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Has Social Justice Pacified the ERLC?

On August 12-13, hearings were conducted on Tennessee’s capitol hill regarding the pro-life “Heartbeat Bill,” the latest legal threat to the abortion industry. Senator Mark Pody describes the legislation as an attempt to “say that there’s life in that womb from the very moment of conception, and that baby, that human being, should have the same constitutional rights as everyone else.”

According to Matthew Nowlin, the director of Conservative Christians of Tennessee, the bill is technically an attempt to extend common law protection, based in the 9th amendment, to babies, before a heartbeat is even protected. If it were to pass, and then win a victory at the supreme court, it would effectively overturn Roe. v. Wade.

The Tennessee Pastor’s network showed up to support and testify, but surprisingly, not the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission for the Southern Baptist Convention. Nowlin explains:

This is a Tennessee issue and the ERLC is based in Tennessee. This isn’t just a local issue. This is an issue of national importance. By not doing anything, their inaction has almost forced some other Baptist institutions to step in and fill this niche that is really in their wheelhouse. 

Despite being headquartered a few miles from where testimony was taking place, no one representing the ERLC showed up. According to Nowlin, it’s a fight in which the ERLC’s resources could really help.

For Southern Baptists, the question must be asked: Why does the ERLC have the resources to support the building of a mosque in New Jersey, and animal rights in Tennessee, but not to support a heart beat bill?

In fact, on August 12, Russell Moore, director of the ERLC, posted an ERLC article about artificial intelligence. While AI is an important topic, isn’t it more in keeping with the ERLC’s mission to support pro-life legislation? After all, they are officially pro life, and have been very concerned with social justice under Moore’s leadership.

This is yet another reason we’re making our movie. We’ve been warning that the social justice movement is not just a threat to the Gospel, but to the pro-life movement as well. When a Christian political organization appears to be more concerned with animal rights than helping effectively and legally defeating abortion, should Christians fund them?

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