Response to Roe v. Wade
On Sunday, June 26, 2022, Pastor Josh Smith responded to the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
"This is a significant moment in the life of our nation, as I prayed about it and thought about it, I wanted you to hear a few things from me.
The first thing is, as we celebrate this, and we should, we have to at the same time make a new and a greater commitment to come alongside scared and worried and overwhelmed and vulnerable women who find themselves with an unexpected pregnancy. Sixty percent of women seeking an abortion live alone and below the poverty line, which means they come to this moment scared, without any support and help. They’re afraid and feel there’s no other option, and the church of Jesus Christ must be the one to say we want to love and support you in any way we can. We have to be on the front lines of that and let every one of those ladies know that the church is the place that will help.
I also want you to know that we must love and care for those who have had abortions. At every church I’ve pastored, I've been amazed to find out the number of people in the church who have had this experience in the past. And listen, our love for the unborn must be matched by our love for those who have had abortions. We are not to be a beacon of condemnation; we are to be a beacon of grace. We are to be the very visible presence of God in their lives and to say to you listen: In this moment, whatever it is, we are a place for you to find healing, grace, kindness, and the love of Jesus Christ. That matters.
I also want you to know, as Christians, saving children does not mean we’re oppressing women. I have four daughters, this is deep for me, but I’m so bothered by the narrative that if you’re pro-life, you’re anti-woman. I’m telling you deeply this grieves my heart and brings tears to my eyes. Nothing more than the Bible upholds the dignity, the value, the equality of women. The Bible speaks to that more than anybody else. I preached a sermon earlier this year; we want every woman to feel loved and cherished and beloved by God. But the Bible upholds the dignity of an unborn child. And so we are going to say both. We are going to say that we believe in the dignity and value of these women, and we’re going to say we believe that life begins at conception and these children matter to God. We do believe that life begins at conception. So we grieve over the 63 million children who have been killed by abortion. This is supposed to matter to us.
And the final thing I want you to know is that we have work to do. This is still a statewide issue, so we continue to work to see the end of abortion in every single state. But while we’re doing that, we’re going to protect women and children. And we’re going to be the presence of God in our community making sure that all of them know the love and the grace of God. That’s what we’re going to be about. That’s my perspective. We’re going to take the Word of God seriously—Love and cherish. We will show women the value they have in the eyes of God and protect the unborn—at the same time."