If you've been able to tune in to our broadcasts in recent weeks, you know we've addressed the critical issue of the COVID-19 Vaccine more than once. In this email I lay out what SHOULD be the response of every believer to these unique and dangerously deceptive times in which we live.
Please understand: There is no medical or theologically compelling reason to take the COVID-19 vaccine. Many pastors, doctors, and Christian leaders like myself are urging people not to take it, or at least to wait before taking it.
But others are encouraging just the opposite. Dr. Russell Moore, leader of the Southern Baptist Convention’s ERLC, recently said, “I wouldn’t be able to think of one evangelical pastor who’s saying, ‘Don’t be vaccinated.’” Moore appears to be out of touch with the many pastors with whom I have spoken who have expressed concerns about an experimental genetically altering drug being promoted as a cure for the Coronavirus by politicians and pastors.
Even vaccine manufacturer Merck has now abandoned development of two coronavirus vaccines saying that after extensive research it was concluded the ‘vaccine shots’ generated an ‘inferior’ immune system response in comparison with natural infection. In effect, Merck is saying that it is more effective and ostensibly safer to get the virus, recover, and develop a natural immunity.
Yet some evangelical leaders argue that doing so is an act of “Christian compassion.” Dr. Rev. Al Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, for example, maintains, “I will take it not only for what I hope will be the good of my own health, but for others as well.” Others claim the vaccine is a “present from God” and an answer to prayer.
Dr. Robert Jeffress of Dallas First Baptist, asserted, “To ask God for help but then refuse the vaccine makes no more sense than calling 911 when your house is on fire, but refusing to allow the firemen in…There is no legitimate faith-based reason for refusing to take the vaccine.”
Then there is the declaration, “A Christian Statement on Science for Pandemic Times” published by BioLogos and Dr. Francis Collins. It claims, “Vaccination is a provision from God that will prevent disease not only for ourselves but for the most vulnerable among us,” referring to Jesus’ admonition to care for “the least of these” in Matthew 25:31-36.
Over 700 Christian leaders have signed it, including author Philip Yancey, New Testament scholar N.T. Wright, and BioLogos president Deborah Haarsma.
But their argument is seriously misguided.
I can’t help but wonder if evangelical leaders are simply misinformed about the facts of mRNA vaccines—because if they knew it could be deadlier than the Coronavirus would they be advocating for people to take it?
I have expressed concerns about research related to the vaccine in a letter to thousands of pastors. I have interviewed doctors who have issued clear warnings, including immunologist Dr. Delores Cahill, who claims, “…What I'm saying clearly is that I would not take a messenger RNA vaccine even if you gave me $10 million. If it was mandatory, I would go to prison. I would not take it. If someone injected me forcefully, I would sue them for attempted murder.”
A closer look, on the moral, legal, and biblical grounds, compels us not to take it, or at least to wait a considerable time before doing so.
It appears that several Christian leaders are proof texting Scripture to change the meaning of the text and are also sidestepping a critical moral issue. For example, our concern for “the least of these,” as Collins and others claim, quoting Matthew 25, has nothing to do with the Olivet Discourse, in which Jesus admonishes his followers to care for the poor, sick, and imprisoned. Taking an experimental drug with a potentially long list of unknown side effects, which is not approved by the FDA and permanently alters our body’s chromosomal structure has nothing to do with Matthew 25 nor does it exemplify compassion.
In the Pfizer fact sheet for healthcare workers published on the CDC website, it notes that because there is no available data on the effects of the vaccine being administered to pregnant women, “there is insufficient evidence to inform vaccine-associated risks to those who are pregnant” or want to become pregnant. Data is also not available to assess the effects of the vaccine on breastfed infants or on milk production/excretion.
Men who are vaccinated are also warned not to give sperm or engage in unprotected sex. Why?
Even though a Pfizer spokeswoman told The Associated Press “a vaccine candidate has not been found to cause infertility or sterilization,” the Pfizer fact sheet indicates the vaccine poses risks to women who are pregnant or want to be pregnant because “there is insufficient evidence.” In other words, we have to wait until women, unborn babies and breast-feeding babies start presenting side effects.
Why then would evangelical leaders suggest that healthy women who have a 99 percent chance of surviving the virus be injected with an mRNA drug that will irreversibly alter their DNA and potentially cause them to be sterile or have other potentially long- term negative consequences?
Before voluntarily taking the vaccine, individuals must sign a consent form, which raises serious legal concerns.
For example, consider the language of one form:
I have been provided with the Vaccine Information Sheet(s) or patient fact sheet corresponding to the vaccine(s) that I am receiving. I have read the information provided about the vaccine I am to receive. I have had the chance to ask questions that were answered to my satisfaction. I understand the benefits and risks of vaccination and I voluntarily assume full responsibility for any reactions that may result. (Emphasis added.)
Here’s the moral and legal problem: no one can say they’ve read all the information about the vaccine, or even asked the right questions and received answers to their satisfaction. Most don’t know the right questions to ask or what the risks are compared to the benefits.
Worse still, those voluntarily taking the vaccine agree to assume full responsibility (ostensibly legal, financial, medical and other) for all negative reactions, including death. This means that they and their family members, who may be caretakers, are on the hook for all negative consequences.
Biblically, evangelical leaders have a responsibility to guard their flock and protect them from deception. Jesus warned, “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves” (Matthew 7:15). Paul wrote, “Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers” (Acts 20:28).
If pastors and Christian leaders are going to sanction medical choices without first identifying the risks and benefits, are they not like the hirelings Jesus warned about in John 10? (“But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees. The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep” (v. 12, 13).)
Pastors have every duty, right, and responsibility to teach biblical principles about all aspects of life, including medical decisions. But the arguments being made to take such a controversial vaccine not only violate good medical practice but also every biblical principle relative to truthfulness and the seeking of wisdom needed to make Godly decisions.
Christians cannot blindly embrace an irreversible genetically modifying drug that tampers with God’s design for our bodies while also calling it a “present from God” or “an answer to prayer.” Instead, they must carefully evaluate for themselves and their loved ones the full range of serious consequences involved.
After researching the vaccine’s extraordinary risks, I am convinced it is dangerous and wrong to take it. In good conscience before God, I am urging all faith leaders who have endorsed the drug to reconsider their position and urge all Americans to wait and not be intimidated or shamed into taking any mRNA drug.
I hope you'll consider what I've written here. We've produced many programs and information on our websites so please take advantage of them to educate yourself and research what I've shared with you. (American Pastors Network and Stand in the Gap Media).
May God grant you wisdom and courage for these perilous times,
Standing in the Gap for Truth,
Hon. Sam Rohrer
President, American Pastors Network
President, Pennsylvania Pastors Network
Host: Stand in the Gap Radio and TV