Dear Oklahoma Baptists,
The Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma’s stance against abortion and for protecting human life is long-held and well-known. We want to make sure you hear directly from us what our position is regarding recent efforts to fight abortion and protect life.
The BGCO is categorically opposed to abortion, and it is our prayer and goal to see lives saved and an end to abortion in Oklahoma and beyond. Through the years, Oklahoma Baptists have championed numerous bills designed to protect life and fight abortion.
Together, we have seen lives saved and the abortion rate decline. Yet much more needs to be done, and we will not rest until every life is safe. That is why we will be forming a work group to work even more aggressively toward the goal of ending abortion in Oklahoma.
In recent days, you may have read discussions about Oklahoma State Senate Bill 13, the “Abolition of Abortion Act.” Regarding SB 13, after considerable prayer and careful study of the proposed policy, including direct conversations with the bill’s principal author, we have several concerns, including:
- Credible expert legal/policy analysis indicates SB 13 will be invalidated immediately by the courts, if it passes at all, and we cannot save lives with legislation that never goes into effect.
- SB 13, as proposed, unnecessarily and purposely repeals hard-earned pro-life laws that have helped significantly reduce Oklahoma’s abortion rate, including repealing our state’s ban on partial birth abortion, parental notification requirements, the unborn child protection from dismemberment abortion, among numerous other life-saving laws.
- The bill even goes so far to repeal original Oklahoma laws already on the books that allows abortion only to save a mother’s life.
We recently held discussions with the bill’s author, asking these concerns to be taken into consideration. In the meantime, we cannot in good conscience get behind SB 13 as it is proposed.
There are more proven and plausible life-saving policies Oklahoma could enact en route to ending the tragic practice of abortion, while simultaneously offering support and help for abortion-vulnerable mothers.
We will continue to strive for the day in which every human life—unborn and born—in this state and beyond is protected. With all the strength God gives us, we resolve to build a culture of life that recognizes each person is made in His image (Gen. 1:27). God help us…
For Christ, for life,
Dr. Hance Dilbeck
Executive Director-Treasurer, Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma
Dr. Blake Gideon
Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church of Edmond;
President, Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma
Editor, The Baptist Messenger