"Miscarriage is for a moment; a soul is forever"

Doug Phillips’ “Hopeful Theology of Miscarriage”

Speaking this past weekend at “The Baby Conference,” in San Antonio, Texas, Vision Forum speaker, Doug Phillips gave a talk entitled, “A Hopeful Theology of Miscarriage” ~ a summary of which, Phillips shared on his blog.

After taking the position that not all children who die go to heaven ~ but only the “children called of God,” Phillips discussed “the significant role that the unborn and young children play in God’s’ covenant of grace …” and then added:

Though acknowledging the sadness and loss of miscarriage — with he and his wife Beall having lost two unborn children — Doug offered two key points of hope that the loss of a child in the womb can bring:

  1. The hope of discipling our families on the priorities, nobilities, and sacrifices of Motherhood.
  2. The hope that tragedy provides to model confidence in the sovereignty of God to your children and the world.

Somehow ~ this is supposed to bring comfort to mothers who have lost children through miscarriage. Plus, it should be a great lesson about the nature and dealings of God for children and “the world” too!  Ack.

Here’s the “piercing question” that really turned my stomach as Phillips’ words reminded me of the spiritual manipulation which was so much a part of my old Quiverfull world:

“What if miscarriage was God’s mean [sic] of showing mercy and love on a human soul, and if He chose you to be the honored vehicle to usher that child into eternity?”

And then he says, “Miscarriage is for a moment; a soul is forever.”

Mr. Phillips ~ your God is an evil monster! 

May He go the way of Molech, Baal, and all the other sons-of-bitches tribal gods of the ancient Near-East that nobody has taken seriously for centuries.

So how is it that God is showing mercy and love to a baby when He chooses to to kill it ~ or at least, not to continue sustaining its life ~ His way of “discipling” families with regard to moms’ priorities (the noble ones will sacrifice) and as an object lesson for children and “the world” ~ and when He uses our wombs to accomplish His capricious display of sovereignty, we should feel honored?!!!

What does this have to do with God’s covenant of grace?

And women should readily submit our wombs to the capricious whims of this Big Guy, why?

Yes, our mother-hearts will often compel us to sacrifice ourselves for our families.  But unlike the Patriarchs, we women are not so cruel as to willfully sacrifice our own children to populate Hell.  With no assurance that the precious lives which we grow in our wombs and hold in our hearts are among the “children called of God” ~ why should we cooperate in their creation for eternal destruction?

My apologies if Phillips’ flippancy with regard to what most women experience as a most devastating loss and an unbearable tragedy trips any PTSD triggers.  His wolf-like insensitivity-disguised-in-spiritual-virtue sheep’s clothing certainly grabbed hold of my heart and my head and twisted my being into knots of confusion, dismay and anger.

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  • lisa

    I agree with you that Mr. Phillips is offering a pitiful excuse for comfort. If God were doing as he says, indeed He would be a monster. I happen to not believe that God has anything to do with miscarriages, as far as causing them, and that He is saddened and cares for those who suffer them. I am a thinker for myself and reject Calvinism, which I believe to be an evil doctrine. It is plain Vyckie that you are very wounded by all that has happened and have found it easier to just believe that there is no God than to consider that what you thought He demanded of you was not really something He was demanding at all. It seems as if you may either blame Him for what happened, or feel that if He was real and loved you He would not have allowed it. I hope that you can someday realize that He loves and did love you and did not want the hell that you endured. He wants a relationship with you, not rules for you. He gave you freedom. He never said you had to crawl over broken glass to win His approval. The people who came up with the mandates for this religion had to really invent between the lines to come up with it. To say that because the bible says that God told mankind to be fruitful and multiply that all couples must endlessly procreate without wisdom or regard to their situations, or to say that because the bible appears to say that He supernaturally intervened to open or close someone’s womb on a few occaissions means that He does that or wants to do that normally and desires to fully control all wombs is presuming and assuming a lot in my opinion. There is no where in scripture that says people are prohibited from influencing their childbearing, either to encourage or discourage conception. Although the quiver people try to propound the idea that contraception wasn’t accepted or practiced until this century, or that all people thought as they do until recently, that is just plain propaganda. People have in situations that they perceived as necessitating it, used various forms of conception prevention since shortly after our beginnings. We live in a messed up broken world and are messed up and broken ourselves. Sometimes it is just not possible or wise for someone to have a passel of kids, and that doesn’t mean God is going to close their womb for them, anymore than He is going to close the womb of someone who makes an unwise decision such as getting pregnant out of marriage to a scumbag. Anyway, I am sorry for all you have gone through and I hope you can at some point believe that there is a God, who truly is love and did not want for you the bad things that happened. Legalism I believe is what hurt you, not God.

  • Diane Osborne

    I lost a baby at 10 weeks, and I grieved deeply, despite having 2 other children. I do not think God causes miscarriages , etc., but I think that in our fallen world, He allows it . I believe that Scripture shows that my baby (as with all miscarried babies, stillborns, babies who die as infants or small children ) was “short circuited ” into Eternity . I don’t know why, although I could speculate. (Major birth defect ? a life of suffering ? ) Because I lost that baby , we had our daughter the following year. We would not have had her if not for the loss. I think that God teaches us many things thru such losses, and send us comfort .Why does He allow anyone to live ? We are all here by His Mercy .

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    After taking the position that not all children who die go to heaven ~ but only the “children called of God”…

    This is called “Double Predestination” or “Predestination Unto Damnation,” with the implied corollary “Who are you to doubt the Will of God?” It’s one of the memes that’s handicapped Islam throughout its history, and my writing partner (a burned-out country preacher) has to constantly fight “Hyper-Calvinists” or “Truly Reformed” who teach this as from the Mouth of God. He says he’s running into a LOT of such Hyper-Calvinists in the past year or two, and that the mindset seems to be on the upswing. His “Don’t Go Stupid on Me!” sermon is getting far too much airtime.

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    “What if miscarriage was God’s mean [sic] of showing mercy and love on a human soul, and if He chose you to be the honored vehicle to usher that child into eternity?”

    And then he says, “Miscarriage is for a moment; a soul is forever.”

    Mr. Phillips ~ your God is an evil monster!

    What happened to the God who Incarnated into a broken Cosmos, to encounter and share its brokenness? The God who said in almost so many words, “Sometimes Shit Happens”? The God who promises all will be made anew in a repaired and perfected Cosmos 2.0? The God who said that the End is bright with “all things made new”, but there’s going to be some real dark times between now and then?

  • Dr. Lanlais

    Do not judge God by what men spew out of their pious mouths. Ugh. Just as God does not strike us with lightening bolts to show his anger, he also does not cause miscarriages. The Bible teaches he is a loving God who is slow to anger! And that is what I choose to believe!! Not the rantings of some random man who deems himself worthy to speak and expand upon what God says (which is rarely accurate!!)

  • Desalie

    Checked out the blog for the baby conference (vision forum).Is it Godly for Michelle to accpet an actual award (silver plate).Shouldn’t she be saying she needs no award it’s all for the glory of God (tongue in cheek 😉 )

  • Bob

    Wow, are you all mislead. I can’t believe your comments and the responses. How evil! I accidentally found this site while searching for this miscarriage message by Doug Phillips to copy the outline to a friend who didn’t have access to the Baby Conference CD’s. I listened to this message last night with my wife and we thought it was eye opening. As Christians, and having had miscarriages, not exactly what one would “like” to hear. But Biblically, dead on accurate! It’s never about what we want to hear, it’s about what God needs to tell us. So in that sense, a great message! Doug Phillips and Vision Forum are dead on with everything involving the downfall of the family and the need for revival and renewal of the family in this culture. Of course people don’t want to hear that their miscarriages or dead young children may not be in Heaven. But that isn’t our choice, that is God’s will and God’s will alone! Our children are not innocent, we are all born as sinners, cursed by Adam and Eve. No getting around it! By the looks of this site, you sound like you used to be a Christian before the Deceiver got a hold of your heart and now has misdirected you. What a shame. I pray that you cry out to God for mercy and get back into His grace. Anyways, if non-Christians want to stick to those 1.7 children, that’s fine by me. If the rest of us following this vision keep going forward with our QUIVERFULLS, then by a generation or two down the line, by God’s grace, we should be doing much better in the culture. That is if we can keep ahead of the Muslums, who also believe in large families. You should spend less time attacking those who are trying to make a difference in this world, and more time putting your head in the Bible!

  • Amanda

    You sir are a pathetic excuse for a Christian. I realize that I am several months behind in responding to this but I have only recently discovered this blog. How dare you speak to her this way! I too have suffered the loss of not one but two children. I held my twin sons in my arms as they died because they were born way too soon to even have a chance at survival. There is not a doubt in my mind that they (or any other child that has left this world too soon) are not in heaven. The Christ you yourself worship said ” Suffer all little children come to me” (And yes I realize I am paraphrasing here…..contrary to what you vision forum people seem to think just because I am a woman does not mean I lack the ability to think.) I have three other living children and that is all I can have because I made the choice for sterilization (my body could not handle another pregnancy) in order to be there for the children I already have. I suppose in your eyes that means I am going to Hell since I am not a baby factory. Yes family is important….but it is quality not quantity that counts. As far as the comments made by Doug Phillips…..he is a man. He is not God, so how dare he presume to tell anyone what God wants, thinks or feels. His comments are cruel, heartless,and a slap in the face to those who have suffered such devastating losses. Here is a final thought for you…..try asking yourself “What would Jesus Do?” Do you think he would tell a woman grieving the loss of her unborn baby that her child may not have made it to Heaven? I sincerely doubt it. The Jesus I read about in the Bible would offer comfort and reassurance that said baby was now in the arms of his Father. If it is truly the goal of a good Christian to be as Christ-like as possible, you, Doug Phillips, and all who agree with him fall spectacularly short.