We Named Her Sierra Dawn 

We wish that she had come to full term 

Luke 1.39–45 

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • March 10, In the year of our Lord Christ, 2018 


  1. In 1980, my wife was pregnant with our first child. 
    1. However, at a little past six months, 
    2. something was not right. 
      1. Eventually the baby stopped moving. 
      2. Two weeks later, which was now into the 7-month, my wife miscarried. 
        1. A 17-once baby girl came out and 
        2. we were devastated. 
  2. Since the baby girl weighed more than one pound, 
    1. we had to go through the normal process 
    2. as with anyone who has died. 
      1. We named her: Sierra Dawn. 
      2. I have no doubt 
        1. that Sierra Dawn Ruhl is safe in the presence of our God. 
        2. The next thing is for my whole family and me to join her someday. 
  3. Amazingly, some states are allowing 
    1. the aborting of a baby at this stage or even later. 
    2. Some are allowing infanticide, 
      1. the killing of the baby 
      2. after it has been born. 
        1. Why is this happening? 
        2. I am sure that it has something to do with the way certain people see the Supreme Court going in the near future, 
          1. that Roe vs. Wade might be reversed someday. 
      3. Is late term abortion and infanticide widespread? 
        1. I do not believe so, but 
        2. many state governments, 
          1. run by people who have no biblical morals, 
          2. have opened the door for such things to happen. 
            1. Where will it end? 
            2. Has it really gotten that bad in America? 
  4. My wife and I cried hard at the death of our unborn baby girl. 
    1. She was something that God had given us the ability to make. 
      1. Everything about the conception of a baby is a wonderful. 
      2. Everything about the conception and development of a baby screams creation. 
    2. Sierra Dawn was our baby. 
      1. We did not know that she was a girl until she was born, but 
      2. she was our daughter. 
        1. I guess we were destined to have nothing but daughters. 
        2. My wife had a fifth pregnancy after Melissa, but 
          1. my wife miscarried that baby 
          2. before we could know what it was. 
    3. The thought of getting rid of Sierra Dawn, or any of our babies, 
      1. is something that we would never have thought of doing. 
      2. For the girls and young women who have, and 
        1. we want you to know 
        2. that there is forgiveness in Jesus. 
  5. We named her Sierra Dawn because 
    1. she was our baby, 
    2. she was a person as much as we are. 
      1. I saw her after the miscarriage. 
      2. She was a human baby, our baby. 
        1. How can anyone think 
        2. that you can kill her if you do not want her? 
          1. Something is wrong when we think nothing of killing babies. 
          2. How long shall God’s judgment hold out? 


  1. Don, abortion is not your concern, nor the church’s! 
    1. Abortion is a religious issue, because we are made in the image of God. 
    2. Abortion is a political issue, because the Supreme Court legalized it. 
    3. Abortion is a civil rights issue, because we are unjustly killing humans. 
    4. Abortion is a military issue, because we have fewer warriors. 
    5. Abortion is a social issue, because who will take care of the old people? 
    6. Abortion is a tax issue, because we have fewer paying into the system. 
    7. Abortion is an employment issue, because there are fewer workers. 
    8. Abortion is an economic issue, because it costs billions of dollars. 
  2. What the Bible Says 
    1. The Bible speaks of the child in the womb in the same way as outside. 
    2. The twins in Rebekah

      21 Now Isaac pleaded with the LORD for his wife, because she was barren; and the LORD granted his plea, and Rebekah his wife conceived. 22 But the children struggled together within her; and she said, “If all is well, why am I like this?” So she went to inquire of the LORD. 23 And the LORD said to her:

      “Two nations are in your womb,
      Two peoples shall be separated from your body;
      One people shall be stronger than the other,
      And the older shall serve the younger.”
      (Genesis 25.21–23)
    3. Elizabeth and John

      39 Now Mary arose in those days and went into the hill country with haste, to a city of Judah, 40 and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For indeed, as soon as the voice of your greeting sounded in my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy” (Luke 1.39–44).
    4. The Bible speaks of pregnant women as being, “with child”:

      Gen 16.11 And the Angel of the LORD said to her:

      “Behold, you are with child,
      And you shall bear a son.
      You shall call his name Ishmael,
      Because the LORD has heard your affliction.”

      Exo 21.22–25 “If men fight, and hurt a woman with child, so that she gives birth prematurely, yet no harm follows, he shall surely be punished accordingly as the woman’s husband imposes on him; and he shall pay as the judges determine. 23 But if any harm follows, then you shall give life for life,  24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,  25 burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.”

      1Sa 4.19 Now his daughter-in-law, Phinehas’ wife, was with child, due to be delivered; and when she heard the news that the ark of God was captured, and that her father-in-law and her husband were dead, she bowed herself and gave birth, for her labor pains came upon her. [She gave birth to a boy]

      2Ki 8.12 And Hazael said, “Why is my lord weeping?” He answered, “Because I know the evil that you will do to the children of Israel: Their strongholds you will set on fire, and their young men you will kill with the sword; and you will dash their children, and rip open their women with child.”

      Matt 1.18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit.
  3. When Is It a Human Being?
    1. This is not a question of when does life begin? 
      1. The egg is living. 
      2. Common beliefs: 
        1. When the fertilized egg is implanted on the uterine wall. 
        2. After the first trimester, 
          1. because that is when the mother feels movement. 
        3. Some time after birth, 
          1. so that before birth it is just 
          2. “pregnancy tissue,” 
          3. or “POC” (Product of Conception). 
    2. However, at conception 
      1. 23 chromosomes from the father and the mother 
      2. unite to form 46 chromosomes. 
        1. All of the child’s characteristics are determined at that moment. 
        2. These things happen quickly. 
          1. So much so that many premature babies 
          2. survive without complications. 
        3. Some nurses find it difficult when an aborted baby is alive. 
    3. With partial-birth abortion, 
      1. the baby’s body is pulled out, and 
      2. a hole is made at the base of the skull. 
        1. Then the brains are sucked out 
        2. and the baby is removed. 
    4. Here are some Bible passages to think about. 
      1. These three passages show what God thinks 
      2. of what is in the womb.

        Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD,
        The fruit of the womb is a reward.
        (Psa. 127:3).

        For You formed my inward parts;
        You covered me in my mother’s womb.
        I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
        Marvelous are Your works,
        And that my soul knows very well.
        My frame was not hidden from You,
        When I was made in secret,
        And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
        Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
        And in Your book they all were written,
        The days fashioned for me,
        When as yet there were none of them.
        (Psa. 139:13–16).

        “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you;
        Before you were born I sanctified you;
        I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”
        (Jer. 1:5).
      3. Consider Luke about John and Jesus. 
        1. In Luke 1 Gabriel announces what was going to happen to Mary.

          31 “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS” (Luk. 1:31).
          1. Would Mary have been pleasing to God, 
          2. if she aborted the child? 
            1. Even Joseph thought the baby was not his. 
            2. She did not plan this birth. 
        2. Luke 2 gives the account of Joseph and Mary 
          1. going to Bethlehem for the census.

            5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child (Luk. 2:5).
          2. Was she merely with a fetus? 
            1. It’s a child in the fetus or embryo stage, but 
            2. still a child. 
          3. A tomato seed is not a tomato. 
            1. Nor is the flower, 
            2. like the egg and the sperm. 
              1. But when a flower dies a tomato begins to form. 
                1. It is a tomato, although not ready for picking. 
              2. When as big as your fist and green, it’s a tomato. 
                1. You could pick it and let it ripen. 
                2. It does not have to be red before we call it a tomato. 
          4. So a child is healthiest when brought to full term, but 
            1. premature delivery will still deliver a child, 
            2. who with extra time is as healthy as the next child.