“Immediatist vs Incrementalist” debate analysis, Part II: There’s only one way to cut down a tree?

Click to enlarge…


While arguing in defense of abortion immediatism during his debate against Center for Bio-Ethical Reform’s Gregg Cunningham, Abolish Human Abortion’s T. Russell Hunter used a tree analogy.

Hunter claimed cutting off “branches” of abortion through incremental laws is more than a waste of time, it’s counterproductive, because new branches take their place. The only way to end abortion, said Hunter, is to ignore the branches and focus on chopping down the tree.

Hunter’s tree-cutting analogy is erroneous for several reasons, foremost because removing branches first is exactly how it’s done. I happen to know this because we had to have three big trees cut down in our yard last year (thanks, ash borers), and I happened to take video. Little did I know how handy it would come in…

YouTube Preview Image

At risk of taking Hunter’s tree analogy too far, I daresay all trees in populated areas, such as where abortion exists, are cut down branches first.

In fact, as Cunningham pointed out, “In the entire history of social reform, no activists have ever outlawed a major injustice ‘immediately.'” It has always been branches first.

suckerWell, now that I’ve started down this path, I’ll add it seems indicative to me of Hunter’s antiquated, undeveloped logic that he would use shears and an ax in his illustration to cut off branches and take down a tree. In both cases only a saw will do, unless one wants to take forever, or one is too small to handle a saw, or one hasn’t properly assessed the tree.

Ok, one other point, Hunter is apparently unaware that suckers can grow from trunks (see photo right), so it’s not as if cutting a tree down is necessarily the end of things.

That’s the last of my immediatism tree analogies. On with Hunter’s.

Video of Hunter’s argument is below. In it he makes several gaffes in relation to incrementalism.

2015-05-01_1048One is that he shows a new branch of late-term abortion growing from the cut-off branch of partial-birth abortion.

That’s not accurate. No new branches have grown. There are only so many ways to commit late-term abortions. So the other methods are separate branches we are also working to lop off, such as 12+ week dismemberment abortions, a new target.

About dismemberment bans Hunter misquoted me (at 5:05 in video below) as stating, “Of course, there are other methods that might grow up in its place.” Not true. I wrote:

The fact that abortionists might simply switch procedures disturbs me, of course, although I know the mere title, “Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Act,” is incredibly educational.

But Balch reminded me the induced labor abortion method requires a higher level of expertise, as abortionists testified during the Partial Birth Abortion Ban hearings….

So, yes, a Dismemberment Ban would stop many babies from being aborted.

At any rate, don’t bans against 20-week abortions, or 13-week abortions, or 6-week abortions address Hunter’s concern about banning methods? Those are branches we are certain can never grow back.

It is true the Culture of Death, i.e., Satan, is constantly devising new ways (“branches”) to kill innocent children. It is naive to think otherwise.

Such as the emerging worldwide black market for abortion pills. This phenomenon has nothing to do with whether abortion is legal in the U.S. It’s simply another new abortion branch that will need chopping off.

So here’s Hunter’s tree analogy…

YouTube Preview Image

I know Hunter is a smart guy. I know he knows he grossly misrepresents the pro-life movement, such as at 7:47 in the video:

And you say [to pro-life leaders], “Well, why don’t you say abortion is murder and sin and seek its abolition?” Well, because they can’t. Because it’s legal. And the courts have said. So now instead of that wily snake saying that we gotta keep legal abortion safe, legal, and rare, we’ve got pro-lifers saying, “As long as abortion is legal, it should be safe, early, and painless.”

2015-05-01_1233Hunter knows it is ludicrous to claim pro-lifers keep secret the fact that “abortion is murder and sin” and don’t “seek its abolition.” He knows perfectly well we do both. It is slander of the worst kind for Hunter to claim the end game for pro-lifers is that abortion be “safe, early, and painless.” He knows perfectly well why we pursue incremental efforts.

(All this while Hunter pursues his own self-approved brand of incrementalism – geographical incrementalism.)

So why does Hunter persist? Stay tuned for Part III: “Immediatist underpinnings collapse.”

Also read:
Part I: Let babies die today, we can save the rest later.

37 thoughts on ““Immediatist vs Incrementalist” debate analysis, Part II: There’s only one way to cut down a tree?”

  1. JIll, Thank you for continuing to spread the ideology of abolitionism (even if you skew it as you do). I continue to receive messages from folks explaining how they just didn’t see the difference between abolitionists and pro-lifers and I think your freaked out obsession with protecting your industry is helping people see that the differences are vast and that the PLM is on the ropes.

    AS for the tree analogy… Yeah, you can’t take it to literally, but if you would like, think of the abortion tree as more like Redwood. Your suggestion that abortion takes place in populated areas so we have to be careful how it falls is interesting. It is similar to the arguments made by gradual abolitionists in the 19th century who said that we had to be careful about the speed of abolishing slavery because we didn’t want black people to just start marrying and mating with white people overnight!

    But I’ll think about how to adapt the analogy to your concerns.

    Of course I agree that anything that sprouts up from the tree after we chop it down would need to be cut as well. But in the event that two shoots came up from the stump, I wouldn’t suggest cutting one of them and then getting to the next one after it had become another tree.

    Thank you for continuing this discussion.


  2. BTW,

    Abolitionists advocate any bill or law or campaign or project or tactic (etc) that calls for and actually seeks the abolish of human abortion/protects all human beings from murder.
    The bills and laws that we see as delaying abolition and/or distracting pro-lifers from the work of abolition are those bills (campaigns etc) which do not oppose abortion in and of itself (but focus on abortion procedures, places, etc) and those bills which specify which humans are to be protected from abortion (because they have reached a certain age or stage of development, or have met some other culturally approved criteria of value such as the possession of a heart beat, being conceived in consensual sex, not being diagnosed with down syndrome, spina bifida, or some other condition deemed by our culture as justifying murder by abortion).

    We advocate going out into the culture to expose abortion as sin and murder and calling individuals and communities to repent of the practice of child sacrifice and the disregard of their neighbors. We seek to activate people and call them to stand up and oppose abortion and integrate the work of abolition into their daily lives. We try to extricate the masses of pro-lifers who have placed their faith in promises of change for the past 43 years and who by and large sit on their hands, write checks to professional pro-lifers, and vote every few years on the next historic game changing bill, measure, or candidate. We want to see the church of the Living God rise up and stand on His Word and in His power and call this culture to repent. We gear all that we do towards a revival of true and vital Christianity, and we believe that the Gospel of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ can and will triumph over the evil of our age.

    As for specific bills and laws, we do believe that cultural change is necessary to their passage and are focused on doing what we can to “get the votes,” as our anti-abolitionist pro-life opponents always tell us, “are not there.” But do look for specific practical actionable bills of abolition to start appearing in 2016. And please, please, please do not oppose them because they seek to protect all human beings from abortion. Please do not fight against us because you think the time is not yet come for such a bold action to be tried. Children are being murdered every second of every day. We must do all that we can to save them.


  3. Jill, good grief, it’s an analogy. I can picture you arguing with Jesus, “well Jesus, you see, a branch can actually have some rotten fruit, and some good fruit. I KNOW this because, you see Jesus, I have a tree in my backyard.”


  4. Jill, you have yet to engage immediatism, but have only addressed strawman versions. In this post, you attack the validity of the analogy because of Dendrology. To say that the analogy doesn’t work is begging the question.

    I challenge you to a public formal debate on Incrementalism in the Bible. You can host if you prefer. In person and filmed, or virtual.


  5. TR,

    My “freaked out obsession” is what I knew you knew but that you admitted 3x in the debate: that incrementalist pro-life advances save children’s lives. Yet you blow those children off. This is utterly unfathomable, loathsome, and ghastly to me. My “freaked out obsession” is for those children. They’re abstract collateral nothings to you. They’re not abstract to me.


  6. You mean that blasphemous butchering of God’s Word that Gregg conveniently put in his closing statements so it couldn’t be directly addressed? If you think Gregg addressed Biblical Incrementalism handily, then feel free to use his proof texts to actually debate the issue, instead of just make eisegegetical assertions at the end of a debate.


  7. Good job Jill and thankful for your patience and persistence. I like getting people to agree that late term abortions are terrible. Then once you have them there, you go with the sled argument taught by Klusendorf and their logic falls apart for permitting earlier abortions. They are just saying that size, level of development, environment and degree of dependence is the difference between life and death. If you can convince me it is okay to do it to a toddler than I will okay doing it to the pre born.


  8. T Russell Hunter–you support bills that abolish all abortion? REALLY? No–you are for overturning Roe which as stated a gazillion times on the other threads–is INCREMENTALISM because it does NOT abolish all abortion in the world therefore according to your logic is evil, wicked and should not be supported. You guys are such hypocrites. So if we overturn abortion in the US someone can just travel to Mexico or Canada and abort their babies. That is geographical incrementalism and it makes you a colossal hypocrite.

    Jill doesn’t seem “freaked out” to me. I think she has done a pretty good job picking apart your pitiful arguments.

    And you know what? If you guys thought the way you do and just did your own thing I’d have no issue that you don’t see eye to eye with us. But its the fact that you INSIST on hopping into bed with abortionists when it comes to pro-life bills that makes me want to wage war with you. As Jill pointed out–the babies saved–they mean nothing to you. As long as you can win the argument you don’t care about bodies piling up.


  9. I’m convinced that Abolish Human Abortion are pro choicers disguised as prolifers with the mission to bring the prolife movement down. It is one thing to disagree, it is another to go after your own, as they constantly seem to do. If they stopped fighting prolifers, maybe they could join in and we could all fight abortion together.


  10. “I’m convinced that Abolish Human Abortion are pro choicers disguised as prolifers ”
    The thing is, abolitionists actually go out of their way to insist that they are not pro-life. Personally, I think that it is just a tactic to side-step allegations of infighting by claiming ot to be part of the same movement.


  11. Jill Stanek,

    Do you agree with your readers that “AHA” is some kind of a pro-choice plot? A group sent by pro-aborts to bring the PLM down?



  12. It’s one thing not to agree with incremental steps, it’s quite another to accuse people of being “an industry” and in the same breath claim they are “on the ropes.” One glance at the Walk for Life, or Walk For Life West Coast would show you that the pro-life movement is younger and stronger and bigger than ever. Are you envious not to have the numbers? Well, if you’d stop SEGREGATING yourselves, you’d realize those are EVERYONE’S teammates. All those young high school and college students marching with us this January, those are the allies in whose faces you are spitting. The Walk for Life is free, anyone can walk up and join in. Sidewalk counseling is free. Any pro-life organization that receives money, gets it from volunteers (unlike Planned Parenthood, a bloody and large component of a REAL industry, which receives tax dollars against my will).

    Your campaign against pro-lifers is truly sickening, and you make abortionists laugh. I think the debate doesn’t need one more episode, it doesn’t need any more energy. I would like NOBODY to argue incrementalism vs immediatism ever again. It’s a waste of precious energy.

    I don’t think Jill should give this “Versus” any more time and attention, but this is her blog, not mine, and we don’t have to agree on every little thing in order to be teammates.

    I still see AHA as allies. Allies whose members can behave badly, but allies just the same. Now, I’m going to take my own advice after this comment and not address Hunter’s loathsome accusations ever again.


  13. The biggest problem I have with absolutists is that they seem VERY naive and unrealistic. They seem to believe that if they just ban abortions, abortions will stop. This is far, far from true. Even the most rudimentary look at the abortion-rights movement shows that they are 100% dedicated to making sure that abortions continue to happen. What the woman actually wants pales next to the priority of making sure that the abortion takes place.

    In frozen embryo cases, they have always sided with the person who wants the embryos destroyed, even when the woman wants to arrange “snowflake adoptions” to spare what she clearly sees as her unborn children. It’s not about what the woman wants; it’s about making sure that if anybody gets it into their head that an unborn child should die, then the unborn child must be put to death, period, paragraph.

    Look at how the abortion-rights movement handles forced abortions in China. They tsk-tsk that it’s a shame that “a few rogue” population-control zealots force abortions, but that really we need to focus on keeping ACCESS and not let ourselves get obsessed with the occasional “rogue” bureaucrats.

    There are entire books and web sites totally devoted to making sure that abortions happen. Herbal abortion recipes and support forums. “Menstrual extraction” kit instructions and support forums. How to find a doctor who will give you a false diagnosis and do an abortion under the guise of legitimate medical care.

    There are groups that have built abortion boats that ferry women offshore to do abortions in international waters in order to evade laws.

    As long as human evil exists, people like these will exist, and they will do the things they did before legalization. They will teach each other home abortion techniques. They will find willing abortionists of a variety of skill levels. They will arrange transportation. Because to them, if a pregnant woman faces any challenges, the question isn’t “How do we help her?” It’s “How do we arrange to abort this pregnancy?”

    They would LITERALLY rather that the woman die from a botched abortion of any kind than have the abortion not happen once the idea has entered the woman’s head, even if the woman has changed her mind and no longer wants the baby to die.

    You can NOT stop these people by outlawing abortions. There IS no cutting down the tree and being done with it. Ever. Not until Jesus returns. And EVERYBODY, incrementalist and absolutist alike, needs to grasp that and have strategies for fighting against the underlying issues.


  14. The main thing we need to do is show WHAT abortion is and keep asking, “How does doing this to a baby help the baby’s mother? Wouldn’t it be better to address her actual problems?” Ask “How does an abortion free her from the person who has her trapped in a sex trafficking situation?” “How does an abortion get her boyfriend to stop beating and raping her?” “How does an abortion get her mortgage out of arrears?” “How does an abortion get her a better job?” “How does an abortion solve her family’s homelessness?” Then we point to what prolife centers do. “We get her away from the sex traffickers. We get her into a battered women’s shelter or even help her to relocate to a safe place. We collect money to get her mortgage out of arrears then arrange for ongoing financial management coaching. We help with job placement. We find a home for her.”

    Show the abortion-rights movement for what it is — a movement for the rights of ABORTION as a practice. THAT is what will chip away at the roots, and THAT kills the tree. And part of what shows the abortion-rights movement for what it is is when we point out specific evils. Incrementalism does that. Though I think the approach needs to change to more of a right-to-redress that frames abortion as a woman versus abortion-salesperson conflict rather than the woman and her doctor versus antichoice busybodies that regulation tends to walk right into.


  15. “You can NOT stop these people by outlawing abortions.”

    I agree that there will always be those who push abortion. Just like there will always be those who push other immoral, evil, illegal agendas.

    But once abortion becomes illegal again, and some of these folks are pinpointed, they can be held accountable for breaking the law.

    Q: What do you call 10 abortionists in a jail cell?

    A: A good start.


  16. Being an abortion survivor makes me an immedialist, while I am doing everything else to stop any kind of baby killing. While we cannot stop all the baby killing immediately, the principle must remain that any killing should be stopped immediately. Life must be respected from conception to the natural end. One can not be against abortion and promote contraception, which many are doing. If we are not ready to accept this among us then how could we impress and convience others? The whole culture has to be renewed, with the help of the Holy Spirit, as we are just creatures. And yes, being a practicing Christian, a Catholic, helps me.


  17. How can you tell the difference between Lutheran pietists and AHA? One of them is Lutheran.


  18. Daniela–you said “Being an abortion survivor makes me an immedialist, while I am doing everything else to stop any kind of baby killing. ”

    So you’re an incrementalist. The problem is AHA leaders are saying that doing everything else to stop the baby killing is sinful if it doesn’t stop the baby killing IMMEDIATELY.

    ALL pro-lifers want to stop abortion IMMEDIATELY. To think otherwise is ridiculous. Of course we want total abolition of abortion RIGHT NOW. But since that isn’t going to happen we will save the babies we can with whatever legislation we can at the moment. The difference is AHA would rather let those babies die with all the other babies and save NO ONE so that they can pat themselves on the back and pretend they have the moral high ground.


  19. “How can you tell the difference between Lutheran pietists and AHA? One of them is Lutheran.”
    I’m going to have to be honest here and admit that I don’t get it. I was not familiar Lutheran Pietists and from what I’ve found googling I can not see the connection to AHA. Can someone explain this to me?


  20. JDC, this was my way of saying AHA are pietists in the lineage of the Lutheran movement. A few of it’s trademarks are frustration with the Church and an overemphasis on the Law.


  21. “JDC, this was my way of saying AHA are pietists in the lineage of the Lutheran movement. A few of it’s trademarks are frustration with the Church and an overemphasis on the Law.”

    Thanks, I think I see what you mean.


  22. Sydney M.: I might had omit “everything else”! Thank you! Other way: dear not to twist my words! I am an immedialist and I am doing ALL what is in my power to stop abortion. Lawful recognition of life from conception is crucial. That is possible country by country. Try to use some logic.
    I wanted to add that Gregg Cunningham is a soldier who did survive a terrible war. His strategy is excellent and CBR & affiliate are fighting heroically abortion.


  23. Good grief, if I see an “abolitionist” cry “straw man” one more time, I’m going to start believing that there isn’t actually a real, non-misrepresented position for them to hold . . .


  24. Scott , if I could like your post 100 times I would. Abolitionists use “straw man” like other people use the word “the.”


  25. If every single attempt by a non-abolitionist to describe their position is a straw man, at a certain point it becomes hard to escape one of two conclusions.
    1) They are so bad at explaining their position that no one outside their movement has actually understood it.
    2) They are just using it has a way to deflect legitimate objections to their position.

    These days, it seems that the internet is full of people who know the names of logical fallacies, but have very few actual arguing skills. It’s really making actual discussion of issues very difficult.


  26. JDC, you might already be aware of this, but Scott Klusendorf raised this very same issue. He wrote, “if an organization must post a string of videos constantly clarifying its position while asserting everyone else misunderstands its principles, to what extent does that help or harm the organization’s efforts to promote desired reforms? For example when I think of JFA, CBR, or Created Equal, I know exactly what they purpose to do.” This is what I call the wax nose of AHA.


  27. Chase Reader, I was not aware of Scott Klusendorf’s quote but I certainly agree with his sentiment. From what I’ve seen of him, he’s a very sharp guy, so I’m glad to hear that our thoughts on the matter are similar. I must also add that I think your “wax nose” term is very on point as well.


  28. AHA isn’t an organization though. It’s an ideology with its own logo, website, social media pages, leaders, monthly membership fees, online store (with ads all over its website and social media pages), and LLC status.


  29. Important Note:

    Anti-slavery gradualists consistently stood opposed to the call of the immediatists and forestalled emancipation for many decades before the passage of the 13th amendment and the abolition of chattel slavery in the United States of America.

    Over these decades Immediatists like William Lloyd Garrison, Wendell Phillips, the Grimke Sisters, the Tappanites, Levi Coffin, Harriet Tubman and nearly all the active workers of the Underground Railroad loudly and consistently called for the total and immediate abolition of slavery and moved the culture along as a result. By the time of the war, abolishing slavery had become a necessity due to abolitionist agitation and the great cultural conviction that the war was ultimately being fought to free the slaves. The gradualists, always in the vast majority, finally bent to the moral suasion of the immediatists and following the North’s triumph in the war capitulated to their call. 

    Of course the abolitionists rejoiced that all their years of toil and consistent agitation for abolition had come to fruition. They actually interpreted the 13th amendment itself as the long hard fought for fruit of their work. Likewise, Abraham Lincoln credited the “moral power” of “the Garrisonians” (immediate abolitionists), specifically for transforming the countries views on slavery and providing the necessary resolve and demand for emancipation that made it the necessary next step following the northern army’s victory in the Civil War.

It is true that the emancipation proclamation was a clever war measure on Lincoln’s part and that it was never an actual bill or declaration of abolition (and it certainly did nothing to abolish slavery itself), but it did however encourage even the most vocal abolitionists (and former opponents of Lincoln’s like Garrison and Douglass) to believe that he would soon do the right thing. As the immediate abolitionist and underground railroad worker/northern army nurse Harriet Tubman believed, Lincoln, as soon as he determined to fully emancipate the slaves and “crush the head of the snake,” would be used by God to bring the war and slavery to an end only after Lincoln determined to fully emancipate the slaves in the manner that the immediate abolitionists had long been agitating for. Tubman, like so many others, understood that Lincoln had to repent of his own incrementalism and say enough was enough, and lay the axe to the tree. (Yes, the tree and axe analogy was used by 19th century abolitionists as well).


Of course it is true that even the work of the immediatist takes place over time and that is why the doctrine of immediatism has never been opposed to the long hard work of constantly laying the axe to trunk of the tree or struggling to pull the roots up over time as long as it takes. ImmediatISM is not simply a synonym of immediate in the way that modern day anti-abolitionists so constantly frame it.

 That immediatism produces gradual results has always been recognized and understood by abolitionists.

    As historian Aileen Kraditor writes in “Means and Ends in American Abolitionism,” the abolitionist’s conception of his role in society as an agitator was focused practically and consistently on the principle and goal of immediate change rather than the goal of producing incremental victories. “The goal for which [the abolitionist] agitated was not likely to be immediately realizable,” Kraditor writes.

    She continues, “It’s realization must follow conversion of an enormous number of people, and the struggle must take place in the face of the hostility that inevitably met the agitator for an unpopular cause. Hence he would be denounced not only as a contemner of the general will but also as a visionary. The abolitionist knew as well as well as their later scholarly critics that immediate and unconditional emancipation could not occur for a long time. But unlike those critics they were sure it would never come unless it were agitated for during the long period in which it was impracticable.” (p26). 

As Kraditor continues to explain: “To have dropped the demand for immediate emancipation because it was unrealizable at the time would have been to alter the nature of the change for which the abolitionists were agitating. That is, even those who would have gladly accepted gradual or conditional emancipation had to agitate for immediate and unconditional abolition of slavery because that demand was required by their goal of demonstrating to White Americans that Negroes were their brothers” (p. 27).

    William Lloyd Garrison, the most vocal and active proponent of immediate abolitionism (also the most hated by gradualists), understood this principle fully and freely explained that, “We have never said that slavery would be overthrown by a single blow; that it ought to be, we shall always contend.”


As the American Anti-Slavery Society (the “ICAS” of the 19th century) stated in its first annual report, the well-meaning gradualists who opposed their focus on immediate abolition had entirely mis-understood immediatism and falsely opposed their ideology and strategy. The American people, the AASS argued, would be “moved” to abolish human slavery by a “powerful array of true principles” and only ever transformed by an uncompromising call for “total, immediate, and unconditional emancipation.” The AASS in turn exhorted gradualists to cease toiling on increments and regulations but to instead, “urge the naked truth,” and “insist upon reformation now.” The AASS explained that immediatism would bear fruit that was “sufficiently gradual,” and “practical reformation” would be produced only “after the sternest immediatism of doctrine” was consistently proclaimed and adopted.

Of course the abolitionists understood that they were dealing with a mass of slavery supporters and anti-slavery incrementalists who could not even imagine immediate unconditional emancipation and an apathetic culture which had long become accustomed to the argument that the only way to abolish slavery would be to do it gradually (because they feared that it would be dangerous to grant black people their freedom from bondage over night in the way that they eventually received it), but this only encourage the abolitionists to keep on calling for repentance of the national sin of chattel slavery. And they well knew that calling for incremental change (just as we know today) only put off abolition and even after decades of work and millions of dollars would only ever produce incremental change.

    As the historian William E. Miller argued in his monumental work “Arguing Against Slavery” (1996), the American abolitionists learned to denounce all forms of compromise and procrastination regarding their position and appeal from studying the work of earlier British abolitionists who were constantly thwarted, delayed, and distracted by calls for regulation and gradual abolition. As Miller records, the American abolitionists, like the English abolitionists before them became convinced by history and experience that “any kind of procrastination” had to be vociferously denounced. 

Miller adds, “As Martin Luther King and his cohorts fighting against racial segregation in the twentieth century had had repeatedly to explain “Why We Can’t Wait” (the title of one of his books), so in the previous century the English Abolitionists, in their long struggle, had finally come to see that they had to say “immediately”–because anything gradual stretched out into never. If you were serious about ending slavery, history had shown, you had to cut through that endless self-deceiving delay” (p. 74).

The call and cry for immediate abolition was that which imbued the abolitionists movement in America with its strength and moved the whole country along to emancipation.

    As Wendell Phillips, standing over the coffin of William Lloyd Garrison recollected, “[Garrison] seems to have understood–this boy without experience–he seems to have understood by instinct that righteousness is the only thing which will finally compel submission; …that only by the most absolute assertion of the uttermost truth, without qualification or compromise, can a nation be waked to conscience or strengthened for duty” Phillips, “Funeral Oration for William Lloyd Garrison”). 

As a contemporary historian of American abolitionism recorded, “It was the custom in that day to inveigh against immediatism as “impracticable.” “You cannot,” said our opponents, “emancipate all the slaves at once; why, then, do you propose so impossible a scheme?” Our reply was, that slaveholding being a sin, instant emancipation was the right of every slave and the duty of every master. The fact that the slaveholders were not ready at once to obey the demands of justice and the requirements of the Divine Law militated not against the soundness of the doctrine of immediatism or against its power as a PRACTICAL WORKING PRINCIPLE. The minister of the Gospel does not cease to proclaim the duty of immediate repentance for sin because he knows that his message will not be immediately heeded. It is his duty to contend for sound principles, whether his auditors “will hear or forbear.” He dares not advise or encourage them to delay repentance for a single hour, through he knows that in all probability many of them will do so until their dying day.” 


Compromise may very well be the art of politics, and politics might very well be the art of the possible. But immediatism has always been the art of the desired end and the causal power driving all great moral transformations and cultural reformations. This is true regardless of how long it takes for the transformation to truly come into effect. The time it takes for a nation to turn from its wicked ways and change its course is only as long as it takes for that nation to repent before, or be judge by, Almighty God. That it takes time to put the pieces of the nation back together is no fault of immediatism or failure on the part of God. That is the way things are. But, and this needs to be clearly understood by all who are engaged in this current conversation, unless we call for the total, immediate, and unconditional abolition of human abortion, we will never see it, except as the result of our own conflagration.


Comments are closed.