Mercy and the Womb

Mercy and the Womb

Reading Time: 2 minutes

In doing some studying of words used in the Bible, I found that a number of different words are translated as mercy. One seemed to be profoundly more attached to the core of one’s being than the rest. The word is “racham,” and it is typically just translated as “mercy.”

But I saw an odd note as I skimmed that said, “bowels.” I first thought “bowels of hell,” but that made no sense, so I dug deeper. It wasn’t really “bowels” that the word came from—no, in fact, the first time the word was used was in Genesis 20:18:

“The Lord had closed up every womb (racham) in Abimelech’s household because of Abraham’s wife Sarah.”

Womb and mercy were the same word. I was dumbfounded at first. Yet until we decided that ripping the miracle of life limb-from-limb was “medical care,” the womb was the safest place in the world. Beyond that, it was a place of nourishment, of being close to the heart of your creator, and of sharing in every possible moment.

The womb was a place of beginning and a place of incredible promise, of future opportunities that would be warmly and deeply cherished by the mother as they developed. From the womb would come a unique bond—a bond that is entirely life-changing. A bond that drives parents to sacrifice their lives so that the smiling, tiny face might have a chance to live. (Until recently, when we decided that the most magnificent occurrence ever was an inconvenience; a detour on the way to eternal death that should be removed so that we can bee-line toward the abyss in a state of culturally-induced, indulgent stupor.)

“The God of your father who helps you, and by the Almighty who blesses you, with blessings of the heavens above, with blessings of the depths below, with blessings of the breasts and womb (mercy/racham).” Genesis 49:25

In the Tabernacle, the Ark of the Covenant had one thing above it: the Mercy Seat. One thing triumphs over judgment, and it is mercy—yet in that same passage we find that out (James 2:13), we also observe that judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful.

It makes me tremble for those who seek abortions, and for those who deliver them. Their souls utterly lack mercy; something has been carved out of them, and the replacement organ is not a heart, but something unspeakably grotesque—a color out of space that horrifies as much as it makes one weep; which beats and pulses sickly and putridly, the ooze of selfishness somehow weeping out of its vessels as it courses forth wrath and lust.

My God, may we all be as merciful as the womb.

Mercy is found in the womb.

Share your comments, critiques, or criticisms here. [Please note that I alter most the hate comments to make them funnier for the other readers.]