Thursday, August 28, 2014


I teach a Wednesday morning class at the church I attend. We have been studying Old Testament characters. Sometime back we studied Moses. While reading in Exodus 1 about how Pharaoh commanded that all male Israelites be killed at birth by the midwives, I was struck by an observation concerning those babies saved by the midwives.

The nation of Israel came to dwell in Egypt because of a severe drought. Joseph, a Hebrew, sold into Egyptian slavery by his brothers, rose to command all of Egypt under Pharaoh. Joseph not only saved Egypt from the drought, but the entire Middle Eastern world as well. He brought the rest of his family down to Egypt to live with him. Fifty years later, Egypt had forgotten what Joseph had done and observed with fear the increase in the Hebrew population. In response, Egypt enslaved the Hebrews, hoping to control their birthrate. Yet the Hebrews continued to reproduce at an incredible rate. Finally, Pharaoh ordered Hebrew midwives to kill all male babies delivered by Hebrew women. Two midwives, Shiphrah and Pua, saved the male children because of their fear of God. When Pharaoh summoned them to explain themselves, they told Pharaoh that Hebrew women delivered babies before they could arrive. The biblical account states that God blessed the midwives for their actions. It was something not explicitly stated in Exodus 1 that caught my attention.

Pharaoh continued to command that all males born to Hebrew women be killed. He ordered that they be cast into the Nile River. Yet nowhere does the biblical account say that those males saved by the Hebrew midwives were killed. Moses' brother Aaron was three years older than Moses (Ex. 7:7). He must have been one of those saved by the Hebrew midwives. Exodus does not record a scene such as the murder of the young males ordered by King Herod in an attempt to kill Jesus Christ. Had Pharaoh ordered those Hebrew male children killed, surely Exodus would have recorded it. It is reasonable to infer from this observation that no such killing of male Hebrew children saved by the midwives occurred.

Making this observation, a further observation comes to mind. The current occupant of the White House, Barack Obama, when he was an Illinois state senator, was the sole senator to vote in support of partial birth abortion. Partial birth abortion occurs when a baby is being delivered out of the womb. Just before the baby is completely removed from the mother, the abortionist runs scissors through the back of the baby's head, killing the child. In this regard, Obama and those who support this procedure have as much regard for human life as did Pharaoh.

Another observation comes to mind. Recently, papers have been published in academic journals advocating what some call after birth abortion. Some advocate that the mother's wish to terminate her pregnancy should be so controlling that even if a baby survives the attempted abortion, the baby's life should still be terminated. Apparently, that line was never crossed in Pharaoh's Egypt, at least when it came to the children saved by the Hebrew midwives. Some would say that after birth abortion would never happen in America. Experience informs us that what appears in academic journals, no matter how extreme, doesn't stay buried in academic journals. Why should we expect those who support partial birth abortion to draw the line at after birth abortion. If the pro abortion element gets its way, the U.S. would be less safe for newborn babies than Pharaoh's Egypt.