abortion and the bible
abortion and the bible
ARTICLE IN BRIEF
America is in the throes of a frenzied uproar over abortion. This moral issue has been transformed into a political issue. Nevertheless, there is a God in heaven Who has already spoken on the matter. Indeed, the Bible speaks definitively and decisively about abortion.
From 2015 to 2019 in the United States of America, some 890,000 children were butchered annually by abortion doctors.1 Since 1973, when the Supreme Court legalized abortion-on-demand, over 63 million babies have been slaughtered in America.2 Every year, an estimated 73 million abortions occur worldwide.3 Even to contemplate how many children have been forever eliminated from the Earth since 1973 due to abortion, never having seen the light of day or been permitted to live out their lives, is heart-rending. And the slaughter continues….
Some encouraging signs have surfaced recently—the most prominent one being the reversal by the U.S. Supreme Court of the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling. While this decision is monumental, the ruling does not eliminate abortion in America—but simply places the matter back into the hands of the States from whence it never should have been wrested.4 Sadly, even this laudable attempt to turn back the tide of moral degradation that has swept over the nation seems too little, too late. Nothing can be done for the myriad of little ones whose lives have already been extinguished. Seemingly, only a massive moral awakening will alter the path toward destruction that the nation is following.
Indeed, many in America consider abortion to be an acceptable option. What would one expect? Three generations of Americans have been saturated with the “politically correct,” WOKE agenda of the social liberals for decades. By means of the power of “the law,” the 1973 Court made abortion legitimate nationwide for nearly 50 years. Many in the medical profession followed suit, lending prestige and sanction to the practice of abortion—in direct violation of the Hippocratic Oath.5
American civilization has undergone a sweeping cultural revolution during the last half century. The American moral framework has been restructured, and this country’s religious roots and spiritual perspective have been largely brushed aside. The Founding Fathers and the bulk of the American population of the first 150 years of our national existence based their beliefs and practices on the Christian worldview. Hence, they generally opposed what has become commonplace in America today, including gambling (i.e., the lottery, horse-racing, casinos, etc.), divorce, homosexuality, unwed pregnancy, transgenderism, and pornography in movies and magazines. These behaviors simply would not have been tolerated by most of American society from the beginning up to World War 2. But the moral and religious underpinnings of our nation have experienced catastrophic erosion. The widespread practice of abortion is simply one sign among many of this culture-wide shift.
But there is still a God in heaven—the omnipotent, omniscient Creator of the Universe. He has communicated to the human race in the Bible, and He has stated that one day He will call all human beings who have ever lived to give account, and He will judge them on the basis of their behavior on Earth. Therefore, every single person is responsible for carefully studying God’s Word, determining how He wants us to behave, and then complying with those directives. It is that simple, and it is that certain. Regarding abortion, have most Americans heard the biblical viewpoint? Do they even care how God feels about abortion? Are they interested in investigating His view of the matter? After all, the Bible does, in fact, speak decisively about abortion.
The Biblical Perspective
For those who are convinced that the evidence is decisive concerning the existence of God and the supernatural origin of the Bible, what the Bible says on any subject is of paramount importance. Before anyone dismisses the Bible as an uninspired, human production, surely fairness demands that the evidence be examined before any premature dismissal. The fact is the evidence is prolific and decisive.6 An honest appraisal of this evidence will establish the divine origin of the Bible—making a person ready to ascertain God’s will on any matter of ultimate spiritual significance.
God Creates the Human Spirit
While the Bible does not speak directly to the practice of abortion, it does provide enough relevant material to enable us to know God’s will on the matter. The Bible teaches that each human being possesses a spirit. This spirit is what makes each person a unique personality with a mind that transcends the animal kingdom. At death this spirit/mind is separated from the body and enters the spirit realm (hades) to await the Judgment (Luke 16:19-31). In Zechariah 12:1, God is said not only to be the Creator of the heavens and the Earth, but also the One Who “forms the spirit of man within him.” He is the giver of life (Acts 17:25). That fact alone makes human life sacred. God is responsible for implanting the human spirit within the human body. We humans have no right to end human life—unless God authorizes us to do so under conditions stipulated by Him (Hebrews 10:30). Biblically, the authorized taking of human life is based on that human’s sinful behavior. Taking the life of an unborn infant certainly is not based upon the moral conduct of that infant. So if God places the human spirit in a human being while that person is in the mother’s womb, to end that life is a deliberate attempt to countermand God’s action of “forming the spirit of man in him.”
In the Womb
But when does the human spirit enter the human body and thereby bring into existence a human being? When does God implant the soul into the body—at birth or prior to birth? The Bible provides abundant evidence to answer these questions. For example, the Bible states: “As you do not know the way the spirit comes to the bones in the womb of a woman with child, so you do not know the work of God who makes everything” (Ecclesiastes 11:5, ESV). In this passage, Solomon equated fetal development with the activity of God. The human spirit is implanted in the body while still in the womb.
Job described the same process with even more specificity in Job 10:9-12. There he attributed his pre-birth growth to God:
Remember, I pray, that You have made me like clay. And will You turn me into dust again? Did you not pour me out like milk, and curdle me like cheese, clothe me with skin and flesh, and knit me together with bones and sinews? You have granted me life and favor, and Your care has preserved my spirit.
Observe that Job7 was describing the formation/development of his pre-born body—not his spirit. His spirit is represented by his use of the term “me.” His spirit/personality/mind—what made him “me”—was in existence as his body was being formed.
David described the formation of his body prior to birth similarly:
For You have formed my inward parts; You have 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 (Psalm 139:13-16).
David insisted that his development as a human being—his personhood—was achieved by God, prior to his birth, while he was yet in his mother’s womb. He also said to God: “By You I have been upheld from birth; You are He who took me out of my mother’s womb. My praise shall be continually of You” (Psalm 71:6). Again, observe that David’s use of “me” refers to his humanity and personhood prior to his birth. No wonder Naomi spoke to Ruth about the impossibility of any further “sons in my womb” (Ruth 1:11).
Some have suggested that Ecclesiastes, Job, and Psalms are all books of poetry and, therefore, not to be taken literally. However, poetic language has meaning. Solomon, Job, and David were clearly attributing their pre-birth personhood to the creative activity of God. They were, in fact, human beings while their bodies were being fashioned.
Of course, many additional passages that make the same point are not couched in poetic imagery.8 Jeremiah declared: “Then the word of the Lord came unto me, saying: ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I sanctified you; and I ordained you a prophet to the nations’” (Jeremiah 1:4-5). Compare this statement with Paul’s equivalent claim in which he said that God set him apart to do his apostolic ministry even while he was in his mother’s womb (Galatians 1:15). Isaiah made the same declaration: “Listen, O coastlands, to me, and take heed, you peoples from afar! The Lord has called me from the womb; from the matrix of my mother He has made mention of my name” (Isaiah 49:1).
These passages do not teach predestination. Jeremiah, Paul, and Isaiah could have exercised their free will and rejected God’s desires for their lives—in which case God would have found someone else to do the job (cf. Esther 4:14). But these and many other passages do teach that God treats people as human beings even before they are born. These passages show that a pre-born infant is a person—a human being. There is no moral difference between a human baby one minute before birth and that same human baby one minute after birth. And that status as a human being applies to a person throughout his or her pre-natal development from the moment of conception. No wonder the Angel of the Lord said to Hagar: “Behold, you are with child, and you shall bear a son. You shall call his name Ishmael” (Genesis 16:11).
Throughout history, pregnant women have been considered to have a child within them—not a blob of flesh or a lifeless, nonhuman “fetus.” That is why Job could bemoan, “May the day perish on which I was born, and the night in which it was said, ‘A male child is conceived’” (Job 3:3). The underlying word translated “a male child” (גֶּ֫בֶר) refers to a human being.9 The term “conceived” (הֹרָה) in the original means to conceive, become pregnant.10 Job viewed conception to be the temporal commencement of a human being. Conception is the moment a human being begins existence. The science agrees.11
Elizabeth & Mary
Consider further the recorded visit that Mary, the mother of Jesus, made to Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptizer. Both women were pregnant at the time.
Now Mary arose in those days and went into the hill country with haste, to a city of Judah, and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. 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. Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 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).
Notice that Elizabeth’s pre-born baby is being represented as a living human being. In fact, the term “baby” used in verses 41 and 44 to refer to the pre-born John is the exact same term that is used in the very next chapter to refer to Jesus after His birth as He lay in the manger (Luke 2:12,16). So in God’s sight, whether a person is in his or her pre-birth developmental state, or in a post-birth developmental state, that person is still a baby! In Luke 1:36, John the Baptizer is referred to as “a son” from the very moment of conception. Indeed, all three phases of human life are listed in reverse order in Hosea 9:11—birth, pregnancy, and conception.
If abortion is not wrong, Mary would have been within her moral and spiritual rights to abort the baby Jesus—the divine Son of God! Someone may say, “But that’s different, since God had a special plan for that child.” But the Bible teaches that God has special plans for every human being. Every single human life is precious to God—so much so that a single soul is more significant than everything else that is physical in the world (Matthew 16:26). God sacrificed His own Son for every single human being on an individual basis. Each human life is equally valuable to God. The unrealized and incomprehensible potential for achieving great things by millions of human beings has been forever expunged by abortion. The remarkably resourceful potential of even one of those tiny human minds—now extinguished—may well have included a cure for cancer or some other horrible, debilitating, and deadly disease.
Another insightful passage from the Old Testament is found in Exodus 21:22-25. This passage describes what action is to be taken in a case of, presumably, accidental injury to a pregnant woman:
If men fight, and hurt a woman with child, so that she gives birth prematurely, yet no lasting harm follows, he shall surely be punished accordingly as the woman’s husband imposes on him; and he shall pay as the judges determine. But if any lasting harm follows, then you shall give life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.
This passage has been mistranslated in some versions. For example, some versions use the word “miscarriage” instead of translating the Hebrew phrase literally—“so that her children come out.” The text is envisioning a situation in which two brawling men accidentally injure a pregnant bystander. The injury causes the woman to go into early labor, resulting in a premature birth of her child. If neither the woman nor the child is harmed, then the Law of Moses levied a fine against the one who caused the premature birth. But if injury or even death resulted from the brawl, then the law imposed a parallel punishment: if the premature baby died, the one who caused the premature birth was to be executed—life for life. This passage clearly considers the pre-born infant—at any stage of development—to be a human being, thus implying life beginning at conception. To cause a pre-born infant’s death was homicide under the Old Testament—homicide punishable by death.
Notice that this regulation under the Law of Moses included injury inflicted accidentally. Abortion is a deliberate, purposeful termination of a child’s life. If God dealt severely with the accidental death of a pre-born infant, how do you suppose He feels about the deliberate murder of the unborn by an abortion doctor? The Bible states explicitly how He feels: “[D]o not kill the innocent and righteous. For I will not justify the wicked” (Exodus 23:7). As a matter of fact, one of the things that God hates is “hands that shed innocent blood” (Proverbs 6:17). How marvelous it would be if those who are supportive of abortion would adopt the attitude Joseph manifested toward his brothers who feared his retribution: “Do not be afraid, for am I in the place of God?” (Genesis 50:19). Those who participate in the taking of pre-born life are presuming to play God.
“It’s My Body!”
A common claim that has resonated with many ever since the initial discussion of the abortion question commenced in the 1960s (culminating in Roe v. Wade in 1973) states: “But it’s my body; no one has the right to dictate to me what I can or cannot do with my own body!” Apart from the fact that this claim is not true,12 it begs the question. That is, it assumes the life growing in the womb is not a separate and distinct body/person. Though this article is confined to the matter of what the Bible says on the subject of abortion, the advancements of science in recent years have verified that pre-born infants are living beings. Though they are dependent on their mother for survival (even as post-birth children are), they possess a host of characteristics and attributes that demonstrate their independent existence. While the pre-born infant’s body is in a state of growth (even as the body continues to grow for many years after birth), the child possesses a body from the moment of conception (again, composed of the collective DNA of both parents).
The science of “fetology”13 demonstrates that the pre-born child possesses many indicators of human life.14 The human body comes into existence the moment the DNA of both parents combines. From that moment forward, the human body is intact—merely in a state of development that continues after birth and throughout one’s lifetime until death. Nothing more is added to the parent’s DNA—only growth, replication, and expansion. Hence, no woman can legitimately claim the right to terminate her unborn baby on the grounds that her body is her own. The unborn baby has his/her body as well—a separate and distinct body within another body. Though not yet able to speak for himself, the owner of that body has as much right to preserve it. What’s more, the male contributor of DNA to form the body within a woman has as much right to defend and protect the baby’s body as does the woman carrying that baby. The man and the woman have contributed equally to the formation of the baby’s body. Consequently, the woman who becomes pregnant is under obligation to preserve the person/body within her until that person exits her body naturally.15
What’s more, a pregnant woman can die while the child living within her continues to live. If medical personnel act quickly, the deceased mother’s body can be placed on life support which allows oxygen to continue to reach the child, enabling the child to survive indefinitely.16 This fact proves that an unborn child is a separate person from the mother, possessing his/her own body.
The Spirit & the Body
Observe how the Bible clarifies the matter of the personhood of the pre-born infant, specifically, whether such a child is in possession of his/her spirit. In his discussion of the active nature of saving faith, the supernaturally guided writer James stated emphatically: “For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also” (James 2:26). This passage plainly pinpoints when the death of the body occurs: the moment the spirit departs the body. As long as the spirit still resides within the body, the body is alive. Further, Solomon explained: “Then the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.” Solomon’s allusion to the creation of the first human body by God was achieved using the physical substance of dirt (Genesis 2:7). The buried bodies of all deceased human beings literally return to the dust. Hence, the human body is purely the receptacle given by God to “house” the spirit. With these realities in mind, follow the logic in the following two syllogisms:
If God gives each person his/her spirit, and
if He takes the spirit back upon the death of the body, then
God places the spirit in the body the moment the body is alive.
If the body of a pre-born person is alive, and
if the body without the spirit is dead (James 2:26), then
the pre-born body possesses a spirit and is thus fully human.
Inconsistency and Moral Insanity
When one contemplates God’s view of the unborn child and compares that view with what is happening in society, one surely is astounded and appalled. For example, women have been indicted and convicted of the murder of their own children when those children have been just a few months old. The news media nationwide, and society in general, have been “up in arms” and outraged at the unconscionable behavior of a mother who has so harmed her young child as to result in death. Most Americans have been incensed that a mother could have so little regard for the life of her own child and advocate taking away the child from the mother. Yet the same society and the same news media that are outraged at such behavior would have been perfectly content for the same mother to have murdered the same children if she had simply chosen to do so a few minutes or a few weeks before those children were actually born! Such is the insanity of a civilization that has become estranged from a righteous God.
Consider the following terribly tragic inconsistency and incongruity that exists in this country. Merely taking possession of an egg containing the pre-born American bald eagle—let alone if one were to destroy that little pre-birth environment and thus destroy the baby eagle that is developing within—results in a stiff fine and even prison time. Yet one can take a human child in its pre-born environment and not only murder that child, but also receive government blessing to do so! Eagle eggs, i.e., pre-born eagles, are of greater value to American civilization than pre-born humans! Jesus’ view is exactly the opposite: “Of how much more value are you than the birds?” (Luke 12:24).
The ethical disharmony and moral confusion that reign in our society have escalated the activity of criminals who commit a variety of heinous crimes—killing large numbers of people, raping women, and doing all sorts of terrible things. Yet, a sizeable portion of society is against capital punishment. Many people feel that these wicked adults, who have engaged in heinous, destructive conduct, should not be executed—a viewpoint that flies directly in the face of what the Bible teaches (Romans 13:1-6; 1 Peter 2:13-14).17 God wants evildoers in society to be punished—even to the point of capital punishment. Yet, we will not execute guilty, hardened criminals, while we will execute innocent human babies! How can one possibly justify this terrible disparity and the horrible scourge of abortion?
There’s no question that abortion is a serious matter with God. We absolutely must base our views on God’s will—not the will of men. The very heart and soul of this great nation is being excised by unethical behaviors like abortion. In the words of former United States Court of Appeals judge, Robert Bork: “The systematic killing of unborn children in huge numbers is part of a general disregard for human life…. Abortion has coarsened us.”18 We must return to the Bible as our standard of behavior—before it is too late. After all, the God of the Bible has been known to rain down His wrath on cities and nations whose descent into depravity merited such a response (Genesis 15:15; 19:24; Jeremiah 5:9,29; 9:9). Ronald Reagan was right when he stated: “[W]e cannot survive as a free nation when some men decide that others are not fit to live and should be abandoned to abortion or infanticide.”19 When the Israelites began practicing false religion, which included sacrificing their children to false gods, God was incensed and declared: “They have filled this place with the blood of the innocents (they have also built the high places of Baal, to burn their sons with fire for burnt offerings to Baal, which I did not command or speak, nor did it come into My mind)” (Jeremiah 19:4-5; cf. 32:35). God declared shedding the innocent blood of their children meant “the land was polluted with blood” (Psalm 106:37-39). God even considers children to be His (Ezekiel 16:20-21; Psalm 127:3). Indeed, the killing of the innocent unborn surely ranks as one of, if not the, premier moral issue that may bring God’s wrath upon the nation. Statistics reveal that over 1/4th of the potential African American population is aborted each year.20 If a person would never vote for a political candidate that supports sinful slavery, why would a person vote for a political candidate that supports killing 1/4th of the African American population?”
When the allies during World War II managed to advance on the Germans, pushing them back into Germany, American soldiers happened upon the concentration camps and witnessed firsthand Hitler’s “final solution” for the Jews. As reports and pictures became available to the public, the world was horrified. Some six million Jews had been ruthlessly murdered in multiple death camps. The civilized world was stunned and incredulous at the brutality and inhumanity perpetrated by the Nazis. Think of it: 6,000,000 men, women, and children. And yet, since 1973 when abortion was legalized in America, the number of pre-born infants that have been ruthlessly ripped from the wombs of their mothers has now surpassed 63,000,000 babies. The magnitude of that number is unfathomable to the human mind. As noted earlier, is it possible that one of those children would have achieved great things that benefited all humanity?
When God confronted Cain for murdering his brother, Cain lied by feigning innocence: “I do not know. Am I my brother’s keeper?” (Genesis 4:9). God’s response to such flippancy is haunting: “The voice of your brother’s blood cries out to Me from the ground” (vs. 10). Whatever God intended to convey by His allusion to the sound of Abel’s blood, if God heard the sound of that innocent blood crying from the soil upon which Cain shed it, imagine what it sounds like to God to hear the blood of 63 million+ shrieking babies. One of the reasons given by God for sending Judah into captivity was the shedding of innocent blood that filled Jerusalem—“which the LORD would not pardon” (2 Kings 24:4).
The ultimate solution to every moral issue is genuine New Testament Christianity and the objective, absolute standard of the Bible. If all people would organize their lives around the precepts and principles presented in the Bible, civilization would be in good shape. No other suitable alternative exists. There is simply no other way to live life cohesively, with focus, with perspective, with direction, and with the proper sense of the purpose of life.
Consider this final observation. If the God of the Bible exists, and if the Bible is His inspired Word—the only book on the planet that is of supernatural origin—then all human beings are accountable to Him for their behavior on Earth. Indeed, existence on Earth is specifically designed by God to be the “probationary period” during which time all human beings (of accountable age and mind) decide their eternal destiny.21 Consequently, all human beings will one day stand at the Judgment before their Creator and give account for their decisions while on Earth: “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad” (2 Corinthians 5:10). Consider this sobering scene:
When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on His right hand, “Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world….” Then He will also say to those on the left hand, “Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels….” And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life (Matthew 25:31-46; cf. Hebrews 9:27; Ecclesiastes 12:14).
How we conduct ourselves in this world will determine where we spend eternity. May God help us to conform to His will regarding the matter of abortion.
1 “Data Center” (2022), Guttmacher Institute, https://data.guttmacher.org/countries/table?country=US&dataset=data&topics=406#source.
2 “Number of Abortions—Abortion Counters” (2022), http://www.numberofabortions.com/.
3 “Unintended Pregnancy and Abortion Worldwide” (2022), Guttmacher Institute, https://www.guttmacher.org/fact-sheet/induced-abortion-worldwide.
4 This is not to say that either the Federal government or the State governments have a right to decide whether abortion is permissible. God has already legislated on the matter. The purpose of human government is the divine obligation to protect the unalienable rights of the innocent, including the right to life (Romans 13:1-5)—which includes the unborn. While the Dobbs ruling may be seen as an attempt to contain if not reduce abortion, it nevertheless fails to make clear that the taking of human life prior to birth is murder. No Federal or State court or legislative body has the right to say otherwise.
5 Michael North, trans. (2002), “Hippocratic Oath,” Greek Medicine, https://www.nlm.nih.gov/hmd/greek/greek_oath.html.
6 Out of a mountain of evidence, see for example The Bible is From God, Is the Bible God’s Word?, and a host of materials on the subject available free of charge at ApologeticsPress.org.
7 We have an inspired account of what happened to Job and an accurate record of what he said and did. However, Job’s words were his own thoughts about his predicament and may therefore not be considered reflections of God’s thinking. However, observe that his analysis of his pre-birth condition is not challenged by God or his friends.
8 While the books of the prophets are certainly written in standard Hebrew metrical verse, observe that they are not describing figurative objects that are not real. In chapter 49, for example, in addition to his mother’s womb, Isaiah alludes to “coastlands,” “peoples,” “mouth,” “sword,” “shaft,” and “quiver”—all literal.
9 L. Koehler, W. Baumgartner, M.E.J. Richardson, & J.J. Stamm (1994-2000), The Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament (Leiden: E.J. Brill, Electronic ed.), p. 175.
10 Ibid., pp. 255-256.
11 For scientific and philosophical discussions of this affirmation, including the fact that at conception the baby possesses its own genetic makeup that is distinct from the parents, see John Janez Miklavcic and Paul Flaman (2017), “Personhood Status of the Human Zygote, Embryo, Fetus,” The Linacre Quarterly, 84:130-144, May; Drew Zahn (2018), “The Science is Conclusive: That Fetus is a Baby,” Des Moines Register, December 12, https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/opinion/columnists/iowa-view/2018/12/12/science-conclusive-fetus-baby-iowa-fetal-heartbeat-law-abortion/2286938002/; M.R. Thomas, B. Tutschek, A. Frost, C.H. Rodeck, N.Yazdani, I. Craft, and R. Williamson (1995), “The Time of Appearance and Disappearance of Fetal DNA From the Maternal Circulation,” Prenatal Diagnosis, 15(7):641-646, July; Jacob Kitzman, Matthew Snyder, Mario Ventura, et al. (2012), “Noninvasive Whole-Genome Sequencing of a Human Fetus,” Science Translational Medicine, 4:137ra76, June 6. “Mother and baby/fetus have different genetic codes. Every cell of the mother’s body contains her own distinct gene code/DNA, unique to her only. The father’s DNA is obviously equally unique. The DNA of the baby/fetus is taken 50% from mother and 50% from father to form an equally unique and different baby/fetus”—Derek Conte (2019), “Are Mother and Baby Distinct Individuals?” (Brightside), March, https://www.drderekconte.com/storage/app/media/Articles-March-25/are-mother-and-baby-distinct-individuals-march-2019.pdf.
12 Having been made in the image of God and accountable to Him, humans are not free to treat their bodies however they choose. For example, the Bible—and those countries that have been influenced by Christian principles throughout history—have always considered suicide as self-murder and, therefore, illegal. Similarly, euthanasia is assisted murder. God does not give a person absolute right over his own body. Suicide violates several directives given in Scripture. Furthermore, a person is under divine obligation to give proper care to the body. Even as no one has the right to subject their body to sexual immorality (1 Corinthians 6:13-20), so no one has the right to say or think, “It’s my body and I can/will do what I want with it.” For a discussion of the Bible view of suicide, see Wayne Jackson (1986), “Suicide: A Modern Epidemic,” Christian Courier, 21:45,48, April.; Cecil Wright (1979), “Suicide: To Be or Not To Be?” Gospel Advocate, 121:417,436,438-439, July 12.
13 Though use of the term “fetus” can lend itself to dehumanizing a pre-born infant, it is used popularly to refer to “an unborn offspring of a mammal, in particular an unborn human baby more than eight weeks after conception,” and hence, “fetology” refers to “the branch of medicine dealing with the fetus in utero”—“fetus” (2018), The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English, https://www.encyclopedia.com/medicine/anatomy-and-physiology/anatomy-and-physiology/fetus; “fetology” (2003), Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health (Saunders, Imprint of Elsevier), 7th edition, https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/fetology.
14 Katrina Furth (2021), “15 Facts at 15 Weeks,” On Science, 3, September (Arlington, VA: Charlotte Lozier Institute).
15 By “naturally” I intend to include the intervention of doctors to preserve human life by C-section.
16 Ali Venosa (2016), “Woman On Life Support Since February Gives Birth To Healthy Baby,” Medical Daily, June 10, https://www.medicaldaily.com/life-support-brain-dead-healthy-baby-389238; Sara Malm (2016), “Baby is Born Two Months AFTER His Mother is Declared Dead from a Brain Tumour: Polish Doctors Kept Her Body ‘Alive’ to Save the Child,” Daily Mail, April 21, https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3551525/Baby-born-two-months-mother-declared-dead-brain-tumour-Polish-doctors-kept-body-alive-save-child.html; Dana Dovey (2016), “Baby Girl Delivered After Mom Dies From Gunshot; What Happens To Fetus After Mother Dies?” Medical Daily, September 21, https://www.medicaldaily.com/baby-girl-delivered-after-mom-dies-gunshot-what-happens-fetus-after-mother-398507; Steven Ertelt (2013), “Paramedics Save 9-Month-Old Unborn Baby After Mother Tragically Shot Dead,” LifeNews.com, November 5, https://www.lifenews.com/2013/11/05/paramedics-save-9-month-old-unborn-baby-after-mother-tragically-shot-dead/; Dana Dovey (2014), “The Right To Life: Baby Born To Clinically Dead Mother?” Medical Daily, December 22, https://www.medicaldaily.com/right-life-baby-born-clinically-dead-mother-will-same-ring-true-controversial-irish-315264; M. Esmaeilzadeh, C. Dictus, E. Kayvanpour, et al. (2010), “One Life Ends, Another Begins: Management of a Brain-Dead Pregnant Mother—A Systematic Review,” BMC Medicine, 8:1-11, https://bmcmedicine.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1741-7015-8-74.
17 See Dave Miller (2012), “Capital Punishment and the Bible,” Reason & Revelation, 32:62-64,68-71, July.
18 Robert Bork (1996), Slouching Towards Gomorrah (New York: ReganBooks), p. 192, emp. added.
19 Ronald Reagan (1984), Abortion and the Conscience of the Nation (New York: Thomas Nelson Publishers), p. 38.
20 For example, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2019 the abortion ratio for African Americans was 386 abortions to 1,000 live births, meaning that out of every 1,386 pregnancies, 386 unborn children were killed—28% of the potential African American population. “Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report: Abortion Surveillance—United States, 2019” (2021), Surveillance Summaries, 70:1-29, November 26, https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/ss/ss7009a1.htm.
21 See Thomas Warren (1972), Have Atheists Proved There Is No God? (Parkersburg, WV: National Christian Press); Dave Miller (2015), Why People Suffer (Montgomery, AL: Apologetics Press).
Article updated 7/1/2022