Shock waves rippled through the pro-life community last week as a Houston Grand Jury indicted the undercover journalists from the Center For American Progress while exonerating Murder Inc. (Planned Parenthood). The Grand Jury, in its independent investigation into the sale of fetal body parts intended to target Planned Parenthood turned instead toward those who had exposed the practices. David Daleiden, leader of The Center for Medical Progress, and Sandra Merritt were charged with attempting to purchase human tissue and using a false ID. The attempt to purchase charge is minor, but the ID charge is a felony and can become a sentence of up to 20 years. Planned Parenthood, notably, was cleared of all wrong doing.
This is an utter travesty of justice and a complete failure of America’s justice system. You don’t need this blog to tell you that murdering children is far worse a crime than possessing a fake ID. And are we really supposed to believe that it is legal to sell body parts but illegal to purchase them? In addition, to exonerate a murderous organization and publicly defend them as they’re caught on video attempting to sell bodies and making arrangements to provide more valuable pieces to buyers is laughably infuriating.
Yet, it is completely unsurprising. This is what a sin-sick society looks like. Most of America yawned at the Center for Medical Progress’ videos depicting the gruesome violence done to infant children and the cold calculating profit mongering of Murder Inc. officials trading the highest price for their bloody wares. This society, largely, saw the story and flipped the channel. Morally vacuous, most people lacked the courage, conviction, and clarity of thought to even begin to deal with such horror, let alone put a stop to it. Murder Inc. THRIVES in such and environment, it relies on it.
And it is into a similar legal environment that they entered into as a Grand Jury examined the case. Courtrooms are important and useful things. They are a window in the worldview that dominates a society. It is impossible to legislate without enforcing a morality. Legal codes (many laws together), however, can be wildly inconsistent because human beings are inconsistent.
Enforcement of laws tells us even more about the worldview of a society. It is one thing to write down what you believe to be right and wrong, it is another to act as if what is right is truly right and what is wrong is truly wrong. Enforcement is the difference between talking the talk and walking the walk. That picture is no clearer than our justice system. Who we prosecute and who we have mercy upon tells us what we really believe, not merely what we say we believe.
In no uncertain terms, this society believes it is a greater crime to have a false ID than to slaughter human beings and sell them for parts. To this society, fake IDs are evil, baby murder is good. To this society, attempting to purchase body parts is a crime, but selling them reveals no wrong doing. One wonders if the difference between crime and capitalism in this society is the motive behind your purchase. After all, surely the hundreds of medical labs trafficking in these body parts for their own scientific purposes do not live in fear of being charged with the same crimes as Mr. Daleiden. In this society, you can buy body parts of murder victims, just as long as you don’t tell the world of the horrors involved in procuring them.
But good and evil are not determined by popular opinion. Those definitions are the property of God alone, and while the world may shake its fist, God remains on His throne. Our courtrooms and our laws may be a window into the worldview of our society, but they are not ultimately sovereign. God is pleased to use governments and rulers, good and bad, for His glory and His purposes. But the world is mistaken if it labors under the delusion that a Houston Grand Jury has settled this matter. In fact, all they have done is shown themselves to be a boil born from the sickness infecting us all.
Planned Parenthood may have sold baby parts, but remember that Planned Parenthood is not the Grand Jury. There is a second evil done here. What became clear in Houston is that our society isn’t merely content to allow some evil to live in peace but rather that it is not content to allow the exposing of that evil to live in peace. Our society wants desperately to have its abortions. Abortion is the gateway to a life lived in what is mistakenly called freedom. Abortion means it can pursue the delusion of freedom without responsibility, pleasure without sacrifice. Abortion allows it to buy now and never pay later. Abortion means it doesn’t have to make discerning choices, it means it can seemingly live without wisdom. Abortion permits laziness. It permits licentiousness. It is a building block unto the ultimate golden calf of self actualization, self realization, and autonomy. Those are this society’s values. Those are the things it calls good.
So, therefore, it calls abortion good too because it is a part of the whole for which this society strives. Murder is called good, so great a good that a gross injustice becomes preferable to admitting wrong. Justice, then, becomes evil. Rescuing the innocent, pleading for their lives, exposing the brutality of their deaths and the callousness of the murder is called evil. But we, the church, must rest assured that evil has not become good. Good has been maligned as evil, but we take comfort that men, even grand juries, even Supreme Courts, even kings, will one day bow the knee to He who is ruler of all.
Until then, the church must stay in the fight. We must declare truth. Evil is evil, good is good. If you are confused (and you probably are), you’re in desperate need of a Savior. That Gospel -God’s rule in the lives of men, His sacrificial love for sinners- is the cure for the sickness. No more is needed. No less will do.