Lutheran Family Service gives thanks to God for today’s Iowa Supreme Court decision to lift the temporary injunction on the Heartbeat Bill passed last July by the legislature! This bill bans abortion after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, usually around six weeks. Currently, little boys and girls can be killed up to twenty weeks old in the womb. More lives will be saved in Iowa.

The Iowa Supreme Court further ruled in this case that the standard to be used in determining legality of law in this matter is rational basis. This test states that a law must have a legitimate state interest, and there must be a rational connection between the law’s means and goals.  For example, a law to restrict abortion must show a rational connection between the goal—to restrict abortion—and a legitimate state interest. Therefore, this test makes it easy to pass abortion restrictions because it is very rational to see that it is in the interest of the state to protect the lives of citizens not yet born.

You can read the decision in its entirety online at:

The Iowa Supreme Court has sent the case back to District Court where they will grapple with the issue once again, now that the Iowa Supreme Court has ruled rational basis as the standard. For now, the injunction on the heartbeat law is lifted, meaning hundreds of little boys and girls in Iowa are safe from being killed in the womb.

This came about because a life-affirming governor and a life-affirming legislature worked strategically to pass another Heartbeat Bill after the Supreme Court in 2023 allowed an injunction on the previous Heartbeat Bill to remain intact. In that ruling, Justice Dana Oxley recused herself resulting in a three-three tie.  But she voted on the current ruling thus tipping the scales.

This illustrates the importance of electing a life-affirming governor and legislature. It calls upon Christians to put their faith into action by voting for those who uphold the God-given sacredness of all life. It also reminds us of the importance of Christians who are so gifted to run for office and seek positions of influence. Justice Oxley is an LCMS Lutheran!

The ruling also means more moms will give birth. Sometimes these moms experience very difficult situations, and a surprise pregnancy adds exponentially to it. Saving the lives of babies also means helping the moms who carry them. Christians have the opportunity to increase their support of those giving pregnancy counsel, and to consider donating time, talents, and treasure to ensure women and unborn little boys and girls get the help they need. It is a witness to those who promote the choice of death to see love in action that brings good from the choice of life.

While all of us at Lutheran Family Service give thanks for this ruling, the objective remains to protect little boys and girls from the moment of fertilization. Our work continues. Therefore, we need to continue to elect life-affirming people to office and affirm and support their efforts. We also need to continue to educate God’s people about the fundamental reason we affirm life. It is not because we live in a society that doesn’t, but because we serve a God who does. He gives every life value. He knits every life together in the womb. Jesus died for every life. The Holy Spirit desires to call every life into an eternal relationship with Him. Created, redeemed, and called. This is why human life has value and why we speak up for and defend it in truth and love.

Join us in prayer.

Lord of Life, we praise and thank You for the decision by the Iowa Supreme Court to allow the Heartbeat Bill to take effect.  We thank You for the lives that will be saved. Help us increase our efforts to show Your love to those experiencing a surprise pregnancy, and that the little boy or girl You knit together in their womb might be given continued life and new life in You. In Your name, Amen.

Praising the God that moves mountains,

Rev. Max Phillips
Executive Director
Lutheran Family Service

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