Recently Christian Church-Goers were polled to see what are the subjects they must wanted to hear preached at the pulpit. The 12 rated the most crucial were quite surprising for they went beyond the light and fluffy feel good, positivity that most big churches tend to stick to; the subjects voted upon were hard, non-politically correct, and in our current culture very controversial. In this article series The Gospel Truth I would like to discuss each topic with you and share the information I have found in my study of the scripture, as well as scientific research, and primary sources with first hand accounts of their experiences.
Today I would like to tackle the truth about abortion according to the biblical text. This is a hard subject to relate to you with out being mired in personal feeling and opinion of all involved. The women’s movements and Right to choice advocates are very clear that a Christian Pro- life stance is out dated, hateful rhetoric that shames the women who had no other choice. But is abortion the only option, or has it become a glorified form of birth control?
A favorite argument of the Pro-choicer’s is that ” The Bible doesn’t say anything about abortion, so women have the right to choose.” As a Christian i had to ask myself, and my faith: Is that true? The answer surprised me for it came out as a both yes, and no. It is true that the Bible never specifically mentions the word ‘abortion’ but that does not mean that the Bible doesn’t give us a moral command that applies to the abortion issue. This distinction must be highlighted for the discernment of the Christian believer. Although the bible never say that a woman can’t have an abortion, it also never says that you can throw your kid’s away, or drowned them in a bathtub either. However the Scripture does give us a command that applies to these situations and is repeated numerous times in both the Old and New Testament; Thou Shalt Not Murder.
Now many understand this commandment as Thou Shalt Not Kill but as Dennis Prager explains in his book The Ten Commandments: Still the Best Moral Code (book review here) that according to the original Hebrew text the commandment was Thou Shalt not Murder, and that there is a difference between immoral and moral killing. Moral killings were very specifically outlined in the Torah being that of self defense and the defending of ones nation from their enemies, equally specific was the definition of immoral killings which for us boils down to the premeditated, or not, murder of another innocent human life. The focus on innocence being crucial to the definition of the victim and the outcome to the perpetrator.
That brings us to our next question: Is a Fetus human life? That’s what the abortion argument really boils down to, when does human life begin? Many debates have been had over this particular question. I have heard answers saying that a baby in womb is nothing but a parasite, a group of cells that cant be considered real until its able to live on it own out side the womb. But if we take that argument to heart then there can be cases made that a baby born is not human for it cannot defend for itself. It is in that belief that we have seen a heavy rise in late term abortions, as well as cases were babies have survived the abortion but have been left to die by starvation, and abandonment, later to be ripped apart for “scientific purposes.” Which brings me to the Planned Parenthood practice of selling the tissues of discarded fetus’. If a fetus is not human and can be easily exterminated, like we do with a common household pest, then why are they so eager to retrieve the remains and sift through them for likely organ tissues for medical research? Isn’t that in itself declaring the humanity of the tiny organisms, for if they were not human, conceived by human parents, their tissues would be of no use to them.
But the point of this article is what the scripture says of these tiny cell masses. What does God proclaim to be human? A major example of the definition of human life is in Psalm 139. The whole chapter is about how God Knows us, how we are forever in His sight and understanding. He knows the words we will speak before they even form in our minds, were we will go in this world, and the purpose He gave us. In verse 13 he speaks specifically about knowing us even before birth:
For you created my innermost being;
you knit me together in my mothers womb.
In Verse 16 the thought is expounded to include that God does not create without purpose and that God has our lives planned long before they ever come into fruition:
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for
me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
When we place the mantel of Christian upon ourselves we are saying that we take God at His word, and that we believe in the unwavering mercy that Jesus Christ bestowed upon us by taking our sins upon himself. He died for us, knowing that our world would turn into what it has become. This is not something that anyone should take lightly, it is not a tightly or a privilege that we can take without some kind of repayment. This repayment, or responsibility we take up in our belief is the moral conduct we accept when claiming the title of Christian. Non-believers have it a bit easier they can rationalize and react as they please with little thought of their actions eternal presence. That is not something we, as Christians, are allowed.
Yet the struggles we face in today secular world are not new ones. Just because technology has changed in 2000 years does not mean human nature has, we must follow the example of our Savior. Putting God above all things, and loving our neighbors, but like him we must also stand up for the truth of Gods word. Jesus was not the mild mannered man of Hollywood standards, we was a revolutionary of love, and Gods infinite grace, he spoke out against the hypocrisy of religious leaders in their following laws that man created and were not of God. That is what we must do as his followers, we must be careful with the arguments we choose, we cannot grow upset or irrational as so many do while defending their own opinion. We must remember that the truth of scripture isn’t about opinion. Its not about our choice, or free will either, what God says is Good and bad will eternally always be good and bad whether we accept it as so or not for God is the ultimate Judge and ruler. That is something that as Christians we must always remember.