The Tyranny of Roe Is Over—What Now?

The Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization—anticipated since the court announced it would hear the case last year, and even more so since a draft of the opinion was leaked over a month ago—was officially announced on Friday. The six-to-three decision not only upheld the Mississippi case—which effectively bans abortion after fifteen weeks—but also overturned the nearly five-decade-old decision in Roe v. Wade, which erroneously declared that the Constitution guarantees the right to an abortion.

Because of the leak, the decision was not entirely surprising, but it is monumental nonetheless. With their ruling, the court has turned away from its wicked 1973 decision—which was not the court’s to make—and has done so while admirably remaining in its proper sphere of authority, which is to rule on the law rather than creating it.

We ought to celebrate this move of history, but we ought to do so with an understanding of what still lies ahead. 

We best not be lulled by the victory of the overturning of Roe no matter how great it is. While the impulse of many may be to revel in this long-fought victory and relent in the fight, our call and opportunity to go on the offensive against abortion has never been more clear—and it must not be ignored. 

Governor Tom Wolf vows to keep the murder market rolling as long as he is in office. Since this is the case and hiding behind Roe is no longer an option, there should be no so-called “moderate middle ground” and no incremental approach to regulate abortion. Insistence upon equal protection under the law and the necessity of criminal penalties for all involved—mother and father included—must be the demand.

Complete abolition with no exception must be the target for all who know that life begins at conception. This is especially true for Christians, because we love our God, who is the Author of Life, and we love our neighbor, which includes the preborn. Love does not rejoice with unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth (1 Corinthians 13:6). Love and truth must therefore compel us to fight with even more of a focus on what should be our end goal—justice in the sight of God for the preborn.

With the overturning of Roe, old challenges and new challenges will only become more intense. The first that comes to the forefront is the necessity of repentance within the church, followed by a call to national repentance for everyone else over our involvement in the abortion holocaust.

Many have bowed down to an idol of judicial supremacy, letting it rule without question. Many have chosen to go along with what the culture has falsely called “rights.” Many have stayed silent. Many have had a direct involvement with abortions and abortifacients. We must repent and not celebrate without a healthy dose of contrition. If we come to see that we have partaken in abominations before God—unjust regulations, submission to an unjust court ruling, and the heresy of the victimhood of the mother—then we ought to be broken, repent, and move forward with greater urgency. This is foundational to what we continue to face now.

With the leak, the recent failure of Louisiana’s abolition bill, the pro-life doctrinal confession that came out as a result, and now with the overturning of Roe, the divide between what it means to be pro-life and what it means to be an abolitionist has become clearer than ever before. There is no excuse for any regulatory bill with exceptions. There should have never been any excuse in the first place, but now it should be clear. 

It is in this context that we will see what states mean by “banning” abortion. No state that will “ban” abortion currently has equal protection in mind. This will result in “legal” abortions where the mother will not be punished. This will also create an environment in which people travel to other states or countries to get an abortion—under the auspices of businesses and other entities which desire to keep the murder market going. 

With governors like ours, these mothers will be welcomed with open arms in the states that promote abortion. Many states will work to codify open abortion access into their laws with greater fervency—creating a greater need for abortion mill ministry, preaching the gospel in general, exhorting lesser magistrates to uphold justice in the face of tyrants like ours, demanding for pregnancy centers to be consistent with biblical justice, and electing abolitionist politicians who will never compromise an inch.

There is so much to do and the path has been cleared by the providence of our sovereign God—who is always working to bring about His perfect will. The church needs to be at the forefront of these issues, as we are called to be the prophetic voice of God in the world. In Christ we are all members of one body and are used by God in different ways, so we all have a part to play in this fight for our beloved preborn neighbors.

As we thank God for the overturning of Roe, let us have clarity with great conviction to be resolved in our lives to honor God and deny self for the glory of Christ our Redeemer and King. Let us be further assured through this celebration that only abolition is good and just in the sight of God. To that end, we press on more united in mind, more clear in duty, and more obedient to the will of our Lord.

Written by Matt Kenitzer, with contributions from Luke Griffo.

Matt Kenitzer is a husband to his wife, Shea, since 2008 and a father to three girls. He has been senior pastor at St. John’s Reformed Church in Friedensburg, Pennsylvania, since 2018.