By Abby Thigpen
In a Union University Honors Community Colloquium on Oct. 18, Samuel W. “Dub” Oliver, university president, led his address with this powerful opening line: “We’ve traded a command from God for human understanding; we’ve traded the truth of God for a lie.”
What is this “command from God” we have neglected? Oliver answered this question by quoting a passage from Scripture, Genesis 1:28: “And God blessed them. And God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth…’.”
The command we have disregarded, that we are disregarding, is the command to have and love children. In this modern age, Oliver argued, children have become extremely undervalued. The original Christian mentality that children are a blessing has been uprooted by a perverse, secular view that children are either a nuisance or a hindrance.
As so, Oliver said, the rights of children have been underscored, unborn children are being killed at outrageous rates, and over-sexism has placed female babies in great danger.
Oliver commented that Americans have become blind to the needs of children. The U.S. government is actively attempting to make it easier to have pets as opposed to having children.
Lawyers have taken cases to the Supreme Court on behalf of animals being “unfairly treated,” but so many have turned their backs on fighting for the lives of innocent children killed in the womb.
“Abortion is the biggest scourge on our country today,” Oliver said.
It has many advocates with false excuses for why abortion is a good thing. But the simple, sad truth of the matter is that our modern day society does not want children anymore.
Human wisdom has encouraged sinful ways of thinking about families and children, according to Oliver.
The faulty fear of overpopulation has led to the rampant, government sanctioned killing of unborn or newborn infants, such as China’s One-Child Act.
Oliver drove this point home, saying, “In many parts of the world, the three most dangerous words you can utter is, ‘It’s a girl’.”
In Japan, he continued, whose society is slowly dying because of under-reproduction, “they have begged, incentivized [Japanese] women [to have babies], and the problem with Japan is the women have simply said, ‘we don’t want them’.”
And this mentality is very much true for the United States as well: “For every 100 live births [in the U.S.], there are 10 infants killed.”
But there is hope.
“Demography is not destiny,” Oliver said to the Honors Community. This is a call to the Christian community to fix something that is not unfixable.
Oliver encouraged the students to stand strong in Christian principles when it comes to considering marriage or having a family. He emphasized the importance of Christian community, of the church, for the success of healthy, strong families.
“We don’t live in the ‘I’ world,” he said. “We live in the kingdom of God, and there children are precious.”
Abby Thigpen is a junior English major.