Welcome to G3 Weekly—a summary of this week’s top news stories on Christianity and the public square.
This week, Democrats continued their reaction to the overturning of Roe v. Wade by passing bills to protect contraceptives and so-called gay marriage. A high school in Los Angeles is unsuccessfully trying to open a Planned Parenthood on its campus. Meanwhile, the oldest known depictions of Deborah, Jael, and other figures from the book of Judges were uncovered in Israel.
House Democrats Pass Bills to Back Same-Sex Marriage, Abortion Pills
“For their vine comes from the vine of Sodom and from the fields of Gomorrah; their grapes are grapes of poison; their clusters are bitter” (Deuteronomy 32:32).
The House of Representatives approved the Respect for Marriage Act—a bill which repeals the Defense of Marriage Act and requires federal recognition of so-called same-sex marriage. The bill also allows the attorney general to take civil action against those who violate its measures.
Among the lawmakers who voted in favor of the bill were forty-seven Republicans—including rising stars such as Kat Cammack of Florida, Elise Stefanik of New York, and Burgess Owens of Utah, according to The Hill. Last summer, a Gallup poll revealed for the first time ever that a majority of Republican voters favor same-sex marriage.
The House also passed the Right to Contraception Act. Because life begins at conception, historic Christian teaching indicates that modern birth control methods that prevent the implantation of the fertilized egg—such as oral contraceptives—are abortifacient and risk killing a preborn baby.
“This is their moment. Clarence Thomas has made that clear, right down to the fundamentals of privacy they want to erase,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said of Republicans, according to CBS News. “With this passage, Democrats will make clear we will never quit in the fight against the outrageous right-wing assault on freedom.”
Both pieces of legislation face an uncertain future in the Senate, where ten Republican votes are required to advance proposals.
High School Backs Down from Opening Its Own Planned Parenthood
“Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea” (Matthew 18:6).
Officials at John Glenn High School in Norwalk, California, were forced to pause the opening of its own campus Planned Parenthood after protests from community members.
Dozens of residents appeared at a board meeting for Norwalk-La Mirada School District in protest of the plan, according to NBC Los Angeles, leading the board to postpone the vote to proceed with opening the clinic. Though it would not offer abortions, the clinic would have referred students to abortion providers—with or without parental consent—while likewise giving contraceptive prescriptions and inserting IUDs.
Planned Parenthood spent $61.6 million on “sexuality education” in 2020 and denounces “abstinence-only-until-marriage” programs, as well as their intention to “fight against” them. Instead, the group seeks to push for “sex education laws and funding that support the full range of sex education topics that young people need.”
Planned Parenthood also claims that “LGBTQ youth deserve to learn in settings that are inclusive of their experiences,” since “far too many LGBTQ youth are sitting in classrooms where their teachers and textbooks fail to address their experiences.”
Archaeologists Find Mosaics of Deborah, Jael, Barak
“And Deborah said to Barak, ‘Up! For this is the day in which the Lord has given Sisera into your hand. Does not the Lord go out before you?’” (Judges 4:14).
A team of archaeologists from the University of North Carolina unearthed mosaics of Deborah, Jael, and other heroes from the biblical book of Judges. The images—which show Deborah looking at military leader Barak, among other depictions—are roughly 1,600 years old.
Researchers first discovered mosaics at the site in 2012, according to The Daily Wire.
“This is the first depiction of this episode and the first time we’ve seen a depiction of the biblical heroines Deborah and Jael in ancient Jewish art,” University of North Carolina team leader Jodi Magness said. “We can see how the story might have had special resonance for the Jewish community at Huqoq, as it is described as taking place in the same geographical region—the territory of the tribes of Naphtali and Zebulon.”
Last year, archaeologists found a fragment of a clay pot that dates back to the era of the judges. The fragment, which is 3,100 years old, included the word “Jerubbaal”—a name for Gideon, the judge who led an army of 300 men to defeat the Midianite army.