The Silent Cries of Psalm 22

Grace Woelmer

The Book of Psalms was written as a prayer book to God our Father. There are psalms of petitions and lament, psalms of thanksgiving, and psalms of praise and worship. With these psalms we, as God's children, can pray and talk to Him in any circumstances. Psalm 22 is the famous psalm that starts out with "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" Jesus spoke those words from the cross in supplication to his Father in heaven. And likewise, we sinners cry out loud in our depth of sin, pleading to God to answer us.

I attended the Te Deum Higher Things conference this summer at Concordia Nebraska and served as a campus volunteer. One of the breakout sessions I went to was about the Psalms and how we can use them in prayer to our Father. The session I had attended just previously to this one was about defending life and arguing against abortion. So naturally, abortion and the recent release of undercover videos that detail the sordid activities of Planned Parenthood were both on my mind as I entered the classroom and heard the pastor reading Psalm 22 in the breakout.

We have the freedom to talk to our Father in Heaven in prayer and supplication, laying before him all our troubles and needs. But then I got to thinking, what about those who cannot voice their troubles? What about the babies in the womb who cannot yet cry out loud to the Lord and may never get the chance? From that point on as the pastor was reading, I was hearing Psalm 22 as the prayer of an unborn child, particularly as one who is to be aborted.

"On you was I cast from my birth,
and from my mother's womb you have been my God.
Be not far from me, for trouble is near,
and there is none to help." v. 10-11

"I am poured out like water,
and all my bones are out of joint;
my heart is like wax;
it is melted within my breast;
my strength is dried up like a potsherd,
and my tongue sticks to my jaws;
you lay me in the dust of death." v. 14-15

We may feel exactly like this when we are burdened with sin, but physically a baby undergoes these exact descriptions in the cruel torture of the process of abortion. Their bodies become disfigured and their strength and health are stolen from them. Their life was a gift given to them, but it was also something that was so quickly taken away.

"For dogs encompass me;
a company of evildoers encircles me;
they have pierced my hands and feet--
I can count all my bones--
they stare and gloat over me;
they divide my garments among them,
and for my clothing they cast lots." v. 16-18

All I could think of were the abortion doctors who encircle an aborted baby, dismember and take apart the body, and separate the "useful" body parts. They exclaim, "Another boy!" and they only care about the organs as means of a profit after selling them. I admit that, at this point, I was already shedding tears. Yep, I was the CCV in the back of the room crying, and I could not stop thinking about this psalm and these unborn children. What right do we humans have to decide whether or not a child is wanted or unwanted, useful or not useful, alive or not even a human?

"But you, O Lord, do not be far off!
O you my help, come quickly to my aid!
Deliver my soul from the sword,
my precious life from the power of the dog!
Save me from the mouth of the lion!
You have rescued me from the horns of the wild oxen!" v. 19-21

As sinners, we are helpless and cannot redeem ourselves or purchase our own salvation. Babies are also physically helpless from the time they are conceived until even after they are born. Babies rely so much on their mother and father to care for them and satisfy their every need. A baby's abilities and reliance on others does NOT determine their worth or value. For instance, I am not a very good artist but my inability to paint a beautiful sunset does not mean I am less human. Just like an unborn baby, an elderly person in the nursing home unable to feed themselves does not make them worth less or make them less human. Just as Christ laid down his life for us helpless sinners, we should reach out to help the helpless unborn so that they may have the chance to be cared for and become a saved child of God.

"For he has not despised or abhorred
the affliction of the afflicted,
and he has not hidden his face from him,
but has heard, when he cried to him.
From you comes my praise in the great congregation;
my vows I will perform before those who fear him.
The afflicted shall eat and be satisfied;
those who seek him shall praise the Lord!
May your hearts lives forever!
All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord,
and all the families of the nations shall worship before you." v. 24-28

For those children who are aborted never have the chance to sing aloud to the Lord, to worship His name forever. Yet we must have faith that God has not turned His face from the aborted nor has He turned away from the mothers who choose abortion. God's mercy is never ending, and He forgives all of our repented sins.

"All the prosperous of the earth eat and worship;
before him shall bow all who go down to the dust,
even the one who could not keep himself alive.
Posterity shall serve him;
it shall be told of the Lord to the coming generation;
they shall come and proclaim his righteousness
to a people yet unborn, that he has done it." v. 29-31

Children are a gift from God.

Let us then fight for the unborn so that we may have another generation who can live in faith towards God and who can proclaim His righteousness to the next generation. Life is beautiful, for all life has been created by God. Let us speak not only for the voiceless ones in the womb, but also for the sorrowful women haunted by the regret of a previous abortion. May God work through us to give His comfort to those who seek His grace and mercy. It shall be proclaimed to all that Christ, by dying on the cross, has conquered sin, death, and the devil to win salvation for us and for all people, of all ages. Christ's righteousness goes out even to those unborn children. He has not hidden His face from them, but died and rose again for their salvation, and for us all. Christ was born for all and He died for all, that all may be saved and receive eternal life.

Grace Woelmer is a member of Faith Lutheran Church in Plano, Texas and is studying music education at Concordia Nebraska.

Created: September 8th, 2015