Biden’s Executive Orders

Listen to this article on The Lutheran Witness podcast.

President Joe Biden had barely taken the oath of office on Jan. 20 before he began signing executive orders and presidential memorandums, some of which should be deeply troubling to Christians.

The president signed a record number of orders, many of them reversing policies of the Trump administration on such issues as immigration, climate change and the coronavirus. Before the sun set on his first day in office, Biden had signed 17 executive orders, presidential memorandums and proclamations, and by Jan. 31, he had signed 39. No previous president signed nearly as many in such a short time span; the number of executive orders alone is more than his four most recent predecessors combined in the same period of their presidencies.

At least two of the orders are of particular concern to people of faith. One requires schools to allow biological males to compete against females in sports and opens up women’s restrooms and locker rooms to biological males. The other restores U.S. funding of abortions on foreign soil.

Funding foreign abortions

The Mexico City Policy, which denied U.S. funds to international organizations that provide abortion services, came into being under President Ronald Reagan in 1985. Under the policy, foreign non-governmental organizations that received American taxpayer funding had to certify that they did not “perform or actively promote abortions as a method of family planning.” Not only was this the morally right thing to do, it reflected the will of the people; a large majority of Americans oppose federal funding of abortions, whether in the U.S. or abroad.

Since then, every Democrat president — Clinton, Obama and Biden — has repealed the policy, and both Republican presidents — Bush and Trump — restored it.

Biden’s order rescinding the Mexico City Policy, under the disingenuous title “Memorandum on Protecting Women’s Health at Home and Abroad,” states that the policy “made it harder for women to obtain necessary healthcare.” The order does nothing to protect women’s health. Abortion is not health care, not for the women seeking abortions, and certainly not for the children in their wombs, half of whom are female.

Biden’s order said the policy of the previous administration “imposes … onerous requirements on abortion providers.” On the contrary, the policy imposed no requirements on overseas abortion providers; the U.S. does not have such authority. The policy merely prevented American taxpayer funding of overseas abortion providers.

The order also said the Mexico City Policy “undermine[d] the United States’ efforts to advance gender equality globally” — an ironic assertion, since many abortions around the world are performed for sex selection, which disproportionately destroys females.

Many of Biden’s fellow Catholics condemned the order. Archbishop Joseph Naumann of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops wrote, “It is grievous that one of President Biden’s first official acts actively promotes the destruction of human lives.”

Nothing in Biden’s order references the children in the womb; it treats abortion as a medical procedure that affects only the pregnant women. But the preborn are still human beings, created by God in His image, each one unique. “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb” (Ps. 139:13).

New transgender territory

If the Mexico City Policy tug-of-war is nothing new after 35 years, the transgender order is breaking new ground.

The “Executive Order on Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation” states: “Children should be able to learn without worrying about whether they will be denied access to the restroom, the locker room, or school sports.”

The innocuous-sounding statement has broad-reaching implications, recognized by both supporters, who celebrated it, and opponents, who fear it will destroy female sports in allowing biological males to compete against females. The order also threatens the privacy of females by allowing biological males into their restrooms and locker rooms.

Contrary to the assertion of transgender apologists, hormone therapy does not level the playing field, taking away any advantage a biological male has over females in sports. A British Journal of Sports medicine study found that men transitioning to female still have a biological advantage after a year on hormone therapy. Such studies are hardly needed to prove what has become obvious to anyone following the news: Transgender women are competing, winning and setting records in women’s athletics. This occurs in high school and college, as well as professional sports. And it could render women’s competition in the Olympics meaningless as the fastest, strongest and most skilled biological females, who have trained for years and would otherwise win competitions and set records, lose to trans females with the physical differences that come with a Y chromosome.

Women who have long fought for a place on the field and court through Title IX and other initiatives view this as a devastating setback that, if allowed to stand, will turn back the pages on women’s athletics.

Biden signed a companion executive order that reversed the Trump administration’s ban on transgender Americans serving in the military. The order not only allows those who have already transitioned to a different sex to serve but directs the Pentagon to establish “a process by which transgender service members may transition gender while serving.”

Biden’s order said a diagnosis of gender dysphoria, the condition of psychologically identifying as the opposite of one’s biological sex, is not a medically valid reason to exclude someone from military service or limit one’s access to medically necessary care. That care includes sex-change surgery, funded by taxpayers. Some have voiced concern that the policy will attract recruits who join for the express purpose of receiving gender-reassignment treatment at taxpayer expense.

Prior to the Trump ban, the Pentagon had already implemented a policy to provide hormone therapy and gender reassignment surgery to active-duty service members when military doctors determined it was necessary to treat patients’ gender dysphoria. Biden’s order restores that policy.

God’s Word does not change to keep up with social fashion. In His earthly ministry, Jesus affirmed the creation of just two genders, male and female: “[Jesus said,] ‘Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female?’” (Matt. 19:4). There is no ambiguity, no one is created biologically one sex and psychologically the other.

Christians should approach the issue in love and humility, as the apostle Paul wrote to the Galatians: “Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness” (Gal. 6:1).

That won’t be easy in the current atmosphere. The implications of the president’s executive orders could be far-reaching, hampering the ability of faith-based schools and organizations, as well as military chaplains, to carry out their work. But they do not hinder God’s ability to act in and through His children.

50 thoughts on “Biden’s Executive Orders”

  1. Bill Kaparich, read what I wrote!

    I called the sin of homosexuality and trangenderism perversions, just as much as the sin of abortion-butchering unborn children is a murderous perversion.

    Such sinful perversions – as well as your ad hominem attacks – are not Christ-like behaviors. Repent!

  2. Thank you for writing this LCMS Witness and taking a clear stand. With so many cultural issues coming at the church, seemingly all at once, we need to prepare ourselves. Gender identity, gender reassignment (especially for children), critical race theory, religous freedom, etc are issues the church will need to take a stand on and these are coming quickly. The synods communication on these issues will be critical.

  3. John J. Flanagan

    It is interesting to read the different perspectives which have been brought to the table for discussion. Throughout history, Christians have had to navigate through society and uphold their faith and convictions at the same time. Too many absorb the popular cultural values and prevailing philosophies while neglecting the solid wisdom and instruction found in the Bible.
    Now we have an unethical and corrupt President who embraces the evil of abortion and is intent on advancing it, along with transgender rights, and other sinful ideas, and is supported by socialists (Democrats), an adoring propaganda media, and a dangerous politically correct and ruthlessly leftist mindset. As Christians and American citizens, do we stand for what is right, or do we allow evil to continue unchallenged?
    In my view, where the church has been negligent, where the church fearfully sits by, where the church counts silence as prudent and virtuous, evil will prevail, civilizations will be destroyed, persecution will rise a hundredfold.
    These are evil times. Gird yourselves with the armor of God, and stand up.

  4. “Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor.” 1 Peter 2:17 ESV

    “Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not of this world.'” John 18:36 ESV

    “Put not your trust in princes.” Psalm 146:3 ESV

  5. Michael Fieberkorn

    There is no issue being led to a different perspective, so long as the perspective is one Jesus too could hold. I can assure you, Jesus would never be led to the perspective of enabling abortion, or of undermining His own created design of male and female sexuality. As far as “smaller,” goes, fewer numbers does not mean something is wrong. Jesus said narrow is the path that leads to salvation and few will find it. Jesus said the world will stand in opposition to the kingdom of God. What’s increasingly popular in the world is rarely the ethic of the kingdom of God. And as far as love goes, love is not tolerance at all costs. Love is compassion. Sometimes the compassionate thing to do is care, other times the loving thing to do is rebuke, that the sinner might turn, repent, and be saved.

  6. I am glad to see the LCMS speaking out. It is not “pro Trump” to agree with the policies he put forth. The LCMS may be shrinking but it is not shirking it’s duty to speak the truth. Genuine Christianity has never been popular! This (Witness) is the proper forum for stating the facts. You will not hear it from the pulpit however, because that is not what our Lord wants to be preached at worship services. It’s time for everyone who calls himself/herself Christian to stand up for the truth as set forth in the Bible. It isn’t easy, but not as hard as what Jesus suffered for us. Also: Christians do not hate sinners – we are compassionate toward those who suffer sin’s consequences, and we try in every way possible to lead sinners to Christ.

  7. These two issues sicken me to think the leader of the country is so morally degrading the attitudes about women. Wonder if he’d want his granddaughters subjected to sharing locker rooms with males!

  8. carol anderson

    This was an interesting article. I am a Catholic and am bothered by the fact that Biden claims to be a Catholic but believes in abortion, and his vice president believes in partial birth abortion. Our priest wrote an interesting article a few weeks ago about abortion and Biden. He ended the article by saying we need to pray for Biden.

  9. As reasonable and correct as some of these concerns are (especially those regarding the reversal of the Mexico City policy), this article fails to demonstrate why these grievances belong in a Christian publication. The stridently partisan framing makes this piece sound like any other secular conservative political commentary just with a few Bible verses quoted. Surely Jesus’ church is not just another Republican interest group?

    1. Kendall, it is not partisan to oppose the butchering of unborn children or supplying funds for such butchery, nor is it partisan to oppose the perversion of homosexuality or transgenderism.

      It is your leftist claptrap that is “stridently partisan”! It is most definitely not Christian.

      1. Carl, “Preversion” … really??? If these individuals you label as perverts have accepted Jesus as their Savior, why do you degrade them? Do you deny Jesus the right to accept them? I apparently missed the memo that placed you ahead of the Lord. Your lecture to a community of Christians is tainted by a certain lack of humility. Bill

    2. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that Christians voicing opposition to the killing of the innocent would be construed by this current culture as ‘strident’. But of course when many Christians today are told they can pick and choose from the Law what should we expect.

      1. Cutie,
        Don’t feel alone in your opinion. Not all MS Lutherans agree with David Cox.

      2. Joann,

        I’m not so concerned about whether or not one agrees with Mr. Cox; I’m more interested in whether or not one agrees with God’s Word. As I mentioned to Cutie, I suggest you consider Martin Luther’s explanation to the Fifth Commandment. http://catechism.cph.org/en/10-commandments.html I would especially encourage you to consider the Questions and Answers in the synodical handbook portion. The murder of unborn children has no place in the Christian community and is antithetical to the Christian faith.

  10. Rebecca Oerman

    It has nothing to do with Trump. Mr. Cox is stating the truth according to the Bible. God’s word has not changed. Sin is still sin despite what many people today wish were true. Calling sinners to repentance is the loving thing to do. Ignoring sin just paves the road to hell.

    1. Roy,
      Have you ever known, talked with, or taken the time to inquire of these women why they feel so desperate, alone, in seeking such a life altering action?
      Many Christians hide behind scripture and offer no tangible help.

      1. Joann,

        I have. What I have found is that those who so often advocate for the murder of unborn children lack the courage the offer true help that does not violate the life of the unborn. When I suggests that instead of murdering unborn children we might establish pregnancy care centers, I’m usually met with blank stares or flat out refusals to do anything. It’s too much work; it’s too hard. Murdering the child is easier.

        That said, Lutherans are not afraid to hide behind Scripture, because the Word of God is all that we have. God, in His Word, never promises an easy life. He never promises easy solutions. In fact, He promises the cross, which means learning to die to ourselves and living as a redeemed child of God in accordance with His Word. I agree these women are desperate and alone. But that desperation does not grant permission to reject God and His Word.

        I give thanks that our Lord forgives all sins, even those of murdering an unborn child. I pray all who struggle with this guilt would find forgiveness in Him.

  11. Robert M Bjornstad

    It is sad that the Missouri Synod has become so closely connected to one political perspective. The article above shows support for a narrowing and discriminating viewpoint. Maybe the leaders of the Missouri Synod do not believe that there is room for those who are led by Jesus to a different perspective. I agree with those who see the Synod future as smaller, less significant, and lacking love.

    1. So you are saying Jesus leads a woman to kill her unborn child? Really? And as for the military be transgender if you can do the job, but I as a taxpayer shouldn’t have to pay for you to change your body. Do that on your own dime. I believe in God the Father almighty and have accepted Christ as the way, truth, and life. Love is for all, but love doesn’t mean we have to be complacent and let the world’s views take over our faith.

    2. Jeffrey Clark

      Your argument is based upon a fallacy: that the LCMS worships at the altar of political ideology. Indeed, this does seem to be the case in many mainstream denominations who consider the Bible as a cafeteria plan; rejecting those parts that would stand in the way of supporting liberal causes that Scripture rejects.

      As a lifelong FORMER member of ELCA congregations, I can tell you that LCMS congregations are teeming with love and welcome all-comers. Our own congregation has grown significantly over the past several years. However, Gospel Law is not modified to suit an ideological fad or trend. Sin is still sin… all of it.

      In short, LCMS positions have not moved though it might appear that way to folks on the ship of the political left as it continues to drift further and further into radical thought and practice. As it has for centuries, the LCMS is strictly and exclusively guided by the Holy Bible , not CNN and the NYT.

      Anyone who thinks that Jesus leads us away from God’s Law toward a “different perspective” is hallucinating. We are assured that Jesus never leaves His Father’s side (Luke 22:69).

      I pray for anyone who seeks a trendy church experience free from bothersome parts of Law and Gospel.

    3. Matt 7:13-14 13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 [a]Because narrow is the gate and [b]difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.

      If you are being led through the wider gate, perhaps it’s not Jesus you are following? (not you personally, this is not an attack, merely a reply)

      Which church of Revelation would you rather be a part of? I’d much prefer Smyrna to the others who have become lukewarm, forgotten their first love, aligned with the world etc.

    4. Robert, those who support “different perspectives” that include abortion butchery, homosexuality, and other sexual perversions are not being led by Jesus; they are being led by Satan into the abyss of hell, as they spew their memes of hate against Christians.

    5. All denominations are declining per data that is publicly available. The denominations that are losing membership at a frightening pace are those that are theologically liberal (and many of those denominations happen also to be politically liberal). Many, like the Episcopalian church are forecast to disappear completely within 20-30 years. They have succumbed to decades of cultural pressure, which is obviously only getting worse. The denominations that will survive this will be those that stand up against the rapidly declining culture and resist the call to reinterpret or water down the Word of God. Theologically conservative denominations will survive and, I believe, come out on the other side stronger.

    6. Thank you for answering, Roy. And for actually reaching out to the desperate in this situation. We should all take the initiative to do this . Sadly, it is easier to text opinions.

  12. George D Kendall

    I dont beleive in Transgendered people… Its confusing! because they want to be some other sex other then what they were created biologically speaking. God didnt create Confusion!

  13. First off.. I dont beleive in changing your sex., Even if you are having sexual issues, IF youre a male, learn to be a man and if you having problems seek wisdom and spiritual help,If youre a Woman and youre having problems being one,dont change your SEX. We are in the Likeness of God The Father, just because You are not comfortable being one sex or the other, and beleive You would better off as the other Sex.

  14. Robert Geopper

    In recent years, LCMS membership has fallen below 2 million baptized members and that membership continues to drop at a rapid rate.

    When asked, youth leaving the church state 2 primary reasons. The church is hypocritical and judgmental. Statements like this only reinforce their belief.

    Policy of forced removal of children from parents at the border — crickets.

    Policy of non-discrimination against transgender individuals — SINNERS!

    This is why your church is dying. Trump>God

    1. Michael Fieberkorn

      All mainline denominations are dropping at a rapid rate, even the liberal ones. America is an increasingly godless nation. As the ship sinks, I’d rather be on the side of Jesus and Scripture, than society. God>America.

    2. Perhaps the youth have been too brainwashed by the worldly and anti-Christian education system? ‘Few will enter by the narrow gate’ Matt 7:13 The falling away is prophesied, sad and regrettable and certainly we shouldn’t simply ‘let them go’ without concern or reaching out, but to suggest the church should adapt to appease them and the world’s ideals is disconcerting. God is forgiving, but first requires repentance. Now Trump is to blame for the falling away? no words.

    3. Regarding your comment on children being removed from parents at the border–what proof do Border Patrol agents have that these adults are the childrens’ parents? What if they are abusers/traffickers? Will children feel free to report their situation when still in possession of their abuser’s? It is not a perfect situation, and never will be as long as people try to do things in an unlawful way. However, when immigrants do things in the correct way–THEN there are many ways to confirm that children are with their true and lawful guardians who love and care for them. If you are concerned about hypocrisy, then take a good look about how an open borders policy creates a highway for child abusers, pedophiles, and human traffickers to carry out evil with no protection for children and other victims.

  15. Happy to see some rhetoric and a stand from LCMS. I’ve been a Lutheran all my life, but it’s the Conservatives I see taking a stronger stand and being vocal about what is going on.

    1. Barbara, your thinking is seriously misguided. Opposition to abortion and sexual perversion is from prayerfully listening to God’s word. If Republicans also oppose to these actions and behaviors, it is simply because they agree with God’s word on these issues.

  16. I am lutheran and I still believe in the right for a woman to choose. Only person that should judge people is God. I dont see an issue with a president that actually works. I’m glad he went in to reverse a lot of Trump’s 1% propaganda. The US is a diverse culture and should be represented that way. Love your neighbor as you would love thyself! Now I’m a bit concerned about the boys competing against women and boys using girls bathroom. That just sets up a whole new issues that will be a problem.

    1. Roy S. Askins

      Cutie,

      There are many people who claim to be Lutheran, but that does not make them Lutheran. It is not a Lutheran belief that a woman has the right to murder her unborn children. Why? Because God calls His people to protect the weakest and preserve the lives of our neighbors — especially our nearest neighbors, our children.

      I encourage you to read the Fifth Commandment again, and reflect on the explanations in the back. You can find a copy here: https://www.cph.org/p-32272-luthers-small-catechism-with-explanation-2017-edition.aspx?REName=&plk=0&Lk=0&rlk=0

      Let me know if you have any questions.

    2. Sundra Mistler

      The woman has a right to choose—-there are lots of ways to not become pregnant. I am sure that Mary would have rather not been pregnant—just think, in this modern time Jesus might never have been born. Again—the 6th commandment will take care of a lot of this. Back to the basics!!!!

    3. John J. Flanagan

      Cutie, please stop for a moment. Take the time to examine your hands and fingers, your fingernails, and look closely at the fingers you used to type your comments. By about 10 weeks in within the sanctuary of your mother’s womb, those very fingers were formed. Your little heart had already been beating at 3 -4 weeks. Your head, spinal column were distinguished, and your umbilical chord was being active, transporting oxygen and nutrients from your mother to your tiny body, and it was good. It was a miracle and God created another child from as result of His boundless love. In the weeks that followed, at around week twelve, your eyes of a beautiful color, ears, and face displayed your distinctive qualities. By 14 weeks, you had nerves, nerves which could experience pain. On and on the days passed, and Cutie was increasing in weight by seven times, and doubling in height. By 23 weeks or earlier, viability was present, and you could actually survive outside of the womb.
      When you consider these facts about your own life, do you think that the “pro-choice” position, in which 50 million unwanted babies have perished already, is a moral opinion, a viable political position, or a point of view the Lord expects of a Christian? The answer is no, it is not. I pray that you will come to your senses, and the truth, that the murder of the unborn in the womb is wrong. For women who had been misguided and had abortions, and repent, God will forgive. The LCMS takes a pastoral view of the abortion issue, and opposition must be tempered by mercy and compassion for those struggling with this sin, or the effects of it. The great Satanic lies of the culture, and the extreme anti-family position of some feminist leaders in our time has painted “reproductive rights” to include infanticide for convenience, and this is an abomination to the Lord. Many leaders of the pro-life movement are women themselves, so it is not a matter which should be construed as ‘against the rights of women.’ It is a grevious sin, and we must stand against it always. Being ‘pro-choice’ means determining that a defenseless child is worthy of death, in 90 percent of cases, for the mere reasons of being unwanted and inconvenient, and this is the grevious sin of our nation….God will judge.

  17. I am aware of some Lutherans leaving the church because they feel it has become too liberal. I am pleased to see concern about Biden’s polices expressed in this article.

      1. At the 2001 LCMS Convention, delegates approved [706 to 343] Resolution 3-21A (Proceedings, p. 142), which resolved, “That the 2001 synodical convention affirm the late President Alvin L. Barry’s judgment that ‘we cannot consider them [the ELCA] to be an orthodox Lutheran church body’.”

        In its 2012 “Response” to the ELCA’s 2009 decision to recognize “homosexual marriage,” the LCMS Commission on Theology and Church Relations stated (p. 21): “The ELCA has now taken this step, embodying apostasy from the faith once delivered to the saints.”

        Thus the ELCA organization has been recognized as neither Lutheran nor Christian. The XXXA is a tool of Satan.

  18. Thank you for this article. There are far too many members in LCMS who sit there in a pew on Sunday and say nothing, do nothing! Many even think it’s ok or that it won’t be that bad or these rules don’t effect them…
    Every person who voted for this agenda along with those who saw this coming need to get down on their knees. We need to unceasingly pray that our great and awesome Father will lead us through this travesty. Please let our voices be heard by those with deaf ears.

  19. Sin has corrupted everything… including sexuality and gender. Of course some people are confused about their sexuality and gender… let alone marriage, identity, and life in general. Jesus hung out with the sinners and pointed them to Himself. Let’s be a church that hangs out with sinners and points them to Jesus.

    1. Tom,

      Indeed, sin has corrupted everything, and as Christians, we will gladly speak with anyone who is willing to listen to the message of Christ’s forgiveness. Mr. Cox’s concerns revolve around the government coercing Christians to act in ways that are contrary to our beliefs about such actions.

  20. This so called ‘christian’ has to be stopped. He may be a Catholic but is no Christian with his crazy want list: abortions, transgender recognition, etc. He is only interested in spite.

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