather than seeing children as a bad thing, God’s Word proclaims them a wonderful blessing. Psalm 127:3-5 says,
“Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth. How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them; they will not be ashamed when they speak with their enemies in the gate.”
God places great value on human life (Matthew 6:26) because He made man in His image, His most cherished creation. As Scripture shows us, a baby is a beloved person in the womb (Jeremiah 1:5, Psalm 139:13-16, Luke 1:41). How much value does God place on human life? So much that He ordered the death penalty for anyone who takes an image-bearer’s life, including the life of a child in the womb (Genesis 9:5-6, Exodus 21:22-25).
The Bible also shows God’s hatred for child sacrifice throughout the Old Testament. Leviticus 20:1-5 says,
“Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, ‘You shall also say to the sons of Israel: ‘Any man from the sons of Israel or from the aliens sojourning in Israel who gives any of his offspring to Molech, shall surely be put to death; the people of the land shall stone him with stones. I will also set My face against that man and will cut him off from among his people, because he has given some of his offspring to Molech, so as to defile My sanctuary and to profane My holy name. If the people of the land, however, should ever disregard that man when he gives any of his offspring to Molech, so as not to put him to death, then I Myself will set My face against that man and against his family, and I will cut off from among their people both him and all those who play the harlot after him, by playing the harlot after Molech.’”
See, God isn’t a god of “bodily autonomy,” but the God of life. Our chief right isn’t bodily autonomy but our God-given right to life. Hochul and Judson Memorial have engaged in a dangerous heresy, ascribing to God a support for murdering children. The claim is in direct opposition to Scripture. Any person who teaches these lies about God is a false prophet, leading others to sin and incurring judgment for themselves.
Even for this, however, there is grace — if a person asks for forgiveness and turns away from their sin. Christians should pray that those like Gov. Hochul and the leaders of Judson Memorial who are so blinded by sin as to use God to endorse killing babies will be given the gift of repentance and turn to faith in Christ.
Ready to dive deeper into the intersection of faith and policy? Head over to our Theology of Politics series page where we’ve published several long-form pieces that will help Christians navigate where their faith should direct them on political issues.