Every event is part of a story within a larger story, and that larger story has ancient roots.
In his beautiful creation, God created the first man, and from him created the first woman. The first man, Adam, was designed to lead his wife and the rest of creation in glorifying his Creator, and was entrusted with the task of providing for and protecting God’s world.
The first woman, Eve, was designed to joyfully support and strengthen her husband in fulfilling his roles, while according to the meaning of her name, becoming the mother of all the living.
God designed these distinctions into man and woman. They are not arbitrary, but wired deeply into our very beings. When God looked at his plan for man and woman in complementarian harmony, behold, it was very good.
The Tragic Turn
And yet as the third chapter of the story unfolds, the first couple tears down God’s authority and asserts themselves as their own ultimate authority. God’s declaration of goodness was not good enough for them.
Additionally, God’s adversary tempted the woman first in an attempt to manipulate her mind and heart. Knowing God designed the man to be the head, Satan subverted God’s arrangement and tempted the woman to pretend she could be her own authority. The serpent approached the woman as a perversion of God’s created order to strike chaos into the perfect unified bond of man and wife.
The serpent’s forked tongue hissed lies to Eve and made her question the legitimacy of God’s command to not eat the fruit from one tree in the garden. Eve doubted God’s goodness. Why would God withhold something from her? What was she missing out on? The only way to find out was to bite the fruit. She would become like God, said the serpent.
What did Adam do? First, what he didn’t do. Adam failed to protect the garden from God-rejecting lies. Second, he passively went along with Satan’s lies. He abdicated his responsibility to protect Eve from Satan’s schemes. Instead of leading her away from Satan’s lies, he reinforced the lie himself by willing participation. Though Eve was the first to disobey God, Adam’s failed leadership bears the legacy:
Just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned . . . Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come. (Romans 5:12, 14)
Adam was held accountable for his role as leader, and he was found wanting. Instead of crushing the serpent underneath his foot, he stood idly by. He failed God, he failed Eve, and he failed all of mankind.
Adam and Eve, the first couple, designed to bear fruit and give life and multiply small replicas of God’s image, were the ones who introduced death.
Women and Abortion
When reading fiction, we typically don’t expect the beginning to repeat itself. But Adam and Eve are no fiction, and we see through all of Scripture this same theme of creation and fall. And it is this tragic true story within the true story of the biblical narrative that we see playing out in the abortion industry.
Every day the cunning serpent whispers in the ears of women with unplanned pregnancies, darkening the doors of abortion clinics, promising death is the way these women will regain control over their lives. Instead, death greets them at the door, and crushes the life out of their baby, God’s image-bearer, whose life ends violently. Satan manipulates these women with a promise of freedom and personal fulfillment — if only they would get rid of “it,” the “fetal tissue,” the crushable pieces of flesh that promise an inconvenience and interruption to all of her plans. Surely God would not give her something that would infringe upon her personal right to be unencumbered by the life of another.
Millions of deceived women have bitten the apple of these lies and now live with the inescapable guilt. They have decided to usurp God’s authority over life and wield their own authority to take life away. Women bow down to the golden idols of “freedom.” Today, we women have broken our political shackles of oppression and created our own autonomous islands where we can do whatever we please. We are liberated. And yet in our blindness, we’ve stepped into Satan’s trap. We who live in ignorance of Eve’s tragedy are the shackled ones.
We were made to bear and nurture life, but instead of fulfilling Eve’s namesake (“life”), we have exacted death from our wombs. We’ve traded the lives of our children for the preferred version of our own. God intended for women to flourish as they put themselves on the backburner to love and prioritize their children. Now women are front and center, and children go down the garbage chute.
Men and Abortion
What about the men? Like Adam, they stand idle. They have failed to protect the women. They have abandoned their post as leader — leaving women and children in the gutter to fend for themselves. They have made it easy for women to choose death over life. They have driven women to abortion clinics, dropped them off at the curb, and killed time fondling the latest tech gadget — meanwhile their own flesh and blood is cut to pieces and sold as a nameless collection of tissue specimens.
Men have perverted and abdicated their roles by actively and passively taking a backseat in the abortion industry. Their abuse and abandonment paved the way for women to demand their “rights.” Instead of “women and children first,” it has been men first. His servant leadership has failed because he does not want to lead by service. He wants sex without responsibility.
Men would lead many women away from abortion if they provided for the needs of the mother and child, as well as protected the life of the child. God wanted Adam and Eve to cultivate life in the garden through their distinct roles, but Satan succeeded in breaking the unity of the first man and woman — and that broken bond continues today through the doors of every abortion clinic.
The Story Goes Forward
Though Satan’s tactic succeeded, it was only a temporary setback, because even in the beginning we catch a glimpse of the restoration that is to come. Genesis 3:15 says,
I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.
There was hope for Eve to bring true life into the world, because Christ came through her lineage. Adam’s and Eve’s offspring would be the Savior of their race — our Savior — who has already come to crush the head of Satan. Jesus was once a fetus in his mother’s womb. What better way to spite Satan’s child-killing efforts than to come into the world as a newborn baby? Satan hates life and will stop at nothing to destroy it, but the little human life that Jesus embodied would destroy Satan and the cycle of death forever.
Back in Romans, Paul goes on to say,
If, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ. (Romans 5:17)
Adam brought death to all mankind, but Jesus Christ came to bring life again. The recurring theme of creation and fall does not stand alone in Scripture; it is followed by restoration. God is storing up his wrath against the wicked of this world; he will come back in judgment with righteous vengeance against the remaining evil, even on the behalf of dead unborn children. The abortion industry will be abolished in the end.
Forgiveness and Life
For now, we offer the forgiveness and the life of Christ to fellow sinners who have taken the bait of death. As Christians, we fight daily to reinstate God’s authority over our lives and take ownership of our God-given roles in order to cultivate life here on earth. We realize the joy we are seeking in personal freedom is a joy we can only find in God. It is a superior joy in Christ that we offer to the world, because it is the superior joy we have tasted. Satan’s twisted lies are empty — they always have been.
The twisted stories of sin, and the reign of death, will all come to an end. It will culminate in a grand finale of the final restoration of all things under the reign and rule of God — made possible through the cries of a baby in a manger who grew up without sin, died, and was raised to life again. This is a story greater than Satan’s schemes and greater than the abortion industry.
And this is our story. This is our universal story that makes sense of every tragedy we live out right now. Let’s tell it over and over.