Raphael Warnock, a Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate in Georgia, has declared himself a pro-abortion pastor. Twenty-eight prominent black leaders are calling on him to renounce his beliefs.
Warnock pastors Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, a congregation that Martin Luther King also once pastored. The pastor, whose runoff Senate race in Georgia is under intense national attention for the potential it has to swing the upper chamber to the Democratic Party, has before raised eyebrows among some Christians for comments he has made about Christianity, such as when he described Jesus Christ as “a poor Palestinian prophet” and a “Palestinian peasant.”
Warnock also offended some when he compared Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to former Democratic Alabama Gov. George Wallace during a 2016 sermon that recently resurfaced. Video has also emerged of Warnock saying you cannot serve God and serve in the military.
The letter issued to Warnock reads:
“We are a coalition of black Christian ministers who, like you, feel called by God to preach the Bible, advocate for justice and fight against societal evils. We applaud your commendable efforts to share Christ while pursuing political solutions to our most pressing problems today.
“But precisely because we share so much in common with you, we feel compelled to confront your most recent statements concerning abortion. You have gone on the record saying that you are a `pro-choice pastor ‘ who will `always fight for reproductive justice.’ You have publicly expressed your views that abortion is an exercise of `human agency and freedom’ that is fully consistent with your role as a shepherd of God’s people.
“We believe these statements represent grave errors of judgment and a lapse in pastoral responsibility, and we entreat you to reconsider them. As a Christian pastor and as a black leader, you have a duty to denounce the evil of abortion, which kills a disproportionate number of black children. Your open advocacy of abortion is a scandal to the faith and to the black community.
“Abortion is fundamentally in conflict with the plain reading of the Bible. The Bible clearly teaches that human life is created by God beginning at conception. As Psalm 139 proclaims: `You knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am wonderfully and fearfully made.’ What human being could possibly have the right to blot out an innocent life that God has wonderfully and fearfully made?
“For all of the above reasons, we entreat you to reconsider your public advocacy for abortion. Unborn black, brown and white lives are so much more than clumps of cells, burdensome inconveniences or health problems. They are sacred human persons endowed by God with inalienable dignity and worth. We implore you to uphold the Biblical defense of life and to fight against the systemic racism of abortion.”
Alveda King, niece of MLK Jr., is joining the myriad voices condemning Warnock, pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, for saying Tuesday he is a “pro-choice pastor.”
“He is doing such a disservice to his own congregation — to the women and the men and the families, the children, and his community,” King said. “He should be giving them alternatives: ‘There are better ways to live. Let me as pastor of this church help you so you don’t have to kill a baby and hurt your own body.’”
Warnock, she continued, “should offer real, genuine service to his parishioners that cannot include abortion. God said choose life. He didn’t give any excuses for not choosing life.”
As for the oft-repeated claim that Warnock preaches “from MLK’s pulpit,” King suggested Wednesday that isn’t the entire story.
–Alan Goforth | Metro Voice