Southern Baptist ethicist Richard Land and other pro-life leaders quickly condemned the May 31 killing of abortion doctor George Tiller.The murder of Dr. Tiller must not be condoned in any way. I agree completely with Dr. Land that those who are Pro-Life must not advocate or condone the use of violence against those who support or practice abortion. Instead, we must seek to convince the American people through the persuasion of ideas that abortion is wrong.
Probably the best-known abortion provider in the United States, Tiller was shot to death on Sunday morning inside the building of Reformation Lutheran Church, the Wichita, Kan., congregation of which he was a member.
Scott Roeder, 51, of Merriam, Kan., was arrested the same day on suspicion of committing the crime. Roeder is a member of the Freemen, an anti-government group, and strongly opposed abortion, according to The Wichita Eagle. He believed the killing of abortion doctors was justified, other abortion opponents told The Eagle.
The entire pro-life community "must swiftly and soundly repudiate" the one who killed Tiller if he "was acting in the name of the pro-life movement," said Land, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, in a statement released the day of the murder.
Tiller's slaying "is a human tragedy," Land said. "Murdering someone is a grotesque and bizarre way to emphasize one's commitment to the sanctity of human life. People who truly believe in the sanctity of human life believe in the sanctity of the lives of abortion providers as well as the unborn babies who are aborted."
Land said, "Clearly the killing of abortion providers is unbiblical, unchristian and un-American. Such callous disregard for human beings brutalizes everyone.
"For people to take the law into their hands in this fashion and to attempt to be judge, jury and executioner of a fellow human being is reprehensible and must be condemned by all civilized citizens," he said. . . . . . Read More
In recent days, it appears Americans are becoming more Pro-Life, according to a recent Gallup poll. By a 51%-42% margin, Americans now say they are "Pro-Life," instead of "Pro-Choice." Let's hope the negative press toward the Pro-Life movement that will result from Dr. Tiller's murder will not move Americans back in the wrong direction. As followers of Jesus Christ, we must stand for Life, not just when it is convenient. Let's keep winning the battle for the hearts and minds of Americans and hope that one day the horror of legal abortion will be overturned in our nation through peaceful and lawful means.
NOTE: Cornerstone is a member of The Southern Baptist Convention. All the way back in 1994, a panel of Southern Baptist ethicists issued an 11-page document entitled, The Struggle Against Abortion: Why the Use of Lethal Force is Not Morally Justifiable. The document asserts:
"We strongly contend that killing abortion doctors is not a moral option for Christians."
You can read the entire document here.