What Does the Bible Actually Say about Abortion?
After a United Methodist pastor in Birmingham, Alabama named Dave Barnhart posted something on social media about abortion critics in 2020, the post garnered considerable attention from people on both sides of the abortion debate. He stated that the “unborn” are a very convenient group to organize around because they make no demands of you and are not morally complicated—in contrast to those in prison, those suffering from addictions, and those trapped in poverty, he stated that they are. “You can love the unborn and advocate for them without putting your own wealth, power, or privilege at risk, without re-imagining social structures, without apologizing to anyone, and without making reparations to anyone,” says the author.
A resounding and resolute statement, to be sure.
That, at the very least, is true of a large number of people within the movement.
Nonetheless, first and foremost, let us consider what Jesus and the scriptures actually state on the subject of abortion.
- Abortion is not referenced in the Bible at all, unlike homosexuality and a number of other matters that tend to inspire and upset conservative Christians.
- The absence of numerous prohibitions against it is something we are disappointed about.
- Which is a rigorous legal code for an ancient tribe that did not have a police force, a complex court system, or any of the social or restrictive institutions that we take for granted today.
- Of course, this does not rule out the possibility that abortion is referenced in the Bible.
- “I curse the man who broke the news to my father, telling him, ‘A child has been born to you, a son,’ making him overjoyed in the process.
- The anti-abortion movement does not, perhaps predictably, make use of biblical references, but another passage from Jeremiah is most certainly one of them.
- This is primarily due to the fact that it is one of the few that they can discover.
It is a reference to a specific plan for one man rather than a general approach to biology and reproduction, and it is a reference to God’s vision as well as the significance of Jeremiah and his purpose on earth.
Psalm 139 has another another frequently quoted passage, this one again mentioning the womb.
I thank you for creating me in such a dreadfully and beautifully way.
When I was being created in secrecy, delicately woven in the bowels of the ground, my frame was not concealed from you.
My unformed material was visible to your gaze.
But, once more, what exactly is being said?
The Christian concept is that God is aware of everything, including ourselves, and understands who and what we are.
She is aware of the kindness and purity that exist in her heart, as well as the harshness of others who criticize her.
The tale of Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, which appears in the New Testament, is another biblical reference that is commonly used in opposition to abortion.
But, more importantly, does it have anything to say regarding the issue of abortion?
First and foremost, it just depicts movement in the womb, and second, it is a reference to individuals who are not conventional, not normal, and who are not like the rest of us in terms of appearance.
It is not intended to be a guide to female reproduction.
Exodus 21:22, on the other hand, is a passage in the Bible that does make specific reference of the fetus.
If a woman gets injured during a conflict and later miscarries her child, the punishment is a fine, which is only a money payment.
For better or worse, the life and well-being of the mother are far more important than the lives and well-being of her unborn kid.
However, in recent years, the anti-abortion movement, which was a pillar of the Donald Trump presidency, has become increasingly ideologically conservative, and it tends to be strongly supportive of the military and an aggressive foreign policy.
Inconsistency and inconsistency are inherent in the human condition.
Abortion is not a holocaust; the Holocaust, on the other hand, was.
That’s all there is to it when it comes to the Bible.
Instead of requiring abortion rights, it is more accurate to state that the Bible does not have anything relevant to say on the matter.
In my experience, I have never encountered someone who believes that abortion is either good or desired; nonetheless, most individuals would argue that any sort of surgery or medical intervention is either good or desirable.
The situation is made much more problematic by the fact that, in the instance of abortion, the “potential” for life is unquestionably there.
However, these are not the fundamental causes of abortion in general, and the answer is not to restrict women’s freedom, but rather to create communities in which persons with disabilities do not encounter prejudice and in which gender equality is the absolute standard.
Female patients are subjected to a barrage of humiliation and degradation outside of clinics, which is truly appalling.
Then there are some who persist on distributing millions of flyers depicting graphic, bloody images of abortions, even if it means shoving them through the front doors of private houses where it is possible that children may come into contact with them.
Violence has unquestionably occurred, and it has included kidnapping, assault, attempted murder, murder, arson, bombings, and stalking, among other acts of violence.
Attacks have also been carried out in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and other countries.
As recently as late November 2015, a shooting at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs claimed the lives of three people and injured several others.
It occurs even in Canada, which is regarded as a tranquil and moderate country.
In 1997, a sniper opened fire on Manitoba doctor Jack Fainman, an obstetrician who also performed abortions, while he was sitting in his living room.
He was able to live, but his injuries prevented him from returning to his previous profession as a doctor.
The anti-abortion movement has been tainted by violence, ugliness, and intolerance, and all signs indicate that these feelings and attitudes are only becoming worse.
It’s also a rather recent development.
After three years of deliberation and debate, the Southern Baptist Convention, perhaps the most influential conservative denomination in North America, passed a resolution urging “Southern Baptists to work for legislation that will allow the possibility of abortion under such circumstances as rape, incest, clear evidence of severe fetal deformity, and carefully ascertained evidence of the likelihood of damage to the emotional, mental, and physical health of a mother.” The reference to the emotional, mental, and physical health of the woman who is carrying the fetus leaves the door wide open for abortion rights to be granted under certain circumstances.
- The exponential growth of radical opposition to abortion within evangelical Christianity is also brought into sharp focus, making it appear extremely contemporary.
- In the United States, Republican leaders may have a variety of positions on a variety of subjects, but opposition to abortion has practically become a sacrament in the reactionary catechism of thought.
- A strong element of control can be found in all Christian opposition to abortion, a belief that women do not deserve autonomy and are instead vessels and vehicles for children.
- Aside from the apparent offensiveness of it all, it’s just not scriptural in the first place.
- Jesus’ mother, Mary, instructs him to execute his first miracle, the changing of water into wine, at the behest of a woman.
It is Mary who declares, “He has displayed power with his arm; he has dispersed the haughty in their hearts.” In his reign, he has deposed the mighty from their thrones and exalted the lowly; in his reign, he has provided food for the hungry while sending the wealthy away empty.” Jesus is concerned with the humanity and equality of all people.
This wonderful rebel should not be reduced to a banner or a phrase that is used to harm half of the world’s people, causing them to become helpless and destitute in their own country.
All intellectual property rights are retained.
On November 3, 2021, the following correction was made: Clayton Waagner’s last name was misspelled in a previous version of this article.
Michael Coren is the author of seventeen books, four of which have been bestsellers, which have been published in twelve different languages worldwide. He is also an ordained minister in the Anglican Church of Canada, in addition to being an award-winning columnist. He currently resides in Toronto.
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What does the Bible really say about abortion?
As he makes his way outside St. John’s Church, which is across Lafayette Park from the White House, President Donald Trump carries a Bible on June 1, 2020, in Washington. (Photo courtesy of AP photographer Patrick Semansky) — The Royal National Society (RNS) One of the most memorable images in contemporary politics is that of President Donald Trump, who is widely considered to be the most profane person to have ever occupied the White House, holding a Bible in front of a boarded-up St. John’s Lafayette Church, a symbol of his unwavering commitment to his evangelical Christian supporters.
It is this same urge that has pushed Amy Coney Barrett, a conservative Catholic, to the threshold of the United States Supreme Court of the United States of America However, regardless of the president’s own personal morality, the argument goes, he supports “biblical ideals” and, as a result, may be considered as a representative of God.
- This gap is never more clear than in the argument over abortion and the alleged “right to life” of the unborn child.
- God warns Noah in Chapter 9 after the flood, “Whoever bleeds the blood of a human, by a human shall that person’s blood be spilt,” since “God created humans in his own image,” according to the Bible.
- Given that humans were made in the image of God, life is safeguarded, but the penalty for slaughter is much greater death.
- The Bible, on the other hand, is devoid of any mention of human rights.
- The dispute over the right to life is not mainly focused on the death sentence, but rather on abortion as a matter of principle.
- Abortion, on the other hand, is never referenced once in the whole corpus of biblical law.
- (Image courtesy of AP Photographer Alex Brandon) It is certain that the practice existed in antiquity.
Assyrians, who were predominantly known for their harshness in combat rather than for their care for the lives of the defenseless, were the only people in the ancient Near East who publicly denounced it.
The prophet Jeremiah blames the day he was born, as well as the man who informed his father of his birth, “since he did not murder me in the womb so that my mother would have become my tomb,” according to the prophet.
“When individuals who are fighting damage a pregnant woman such that she has a miscarriage but no other harm happens,” according to the text of Exodus’ 21st chapter (in Hebrew), there is a pecuniary punishment imposed on the perpetrators.
If the kid was not completely developed when it was born, the punishment is monetary, as was customary for property offences.
Opinions on when the fetus reaches this stage have vary throughout the years, depending on who you talk to.
If this has occurred, abortion will no longer be an option.
Modern medicine makes it possible to be more aware of the phases of development occurring within the womb.
While the Jewish historian Josephus claims that abortion is prohibited by the Law of Moses — that is to say the first five books of the Hebrew Bible, or Old Testament — and is therefore considered infanticide, there is no such law in the Bible.
It is the Mishnah (a collection of laws based on oral tradition, written down around 200 CE), which is more typical of Jewish tradition, which allows abortion in the case of difficult, potentially life-threatening labor, on the grounds that the life of the mother takes precedence over that of the child.
Earliest recorded in the second century CE, the Didache, a literature that purports to be based on the teachings of the apostles, and in the Epistle of Barnabas, another early Christian work that was modeled on the letters of Paul, are the first unequivocal condemnations of abortion in Christian tradition.
- Abortion is not prohibited by the Bible, but it is also not permitted by the Bible.
- It’s possible that it wasn’t extensively practiced.
- Children were typically seen as a blessing, whilst childlessness was regarded as a curse in ancient times.
- It does not recognize a right to life for the fetus, nor does it recognize a woman’s right to choose.
- No matter what religious affiliation one has, everyone in the modern world is affected by the heritage of the Enlightenment, which gave us the discourse on human rights.
- However, there is no line that can be made between Trump’s Bible display and a Supreme Court justice who may overturn Roe v.
- Christians, on the other hand, who appeal to Scripture in order to trump a political discussion with the force of biblical authority should be reminded that the Bible does not really say anything about the subject at all.
In addition to being the Holmes Professor of Old Testament at Yale Divinity School, John J. Collins is the author of “What Are Biblical Values? “What the Bible Says on the Most Important Ethical Issues.” Religious News Service does not necessarily endorse the opinions represented in this post.)
6 Myths About Abortion
1. Abortion is prohibited by the Bible. Regardless of what the Bible says about abortion, it shouldn’t matter. United States is not a theocracy in the traditional sense. Despite this, given the conviction of abortion opponents that abortion is a violation of God’s Word, it may come as a surprise that neither the Old Testament nor the New Testament address abortion—not even a single word about the practice. In addition, the Old Testament is not averse to discussing women’s bodies in general. Menstruation receives a great deal of attention.
- As to how the writers (or Author) could prescribe what should happen to a woman who attempts to assist her husband in a battle by grasping the other man’s testicles (her hand should be chopped off), yet did not believe that abortion warranted even a passing mention, it is puzzling.
- Midwives would have been well-versed in the art of inducing a miscarriage.
- Most current interpretations of this verse argue that it makes a distinction between producing a preterm birth (fine) and causing a miscarriage (death punishment), which is consistent with the interpretation of abortion opponents today.
- Given the fact that anti-abortion exegetes are just now discovering evidence for an absolute biblical prohibition on abortion in this very obscure text, one has to question why no one else has noticed it before.
- The New Testament provided God with a second opportunity to express himself clearly on the subject of abortion.
- He didn’t say anything about abortion, however.
Opponents of abortion argue that young girls and women are routinely coerced or harassed into terminating unwanted pregnancies.
The 64 percent figure comes from a 2004 article in Medical Science Monitor by Vincent M.
Coleman, James J.
Reardon, titled “Induced Abortion and Traumatic Stress: A Preliminary Comparison of American and Russian Women.” Rue, Coleman, Rue, and Reardon were the first to report the figure.
For example, according to its Web site, the name was “selected from a baby names book” for its ability to seem welcoming while yet being scholarly.
A number of additional false studies have appeared in Medical Science Monitor, an online publication, including pieces maintaining the debunked vaccine-autism link.
However, there are a lot of issues with the research in question, which was actually not about coercion but rather about comparing the post-abortion suffering experienced by American and Russian women.
They were also considerably more white and middle-class than the average population of women who had abortions, and they were reporting on abortions that occurred a decade earlier.
“Health difficulties” following the abortion were reported by 33% of those who had one, which might indicate anything.
In an unusual twist, the American women, but not the Russian women, revealed that they had experienced a great deal of abuse and trauma in their lives prior to the abortion.
In a 2005 poll conducted by the Guttmacher Institute, 1,209 women were asked about their reasons for having an abortion.
(This is a significant decrease from a comparable study conducted in 1987, in which 24 percent of women stated the wishes of their husbands/partners and 8 percent mentioned the wants of their mothers/grandmothers).
Anti-abortion literature is replete with accounts of women who have been seriously hurt or even died in abortion clinics.
Steven Brigham has been involved in court disputes in a number of states.
There are, without a doubt, more substandard clinics out there.
Abortion, on the other hand, is incredibly safe.
A total of eight women died as a result of abortions in 2009.
What about Viagra, you ask?
Legislators, on the other hand, are not asking for a ban on Viagra.
Women die at a rate of 8.8 deaths per 100,000 in this group.
(Also, the maternal death rate is increasing in the United States, despite the fact that it is decreasing across the world.) Strangely, no one has suggested that obstetricians be required to read pregnant people scripts about the hazards that lie ahead before sending them home for 24 hours to consider whether or not they want to proceed with the pregnancy or not.
There are an excessive number of abortions.
According to the Guttmacher Institute, abortion rates dropped by 13 percent in 2011 compared to the previous year, mostly as a result of increased access to birth control and longer-acting birth control techniques such as the IUD.
However, the majority of the time, what people are saying is that women are too casual about sex and contraception.
As Will Saletan points out, it is impossible to condemn abortion as immoral and to maintain that the optimal number of abortions is zero, without also criticizing the particular woman who has put herself in this predicament and now wishes to do something wrong in order to get herself out of it.
Abortion is racially discriminatory.
The advertisement, which featured an attractive young black child dressed in a charming pink frock, stated that “The Most Dangerous Place for an African American Is in the Womb.” An image of a tiny black child with the caption “Black Children Are an Endangered Species” was shown on billboards in Atlanta the year before.
- However, the claim that abortion is racist is one that is frequently heard in the pro-life movement.
- It doesn’t make much sense when stated in this manner.
- Because abortion opponents may portray the procedure as a kind of slavery or genocide, they can claim to be anti-racists without having to understand anything about the lives of black women or do anything to help remedy the massive and still-unabated consequences of slavery and segregation.
- That’s what they usually say: women are the “other victim” of abortion, and only the abortion providers should be prosecuted with a crime.
- I admit that the idea of putting women on trial for abortion seems far-fetched right now.
- However, the groundwork is already being laid.
- Many women have been arrested and some have been imprisoned for drug use or other inappropriate behavior while pregnant, even when no negative consequences have resulted and even when the law was clearly intended for another purpose (to protect living children from meth labs, for example).
- They were successful in getting the federal Unborn Victims of Violence Act passed, which made causing the killing of embryos and fetuses a separate crime from causing damage to the pregnant woman, as well as variants of that law passed in numerous states across the country.
In light of the growing restrictions on abortion, as well as the embryo and fetus being recognized as legal persons in an increasing number of areas of the law, it is becoming increasingly difficult to argue that a pregnant woman’s actions during pregnancy should not be subject to legal scrutiny.
and Learning to Drive, as well as a poet, essayist, and Nation magazine columnist.
She currently resides in New York City.
Katha Pollitt has copyright protection for the year 2014. All intellectual property rights are retained. Continue reading this: Dear Conservative Brothers and Sisters: Do you want to see fewer abortions? Tolerate Contraception in Moderation
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What Does the Bible Say About Abortion?
- Is abortion considered a sin? Is abortion considered murder? Do you think it’s ever okay to have an abortion? Is it possible for God to forgive me if I had an abortion? What should I do if I come into contact with someone who has had an abortion? What should I do if I encounter someone who does not share my pro-abortion beliefs?
Fortunately, these are typical issues, and this post is one of the most frequently read Bible FAQ’s on our website, with over 20,000 views.
Issues Concerning Biblical Opinions Church Doctrine and Other Miscellaneous Topics
During the time of Jesus1, the practice of abortion, infanticide, and child abandonment were all authorized under Roman law. Abortion is not addressed in the Bible, which is surprising considering that it has been done since ancient times and may be accomplished through a number of methods. A number of Bible texts, on the other hand, have been identified as being pertinent to the abortion debate. They may certainly articulate some basic ideas that are important, but none of them were intended to be comments about abortion when they were first written.
- However, when the sentence is read in context, it is evident that this was not the meaning intended.
- Jeremiah Chapter 1 tells the story of Jeremiah’s calling to be a prophet.
- It was at this point that Mary prepared herself and made her way to a village in the hill area of Judea, where she entered Zechariah’s home and welcomed his wife Elizabeth.
- “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will have!” she shouted in a loud voice.
- As soon as the sound of your welcome reached my ears, the baby in my belly burst out laughing with delight.
- “I have designated you a prophet to the nations,” he said.
- “Thank you for creating me.” Will you now turn around and annihilate me?
Will you now burn me to a crisp once more?
The Bible frequently compares life to breathing, and when taken out of context, this scripture appears to imply that a person is not alive until he or she draws their first breath after birth.
Man was created out of dust by the LORD God and breathed the breath of life into his nostrils, resulting in his becoming a living creature in the eyes of the LORD God.
And if two men fight and one of them strikes a pregnant lady, causing her to miscarry, but there is no more harm, the guy will very certainly be punished as much as the woman’s husband may want, and he will be required to pay whatever the courts determine.
Some believe that the torture was intended to induce an abortion if the lady was pregnant as a result of adultery.
The precise connotation is still up in the air.
Even while some Bible verses may provide valuable insight into the challenges at hand, there is no widespread consensus on how they should be interpreted.
Prior to 1973, abortion was allowed in some of the 50 states of the United States, though it was typically subject to tight limitations. In the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, the Supreme Court of the United States determined that a woman had the right to an abortion throughout the first trimester of pregnancy. States are still permitted to restrict abortion during the second trimester and outlaw it during the third trimester2, notwithstanding the Supreme Court’s ruling. Abortion has risen to become one of the most contentious and divisive problems in contemporary culture since that time.
The Pro-life Position
Advocates for the right to life represent one extreme of view. It is their belief that life begins at the moment of conception. As a result, abortion is considered murder and is thus outlawed by the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:13). They are firmly in favor of legislation that prohibits all or practically all abortions. The view that life starts at conception, on the other hand, is not supported by medical research, the Bible, religious tradition, or legal tradition in a clear and convincing way.
- Early Christians, on the other hand, did not appear to consider abortion to constitute murder until after the baby was born.
- That remained church dogma for many centuries, and abortion performed before the time of ensoulment was not deemed a fatal sin at the time of conception.
- 3,4Until “quickening,” or the first discernible fetal movements, which occurred around the fifth month, it appears that abortion was permitted under English common law.
- In the early 1900s, laws prohibiting abortion were implemented, with the chief motivations being the injuries and fatalities caused by untrained abortionists and a fight between rival groups for control of medical practice.
The Pro-choice Position
Pro-choice campaigners represent the polar opposite of this spectrum of thinking. They feel that abortion is not fundamentally different from other means of birth control, and they firmly support a woman’s freedom to make her own decision regarding abortion without being subjected to any legal restraints or restrictions. They point out that legalized abortion does not compel someone to have an abortion against her choice, and they argue that laws against abortion equate to imposing a religious teaching on individuals of different religions through legislation.
Although many popularly accepted laws have been passed as a consequence of moral concerns, the pro-choice perspective ignores the reality that there has been a long history of moral opposition to abortion and legal restriction of its practice.6
Advocates for abortion are considered to be on the other side of the political spectrum. Abortion, they feel, is no more or less effective than other kinds of birth control, and they firmly support a woman’s freedom to make her own decision regarding abortion without being subjected to any legal limitations. They point out that legalized abortion does not compel anybody to have an abortion against her choice, and they argue that laws against abortion equate to imposing a religion teaching on persons of other religious beliefs.
According to the surveys, a majority of people have qualms about both the extreme pro-life and pro-choice viewpoints on the issue of abortion. The following are some of the problems that are of importance to the vast majority of the population:
- Morality. Abortion is a topic that many people are deeply concerned about and have significant reservations about. At the same time, they feel that abortion may be the least of two evils in some situations. A number of circumstances are considered to justify abortion, with varying degrees of acceptance, including: danger to the mother’s life, defective fetus, rape, incest, teen pregnancy, risk to the mother’s physical or emotional health, unstabilized family situations, mental retardation of the mother, and so on
- Separation of church and state. Numerous persons who hold moral objections to abortion think that their opposition to abortion is fundamentally a religious belief. Therefore, they think that using the legislation to enforce that religious conviction on the significant portion of the population who hold other beliefs would be immoral
- The dangers of illegal abortion. Previously, abortions were permitted in select states prior to the 1973 Roe v. Wadedecision, which legalized abortion throughout the United States. It was estimated that in 1972 586,800 legal abortions were place in such states. 8 The number of illegal abortions conducted in the United States each year is believed to be between 200,000 and 1,200,000 every year. 9 In order to terminate their pregnancies, many women residing in places where abortion was prohibited simply went to states or countries where abortion was permitted to do so. Those who could not afford this option frequently sought out a third party who would do the surgery illegally on their behalf. Some doctors were eager to lend a sympathetic ear. However, many illegal abortions were carried out by unqualified practitioners, and many women were exploited, sexually abused, injured, infected, rendered sterile, or even died as a result of the actions of these “back alley” abortionists and clinics. 10,11,12 The consensus of medical opinion, despite occasional claims to the contrary, is that legal abortions are extremely safe, posing less danger to a woman’s physical and mental health than maintaining a pregnancy. Thirteenth: The efficacy of constraints Many individuals who are opposed to the availability of abortion in some or all conditions are concerned that the availability of legal abortion in multiple states and nations, as well as the possibility of illegal abortion, will render any legal restriction mostly ineffectual in the long run. While at the same time, such limits would very certainly bring back the horrors of illicit abortions, which have been nearly virtually abolished in recent years
- Tactic Neither side has done a good job of presenting its ideas in a way that is understandable to the majority of people in the middle of the political spectrum. On both sides of the political spectrum, activists repeat their slogans endlessly, but they have seldom bothered to comprehend and answer the issues of individuals in the center or on the opposite side of the political spectrum. 14 Some politicians use the abortion issue to achieve political advantage by igniting people’s feelings and worries about the topic. 15 The actions of a tiny number of activists have resulted in the harassment and deception of women seeking abortions, the unlawful blockage of abortion facilities, the harassment of physicians, and the commission of violent crimes, including death. Such behaviors are plainly in violation of biblical precepts, and major Christian groups do not condone such behavior. However, because of the conduct of a few, the pro-life movement has gained a negative reputation in the minds of many people. 16,17
The majority of Christians, Christian theologians, and Christian churches are divided on whether or not terminating a pregnancy is the moral and ethical choice in certain circumstances. Most people, however, would agree that it is not a step that should be taken if there are satisfactory alternatives available. When faced with this decision, a woman or couple is left with medical counseling, pastoral counseling, advice from family and friends, and prayer to assist them in making their decision.
Will God Forgive Me if I had an Abortion?
It is possible that some women who have had abortions, as well as their partners who were involved in the choice, would later come to regret their decision. They may believe that they have done a grievous sin for which God would never forgive them. As for forgiveness, according to the Bible, God will forgive any sin if a person repents (makes a true decision to move away from sin and toward God) and that God will also forgive other people who have sinned against that person. For further information, see this article: What Does the Bible Say About Forgiveness of Sins?
How Should I Treat Someone who has had an Abortion? HowShould I Treat Someone who Disagrees with My Beliefs about Abortion?
Because of the intense emotions surrounding the abortion debate, it is possible that persons on both sides of the issue will fall prey to the sin of self-righteousness. However, Jesus and other New Testament teachers instructed us not to judge, reject, or discriminate against individuals whom we deem to be “sinners” via their words and actions (Matthew 7:1-2, 9:10-13, Luke 7:36-48,18:9-14, John 8:1-11). According to Matthew 18:15-17, Christians have a responsibility to address injustice among themselves, but this should always be done fairly and compassionately.
Remember, as Christians, that we are all sinners in God’s eyes (Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8) and that God loves all His children, even those who hold beliefs that vary from our own (Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8).
(Matthew 5:43-48). Because of our strong opinions against abortion, we can’t afford to allow our emotions cloud our judgment of Jesus’ instruction to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:36-39).
A number of churches, including the United Church of Christ18, the Episcopal Church19, the Presbyterian Church (USA)20, and the United Methodist Church, do not support abortion as a method of contraception. They do, however, support a woman’s right to seek an abortion if she believes it is the best option for her in her particular circumstances, and they support keeping abortion legal in most cases. Other faiths, such as the Roman Catholic Church and the Southern Baptist Convention, are opposed to all abortions and support making abortion illegal.
From the time of conception, human life must be recognized and preserved to the fullest extent possible. A human being must be regarded as possessing the rights of a person from the very beginning of his or her existence – among them is the inalienable right to life that every innocent being possesses. 2271. Since the first century, the Catholic Church has stated that abortion is a morally wrong practice that should be avoided at all costs. This teaching has not changed and will not change in the future.
The following is taken from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, (c) 1994, United States Catholic Conference, Inc.
Procreation is a gift from God, a valuable trust that should only be placed in the hands of a married couple. An whole new creature enters the cosmos at the moment of conception: a human being, a person formed in the image of God. This human child, regardless of the circumstances of his or her conception, needs our protection. Copyright (c) 1999-2001, Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention, Position Statements
The beginning of life and the end of life are the bounds of human existence that have been established by God. Humans have always had some degree of control over when they would die, but they now have the incredible capacity to select when and even if new individuals will be born, which is truly amazing. In light of our convictions about the sacredness of unborn human life, we are reluctant to support abortion. However, we are also obligated to protect the sanctity of human life and the well-being of the mother, for whom an unwanted pregnancy may cause irreparable harm.
We cannot accept abortion as a legitimate method of contraception, and we categorically reject it as a method of gender selection.
We encourage all Christians to do a thorough and prayerful investigation of the kind of situations that may necessitate abortion.
It is not possible for government rules and regulations to supply all of the direction that is necessary by a well-informed Christian conscience.
161J of the United Methodist Church’s Book of Discipline, published in 2000, is cited.
1 Thomas Bokenkotter’s A Concise History of the Catholic Church was published by Doubleday in 1990 and contains page 51.
3 “Abortion,” Grolier, Inc., 1993.
Tricia Andryszewski, Abortion, Rights, Options and Choices (Millbrook Press: 1996), page 63.
Judges Ivan R.
5 Ibid., pp.
Page 83-10 in the same book.
8 judges 9 “Abortion,” Americana Corporation’s Encyclopedia Americana, published in 1971.
Judges, Chapter 13, page 74.
8-9.15 Ibid., pp.
9-15, chapter 17.