ultraSometimes when you ask a “progressive” evangelical or Roman Catholic if he or she is pro-life, the answer will come back: “I’m consistently pro-life.” By this the person means that not only is innocent human life in the womb worth protecting, but life at other stages on the continuum also deserves equal consideration. In practice, this can mean the person will also be anti-war, anti-capital punishment, and perhaps even for childcare tax credits. “Pro-life” can cover a lot of territory when one is “consistently” pro-life!

In practice, however, people who claim the moral high ground of a “consistent” pro-life ethic–Democrats, usually–seem willing to soft-pedal their opposition to abortion in order to support other planks in the Democratic Party’s political platform. They’ll even vote for a candidate who has no regard for human life in the womb but who displays dogmatic certainty about protecting convicted murderers and rapists, who have taken or ruined the lives of others.

It turns out that the claim that one has a “consistent ethic of life” can be pretty inconsistent. So speaking just for myself, if I ask you whether you’re “pro-life,” I want to know whether you think the unborn should be protected … not what you think about welfare policy. We can talk about such things, of course, but I’m asking if you care enough about the evil of abortion to actually do something about it–even at the risk of offending your progressive friends. So please don’t serve up any pablum about your pro-life “consistency.”


About Stan Guthrie

Stan Guthrie is an editor at large for Christianity Today magazine and for the Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview. His latest book is God's Story in 66 Verses. He also is author of All that Jesus Asks: How His Questions Can Teach and Transform Us, Missions in the Third Millennium: 21 Key Trends for the 21st Century, and A Concise Guide to Bible Prophecy. He is co-author of The Sacrament of Evangelism. Besides authoring, writing, and editing books, Stan is a literary agent, bringing together good authors, good books, and good publishers. Stan writes the monthly Priorities colum for He has appeared on National Public Radio's €œTell Me More,€ WGN's Milt Rosenberg program, and many Christian shows, including The Eric Metaxas Show and Moody Radio'€™s €œNew Day Florida.€ A licensed minister and an inspirational speaker, he served as moderator for the Christian Book Expo panel discussion, Does the God of Christianity Exist, and What Difference Does It Make?
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