How true are William Cowper’s words about providence: ‘God moves in a mysterious way, His wonders to perform’!
Little did I think, when I wrote a letter to the local and national Scottish press, about the desperate need to repeal the Abortion Act, that it would save someone’s life far away in the Gambia.
But it did, in a wonderful and perfect way. It is a remarkable story of God’s timely and gracious intervention in the life of a couple, when the wife was pregnant, and it ought to be shared with as many people as possible.
The devil and his emissaries would have many people foolishly believe that God is asleep and oblivious to what is happening around us. The truth of the matter, however, is very different. God is not asleep; the One ‘who slumbers not nor sleeps’ is the same yesterday, today and forever.
As this story reveals, God is very much awake and working out his purposes in the unfolding issues of life, complex and confusing as they may be at times in our eyes. Truly, the Lord does all things well.
The story began in June 2015 when I commenced writing to the press, highlighting the appalling abortion statistics in this country and appealing to politicians to annul one of the sickest laws ever enacted in this country, namely the Abortion Act (1967).
This despicable Act, which was passed by Parliament in October 1967, legislates for the abortion of unwanted children. Abortion is nothing less than murder. Tragically, in this country, a mother’s womb is the most dangerous and unsafe place to live in. This is the case because of our politicians, and what a damning indictment on so many of them.
Part of my letter stated: ‘Abortion, and the slaughter of the innocent, is not something that disturbs the majority of MPs. Not only do they happily approve of abortion, it doesn’t even leave them with a restless conscience or a sleepless night.
‘Let me give you the shameful evidence. Since the Abortion Act was passed in 1967, there have been over 8 million abortions in the UK up to the end of 2013. And as every life is precious, let me break down these figures even further. In England and Wales 7,661,051 abortions were carried out, while 459,767 abortions were carried out in Scotland. This is scandalous and shocking.
The letter went on: ‘The official records tell us that in 2013, 98.4 per cent of all, so-called “legal abortions” were carried out for social reasons. In other words, these abortions were for convenience sake — the babies were just not wanted. A further 3,063 abortions were performed because the child was likely to be born handicapped.
‘Only 193 abortions (0.1 per cent of all legal abortions) were carried out because of a risk to the mother’s life, or because of the risk of grave permanent injury to the physical or mental health of the mother. Truly nauseating.
‘While these figures are stomach-churning, so are the many facts that go along with them. Recent investigations into the abortion industry show that abortion laws are being flouted by many clinics and some babies are being aborted for being the wrong gender or for minor disabilities. Truly despicable’.
What was unknown to me at the time was that my letter, along with newsletters about my evangelistic work around Scotland, were being collated together by a close Christian friend, Scott, living in Stornoway.
Like me, he too has missionary interests abroad; his being in the Gambia, one of Africa’s smallest countries, with a population of around 1.8 million people.
It transpired that he sent the literature to various individuals he was associated with in the mission fields of Gambia, including a certain pastor called Sylvester Konteh. Unaware of his personal circumstances, the wheel of providence ordered that this pastor should be one of the recipients of the letter.
On the day he read it, he put pen to paper and wrote to Scott: ‘Your article on abortion has just changed my life and that of my wife. Although we have never done it, we were seriously contemplating abortion recently, when my wife suspected she was pregnant.
‘She almost died during the last pregnancy. So I was scared this time that I would lose her. We already have four kids, but it was such a risk to have another one. We felt it best to abort this baby. I was really surprised when I received your letter, because I had asked a friend to send me a Reformed article on abortion.
‘After reading your article, which addressed the killing of innocent children, this completely altered the whole process. I was about to undergo abortion for health reasons, but God was working behind the scenes to stop me, in his divine providence. To Him I will be forever thankful and to you for sending me the letter. Together, my wife and I will now walk by faith’.
The very happy news is that, with deep thankfulness to God, a healthy little boy, weighing 8.4 pounds, was safely born on 28 March 2016 to Pastor Sylvester Konteh and his wife, Johnette.
That day, Pastor Konteh sent a text to Scott: ‘Thanks be to God. My wife has just delivered a baby boy. God used you to send a timely abortion article, which saved my boy’s life. To God be all the glory. Scott Muir Konteh is going to be his name’.
We rejoice with them all at this very happy time. Our hope and prayer is that wee Scott will become ‘twice born’, that, by the grace of God, he will become a son of the King of kings. Also, that the Lord will raise him up to be a mighty and faithful ‘sower of the seed’ on the mission fields of Gambia. Yes, to God be the glory, great things He has done.
Abort the Abortion Act!
The Bible reminds us, again and again, that life is sacred from conception and that the deliberate taking of an innocent human life breaks the sixth commandment, ‘You shall not murder’.
Abortion at any stage of gestation is wrong. Scripture makes it abundantly clear what God’s view of abortion is. Jeremiah 1:5 tells us that God knows us before he formed us in the womb: ‘Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee’.
Psalm 139:13-16 speaks of God’s active role in our creation and formation in the womb: ‘For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise thee; for I am wonderfully and fearfully made’.
Clearly, God views the unborn as human and precious, and so does any person that has a heart. They value what God values and they love what God loves. It is quite evident, however, that many politicians in London and Edinburgh do not.
It is high time they annulled the Abortion Act (1967), for the good of the unborn child. It is also high time that all of us in the UK did everything within our power to bring this about, with God’s intervening help — just as he did in the precious life of baby Scott: ‘It is time for thee, Lord, to work: for they have made void thy law’ (Psalm 119:126).
Donald J. Morrison is an evangelist working with the Free Church (Continuing) of Scotland.