The record in 1 Kings 3:16-28 offers a fascinating example of the power of godly wisdom. The case involving two women and their babies has several parallels with our current abortion problem.

  1. The two women before Solomon were sexually immoral and their children fatherless; nevertheless the king chose to hear their case. There's a link with abortion in that some women today are seen as not worthy of help, and their children—especially those whose parents are poor, rapists, or teenagers—are thought to be not as valuable as others. Of course, this is not true. No mother is too sinful to warrant our attention, and no baby is too much trouble. All people deserve help, and the most vulnerable among us deserve the greatest protection.
  2. The story in 1 Kings 3 pits two strong competing sides against each other, much like how the plight of mothers today is pitted against that of unborn babies. Abortion is a terrible dilemma. Both parties appeal to our sympathy, but the rights of one must not be ignored in favor of the other. And the issue of abortion cannot be ignored, despite its unpleasantness.
  3. If you or someone you know suffers from a guilty conscience over past abortion, there is hope! While abortion is a grievous sin, God's grace is sufficient, abundant, and free. You can be made right with God.
    Solomon's edict to cut the living child in two seems like a horrific example of raw power. Sometimes governments wield power ruthlessly in order to settle intractable arguments like abortion. But abortion solves nothing. It is never appropriate to kill in order to get rid of a person who is causing problems. 
  4. Even though King Solomon had issued a verdict, the living baby's mother spoke up: "By no means kill the child!" Even those who seem to have no power can (and should) speak up on behalf of the helpless, especially unborn children. A simple, selfless plea can save the life of someone who is precious to God. Abortionists, on the other hand, use many methods for killing unborn babies—drugs, medical instruments, ultrasound technology. They seem to say, "By any means kill!"
  5. Satisfied with the mother's appeal, King Solomon echoed her words: "By no means kill him!" God approves of leaders and others who speak up for the weak against those who would kill them (Psalm 82:1-4, Proverbs 31:4-9). Women who are considering abortion need wise counselors to help them sort through thorny problems and lead them to solutions that don't involve ending the lives of their children.  

Solomon's verdict was a direct answer to his prayer for wisdom in 1 Kings 3:9. James 1:5-8 assures believers that we too can receive wisdom from God about difficult matters.

Related: Dive deeper into this passage with our new Solomon's Test of Wisdom Bible study/Sunday school lesson.

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