Abortion (2)

W. Terry Varner
November 10, 2013

Our foundational argument is this: the Bible is the standard of authority for settling matters. While I admit that the word abortion is not found in the Bible, there are divine principles of truth which speak to the issue and thereby provides for man heavenly guidance. When man fails to recognize the Bible as the standard of authority, the result is confusion and error. We set forth the following biblical principles making abortion sinful.

Life is a gift from God. All life, human and otherwise, was created by God Almighty. The Scripture is clear about this matter:

First, before we begin to consider abortion, we must understand from where life has come. “He gives life and breath to all things” (Acts 17:25).

Second, when it comes to mankind, man is the only form of life made in God’s image and likeness (Gen. 1:26-27). This fact should cause us to elevate and respect human life above all other forms of life. To be made in the likeness of God is share kinship with God.

Third, from the earliest of time, God has forbidden man to kill or murder his fellowman. “Whoso sheds man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man” (Gen. 9:6). These texts show clearly that human life as well as all other life has its origin with God.

Prenatal and Postnatal Life. Some medical, scientific, and philosophic authorities attempt to approve abortion by distinguishing between prenatal and postnatal life. The Bible which is our standard does not make such distinction. In abortion, the process of life is interrupted medically; otherwise, God’s plan of conceiving would result in birth. Consider:

First, God spoke to Jeremiah in this manner, “Before I formed you in the belly, I knew you, and before you came forth out of the womb I sanctified you” (Jer. 1:5).

Second, Luke, a medical doctor, describes John the Baptist in his mother’s womb as: “the babe (bephlos) leaped in her [Elizabeth’s] womb” (Luke 1:41). John leaped in his mother’s womb when Elizabeth was greeted by Mary, the mother of Jesus. The word for “babe” (bephlos) describes a breathing nursing infant and also the unborn fetus that breaths and feeds through the umbilical cord from the mother.

Third, possibly the most expressive passage on life of a child before being bom is Psalm 139:13-14, “For You have possessed my reins: You have covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”

Christ’s teaching concerning the value of human life. We need to consider how little human life was respected in the first century. This was due to the influence by the Greeks and Romans in various aspects of life in their empires. Consider the horrible gladiator games in which men fought until one or the other died. Infants were the property of the father and commonly could be killed or abandoned at birth, with objection by their mothers. By first century times, abortion was widespread among the Romans.

When Jesus came on the scene in the first century, He taught the sacredness and importance of life. All inhabitants were loved by God (John 3:16). Every man had the right to hear the Gospel (Matt. 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-16). Children were precious to Him. He rebuked those who attempted to turn children away from Him (Matt. 19:13-15). We need to value human life today.