Southern Baptist Preacher Sparks Debate Over Birth Control Pills Being a Sin and Equal to Murder

October 28, 2008 at 1:50 am Leave a comment

A Southern Baptist preacher has brewed up a storm of debates since he
told seminary students that taking birth control pills is a sin and
equivalent to committing murder.

“[T]he third function in that birth control is to prevent
implantation on the uterine wall. And if it reaches that third
function, that third function does not take effect until the seventh
day. The seventh day is seven days too long, and its murder of a life,”
said the Rev. Thomas White at a Southwestern Baptist Theological
Seminary chapel service earlier this month.

“I want you to know that the third form of birth control known
as the pill, that third form that it has is wrong – it is not correct
according to Scripture,” said White, who serves as vice president for
Student Services at SWBTS.

The Oct. 7 sermon has since drawn fire and concern from
students, faculty and fellow Southern Baptists, some of whom agree with
White to a certain extent and some of whom have charged him of being a
legalist.

“We have SBC (Southern Baptist Convention) leaders, including
seminary professors like Dr. White, Southern Baptist agency Presidents,
SBC trustees and other leaders who are preaching personal opinions as
if they were mandates from God,” the Rev. Wade Burleson, pastor of
Emmanuel Baptist Church in Enid, Okla., wrote in a blog post last week.
“This type of legalism will destroy not only the fabric of cooperation
upon which our Convention was built, it will ultimately destroy the
powerful message of the gospel …”

Dr. Richard Land, president of SBC’s Ethics & Religious
Liberty Commission, told the Dallas/Fort Worth news channel WFAA, “I
don’t believe prudent planning is rebellion against God’s will as long
as couples accept God may cause them to have unplanned pregnancies
anyway.”

But Land said he ultimately agrees with White.

In his 38-minute sermon, White expounded on Psalm 127 and
expressed his views on birth control for six minutes. During that short
segment, White said life begins the moment an egg and sperm meet and
thus a pill that prevents that life from implanting on the uterine wall
is wrong.

More generally, he also stated that planning family life your
own way and according to your own time and not entrusting God with your
destiny is a sin.

“We are sinning when we say I’m going to control every aspect of my family … we don’t trust Him,” he said.

White issued a clarification in a blog post last Thursday,
explaining that he does not believe all birth control is murder but
that he opposes “abortifacients which prevent the progression or
continuation of life” – including the third function of birth control
pills.

“We live in a society which largely feels that children are a
burden but the Bible tells us that children are a blessing,” added
White, who confessed to using contraception with his wife in the past
out of “selfishness.”

“There is perhaps nothing in America that we have
misunderstood as much as the fact that children are a blessing from the
Lord,” he had said in the sermon.

White stressed that he does not speak for SWBTS but said he
believes his view is consistent with the Southern Baptist Convention’s
views on the unborn.

Explaining the SBC position on the issue, Land said in a
statement, “The Southern Baptist Convention is not opposed to the use
of birth control within marriage as long as the methods used do not
cause the fertilized egg to abort and as long as the methods used do
not bar having children altogether unless there’s a medical reason the
couple should not have children.”

Source: Christian Post

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