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The trouble with evidence

I love the fact that our Christian religion is based on evidence:

“… Christ…was raised on the third day … and … he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles” (1 Corinthians 15:3-7).

“But Paul said, ‘I am not out of my mind, most excellent Festus, but I am speaking true and rational words. For the king knows about these things, and to him I speak boldly. For I am persuaded that none of these things has escaped his notice, for this has not been done in a corner’” (Acts 26:25-26).

But the problem with evidence is people. The proof for something may be fine, but the person weighing it may be defective. Take the example of the man who goes to the psychiatrist and claims he’s dead. The psychiatrist gets an inspiration and queries, “Do dead men bleed?” “Of course not,” says the troubled patient. The doc proceeds to prick the man’s finger and draw a spot of blood, looking triumphantly at the man, who gasps and exclaims, “What do you know! Dead men do bleed!”

In a confrontation so embarrassing for the pro-abortion side that it almost seems like publicity for the pro-life movement, a federal judge yesterday blocked North Dakota’s new restrictive abortion law, claiming, “The state of North Dakota has presented no evidence to justify the passage of the troubling law” (italics mine). What the judge discounts as evidence is that a baby’s heart starts beating at six weeks of gestation, which is where North Dakota draws the line in a mother’s so-called right to terminate her child’s life.

If life and laws were solely about evidence—and the right evaluation of evidence—this local legal altercation would bring the remaining 49 states to a repentance reminiscent of the horrified mourning of the 11 clans of Israel upon hearing of the Benjamite scandal that highlighted the reprobate state of the nation of Israel (Judges 19-20). From Alabama to Wyoming, we would tear our robes and toss ashes on our heads.

But the federal judge’s ruling doesn’t stand in heaven, where “blind guides” never weigh evidence (Matthew 15:14) and clear truth is not suppressed in unrighteousness (Romans 1:18).

Andrée Seu Peterson

Andrée is a senior writer for WORLD Magazine. Her commentary has been compiled into three books including Won't Let You Go Unless You Bless Me. Andrée resides in Philadelphia, Penn.


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