What is Abolitionism?

We call ourselves Southern Baptist Abolitionists. We assume from the outset that most of the readers understand what we mean when we identify ourselves as “Southern Baptist.” But what do we mean when we call ourselves “Abolitionists?”

For most people, the word abolitionist brings to mind images related to ending Civil War-era slavery. We chose the word abolitionist because we trace the convictions of our movement to the movement to abolish slavery in American history. In a future article, we will trace the historical roots of the Abortion Abolitionist Movement to the Slavery Abolitionist movement, but the purpose of this article is to provide a simple summary of what we mean by the word. 

For others, who have been more involved in the present discussion, the term abolitionist may bring to mind visions of the extreme fringe of the “Pro-life” movement. This article will demonstrate that the abolition movement is neither fringe nor a part of the Pro-life movement proper. 

Abortion Abolitionism, in a nutshell, is nothing more than a consistent application of a biblical worldview to the issue of abortion. Abolitionists have developed five tenets that differentiate our movement from the broader Pro-life movement and anchor our actions and commitments to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Below is a summary of each of these five tenets. 

Tenet 1: Biblical 

Abolitionists begin with the fundamental presupposition that the Bible is the Word of the Living God (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:21). Accordingly, we do not seek to leave the Bible out of the discussion. Instead, we unapologetically stand on the Word of God as our final authority. 

Tenet 2: Providential 

Abolitionists believe that God is the Author of history. He is working His plan and His purpose down through events of history (Acts 17:25). We, therefore, reject worldly pragmatism, which dishonors God, and instead commit ourselves to do that which He has called us to do regardless of the consequences. Duty is ours. Results belong to God. 

Tenet 3: Gospel-centered

Abolitionists believe that the proclamation of the gospel is the *ONLY* message that will prosper against the culture of death that has taken root in our society. It is, therefore, the chief aim of the abolitionist to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ into conflict with this idolatrous child sacrifice that has overtaken our land. Our first and most important message to abortion-minded mothers, post-abortive mothers, abusive and spineless boyfriends/husbands, abortion mill employees, apathetic politicians, and apathetic Christians is “Repent, and believe the gospel!” Far from leaving the gospel of the discussion, we believe the gospel is the discussion. 

Tenet 4: Body-driven

Abolitionists believe that abortion is a local church issue. For far too long, Christians have relegated the plight of the pre-born to para-church ministry “experts.” The local church is God’s vehicle for bringing about prophetic reform among the nations. Christians are to “abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good” (Rom 12:9), to expose evil (Eph 5:11), and to destroy the ungodly thinking that defends evil (2 Cor 10:5). We are exhorted to rescue the weak from death, snatch the falling from flames, and hold back the stumbling from the slaughter. 

Tenet 5: Immediate and Uncompromising

          Abolitionists believe that abortion should be abolished immediately without exception or compromise. We believe legislation that regulates when, how, and which babies die, may be well-intentioned, but ultimately promotes evil and dishonors God. 

Dear Southern Baptist brothers and sisters, every day in our land, thousands of little innocent children are being slaughtered. Join us in this battle to abolish this wickedness from our land.

Read, sign, and share the Southern Baptist Resolution on Abolishing Abortion here.

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