Editor's NoteThe following was written by abolitionist Joe Salant and delivered in a live video on Social Media on April 18, 2017. It is being republished in The Liberator with the author's permission.
Greetings in the mighty Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, the risen and reigning King of nations. The Spirit has been moving on the Bride of Christ to bring the Gospel of the Kingdom of God into conflict with the evil of our day, the American Abortion Holocaust. You will start to hear more and more of these stories increasing in number, as Christians in the professional pro-life movement repent of the trying to fight this national sin in the power of the flesh and wisdom of man and turn to the covenantal, ethical/judicial means in the Word of God, becoming abolitionists. King Jesus will be victorious in history, abortion will be abolished, and it will be done by His Church. The promise is the gates of hell will not prevail against Christ’s bride. Every age has it’s evil. Every age has it’s abolitionists. This evil will be vanquished and it will be vanquished by the people of God moving in obedience to His Law, not hired professionals outfoxing the devil with his own techniques.
It’s important to establish presuppositions. Worldview matters. If the Christian story is not the sole correct view of reality, then leaving the pro-life movement for abolitionism would be a mistake. Conversely, if Christianity is true, then it is incumbent on all Christians to wage war against the wicked rulers of the current age uncompromisingly according to the Word of God, as obedience to the Great Commission. We must be biblical in our fight, not softening terms to appeal to secularists, but making the case in the power of the Spirit. Abortion is a sin that murders an Image bearing human being in the place of the Incarnation. That’s not a truth merely to share with abortion minded Christians, while resorting to secular arguments for abortion minded secularists. We are at war with something greater than abortion. We are at war with the worldview that makes it possible to begin with. That worldview is secular humanism. It is an idol. You don’t defeat idols by acquiescing to their false views of reality. The key to dealing with a national sin like this is sackcloth and ashes repentance of the people of God. Defining and fighting evil in worldly terms and methods will never bring repentance. We must be Gospel-centered, not man-centered, Body of Christ-driven, not worrying about the numbers, people of providence, not pragmatism, doing what’s right and leaving the results to God. Since the call to repentance is always immediate, we must call for the immediate end of the sin of abortion. Repentance is never incremental. You don’t tell the drug addict to cut down on his drug use. While obedience to the call to immediate repentance may waver, the call itself does not.
Furthermore, the law is a tutor, teaching society what is moral. Therefore, all law is by nature religious, because a culture’s idea of justice is wrapped up in its laws. You can never disestablish religion from society, but you can switch religions and the source of law is the god of the society, determining right and wrong. In America the God of the Bible has been replaced by the idol of secular humanism. If secular humanism is true, then there is nothing wrong with abortion because man and his arbitrary law, void of outside objective standard, is the sole measure. However, secular humanism is not true, it is an idol that must be demolished for abortion to end in our nation and everywhere abortion is practiced.
The ancient Israelites were commanded in the Law and warned by the prophets against sacrificing their children to Molech. The word “Molech” simply means “King.” It was a pagan deity demanding ultimate sacrifice to the state. Whereas in the law of God, the firstborn was consecrated to the Lord, the law of the usurping ancient Molech state required the literal burning to death of a newborn on the arms of a giant idol. Today, the sacrifices our usurping Moloch king state demands take place in air conditioned buildings with Orwellian names like “Planned Parenthood.” But make no mistake, these babies in our culture are being literally sacrificed to the god of secular humanism, to the “law” it has established under the watch of eighty million Christians and 100,000 Bible believing churches, whether or not all parties completely comprehend the depth of what is occurring. As Bo Marinov constantly points out on his Ax to the Root podcast, the biblical view of reality recognizes every time there is injustice in the social order it is a result of idolatry. Therefore, abolishing abortion is tearing down an idol and the only sufficient tool for that is the Gospel of the Kingdom of God.
Francis Schaeffer said, “The basic problem of Christians in this country in the last eighty years or so, in regard to society and in regard to government, is that they have seen things in bits and pieces instead of totals.” Many Christians in our culture, in the churches and pro-life movement have fallen into this trap, seeing things in bits and pieces, treating abortion like a problem that can be solved in isolation to destroying its root. However, without tearing down the idols of secular humanism in the high places of government, media, academia, and destroying the Moloch state, there will be no end to abortion.
The ethical structure of secular humanism is always relativistic and situational. It lures the moralist into deciding between the lesser of two evils instead of the biblical ethical/judicial mandate of judging between good and evil. We are told by the devil that he has already established injustice and the only way we can establish justice is take the best deals he offers at the moment. As long as we agree to treat child sacrifice in our laws like healthcare, he’ll toss us a baby or two. He’s convinced our scholars and experts to find every possible example of abolitionists compromising in history to cast doubt on the clear commands of God’s Word and righteous demands of God’s Law. We are invited to help him regulate the murder of the most vulnerable image bearers in our society. Sadly the pro-life movement (and the many who bear the name of Christ therein) have eagerly accepted, sending out fundraising letters written in Christianese encouraging the churches to participate financially in the hellish task. Tithe money going to fund ministries that professionally lobby for laws regulating child sacrifice in America.
Up until very recently I was a participant in this subtle scheme. My work against abortion started in cultural apologetics and rap music I did in my own ministry with a small circuit of churches and Christian gatherings. I was picked up last year by a pro-life youth ministry called Survivors of the Abortion Holocaust after they saw me at a conference. The founders are pro-life legends, Christians and warrior activists, who have placed their lives in peril, endured numerous arrests to save babies. They’re soldiers, and I consider myself blessed to have had the opportunity to fight shoulder to shoulder with them in the trenches for the short time I did, I’m forever grateful and, more importantly, I hold out earnest hope they’re able to respond to the Spirit, repent of the compromised pro-life movement, and start fighting this thing with the axe of the Gospel.
I remember just after I got hired I was all on fire to practice my pro-life strategy and ideology on my brothers in Christ where I was living in Newbury Park, Southern California. Barbecuing with good friends Jon Meenk and Jon Noyes, both pastors, I engaged them with reasoning on why they ought to use their platform to support twenty week pain capable bills. I came with facts, how many babies would be saved, how the next increment would be the heartbeat bill, how the Supreme Court was constituted currently to submit this law and not that one, so on and so forth. To their credit and my amazement, my reasoning didn’t move them. They immediately saw through the smoke and informed me my tactics were wicked, creating laws that allow for the murder of all the babies, as long as it happens on a certain schedule. I felt I was much more technical and savvy in the debate than my compatriots. I also deep down knew they were right. But I stuffed the Spirit and pressed onward.
One of the first things I learned from professionals in the pro-life movement was never to associate with a group called “Abolish Human Abortion.” I was told they were hateful, divisive, sowers of discord, who were fresh on the scene “doing the same things all the pro-lifers did when they were new in the fight.” Being a dabbler in history, that probably had the opposite of desired effect on me, seeming as a stark parallel to how the American Colonization Society talked about William Lloyd Garrison and the 19th century abolitionists in the fight against slavery. I was a loyal soldier though up to a very short time ago, attempting to disprove the AHA ideology of Gospel centered immediatism as the only way, at least. I searched for evidence of the anti-Christian hatefulness of this group and found only passionate attack against unbiblical compromise, but never anything ad-hominum.
What I found instead was brothers and sisters in Christ that hated sin, hated idols, and saw the world with the Schaefferian view I purported myself to have. Many churches hated them, but that was easily attributed to their organized call for the Church to repent of abortion apathy, what’s called the #ChurchRepent project. Shoot, at Survivors when we hit the church parking lots to pass out material, we were persecuted harder than at the abortion mills. The founder was even assaulted and arrested at a church in Rialto. What was most remarkable, perhaps, is I found that AHA was not a 501c3 ministry at all. Nobody is paid, there is no organizational structure. They are believers all on fire to bring the Gospel of the Kingdom of God into conflict with the evil of the day. Calling the churches to repent, the pulpits and pews to get active; not hire abolitionists to do the work they’re commanded to do, but join the work of abolition themselves. I began to see this was the Spirit of God raising the Bride of Christ to slay the dragon.
During activism, whenever I encountered abolitionists on the field of battle I felt drawn to them. I fought this. Challenged them on incrementalism (which is where I felt the ideology was most vulnerable). to them I must have sounded similar to when pro-abort bring up hard cases. Nevertheless, the abolitionists were always patient with me, argued their case, stood with me on the field of play against secular humanist pro aborts at the abortion mills, encouraged me, recognized my gifts and talents, called me to repent of compromise and start acting like Jesus is King in all spheres of life.
The Spirit continued to work on me. I remember watching the absurd ordeal in Ohio, where Ohio Right to Life literally fought a pro-life group in court over a heartbeat bill, which ultimately passed the state house and was vetoed by pro-life governor John Kasich on the grounds that the Supreme Court had tyrannically spoken against it. The Ohio Right to Life President actually quoted secular humanist high priestess Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s threat to issue a decree worse than Roe in his reasoning as to why he sided with Planned Parenthood over the other pro-life group. I thought, there’s much more of a chance to pass full abolition in the power of God than a compromised bill considered an over-regulation of child sacrifice by the humanists.
I began really seeking the Lord on my worldview, allowing all aspects of my theology to be examined in light of His Word, and so forth. I started to see clearly that the war horses and chariots of the Republican Party and pro-life politicians and professionals are not effective weapons in fighting evil. I watched the dog and pony show with Judge Neil Gorsuch, a secularist usher for years at a left wing church, pastored by a secular humanist, pro-gay marriage, pro-gender confusion, pro-child sacrifice female. This is the man the pro-life movement and their appendages in government think will remain an “originalist” to the Constitution under the pressure of the Supreme Court of the Moloch State. I made a Facebook video warning folks about Gorsuch and challenging Christians in the movement to end abortion not to bow at the idol of the Court, to defy Roe and interpose on behalf of the preborn, pointing them to the doctrine of the lesser magistrates (defytyrants.com). Some marked out AHA friends on my page liked the video and shared it, challenged a point or two on Natural Law (on which I was wrong), and we sharpened iron. Now that is an ethical violation for a pro-life professional, but I felt I was obeying God rather than man, let the chips fall where they may. Anyway, in my video I predict Gorsuch being the one to strike down an incremental regulation of child sacrifice as “unconstitutional,” showing from history how well Republican appointed sure fire originalists like Blackmun, Roberts, and Kennedy have done for pro-life/conservative causes.
One of the mantras repeated by figureheads of the pro-life movement is that they were for total abolition of abortion and incremental regulation to save as many babies as deemed possible by any means necessary until total abolition is achieved. However, when bills for total abolition are introduced, criminalizing abortion as murder, the pro-life giants are just nowhere to be found, except for a few actually fighting AGAINST the good work. For example, see how National Right to Life and Tony Lauinger fought State Senator Joseph Silk and the effort to abolish abortion in Oklahoma. Or how Texas Right to Life and national pro-life leaders like Abby Johnson provided cover for pro-life politicians like Byron Cook to stifle HB948, the Abolition of Abortion in Texas Act, authored by Tony Tinderholt. The excuses always revolve around Supreme Court idolatry, the cost of establishing justice at the present time, the secular prognostication that justice cannot be established now, and so forth. I have never heard a pro-life leader in such a context boldly declare that Roe violates the Law of God and the Constitution, and ought to be ignored by the Lesser Magistrates. Abby Johnson’s argument against HB948 was the same as Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards: that abolishing abortion as murder is unconstitutional. Either way, the fact remains that while many of the bigwigs in the pro-life movement do want abortion to end, the time for justice is always later, in the mythical future when the political soil has been fertilized to perfection.
I made another video in support of the Church Repent project, seeing abolitionists come under from so-called discernment bloggers seeking to protect the earthly kingdoms of their friends in the ministry industrial complex. God used the video to encourage the saints while pro-life leaders make it clear my fellowship with “The AHA” was unacceptable. I was informed I was not to yoke up with “anyone from AHA” if I was going to continue with Survivors. For me, that meant my brothers and sisters in Christ fighting evil with the Gospel. I had to obey God rather than man and resign. It is revealing of gross sin and compromise that Christians in the pro-life movement would be fine with associating with purely secular organizations, such as Students for Life, or even anti-Christian organizations, such as Secular Pro-Life, but those Christians over there, fighting evil on their own dime in the power of the Spirit, without compromise, according to the Word of God, are off limits.
To be fair, at this point I had already come to the conclusion that the organized pro-life movement was not the vehicle by which King Jesus was going to bring an end to abortion, yet I didn’t immediately resign from Survivors. I wanted to contend from the inside and steer Survivors toward the Gospel centered approach. That may have been foolhardy. They already considered their established approach “Gospel centered” (and measured against the rest of the pro-life movement, they are) yet previously instructed me not to post my street evangelism on the main Facebook page because it has nothing to do with abortion. Obviously this is contrary to covenantal, ethical-judicial thinking. This is the “seeing things in bits and pieces” condemned by Francis Schaeffer as having no effect in the fight against cultural evils. However, the prospects of what Survivors could be, raising the rising generation under the tenets of abolitionism instead of contemporary pro-lifeism remain. Please pray, saints. Again, I owe Survivors a debt of gratitude and take this opportunity to thank them for allowing me to serve, learn, and battle under their banner.
Let’s take a look at where we are in the grand scheme. Let’s attempt a a God’s eye view. We are supposedly the most Christian nation in the world today, where 80 million Christians and 100,000 Bible believing churches are planted. We have had 44 years of a well-funded professional pro-life movement with some of the most gifted activists, apologists, lawyers, and politicians in the history of mankind. Yet we lead Western Civilization in lifting the stench of institutionalized child sacrifice to the throne of God, where King Jesus sits to judge nations at the right hand of the Father. 60 million babies since the Republican appointed Supreme Court justice Harry Blackmun wrote the blasphemous majority decision in accordance with the will of our contemporary Moloch state. Excluding the uncounted million human beings murdered in the IVF scheme, that’s 1.2 million per year, 3,500 per day, and one image bearer every 30 seconds. To presume on God’s grace that we are “playing the long game” in abolishing abortion, to presume He will not hit this nation with a nuclear bolt of lighting or worse, to presume that we have time on the clock to play on the secular humanist field, moving the football incrementally for another half-century or so of pro-life victories, is the height of humanistic hubris. God is not mocked. And try this one on for size: in this midst of our current plight, there exists something called The Pro-Life Hall of Fame. Google it. Let that sink in.
The cold hard fact is the so-called Christian American pro-life movement isn’t even as good at regulating child sacrifice than the secular humanist governments of Western Europe. Most secular Western European countries, yes, the hotbeds of collectivist utopianism, have bans on abortion after the first 12 weeks and mandatory waiting periods. If a state representative in Texas introduced such a law, Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry complex probably wouldn’t have to spend much energy fighting it. It would be fought by the abortion regulationists in the pro-life movement itself. The United States most stringent regulation on child sacrifice is currently 20 weeks. That’s eight weeks behind France. Seven states have abortion on demand through all nine months of pregnancy. Yes, the secularist politicians of Western Europe are better prenatal murder regulators than the American pro-life movement.
Something’s got to give, and it’s the pro-life movement itself. As the nineteen century abolitionists of slavery had to put an end to the American Colonization Society, the abolitionists of the evil of our age must put an end to the pro-life movement. We must set Gospel centered methods up in contradistinction to the methods of the worldly wise. Abolitionists ask “what does Christianity look like in a nation that kills its children?” The pro-life movement asks “how do we save the babies?” Abolitionists are people of providence, never doing evil so good may come. Pro-lifers are people of pragmatism, doing what works, situational ethics, treating abortion like healthcare in laws as long as they think it will save babies. Abolitionists are Christ-centered, smashing the idols of secular humanism. Pro-lifers co-exist with the idol of secular humanism and many are blatantly secular humanist themselves. Abolitionists believe the Bride of Christ will end abortion. Pro-lifers want a big tent, being all inclusive even to the extent of including the very evil view that must be abolished for abortion to end. Abolitionists call to establish justice now, immediately, based on God’s law (immediatism). Pro-lifers try to work toward justice later incrementally, even using unjust techniques to get there. Abolitionists say “Defy Tyrants,” “Ignore Roe,” establish the Common Law of Christianity, and appeal to Heaven. We’re always appealing to our King Jesus against unjust laws, which are no laws at all. Pro-lifers put their trust in the war horses and chariots of the Republican party and practice Supreme Court idolatry. Abolitionists seek to criminalize abortion as murder. Pro-lifers think abortion is wrong, but everyone involved in committing the act, even in some cases the abortion workers themselves, is a victim. When Trump on the campaign trail and got the pro-life answer wrong, saying women who committed abortions would need to be punished, the pro-life movement rebuked him in unison. It should be needless to say, but if everyone is the victim, then where does that leave the real victims? Of course this is endemic of the problem. The Roe reasoning itself claimed that since Texas didn’t punish abortion as murder, that the state didn’t believe what they were arguing in Court. On that count, they had a point. After all the law is a tutor and the source of law is the god of that society determining right and wrong. 1973 Texas’ god didn’t believe abortion was murder and it reflected in their laws. The 2017 pro-life movement’s god does not believe abortion is murder and it reflects in its laws.
It’s beyond the scope of this statement to detail all the important differences between the pro-life movement and abolitionism. I will post several lectures by abolitionists much greater than myself in the comments and encourage seekers of truth to prayerfully view them in light of Scripture.
I just finished listening to the talk Bo Marinov gave to 1,000 abolitionists gathered in February at the HB948 Abolition of Abortion Rally in Texas. In it, he points out that in war, the single most important factor for a conquering army is the expectation of victory. If you think you’re going to lose, you will. Christians, if your theology and eschatology teaches you that Satan has dominion and the church will not be victorious against the gates of hell in history, you need to get rid of it. It’s unbiblical. Jesus is King and He has commanded us to take the land. The Gospel states the whole earth belongs to our Lord Jesus Christ in the here and now and we are assured of the victory against the idols of the age. We will put the Moloch state under our feet. Abortion will be abolished. Stop regulating child sacrifice. Let’s go out as the Bride of Christ and break the jaw of the dragon.
As a symbol of the victory I am officially marking myself out from the culture of death and futile humanistic means of fighting evil by placing the Abolish Human Abortion symbol on my Facebook page. The upper A stands for “Abolish” the two “I’s” that make the “H” stand for “Image of God” and “Incarnation of Christ” and the upside down lower “A” stands for abortion. Abortion is upside down because it’s man’s law or lawlessness, abrogated by the law of God. That’s why it’s essential to reestablish God’s Law in our culture for this victory. Without God’s Law, there is no appeal to heaven and no grounds for civil disobedience.
In conclusion, I’d like to take this opportunity to publicly repent of my previous compromise and not fighting evil in the power of the Gospel. If you saw me speak at a church, or conference and I had a part in convincing you the pro-life movement is Gospel centered, I ask forgiveness for misleading you. I hope this message reaches Christians like myself in the pro-life movement to consider what the Spirit of God is doing to conquer the evil of our age and convinces them to become abolitionists.
Now, the dividing line has been crossed: Mark me out from the culture of death and defeat. We will win this war.
– Joe Salant