Overturning of Roe v. Wade (1973) and Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992)

American Council of Christian Churches
81st Convention, October 25-27, 2022
Faith Chapel, Carlisle, PA
Resolution on the Overturning of Roe v. Wade (1973) and Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992)

The prophet asked a question that recognized the equal human dignity of his neighbor from the womb: “Did not He that made me in the womb make him? And did not One fashion us in the womb?” (Job 31:15). In our mother’s womb, we were “fearfully and wonderfully made” by the “marvelous works” of our Creator (Ps. 139:14). The murder of a human is sin, “for in the image of God made He man” (Gen. 9:6). God’s work in a mother’s womb is His “reward” for the expecting mother and father (Ps. 127:3-4). As she carries their unborn child, the expecting father must love the expecting mother in the bonds of holy matrimony, as Christ loves His church (Eph. 5:25). Righteous homes exalt a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people (Prov. 14:34).

Throughout our nation’s history, states passed laws restricting abortions in support of righteous homes and the protection of mothers and their unborn children. In their 1973 Roe[1] v. Wade decision, the Supreme Court countermanded this precedent when it struck down a Texas law that forbade abortion except in cases where the life of the mother was threatened. The Court cited a woman’s right to privacy as it granted mothers a “constitutional right” to seek an abortion, but it also affirmed the right of states to regulate abortions to some degree. The Court outlined to what degree with a trimester framework, which divided a pregnancy into three equal terms. The rendering allowed states to regulate later-term abortions more strictly than earlier-term abortions, even though the cited right of privacy never changes from term to term.

In 1992 the Supreme Court admitted the incongruities of Roe v. Wade in their decision regarding certain regulations placed on abortion by the state of Pennsylvania. In Planned Parenthood of Southeastern PA v. Casey, the opinion of the Court cancelled Roe’s trimester framework and sought to replace it with the doctrine of viability, regarding the unborn child, and with protection from an “undue burden,” regarding the child’s mother. Rather than following Roe’s discovery of a constitutional right to privacy, Casey found the right to abortion in the protection of liberty rendered in the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.[2] In so doing, the Court defined liberty as follows: “At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human life.”[3] Whereas our nation’s Declaration of Independence teaches that the endowments of the Creator are the basis of liberty,[4] the opinion of the Court substituted an existentialist view, where liberty involves the right to become one’s own Creator.

On June 24 of this year, the Supreme Court rendered its 6-3 decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, overturning both Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. It upheld Mississippi’s Gestational Age Act that prohibits abortion after the first 15 weeks of a pregnancy unless the mother’s health is threatened. The Court found: “Abortion presents a profound moral question. The Constitution does not prohibit the citizens of each State from regulating or prohibiting abortion. Roe and Casey arrogated that authority. The Court overrules those decisions and returns that authority to the people and their elected representatives.”[5]

Prior to the pronouncement of this decision, its draft was leaked to the press in an apparent attempt to undermine its finalization.[6] The leak incited threats and protests directed at the conservative members of the Court, including an assassination attempt.[7] Buoyed by media-driven outrage, some Democratic politicians have begun swearing allegiance to the abortion industry, attempting to keep their midterm-election hopes alive. The abortion industry has mobilized both federal and state efforts to pass legislation securing a woman’s “right” to an abortion. Clearly, the disgrace of sin lingers over our nation in the face of this recent Supreme Court decision.

Therefore, the American Council of Christian Churches at its 81st annual convention, October 25-27, 2022, at Faith Chapel, Carlisle, PA resolves to continue to preach the gospel of saving grace while decrying the destructive evil of abortion. We will pray for God’s mercy as Abraham prayed for Sodom (Gen. 18:22-33). We will minister to families in the cause of righteous homes. We will help expecting mothers to be thankful for the reward of the Lord, and we will exhort expecting fathers to love the mother of their child. We will expose the destructive lies that provide cover for the sin of abortion in our society, and we will hold our elected officials responsible for defending the lives of the unborn. “If they say, ‘Come with us, let us lay in wait for blood, let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause’” (Prov. 1:11), we will refuse. Instead, we shall endeavor to “defend the poor and fatherless” and to “do justice to the afflicted and the needy” (Ps. 82:3).

[1] Jane Roe was the pseudonym used for Norma McCorvey, who later became involved in the prolife movement. Her autobiography is titled, Won by Love (Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1997), and it contains the following “Dedication”: “This book is dedicated to all the children who have been torn apart by abortion—I’m sorry you are no longer here, but now you are in heaven with our Father—And to all the women who through abortion have had their lives changed—Amazing Grace can heal your heart, and you, too, can be won by love.”

[2] The Amendment reads in part: “No state shall . . . deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.”

[3] 505 U.S. 833 (1992) at 851.

[4] The Preamble reads: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

[5] See the decision’s Syllabus, p. 8. Justice Alito wrote the opinion for the majority: Justices Alito, Thomas, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, Barret, and Roberts. Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan dissented.

[6] Politico published the draft on May 2. See “Five Months Later, Supreme Court still investigating who leaked the abortion case” (October 3, 2022, news.yahoo.com).

[7] See “Pro-Abortion Protesters Demonstrate outside Kavanaugh Home after Foiled Assassination Plot” (June 8, 2022, nationalreview.com). These threats originated at the confirmations of Kavanaugh and Gorsuch. See “Sen. Schumer Threatens Kavanaugh, Gorsuch: ‘You Will Pay The [sic] Price’” (March 4, 2020, thefederalist.com).

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Author: American Council of Christian Churches

Since 1941 the ACCC has sought to PROVIDE information, encouragement, and assistance to Bible-believing churches, fellowships and individuals; to PRESERVE our Christian heritage through exposure of, opposition to, and separation from doctrinal impurity and compromise in current religious trends and movements; to PROTECT churches from religious and political restrictions, subtle or obvious, that would hinder their ministries for God; to PROMOTE obedience to the inerrant Word of God.