The Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison, president of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS), spoke at the Illinois March for Life in Springfield, Ill., on March 21. Read the text of his remarks below.
Be of good cheer. The cause is just.
We are in the business of love, my friends. Every person, no matter how small or imperfect, is the object of God’s love. “We love because he first loved us,” says the apostle of love, St. John (1 John 4:19).
Be of good cheer. God’s love tells us every child is worth the blood of Christ. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son (John 3:16).
Be of good cheer. We are in the business of forgiveness and good consciences. There’s no need to live with shame, no need to be burdened with guilt.
I tell you in the name of Christ today, there is no sin outside of Christ’s reach. There is no hurt He cannot heal. None. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved (John 3:17).
The unborn child is a person. Every human being is equally and eternally valuable, no matter what court recognizes this bold truth … be it the ancient Roman empire, antebellum America, the Soviet Union, fascist Germany, China or modern America.
That’s the truth of science.
That’s the truth of medicine.
That’s the truth of technology, which every single ultrasound screams.
Every person is created in the image of God. That’s the truth of religion, confessed by Philo [of Alexandria], the Talmud, the New Testament, Chrysostom, Basil the Great, Ambrose, Augustine and a thousand more. That’s the truth of all moral philosophies. The unborn child is a person.
That’s the truth of reason. That’s the eternal truth upon which this country is founded, however failed its execution. Every person is entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Every child is entitled to love.
It is the very practical truth that there is absolutely no shortage of willing, adoptive parents for any newborn … right in Illinois. There [is] a plethora of resources [for] any woman in the midst of a crisis pregnancy right here in Illinois.
Be of good cheer. These truths are eternal, and that is why we shall never … cease to speak for the voiceless, plead for the innocent and love the millions misled by the lies.
Let him who is without sin cast the first stone (John 8:7). We stand here claiming no personal moral superiority. We are imperfect messengers of a better way: the way of truth eternal.
Let us pray.
Almighty and everlasting God, source of life and every blessing, we thank You for the gift of every human life.
We confess our sins of apathy and disregard for the least, the last and the needy.
We pray this day for those facing the critical choice of life and death. Let them see a better way, a way of hope and love.
We pray today for this great state, her governor and legislature. We thank You for the just laws we enjoy. Turn hearts [and] open minds, that there be justice for all.
Now may the God of peace, who brought … from the dead our Lord Jesus Christ, the great Shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you in everything good, that you may do His will (Heb. 13:20). [May He work] in us that which is pleasing in His sight. To Jesus Christ be the glory, forever and ever, Amen.
Be of good cheer! Let’s work.