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Is There a Moral Justification For Abortion?

Posted by iusbvision on November 21, 2006

One of the biggest problems in society today is the arguments over reproductive rights.  It is an issue that has been taken and used by members of the neo-conservative right in order to hijack the vote of citizens of faith. The difficulty of this issue is it is an easy knee-jerk reaction issue. No thought is needed, all a person hears is ‘killing babies’ and they suddenly become Republican.  Little consideration is given to the mother, society, or the Bible these leaders supposedly take their inspiration from. I’d like to take a moment to show why it’s not a clear cut issue in the most basic argument used, the religious one.

Biblically there is more than enough support for the idea that some passages may actually support the idea of abortion under extreme circumstances.  In Ecclesiastes 6 while discussing the circumstances of “a man who fathers a hundred children” the comment is made “Better the miscarriage than he, for it comes in futility and goes into obscurity; and its name is covered in obscurity.  It never sees the sun and it never knows anything, it is better off than he.” This is a fairly clear instance of it being said better that one was never born, for a life of misery awaited. How is this different than the circumstances today where a child may be born to a family that hates it, but refuses to give it up? It suffers beatings and abuse until it grows old enough to strike back?  It is far better to allow those who wish children to raise them, and those who do not wish children to avoid having them. 

There is also a passage in Leviticus 27 giving the value of certain groups for judicial reasons. Most interesting is that the child is not assigned a monetary value until it has passed a month in life. In Ezekiel 37 a soldier is being reformed and reanimated by God, but it is clear that no life exists without breath. The same is true for Adam when he is created, and in Genesis a pregnant women is burned at the stake.  Wouldn’t it be appropriate for the innocent fetus’s killers to then be burned under the old law, if indeed that fetus were considered a person?

These are just a few examples where Biblical passages approach a definition of life. In no way are they absolute arguments for (or against) abortion.  As always, I encourage people to look them up and read the context, for most anti-choice passages are quoted incorrectly.  Out of context, I could show you why the Bible supports the mauling of children for mocking a bald man. So always look it up.

The point though is that the passages cited cast some suspicion on the life at conception idea, and each person should make their own decision.  When they come to that decision, it is equally important that they allow others to do the same. It is not a clear cut issue.  Either way, some bad happens. It’s drastically worse though to force someone to have a child when they aren’t ready, potentially ruining the lives of both and damaging the other family around them. Our society is supposed to be free though. So let people make the choices necessary to find fulfillment when the time is right. When abortion was illegal, women were beaten to death by men who didn’t want to be fathers. The desperation at not having a child often translated into dangerous back ally operations that could scar them for life, if they survived. Most importantly, women were subject to their bodies, not the other way around. In a society where we strive for equality, none of that is acceptable.

Ryan Hill
Writer

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109 Responses to “Is There a Moral Justification For Abortion?”

  1. Craig Chamberlin said

    Ryan,

    I suppose I will be one of the first to tackle this issue:

    First, let me summarize you argument, feel free to correct me if I am wrong:
    1. Abortion is a device used by the neo-Conservative Right as a way of manipulating those who are pro-life.
    2. A miscarriage is the same as abortion.
    3. The “Breath of Life” is interpreted as an individual taking their first breath (?).
    4. There are extreme circumstances in which Abortion is justifiable
    5. Banning abortion will simply cause more abortions or spousal abuse

    I will address each one individually as best I can. My goal isn’t to infringe on your interpretation of the Bible, rather to get you thinking critically about the argument you put forth.

    1. Abortion is a device used by the neo-Conservative Right as a way of manipulating those who are pro-life.

    Neo-conservatism is the use of manipulative fear to get votes. However, many conservatives (and democrats) who are pro-life are not manipulated by choosing to vote for an individual who is against abortion. To many Christians (both left and right), the issue of birth at conception is a very important matter in society. In fact, it is so important to some Christians that it is the basis for their vote. To suggest their primary voting concernes are illegitamate is the same as suggesting anyone elses primary voting concerns (National Security, Economic Policies, etc.) are all also illegitamate.

    Examples:
    A) Republicans manipulate those who are for a Free Market economy to vote for them because they agree with Free Market policies.
    B) Democrats manipulate those who desire higher tax rates on the rich to vote for them because they agree with higher tax rate policies.

    These are not manipulation, they are legitamate voting points.

    2. A miscarriage is the same as abortion.

    Miscarriage is not the deliberate destruction of a fetus. Miscarriages are caused by many environmental, emotional and physical factors outside of the control of the mother. Abortion is 100% within the control of the mother. This passage is pointing out the hard times the child will endure as a result of his fathers incompetance, but it is hardly justifying the killing of the fetus for it’s own good. “It would be better off dead” is a statement implying a hypothetical circumstancial situation, it does not state “it is better to kill”. If this were the case, why not kill the child when it is first born?

    3. The “Breath of Life” is interpreted as an individual taking their first breath (?).

    God breathed life into Adam, not the other way around. It wasn’t Adam who became alive as he began to breath. Your argument suggests abortions up to partial-birth abortions are justifiable, which I’m sure you are not condoning. If you are suggesting there is no soul placed within the fetus until a certain time span, just how does man determine when it is so? It is arrogant to believe man can determine when a child recieves a soul, they are not God.

    4. There are extreme circumstances in which Abortion is justifiable

    Do some research, this only accounts for about 1 – 3% of Abortions, and you are going to find most pro-lifers are very divided on this issue. Most are against those who use it as a form of birth control.

    5. Banning abortion will simply cause more abortions or spousal abuse.

    This argument is riddled with ethos and hardly has any evidence to back it up.

    More to come…

  2. Craig Chamberlin said

    Approaching the issue of abortion:

    Scientifically
    The field of Embryology has much to say about life-at-conception.

    Human Embryology & Teratology (pp. 5-55): “Fertilization is an important landmark because, under ordinary circumstances, a new, genetically distinct human organism is thereby formed… Fertilization is the procession of events that begins when a spermatozoon makes contact with a secondary oocyte or its investments… The zygote … is a unicellular embryo… “The ill-defined and inaccurate term pre-embryo, which includes the embryonic disc, is said either to end with the appearance of the primitive streak or … to include neurulation. The term is not used in this book.” (p. 55).”

    [http://abort73.com/HTML/I-A-1-medical.html]

    Not much else needs to be said here

    Ethically
    The most widely used form of abortion is a direct result of the poor decision making of two consenting adults. The continued practice of alleviating consequences leads to continued careless decision making in the future.

    Abortion Statistics:
    – Only 1% are performed because of rape or incest;
    – 1% because of fetal abnormalities;
    – 3% due to the mother’s health problems.
    – Risk to maternal health: 2.8%
    – Risk to fetal health: 3.3%

    – Wants to postpone childbearing: 25.5%
    – Wants no (more) children: 7.9%
    – Cannot afford a baby: 21.3%
    – Having a child will disrupt education or job: 10.8%
    – Has relationship problem or partner does not want pregnancy: 14.1%
    – Too young; parent(s) or other(s) object to pregnancy: 12.2%
    – Other: 2.1%

    [http://www.abortiontv.com/Misc/AbortionStatistics.htm]

    This is not that hard to understand, however, does this justify the banning of abortion? It is a more difficult question to answer, of course. But it definitly justifies those who believe for the majority of cases, Abortion is a selfish decision. Pregnancy has become 99.9% preventable. Also, the consequences of the decision making is shifted to the unborn child instead of the parent.

    Philisophically
    If the fetus is indeed not a child, it makes no difference, because it will one day be a child. Even if one argues the fetus doesn’t become a living being until a certain time period, it does not change the end result. Destroying the fetus “before it is alive” is no different than destroying it when it “is alive”. In either case, a unique child is being thwarted from coming into existence by the hands of another individual.

    Secondly, arguing external circumstances are a direct result for justifiable murder is inherently false. Just as the same argument could be used for any individual with external circumstances society deems “unlivable”. Let us kill all seniors lying in hospital beds because “that is hardly a life”. Man has no right to pre-emptively determine whether one has an opportunity to live or not. Also, this argument merely suggests those born into tougher circumstances are less entitled to life than those who are not. This is discrimination against the unborn child. It is basically stating, “You have no right to live, because your life is going to be undesirable.” Secondly, this argument equates those who are currently born under abusive and harsh circumstances as being lesser individuals. Whether an individual is born with the Brady’s in the suburbs or born with an alcoholic single mom in the slums, it makes absolutely no difference whether they have a right to live or not.

  3. Rachel Custer said

    I just have to say I think attempting to find justification for the killing of babies in the Bible is even more disgusting than those who just admit they want to be able to have abortions because a baby would be an inconvenience. At least those people have some integrity.

    It sickens me that this article was even printed in the Vison.

  4. Bret Matrix said

    Hippocratic Oath

    … will neither give a deadly drug to anybody who asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to this effect. Similarly I will not give to a woman an abortive remedy. In purity and holiness I will guard my life and my art…

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/doctors/oath_classical.html

    Do doctor’s not take this oath anymore, or are abortion mills ran by non-doctors?

  5. Hello everyone,

    I think what my friend Ryan was trying to say in his article is that Republicans, especially right wingers, use abortion as a wedge issue, just like gay marriage and all the other issues that divide our nation, instead of bringing it together. Have you ever read the book “Whats the matter with Kansa” by Thomas Frank. Its main premise is that there is a county in Kansas, one of the poorest counties in that state, and they are solidly a red county, even though it has been proven time and time again that Republican economic policies work against their best interests. Could it be they can’t run on their own economic or foreign policy record, so they have to use divisive issues to get people to vote for them?

    Scott Gorney

  6. Jarrod Brigham said

    Scott,

    Are you willing to entertain the possibility that issues such as abortion are so outrageous that they are willing to vote for what you think are bad economic policies just to preserve life? To some, the sanctity of life is more important than being wealthy.

  7. Rachel Custer said

    Scott,

    I think Jarrod makes a good point. Even though I disagree with almost all liberal economic policies, if democrats were the pro-life party, and Republicans were the pro-choice party, I would never vote Republican.

    Some things are more important than money. Good point Jarrod.

  8. Craig Chamberlin said

    Exactly the point I made above.

    To many Christians (both left and right), the issue of birth at conception is a very important matter in society. In fact, it is so important to some Christians that it is the basis for their vote. To suggest their primary voting concernes are illegitamate is the same as suggesting anyone elses primary voting concerns (National Security, Economic Policies, etc.) are all also illegitamate.

    I am sorry you were disappointed we printed the article Rachel. Freedom of speech of course. I happen to know many Christians who believe exactly what Ryan is stating here, so I believe it is important to bring it out into the open. This is also why we allow for people to respond to articles, to create the balance and so they can discuss it openly.

    Scott,

    If this was the argument he was trying to make, then there is no need for a reference to the Bible. If one makes an argument relating to the political use of a controversial issue it has no relevance to morality – rather to manipulation. If his article addressed the impact of the Neo-conservative fear tactics it need not even determine whether abortion is ‘right or wrong’ it needs only to point out how the issue is being manipulated. Also, he clearly is attempting to biblically justify abortion in his argument.

  9. Bret Matrix said

    There once was a pregnant woman who went to the doctor. She had a 1 year old son already and was concerned about the financial burden that a second child would put on the family. She told the doctor that she wanted him to eliminate the second pregnancy however he could do it. The doctor told her that it would be much easier to just kill her 1 year old son. The woman looked shocked as she asked the doctor why he would suggest such a disgusting act. He told her that it is much easier to just slit the child’s throat than to go through the abortion procedure. It would also pose no risk to her, unlike the abortion procedure that may risk her health. The woman looked at her son and looked at the doctor now holding a scalpel. She screamed MURDERER. The doctor looked at her and asked why was a murderer when he was just trying to remove the financial burden she spoke of earlier. The woman then left the doctor’s office with both her son and fetus.

  10. Bret Matrix said

    A leading pro-life advocate spoke to God and asked Him to send someone to lead the people in thier fight against those who are anti-life. God replied, “I have, you have aborted them all.”

  11. Jarrod Brigham said

    Ryan,

    I must admit that this article took me by suprise. Very few people on the left are willing to discuss the issue of abortion from the Biblical point of view. That is very commendable and appreciate the research that was put into this article. Allow me to take off the President of the Vision hat and put on the President of Campus Bible Fellowship hat and look at the Scriptures you have posted.

    Ecc. 6:3 – This verse says nothing about the child awaiting misery. Allow me to paraphrase Ecc. 6:3-6 – If a man lives many years and has many children, but his soul is not satisfied and he does not have a burial, a stillborn child is better than he is. For it comes in vanity and departs in darkness, though it has not seen the sun or known anything, the stillborn has more rest than this man even if he lives 2,000 years, but has not seen goodness”.

    The stillborn child is not being born to the man. The author, whom I believe to be King Solomon is saying that if a man does not see goodness in life, he might as well have never been born. The context shows the passage to be about enjoying life, it cannot be interpreted as support of abortion, because there is no abortion taking place.

    Lev. 27
    You mentioned the most important point in the Scripture is verse 6 which states that a child is not given any monetary value until one month. This is true, but I don’t see how it is in support of abortion. If you are saying that a fetus can be destroyed because it has no value, then if you use this Scripture, you would also have to admit that an infant up to one month can then be destroyed since it too has no value. I don’t think anyone would admit this can be interpreted from the passage. If not, then one cannot use this passage as support for abortion.

    Ez. 37 and Gen. 2:7
    Ez. 37 is not a literal reformation of the soldier. It is metaphorical and is a prophesy of the nation of Israel. The scattered bones in the passage refer to the scattering of what was left of the nation of Israel after the two tribes were defeated. The sinews connecting the bones represents the pre-1948 regathering of the nation. Flesh covering the bones is when Israel became a nation in 1948. The skin covering the body represents Isreal during the Tribulation and the breath represents the national conversion to Christ during the Millenium.

    The Gen. 2:7 does make it clear that Adam was not a living being until the breath of life was breathed into him. One must remeber that that Adam was the only man not be a fetus. He was created whole, never in the womb.

    There are plenty of passages that would show that a fetus is alive. Jeremiah 1:4-5 “Then the word of the Lord came to me saying: “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I sanctified you…” Before we are born, God has a purpose for us. God cannot know us personally if we are not yet a person.

    In the announcement of the birth of Christ at Luke chapter 2, Mary visits Elizabeth, mother of John the Baptist. Verse 41 reads “and it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost”. The fetus is alive.

    Gen. 38:24-26
    The woman was pregnant, but she was not burned at the stake. In verse 24,Judah wanted her to be burned at the stake, but in verse 26, he repents for this outburst. We know that she did not die because in verses 28 and 29 she gives birth to twins. Not only does this fail to endorse abortion, but vehemently condems it. Judah repents for wanted to kill the woman and her child.

    Here are some other verses that I believe conclusively show that the Bible is 100% against abortion:

    Exodus 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 judge determines. But if any 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.” If the child/fetus dies, the man dies as well.

    Psalm 139:13 David tells God “For you formed my inward parts; you covered me in my mother’s womb.

    I will leave the political stuff up to Craig and Chuck and Bret. I just wanted to address the Biblical issues.

    Jarrod Brigham, CBF President

  12. Erkki KochKetola said

    This wearing of hats everyone does; are they all working at cross-purposes with one another? Or is there some sort of coherent ideology behind them, presumably guiding the choices they make while wearing these hats?

    Just wondering.

  13. Ryan said

    I think many here misunderstood my intention.

    I am not suggesting the Bible supports abortion. I am simply refuting the assumption that it condemns it. There is a very serious difference. Rachel, consider your response for a moment. Should your faith require you to seek the purest understanding of what God meant in his scriptures? Why then would you turn away when someones offers a conflciting viepoint. It is your duty as a Christian to explore that interpretation to find the truth of what God demands of you. Refusing to do so implies you have mroe fiath in the words of men (your pastors and political party) then you do in the words of God. I do not assume my interpretation is infallible, only that it is meant to show you there are other ways to view this.

    Anyways, onwards to the debate. Craig. Your first points about the reactionary nature of politics are well taken. However I believe that many in the leadership of both parties earnestly believe their dogma.

    Also, your philiosophical argument falters severely as it fails to account for a fundamental principle of ethical philosophy. The idea of intent. When a person kills someone in self defense, a serious concern these days due to the recent police issue, it is not considered murder. THis is because the intent was not to kill the attacker, but to defend oneself. It is the same for abortion. The end is not the termination fo the pregnancy, but the salvation of lives of those sentient and aware to udnerstand that. And the hope that they will be able to sustain a new life when they are ready.

    I would also challenge your claim that it is an alleviation of the consequences. An abortion almost always has a lasting psychological effect on the woman involved. It is not this easy happy experience many conservatives like to claim. It is a gut-wrenching, horrendous experience that most women carry with them a long time. But better than being locked into a life they are not ready for, failing miserably at raising a child and becoming a permanent burden on their families.

  14. Ryan said

    Bret, I have a story for you.
    A man working hard all day in his yard. The sweat pours off of him as the day goes on, but he keeps working for he has great pride in his home and its well kept nature. It is a reflection of his hard work and dedication. While he performs his work, he finds an oddly shaped weed. He calls to a neighbor, who happens to be outside working as well. After some discussion, they find it is a small oak sapling. Unconcerned, he moves to pull it out. His neighbor, a botanist and nature lover cires out in horror.
    “What are you doing?”
    “I’m pulling it out. Its growing next to my home and could destroy everything in a few years.”
    “But its an oak tree, it could grow to a thousand years and become a marvel of nature!”
    THe man keeping his yard looked at the 1 ft tall weed in confusion, then at his neighbor in disbelief. He then yanks out the sapling that would have grown into his home, destroyed his foundation, and wiped out the haven he had become so proud of.

    A sapling is not an oak tree, an embryo is not a human being. If it were, miscarriage would be manslaughter. That is the law. If a person dies by accident or carelessness, it is still a punishable offense.

  15. Ryan said

    Finally, Jarrod. Your bring up a most important concern. Paraphrasing. I find your paraphrase completly incorrect. The point was that God said it was better that he were not born then he lived a life without goodness. To this I say, a child born to a family that cannot care for them, in a society that does not offer reasonable alternatives in case fo an abuseive family, and a world that will likely see them eithe rlocke din prison or with their own children in similat circumstances, also meets the same statement. Let that child be born to someone else, or when their parents are ready for another. The soul is the truth of a human being, not the body. There is no statement in the Bible suggestive of when the soul finds the body, short of the comments on the breath of life, or on the ‘quickening.’ This is an area many assert, but none can prove. Either way, that is their decision and they have no right to enforce their own understanding of such an issue on everyone else.

    My point in Leviticus was not to assert a child has no value, but to make clear that the Bible does make that assertion. If the loss of a child under 1 month was not considered enough of an offense that the parents must be compensated, how does one draw the conclusion that a Biblical perspective of life starts at conception?

    The point of Ezekiel remains the same, whether it was a prophecy or a fact. God did not account for the shaped and ready body to be alive until the rbeath of life had touched it. What is illustrated in vision is meant to be a correlation to life, so the relevance remains.

    In Genesis, I see no acknowledgement of the child. Only that he chooses not to have her burned at the stake.

    You have misread Exodus, very severely.
    Let me quote exactly what you are referring to, as per King James version.
    22″If men strive, and hurt a woman with child so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow, he shall surely be punished, according to the womans’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.
    23and if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life,
    24Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,
    25Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.

    So let me ask, how does a child get burned during premature birth? They don’t. The passage stopped discussing the premature birth at the end of line 22 by saying a fine can be imposed upon the perpetrator. Considering how unlikely a premature birth was to survive in those days, such a thing was tantamount to miscarriage.

    In PSalms it is David speaking with God. So is it a surprise God knew the path that was charted for his prophet? It is not a valid passage to apply to all human beings. Same with Jeremiah. These were not average men, their lives were planned by God to serve as his prophets and perform deeds necessary for the Word. John the Baptist reacts to the approach of Mary while in the womb. This is the same, a prophet of God endowed with the holy spirit in the womb is NOT a good model of how a normal life would be. Unless you plan on performing some miracles in the coming few days. : )

    Show me a passage where it discusses one not specifically ordained by God, and then we can consider the implications toward mankind in general.

    There you go, I await your response. I still see nothing to convince me that there is any genuine response to the idea of abortion Biblically. Deliberate interpretations are nothing more than activist preachers, further corrupting the word of God by making assertions that do not exist. Quite to the contrary of many of the best Biblical shcolars of the past millenia. I will cite them a bit later, but for the evening I must retire. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

  16. Erkki KochKetola said

    Ryan:

    While I am sympathetic to your views on this, in the interests of fairness, I would like to see you cite some literature (it doesn’t have to be scientific, necessarily, but at least from a reasonably reliable (the definition of which I’ll leave up to you) source) about the effects of an abortion on women. Of particular interest to me would be literature describing the effects of different abortion procedures. Thanks.

  17. Ryan said

    Ah, see for my part thats personal experience. Information I’ve gathered from people I know, and occasional accounts I’ve seen in studies online. As such, I don’t have any handy. I can try to find something though.

  18. Rachel said

    Ryan,

    I think Jarrod adequately refuted your “evidence” by using the word of God. As for believing more in the words of men, I don’t think that’s what I’m doing, but I’m very interested to know where you got your “interpretations.” Interesting that they have been previously interpreted as such by MEN! And which men? Those who would like to pick and choose and take out of context verses of the Bible in order to somehow explain their willingness to kill babies.

    And oh, by the way, an oak sapling IS an oak tree. The DNA in a sapling is absolutely indistinguishable from that in an oak tree. If it’s not an oak tree, what is it? Just because its a LITTLE oak tree does not make it something else.

    Finally, your story ignores one point. It is not applicable to abortion. To make it applicable, you would have to say that the man who owned the house PLANTED the oak tree and then freaked out when it was threatening his house. Bottom line, keep your garden tools in the shed and you won’t have to worry about needing to kill that poor little oak tree for your own convenience.

    (Also, to compare a sapling to a living human being is disturbing and does not help make your point.)

  19. Bret Matrix said

    Rachel,

    That is so funny. Keep you garden tools in the shed. Ha ha ha.

  20. Ryan said

    No kidding. So every time you cut your lawn, you’re committing environmental crimes? Older trees are often protected in national parks. The sapling premise works fine, a living thing is a living thing, all part of Gods creation. Your argument is that a cell is a human, so the comparison of a sapling to a 1000 year old oak is the same thing. There is plenty of things in between point a and point b. Potential is not the same as actual. If it were, every time you menstrated you’d be a mass murderer.

    Also, Jarrod failed to refute what I said in any way, as you would know had you read my response to his portion. You insistence on using the phrase ‘killing babies’ is a dead give away. You don’t care what the word of God says, as long as it can be twisted to fullfill your own personal beliefs. Thats unfortunate. You should embrace any attempt to fully understand what is said, and if the premise given proves to be false then no harm no foul. As I said before, I don’t think this is an issue addressed by the Bible at all. It is something we all must come to our own understanding. If one MUST use Biblical sources, then it seems apparent that said sources support the idea that the soul finds its host long after conception.

  21. Craig Chamberlin said

    Ryan,

    Her point was very well established. Although the use of certain aggresive words could have been left out, it doesn’t change that she very much acknowledged your parable quite well.

    You are very much comparing a zygote to a sapling. There is another problem to this illustration, trees do not grow as a result of decision making processes. Getting pregnant is 100% preventable, for you to suggest that zygotes are produced by women just as naturally as a sapling grows is not only inaccurate, but irresponsible. There is quite a difference between a fertilized egg and a non-fertilized egg. The problem here is, once the egg is fertilized, even science (look above) says it has become a new human being. Take religion out of the equation completely, and even science is technically against abortion.

    Secondly, let me illustrate one of the most important turning points in the Bible, when Mary concieved Jesus by the holy spirit. Are you suggesting that if she chose to abort the child (or zygote) in the first month because she didn’t want to deal with the problem of having a child, or face her husband who would undoubtly think she had an affair, or face the scrutiny of a society that would stone women for such things it wouldn’t be murder? If she had chosen to do this, Jesus never would have came into existence!

    Lastly, you stated:

    Also, your philiosophical argument falters severely as it fails to account for a fundamental principle of ethical philosophy. The idea of intent. When a person kills someone in self defense, a serious concern these days due to the recent police issue, it is not considered murder. This is because the intent was not to kill the attacker, but to defend oneself. It is the same for abortion. The end is not the termination fo the pregnancy, but the salvation of lives of those sentient and aware to understand that. And the hope that they will be able to sustain a new life when they are ready.
    Emphasis Mine.

    Two things here do not make sense to me.

    1) You are not protecting yourself in the same context of self-defense, because in 95% of abortions it is not life threatening. You are alleviating the consequences of having to deal with your poor decisions. I am sorry, but this is the truth for the majority of abortion cases.

    2) How arrogant must one be to believe they think a child is better off dead than to live a life they deem unlivable. This speaks waves to those who are currently struggling and born in these situations. Ask all of them if they’d rather be dead right now, what do you think there answer will be? “Oh, I sure wish my mother would have aborted me.” People have a right to live, and you have no right to tell them otherwise, don’t speak on you knowing what are livable circumstances for individuals to be born under. You do not have that right.

  22. Craig Chamberlin said

    As a side note:
    Do not take me wrong, I realize making the decision for an abortion isn’t an easy one. However, how does it do the struggling mother any good not to tell her the truth about what science, ethics and philosophy say about abortion. If these three show it could very well be a human being you are killing, then wouldn’t us letting them make the decision uninformed come back to hurt them even more in the future. Maybe this is the explanation for the majority of those who have to deal with psychological consequences of abortions, they realize later on it very much was a unique being. I would think it would be better to tell them this before hand, how about you?

  23. Erkki KochKetola said

    Craig:

    Thus far, no one has presented a sociological analysis of the likelihood of women in the lower middle class or poor women to have abortions. The site you linked to, however, demonstrates that 78% of abortions worldwide are performed in developing countries. The “developing world” lives in abject poverty, for the most part; I think this provides some strength to my hypothesis. I’ve checked the CDC, and their reporting doesn’t appear fine-grained enough. However, they do report some interesting statistics:

    For women whose marital status was adequately reported (39 reporting areas), 80% of women who obtained abortions were known to be unmarried (Table 11). The abortion ratio for unmarried women (570 per 1,000 live births) was 8.8 times that for married women (65 per 1,000).

    For women who obtained legal induced abortions and for whom data on previous live births were adequately reported (41 reporting areas), 39% were known to have had no previous live births, and 32% had two or more previous live births (Table 12). The abortion ratio was highest for women who had three previous live births (291 per 1,000 live births) and lowest for those who had one previous live birth (194 per 1,000).

    Unmarried women who have children are more likely to be in economic distress. According to the CDC’s statistics (http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/ss5407a1.htm#tab12), women with no children are more likely in wealthier (and whiter) states than in poorer states to have abortions. This means that white, middle-class (and upper-class) women are having more abortions before having had children than minorities. So abortion is used primarily as a means of relieving undue economic stress on existing families, and often by white women from upper economic strata to prevent (what they perceive as) undue economic stress.

    The “truth” about what science says about abortion is quite different from what you insinuate; Planned Parenthood (http://www.plannedparenthood.org/news-articles-press/politics-policy-issues/abortion-access/induced-abortion-6137.htm) cites numerous studies which show that the psychological effects of abortion on most women (where they do not have pre-existing emotional problems) are significantly less than the effects of pregnancy. Most (98%) are satisfied with the outcome of the procedure, and most (“more than 70%”) incidate a desire to have children in the future. Although there are definitely possible problems with invasive abortion procedures, there are no such problems with medication abortion (the so-called “abortion pill”).

    Also see:
    * http://www.plannedparenthood.org/news-articles-press/politics-policy-issues/abortion-access/trimester-abortion-6140.htm (risk of death 10 times higher in pregnancy than abortion)
    * http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_induced_abortion.html

    The only significant problem you’ll run into in the future, if you’re a reasonably healthy woman, is the possibility that you might be judged a sinner when you die; clearly, this isn’t resonating with most people.

  24. Erkki KochKetola said

    Sorry, that blockquote should link here: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/ss5407a1.htm

  25. Tom said

    Bret

    No they don’t take that oath anymore and they haven’t for sometime. That version of the Hippocratic Oath that you refer to was made to Apollo, Asclepius, and Hygieia, and required the physician to swear that he would “hold him who has taught me this art as equal to my parents and to live my life in partnership with him, and if he is in need of money to give him a share of mine, and to regard his offspring as equal to my brothers in male lineage and to teach them this art – if they desire to learn it – without fee and covenant; to give a share of precepts and oral instruction and all the other learning to my sons and to the sons of him who has instructed me and to pupils who have signed the covenant and have taken an oath according to the medical law, but no one else.”, there are actually several variations on the modern Hippocratic Oath of which a relatively small percentage contain provisions similar to the ones you make reference to http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/doctors/oath_today.html (as a side note this is also a subject of quite a lot of debate so it doesn’t really resolve anything)

  26. Rachel said

    Erkki,

    The fact remains, no matter who the people are having the abortions, they are using them as birth control because they don’t want later “inconveniences” in their lives.

    There’s another way not to have a baby, and you can even do it if you don’t have a penny to your name. Don’t engage in rampant promiscuity. Bottom line. Not rocket science and costs NOTHING.

  27. Sam said

    To be frank, I don’t think that an 8-wk fetus has any “rights” as a human being whatsoever, let alone that of a blastocyst. I’m all for abstinence, as well as the morning after pill. Although not an ideal alternative, an early term abortion doesn’t cross any moral lines for me and I would likely feel just the same as a woman. Such a perspecitve becomes easy if you cut religion out of it.

    I’m surprised that people even bother to start such threads, in particular what I would consider to be the even sillir notion that the Bible actually provides support for abortion. The issue will never be resolved.

    If I am pro-choice, the pro-lifers would rather call me pro-death, or pro-abortion, implying that I would encourage someone to have one. That’s different, but there’s no point in arguing with a pro-lifer, nor the converse.

    Raising a child is a bit more than an “inconvenience”, a term used to belittle the preferences of the pregnant woman.

    And if you would repond that my view belittles the rights of the unborn, you are exactly correct. They shouldn’t have any.

    My opinion.

    Sam

  28. Rachel Custer said

    Sam,

    You are absolutely right about one thing. When you take away religion, the next most sensible choice is hedonism. People who have no religion really have no reason to make moral choices whatsoever. The fact that so many do is amazing, and the fact that so many do not is really not surprising at all.

  29. Tom said

    So your saying that the only reason that you observe any sort of moral code is because of a series of carrots and sticks that your religion hold over you, wow you actually make morality seem immoral, or at the very best cheap. Morality is by no means dependent on religion (although well defined conventions such as religion at times help us to understand morality) and many people who do look to their religion for moral guidance often behave in a decidedly immoral fashion as well (most distinctly in the case of religious extremism) your equation of religion= morality is horribly flawed and as an agnostic, pretty insulting.

  30. Sam said

    I am certainly not insulted by Rachel’s response, but Tom is correct in that the lack of organized religion, Christianity in particular, does not leave one with hedonism. Although I am not religious in the explicit sense, I have reason to make moral choices and those reasons do not necessarily favor what is most advantageous for me personally.

    A zygote simply has no inherent “rights” whatsoever. I would place the rights of my 8-yo chocolate Lab way, way above those of a human morula. I don’t mean to state that as universal fact – just that in my opinion, it an absurd no-brainer.

    I developed my own sense of right and wrong not owing to “God”, but by the human race over tens of thousands of years and in my case, my parents and the acute society in which I have been raised. In my world view, right and wrong comes from empathy, good will, and the golden rule. I don’t think “God” or something like “Jesus Christ died for us” is necessary whatsoever.

    Cheers :)

    Sam

  31. Rachel Custer said

    Tom and Sam,

    I apologize for any insult – it was certainly not intended, and I guess I need to clarify what I meant, because it does seem insulting when I re-read it attempting to look at it from a different point of view.

    I do not think that only religious people make moral decisions or have morals. What I should have said is, from a distinctly Christian perspective, if there is no God and Christ did not die for us, there is no real reason for Christians to act in a way that is not self-serving, or to act in a Christ-like manner.

    The phrase “from a distinctly Christian perspective” is necessary to my point, and should have been in the first post. I hope this has clarified my point, and again, I sincerely apologize for any insult or offense I have given. It was certainly not my intent.

    Thank you for the thoughtful comments to get me to look at my post and make sure I am saying what I mean to say. I do appreciate it.

  32. Craig Chamberlin said

    Erkki,

    Where the abortions take place has no relevance to the context of the moral justification argument.

    Sam,

    You are using a convenient convention to determine when a fetus deserves human rights, if not before 8 weeks, then when? If at 8 weeks, then why? Obviously, if it is a human at birth, it should obtain human rights when it is declared human. Correct me if I am wrong.

    Also, the “golden rule” is the second most important commandment Jesus spoke in the Bible, just below “Love the lord your God with all your heart”

    “The most important one[commandment],” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

    http://www.twopaths.com/greatest.htm

    I just thought you might find it interesting.

    http://www.loveallpeople.org/pearl-thecommandmentsofjesus.html

    Tom,

    If your agnostic beliefs contain a moral code, then they are a religion. Religion is a set of beliefs about the universe and the purpose of life. Everyone adheres to a form of religion of some kind, therefore a moral code cannot exist without religion. Now, I’m not suggesting your moral code is not valid, I’m just pointing out that it very well fits within the context of religion. Everyone seems to belive if you do not get together every Sunday to “practice” your religion with others then it is not a religion. Religion does not have to be a large organizational structure. It is simply a belief system.


    Hope all of your vacations went well, sorry it took so long for me to reply, been busy the past few days.

  33. Erkki KochKetola said

    I’m not sure why I’m bothering, but…

    Craig:

    Au contraire, where, when, and why they take place is of great relevance.

    Atheism and agnosticism are not religions. Oxford English Dictionary (http://dictionary.oed.com/cgi/entry/50202047?query_type=word&queryword=religion&first=1&max_to_show=10&sort_type=alpha&result_place=2&search_id=Utrj-64XntN-6347&hilite=50202047) defines religion as “[r]ecognition on the part of man of some higher unseen power as having control of his destiny, and as being entitled to obedience, reverence, and worship; the general mental and moral attitude resulting from this belief, with reference to its effect upon the individual or the community; personal or general acceptance of this feeling as a standard of spiritual and practical life.” Atheism and agnosticism do not recognize this “higher unseen power,” do not grant that it has “control of [their] destin[ies],” and most certainly do not believe that it is “entitled to obdedience, reverence, and worship.”

  34. Sam said

    When a fetus acquires “human rights” has tended to be defined on an arbitrary basis, which I’m fine with. You’re not – fine. Let’s just agree to disagree. There’s no point in arguing this.

    Once again, I do not care about Jesus Christ or the Bible, so go thump it someone else. What is this, the Christian Science Monitor?

    Let me repeat: one can have morals irrespective of Christianity. I understand that you are a devout Christian and all of your views are connected to that. I’m not questioning it.

  35. Craig Chamberlin said

    Erkki,

    Your post stated, “Atheism and agnosticism do not recognize this “higher unseen power,” do not grant that it has “control of [their] destin[ies],” and most certainly do not believe that it is “entitled to obdedience, reverence, and worship.”

    Atheism’s higher power is that we are a product of nature, so nature, in essence is our higher power, because it created us. Secondly, it adheres to the moral code of men, in which men determine right and wrong and not a divine intercessor. Agnosticism does not recognize a higher power? This is incorrect, they just believe no religion has discovered who “God” actually is, but pay homage to an unseen higher intelligence.

    http://www.dictionary.com
    Agnostic – “a person who holds that the existence of the ultimate cause, as God, and the essential nature of things are unknown and unknowable, or that human knowledge is limited to experience.”

    Sam,

    Your statement basically is stating a human acquires human rights on an arbitrary basis, which you are okay with, does this make logical sense to you?

    I appreciate your frustration with this topic, but I am simply trying to make a point about the establishment of a “human”. My argument is not directly quoted from the Bible, nor is it an attempt to thump the Bible onto others. If science states a zygote is a unique human then that human has human rights. For society to suggest otherwise strips away the fabric of rights for its own uses. Simply because the human cannot defend itself, doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a right to defense. You didn’t answer my question, when is it a human? If before eight weeks, then when? If after eight weeks, then why? This is meant to be an unanswerable question because it is either a human at conception or it is not. There is no grey area. We cannot declare an individual a human at eight weeks unless there is a clear way to differenciate between the seventh week and the eigth. In the case of human development, all stages are equally important, so how is it sub-human prior to eight weeks if all 9 months are absolutely necessary for development?

    Secondly, I was pointing the parallel of the golden rule and Christian doctrine, I thought you might find it interesting. It was not an attempt to thump the Bible on you, I am sorry you took it this way. I realize there are moral codes outside the context of Christianity. I stated that above. I just pointed out there is no moral code without a religious context (which religion depends on the individual). I never stated all moral codes fall under the Christian philosophy.

    Erkki,

    Remember awhile back when we discussed how an individual cannot take their belief system out of politics, because political beliefs are beliefs. This illustrates the important notion of moral codes stemming from a religion, and how the two cannot be separated. Even you agreed with me people can not remove their religion from their politics, it is because you cannot remove an individuals moral code from decisions affecting others. We’d like to believe we can make decisions without having our belief system affect them, but this is a fallacy, our belief system affects all decisions we make, whether political, scientific or any other.

  36. Erkki KochKetola said

    “Atheism’s higher power is that we are a product of nature, so nature, in essence is our higher power, because it created us.”

    This is an example of reification; you are treating nature, which is an abstraction, as if it were a concrete entity. Nature is all that which is not man-made or controlled by man. It has no concrete existence, it is merely a very abstract label we use to distinguish between things that exist due to human agency and things that do not.

    “Secondly, it adheres to the moral code of men, in which men determine right and wrong and not a divine intercessor.”

    Not all atheists necessarily believe that there is such a thing as morality or that it is of any use – of course, we generally refer to people who believe this as sociopaths. Where atheism is used to inform ethics, you are correct, we do believe that humans determine right and wrong. Ethics are social constructs, rules developed to mediate human interaction.

    “Agnosticism does not recognize a higher power? This is incorrect, they just believe no religion has discovered who ‘God’ actually is, but pay homage to an unseen higher intelligence.”

    Agnosticism is the belief that the existence of an entity or entities which may be described as “Gods” or “deities” is at best unknown or at worst unknowable. Most agnostics (in our society) are basically Christians who doubt their own belief, but there are examples of agnostics who hold that it is not possible to know God in any way, thereby rendering His existence irrelevant.

  37. Craig Chamberlin said

    Erkki,

    Your assumption obligates the definition of religion to have a diety. Religion is a set of beliefs, a diety is not necessary. The belief of the world forming by nature is a belief about the creation of the universe and the belief that men determine moral right and wrong is the moral code.

    This makes both atheists and agnostics fall under the category of religion, just because there is no described God or Gods doesn’t mean they do not have faith in a belief system without said God or Gods.

    Christians have faith in a particular God in just the same way involving the creation of the universe and a moral code to follow. But somehow, you describe this faith with agnostics and atheists as non-religious and with Christians as religious. Yet this is not contradictory?

  38. Rachel said

    Erkki,

    The agnostic belief that God is unknown or unknowable does not deny that there might be a God. As a matter of fact, I would venture to say that most agnostics I know believe in some higher power but question whether humans can define that higher power. The majority of agnostics, in my experience, question facts about God rather than questioning whether or not there is some higher power.

  39. Andrew Filmer said

    This discussion has moved into regions even more unprovable than the original contentions. Which isn’t to say it isn’t interesting.

    The definition of religion has not been entirely agreed upon. Some believe that Buddhism, having not a deity to worship, is considered a spiritual belief and not a religion. Others would disagree. Hinduism on the other hand, is in no doubt a religion, though it contrasts much with the other major religions in that Hindus believe in more than one god.

    Religion and morality are entirely different things, as has been mentioned earlier in this stream. I certainly know and have known atheists who are some of the most moral people I know, and people with religious credentials a mile long who have forgotten that pride can be a sin – or at least a moral defienciency, for those readers who don’t believe in God.

    As for abortion, well, I believe the concept is very much linked to the previous discussion on sexuality. As much as one cannot conclusively conclude that sexuality is a choice, one cannot conclusively conclude that an embryo is not a living human being. My personal moral axis has to side with the potential victims – victims either of discrimination or death – and as such it sides with all sexualities, and all life.

    Though I am more confident when it comes to sexuality, I can say that there is no real agreement or substantial proof that an embryo is not a living human being. I, for one, cannot take a chance on murder, even if there is a chance that it may not be murder, from a moral standpoint – and not a religious one. Especially if it is more often than not recreational, purely preventable, and with the option of adoption.

  40. ryan said

    Sorry all, I was incredibly busy over the weekend. Now where were we.

    Craig. Abortion is 100% preventable. Interesting observation, and totally irrelevant. Many things are 100% preventable, but that does not mean people are going to do so. We have to deal with the reality of the world, not the fictitious utopian paradise where no one ever makes any mistakes. The reality is that forcing people to have unwanted children is a terrible crime. It hurts the parents, the family, the society, and the child who would have been better off being born at a later time.

    2nd. When I say lives, I don’t mean lide and death. I mean a life in abject poverty, sustaining oneself off of wellfare and charity because they can’t afford to feed their kids. You say it is arrogant to claim they are better off dead, I say you’re arrogant for claiming a life of suffering is good because it will teach people a lesson. Thats really waht it boils down too. Anti-choice people always say ‘well they should have known better.’ As if they’ve never made a mistake in their lives and want to punish the mother with a child she is not ready for. Not to mention the idea that its your religious beliefs, so everyone must follow them. To me, thats treasonous. Both to God for violating his gift of free will, and to your country for violating the seperation of church and state.

    Finally, your definition of a ‘human’ is not everyone elses. An embryo is not, according to any reasonable definition. You ask for a defining point of change, and tha tis the subject of a very long and difficult ethical consideration. Biblically, they don’t have value until after 1 month. Should that be the correct time? Perhaps when they ‘look’ human. My eventual determination after wieghing the facts and what I felt was important to ‘personhood’ was a combination of appearance, potential, and cognitive. However I know it is not everyones. But in the grand scheme, I consider and actual person more important than a blob that could eventually become one. Do you really believe that if Mary had an abortion then the son of God would have been completly thwarted? You don’t think God might have found another host?

    I’m also still waiting to find out why a misscarriage is not considered manslaughter under your definition of human life.

  41. ryan said

    Rachel, “Don’t engage in rampant promiscuity.” Several problems here. First of all why should your definition of rampant promiscuity apply to all people. If a couple want to enjoy their relationship in the fullest, why is it your duty to punish them for that by forcing them to have a child they aren’t ready for? Our bodies are designed to demand such things. Its hardwired into our genetic code that sex is desirable, and assuming you are a faithful christian, that code was largely created by the process God put into place. So why is it you may condemn Gods design when its obvious to anyone who spends time watching some teenagers that our hormonal make up pushes us harder to this end than anything else. Period. Yes, it can be a choice. But not always. Some people arent strong enough to always resist the last few million years of evolutionary design. You want to punish them. Thats wrong.

    Youa re also incorrect in the hedonism comment. A persons religious beliefs are a part of the moral code, but not the entirety. It you want to be a literalist, the ONLY commandment required to get into heaven is to accpet Christ as your saviour. However with that being said, there are societal requirements needed to prevent rampant std’s, murders, theft, and overall destruction. Hedonism never makes sense, because it inevitably leads to a shorter lifespan. I’m always fascinated by this idea that so many people of supposed faith seem to think that without God, they’d be fine smoking, whoring, killing, and whatever else might pop up. It is not a christian perspective, its just one more load claimed by the more incompetent ministers who think faith is a tool to beat people into submission, instead of a way of fullfilling ones life.

    Sam, the reason for this discussion is that I know a large number of the readers of this publication are indeed members of the campus bible fellowship. So I chose to show them clearly that they need to come to understandings of important issues like these of their own accord, instead of accepting what others might claim. Also, its a fun argument for me. Still waiting for Jarrod to rebut my examinations of the shortcomings of his examples. Wieghing the evidence, i think the Biblical argument demands the rights of the actual over the potential.

    K. Thats all for now. I still need to bring in the scholars I had mentioned. Maybe this evening.

  42. Rachel Custer said

    Ryan,

    I can’t decide whether I should laugh or go be sick. It’s a sad statement that you think this is a “fun” discussion to have. It speaks to your mindset, and to be honest, if you really enjoy this type of thing, I can’t say I’m upset that you have chosen not to write for us anymore (from your post on the other thread). The Bible never says that a baby less than a month old has no value; it’s a ridiculous misinterpretation.

    Also, you say that we are trying to force our beliefs on other people. But you also state that “an embryo is not a human, according to any reasonable definition.” Ironically, you then go on to state that you understand that people may disagree with you. But if they disagree with you by believing that an embryo is a human, then they are unreasonable? Speaking of faulty reasoning…

    And you also took the hedonism thing out of context; either that or you didn’t understand it. In the Bible, the writer is making the point to the early church that, if Christ did not die for us, we might as well descend into hedonism because from a religious standpoint, we are already lost, so there would really be no point trying to work our way into heaven, because we can’t.

    Please please please speak to actual pastors, biblical scholars, or other learned people before you start to make claims based on faulty ideas and stereotypes of Christianity. And I’m not just talking about “scholars” who only look at the Bible and pick pieces and parts of it in an attempt to endorse their particular brand of sin. I have a feeling if you were doing a piece on any other religion besides Christianity, you would give due respect to the material and experts’ interpretations of the material.

    The constant derision shown toward Christians on this site is getting a little old, especially since the majority of it seems to be coming from people who pretend to espouse such acceptance of diversity. The hypocrisy of many of the “tolerance crowd” is so blatant when it comes to Christianity, and it really does get quite old.

  43. Craig Chamberlin said

    Andrew Filmer,

    I enjoyed that, very interesting observations.

    Ryan,

    So you believe the mothers life is more important than the childs, we need not go any further in our arguments. To me, this is clearly wrong, but I have been wrong before. You can paint an emotional argument all day Ryan, I sympathize for those who have to make such a harsh decision, but guess what, it doesn’t justify murder.

    There is one thing science and myself knows for a fact Ryan. The zygote you so consistently insist on being a blob has a unique DNA structure different than any person on the entire planet, making it one of a kind member of thehuman species. If it is a human it is entitled to human rights. Destroying that “blob” destroys the unique individual that was going to come from it, how is this not destroying another human life? This seems painstakingly obvious to me.

    Miscarriages? I thought I addressed this already. Now you are failing to address intent. Abortion is a choice, miscarriages are not. They are a result of environmental, physical and emotional circumstances. Am I a murderer if I am tied up in the back seat of my car while someone put a brick on the gas pedal and it ran over and killed another individual? No. Am I a murderer if I am driving the car and deliberately hit the individual? Yes. I don’t know how I can be any more clear.

    Now let me address your biblical argument.

    Jesus was Jesus at conception. Now you are suggesting that he wasn’t really Jesus until 1 month after the pregnancy? Ryan… this doesn’t make any sense. Then why would they say Jesus was concieved? Because it wasn’t Jesus, it was a blob. There is no logical rationale behind this. You are saying, “Well, how do you know God wouldn’t have chosen a different host?” I’ll tell you how Ryan, because God would (and did) chose a person who would choose the keep the baby, so obviously he wouldn’t ever need to find “another host”. I’m sure if he knew Mary would abort the baby, he wouldn’t have chosen Mary. You follow? Do you think God sits around and waits a certain timeframe before he instills a soul into a Child? Even if he does, just how arrogant does one have to be in order to believe they know the timeframe by which this event takes place?

    Lastly, if you can prove to me, not biblically, but scientifically that a zygote is not a unique human being I will be impressed. Our genetic makeup very much defines many things about us Ryan, you even attempted to argue in another post that sexuality was genetic. Are you suggesting that if a unique zygote (with unique characteristics that will define the personality of the individual) is destroyed it is not destroying a unique human being?

    Let us take this argument a bit farther, are you advocating the killing of zygotes if a mother doesn’t want to have certain characteristics in a child? Science is becoming advanced, if there is a risk of blue eyes instead of green, are you for killing the “blob” with blue eyes? You have to be careful what you wish for Ryan, because you just might get it.

  44. Ryan said

    Rachel, I’m always sad to see comments like your first one there. You imply you would rather blindly believe, instead of trying to understand an issue. I think it is fun because it is an excercise for me in discussing logical vs illogical. You are so quick to attack, but you have not yet answered my original proposal. Is it not your duty as a Christian to explore it when people raise new interpretations of Gods word? Doing less than that suggests you only want validation, and nothing more. To me, thats a tragic waste of an obviuously good mind.

    This discussion is not an attmept to force my beliefs onto you, it is a request for people like yourself to allow those of us who don’t agree to continue to do so, without your passing laws to force us to obey your viewpoint. One often garnered, at least in part, from twisting Biblical passages to mean something they do not. As I said before, I don’t believe the Bible ‘supports’ abortion. Neither does it denounce it. That has yet to be successfully disputed.

    Finally, I went to Church the majority of my life, until the past few years. Bible study once a week. I’ve read and re-read the Bible, and the books left out because Constantine felt they didn’t support the Imperial authority. I know it very well, and I know how it has been grossly misread for the past millenia. I am a Christian, one who seeks my own understanding of the Word as opposed to what some old man indocrinated by a Bible college says. THey are so often wrong, being taught only whats needed to keep people like yourself happy, but no more. Thats why I stopped going. So much emphasis on hating, disrespecting, and persecuting those unlike yourself.

    Alright, its a long one so I’ll add my sources in a new post.

  45. Ryan said

    The Apostolic Constitutions (circa 380 CE) allowed abortion if it was done early enough in pregnancy. But it condemned abortion if the fetus was of human shape. “Thou shalt not slay the child by causing abortion, nor kill that which is begotten. For everything that is shaped, and his received a soul from God, if slain, it shall be avenged, as being unjustly destroyed.” 7:3

    St. Augustine (354-430 CE) reversed centuries of Christian teaching in Western Europe, and returned to the Aristotelian concept of “delayed ensoulment.” He wrote 7 that a human soul cannot live in an unformed body. Thus, early in pregnancy, an abortion is not murder because no soul is destroyed (or, more accurately, only a vegetable or animal soul is terminated). He wrote extensively on sexual matters, teaching that the original sin of Adam and Eve are passed to each successive generation through the pleasure generated during sexual intercourse. This passed into the church’s canon law. Only abortion of a more fully developed “fetus animatus” (animated fetus) was punished as murder.

    St. Jerome wrote in a letter to Aglasia: “The seed gradually takes shape in the uterus, and it [abortion] does not count as killing until the individual elements have acquired their external appearance and their limbs”

    Pope Innocent III (?-1216) wrote a letter which ruled on a case of a Carthusian monk who had arranged for his female lover to obtain an abortion. The Pope decided that the monk was not guilty of homicide if the fetus was not “animated.”

    Early in the 13th century, Pope Innocent III stated that the soul enters the body of the fetus at the time of “quickening” – when the woman first feels movement of the fetus. After ensoulment, abortion was equated with murder; before that time, it was a less serious sin, because it terminated only potential human life, not human life.

    St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) also considered only the abortion of an “animated” fetus as murder

    Pope Sixtus V issued a Papal bull “Effraenatam” in 1588 which threatened those who carried out abortions at any stage of gestation with excommunication and the death penalty. Pope Gregory XIV revoked the Papal bull shortly after taking office in 1591. He reinstated the “quickening” test, which he said happened 116 days into pregnancy (16½ weeks).

    http://www.religioustolerance.org/abo_hist.htm

    Plenty of dissension. These weren’t just abstract scholars, they were some of the most known and influential leaders of Christian thought. Not syaing there weren’t disagreements. I do not claim this means it is a perfect validation of my position, only that mine is not a lonely one. There is enough disagreement to make it valid for both sides of the debate.

  46. Ryan said

    Alrighty then. Your turn Craig. : )
    You misinterpreted me once again. I believe the mother is an ACTUAL life, while the embryo is not. It is a potential. Thus to me, there is no doubt what is more important. As illustrated above with the discussion of the gardener, what may be is not what is. Behaving that way often gets people committed to insane asylums.

    The DNA argument is an interesting one. Would you claim equal rights for the mutated DNA of a cancerous tumor? It is also human DNA, and most definitely unique. Does this mean that removining it is murder? DNA is not a person. A person is a human being who thinks, feels, dreams, and has a soul. I know Rachel will explode, thinking I am calling an embryo cancer. I am not. It is simply relevant to the DNA idea, and that is all.

    Your car analogy is also inadequate. Miscarriages can occur for any number of reasons. It can be chemical or dietary imbalances even. So would you charge a woman who miscarries for dietary reasons with manslaughter? Actions resulting in accidental death? How about someone who is undergoing alrge amounts of stress at work, causing a miscarriage? There are plenty of other ways this can happen. That is the anaolgy I offered, not being tied to a car.

    Biblical.
    No, I was not suggesing that. prophets and the son of God are Unique among men, they already have the plan in front of them, and are touched uniquely by the Spirit. That and the fact that the person is the soul, not the body. So if the embriotic body of Christ were destroyed somehow, I’m sure God would have found another way to get him into the world. He is, afterall, God. I also don’t think God ‘puts the soul’ in. It is my understanding that he created the universe quite some time ago, so the laws and functioning of it are pretty well in place. If he had to come in and do things manually, he’d be quite the incompetent Deity.

    Craig, if I could prove that scientifically we wouldn’t be having this debate. However I will say that while some traits are very much influenced by our genetics and situation, such as sexual orientation, they are not the entirety of our being. They are a blueprint, like a home for the soul to reside. Sure, I could tell you what your houselooks like. I could hazard some good guesses on what type of perosn might live there by the structure live in, or the decor they choose. Thats only half the picture though. I gurantee if you found another home, life would go on for you. The prior one would have been unique. It would have caused certain things to be more prominent, certain behaviours to arise depending on where it lie. It was not your entirety though, and neither is DNA.

    I have no concerns with preventing your child from having diseases, deformities, or other major issues. I think its silly and a waste to do any more. But since I don’t believe there is a soul until later in development, then I must allow that your proposal would be no worse. I still have the reactionary disgust at the idea, but thats to be expected.

  47. Rachel Custer said

    Ryan,

    And no, I don’t feel the need to attempt to “understand” a Biblical argument for abortion. I know the arguments, I think they’re crap, and I think it’s a sickening misuse of scripture to allow people to feel ok about committing murder. I recently heard a news story about a woman putting her baby in the microwave, killing it. I am similarly disinclined to attempt to “understand” her motives, and in my mind, the two acts are the same. They are both murder.

    Quotes from just a few more historical Christians, LISTED ON THE SAME SITE YOU USED. Why the need to pick and choose only the quotes that back up your argument, Ryan? This is the kind of thing you always berate Chuck for. Did you honestly think nobody would look at your site and see it for what it is?

    Minicius Felix (a Christian lawyer; circa 180 – 225 CE): “Some women take medicines to destroy the germ of future life in their own bodies. They commit infanticide before they have given birth to the infant” 5

    St. Basil the Great (circa 330 – 379 CE): “She who has deliberately destroyed a fetus has to pay the penalty of murder…here it is not only the child to be born that is vindicated, but also the woman herself who made an attempt against her own life, because usually the women die in such attempts. Furthermore, added to this is the destruction of the child, another murder… Moreover, those, too, who give drugs causing abortion are deliberate murderers themselves, as well as those receiving the poison which kills the fetus.” Letter 188:2

    St. Ambrose: (339 to 397 CE) “The poor expose their children, the rich kill the fruit of their own bodies in the womb, lest their property be divided up, and they destroy their own children in the womb with murderous poisons. and before life has been passed on, it is annihilated.” 6

    St. John Chrysostom (circa 340 – 407 CE): “Why sow where the ground makes it its care to destroy the fruit? Where there are many efforts at abortion? Where there is murder before the birth? For you do not even let the harlot remain a mere harlot, but make her a murderer also. You see how drunkenness leads to whoredom, whoredom to adultery, adultery to murder; or rather something even worse than murder. For I have no real name to give it, since it does not destroy the thing born but prevents its being born. Why then do you abuse the gift of God and fight with His laws, and follow after what is a curse as if a blessing, and make the place of procreation a chamber for murder, and arm the woman that was given for childbearing unto slaughter?” Homily 24 on Romans

  48. Craig Chamberlin said

    Ryan,

    First I am going to address your Biblical argument. The Biblical stance applies only to Christians, so I hope individuals do not take this as an argument directed towards Christians and non-Christians alike. Obviously the Biblical consequences of afterlife I am going to suggest here would apply to those who believe in Christianity, and I don’t want those who are not Christians to think I am addressing them.

    You have illustrated the debate that has been going on for centuries, and we continue to do so. However, as Rachel pointed out the obvious contradictions to their arguments, one realizes scholars have landed on both sides time and time again. So here is the question, which scholars are right? Obviously, one cannot say 100% for sure which one is, but what is at risk, exactly?

    Let me ask you this one question Ryan, what if you are wrong? If you are wrong, then a human is murdered, and the mother is guilty of murder. Is this a risk you suggest a Christian take? On the other hand, if you are right, then their mortal lives will truely be more convenient for the time they are here. So I hope and pray you give those whom you say “Abortion can be Biblically Justified” both sides of the story. If you are wrong, Jesus will hold you accountable during Judgement.

    Do not forget though, Jesus will forgive us of anything we have ever done in our lives… ever. The problem with this setup though, is we have to truely ask for the forgiveness and realize we were wrong, and if we don’t, we will be held accountable for it. Keep this in mind.

    Now back to the scientific argument.

    Ryan, the DNA structure of a cancer cell will not one day be a unique human. The DNA of a zygote will. There is not much else to say here.

    You are correct in your illustration of DNA being a blueprint, it is a blueprint for a unique human, involving strengths, weaknesses and various other unique characteristics unlike any other in the world. When the zygote is destroyed, so is the blueprint, forever.

    As for Miscarriages, if a woman deliberately attempts to drink enough alcohol or do enough drugs to endanger the fetus, our society is against it:

    An increasing number of states have begun prosecuting women who use illegal drugs or alcohol during pregnancy with charges ranging from misdemeanor counts of endangering the welfare of a fetus to criminal homicide, the Chicago Tribune reports.
    http://www.kaisernetwork.org/daily_reports/rep_index.cfm?DR_ID=21032

    So if intent can be proven, thats right, I said that word again intent, the mother is already subject to laws in many of our states.

    I pray I do not have to live in your future where parents can choose the characteristics of the child they choose to live.

    “No wait, this one will have too low of a metabolism, this one not intelligent enough, this one may have high blood pressure. Brown hair? No thanks. Blue eyes? No thank you. Lets just keep getting pregnant until we get the child we want. Actually, wouldn’t it be easier if I just gave you a collection of my embryos and you can impregnate each one until you find what I am looking for? Here, let me fill out a child request form.”

    Like I said Ryan, be careful what you ask for, you just might get it.

  49. Craig Chamberlin said

    Ryan,

    The ball is in your court. :)

  50. Rachel Custer said

    Warning: This post is extremely graphic and may offend those with delicate sensibilities, so I don’t recommend checking the link if you are offended easily.

    There has been a lot of discussion on this blog about “zygotes,” “blobs,” “embryos,” etc., basically all in an effort to imply that aborted fetuses are not human beings. I refer any who hold this opinion to the following link:

    http://www.abortiontv.com/Pics/AbortionPictures1.htm

    How can you possibly argue that these are not living human beings? It’s ridiculous. When the fetus is SMALLER THAN A QUARTER

  51. Rachel Custer said

    Continued..

    it has obvious human characteristics. Don’t hide behind twisted words; if you’re going to support what these pictures show, at least don’t lie about what you’re supporting.

  52. Erkki KochKetola said

    “Graphic” doesn’t begin to describe that. Nevertheless, the photo of the 11th-week abortion does not appear to me to contain anything that’s recognizably human.

  53. Rachel Custer said

    Really, Errki? Nothing?

    Not the two legs, two arms, developed feet and hands, etc?

    Maybe you just don’t want to see anything recognizably human. I wouldn’t blame you…it’d be pretty difficult to make an argument for what’s shown in those pictures, I would think.

  54. Rachel Custer said

    Oh, and what about the pictures of the further-developed fetuses? Nothing to say about those?

    To be honest, I wasn’t eager to post those pictures…they nearly made me sick when I saw them. But I think it’s important that we all be honest about what this argument is really about. We have to acknowledge what abortion is, and those pictures prove my point better than anything I could say.

    So, I apologize if you found them too graphic, but I guess I figure if one defends the procedure, one shouldn’t have a problem looking at the results. And if people do have problems looking at the results, it provides evidence against their claims that they don’t believe those are real babies…nobody gets squeamish over a blob. So either people are supportive of what’s going on in these pictures, or their not. There are no shades of gray in this issue.

  55. Craig Chamberlin said

    Erkki,

    You dont see hands, a head, fingers, toes? Just what do you constitute a human form. Sounds like apparant denial to me, but I could be wrong.

  56. Erkki KochKetola said

    It does look vaguely primate-like, but not Human.

  57. Rachel Custer said

    Pictures of primate babies:

    http://images.google.com/images?svnum=10&hl=en&lr=&safe=off&q=primate+baby

    Pictures of an 11-week-old fetus (not aborted):

    http://www.pregnancy.org/pregnancy/fetaldevelopment1.php#week11

    Note the FUR, Erkki. Humans don’t have FUR (well…most of them, anyway). Perhaps part of your difficulty recognizing the aborted baby as human is due to its lack of a head, caused by the violence of the abortion process. On the baby, note the perfectly formed ten toes, the hands and fingers, the open eyes. Note that “nearly all structures and organs are formed, and beginning to function…genitals have taken on the proper gender characteristics.”

    So you would argue that, although this fetus has human DNA, functioning human organs, and can be identified as a male or female, it’s not a human being? It’s a cop-out, Errki, used by people who can’t stomach what abortion actually is – murder of a human baby.

  58. Erkki KochKetola said

    First, none of the photos in that search show aborted 11-week-old non-human primate fœtuses. Therefore, they are an insufficient basis for comparison. Do they have hair/fur at 11 weeks? Do they look similar to that Human fœtus?

    Second, is that fœtus viable? Would it, birthed at 11 weeks, have a high likelihood of survival?

    Third, the organs are not necessarily functioning; the caption says that the organs are “beginning to function,” not that they are functioning. Note, for example, that the fœtus does not yet have a functioning liver, pancreas, thyroid, ovaries, or prostate gland; the last of these don’t begin to develop for another three weeks. I think this suggests an answer to the previous question.

    Fourth, the fœtus develops a coating of hair in utero (which they do, of course, later shed); could something similar occur among other primate species?

    Finally, murder is a legal concept; it is the unlawful killing of a human being. Abortion is lawful. Therefore, abortion cannot be murder. QED.

  59. Craig Chamberlin said

    Erkki,

    http://www.dictionary.com
    Murder – “…the killing of another human being under conditions specifically covered in law.”

    Are you suggesting that the conditions are absolute? If so, I’m not going to bother arguing with you, it’s not necessary.

  60. Erkki KochKetola said

    I don’t understand the question, Craig.

  61. Craig Chamberlin said

    You stated, “Finally, murder is a legal concept; it is the unlawful killing of a human being. Abortion is lawful. Therefore, abortion cannot be murder.”

    You are suggesting abortion cannot be murder because the law currently does not deem it so – thus, you are saying the conditions specified by the law are absolute.

  62. Erkki KochKetola said

    Poor use of language on my part; I should have said “is not,” rather than “cannot be.”

  63. Craig Chamberlin said

    Gotcha,

    In that case, whether something is or is not currently decided murder doesn’t designate an absolute unquestionable law. This is why interpretation is in our laws, the abortion argument calls into question the current interpretation of the law and associates it with scientific and logical discoveries. I don’t see there being much of a problem with this.

  64. Erkki KochKetola said

    By the way, what was the point of this semantic distinction?

  65. Rachel Custer said

    Just an amazing picture:

    http://www.members.tripod.com/~joseromia/samuel.html

    (By the way, I attempted to find a picture of a monkey fetus at 11 weeks…do you know how difficult that is? I’ll keep looking.)

    Erkki,

    The law thing: 1. Why are there cases where a person who kills a pregnant woman is charged for two murders?; and 2. There have been times in the past when people legally “owned” other people. Does this mean the law is right? Or does it mean we needed to change the law because the law was fundamentally flawed?

  66. Anonymous said

    When do most abortions actually take place? I may be off base here, but my sense is that most abortions, say 90%, take place well within the first trimester, and if done after that are rare and are due to an unusual circumstance. The 11 week mark is near the very end of that limit.

    Also, what would you expect a fetus to look like at the 11 week mark? I mean, the pregnacy is nearly a third of the way through for crying out loud!

  67. Erkki KochKetola said

    Rachel:

    How old are the fœtuses?
    How often are people charged with these murders convicted?
    How often are their convictions upheld on appeal?
    Under what statutes are they charged?
    When they are charged with statutes that expressly make the killing of an unborn child illegal, do such statutes cover abortion, and if so, are they upheld (in light of Roe v. Wade)?
    Has anyone been charged with murder for performing an abortion since Roe v. Wade?

    The rest is a canard that doesn’t merit my attention.

  68. Anonymous said

    Erkki,

    Just out of curiosity, why are you using the old fashioned British spelling, “fœtus”. “Fetus” is the preferred spelling both technically and for common usage. I figure you must have a reason because you go out of your way to use it, but it isn’t clear to me.

  69. Erkki KochKetola said

    Because I like it.

  70. Rachel Custer said

    Anonymous,

    Because he’s pretentious. :)

  71. Erkki KochKetola said

    Rachel:

    I prefer to think of it as being erudite. ;)

  72. Rachel Custer said

    Erkki,

    Lol. I like it.

  73. Ryan said

    Rachel, you don’t feel a need to udnerstand it because it might challenge the apparently fragile faith you have. If you truly believed in the word of God, you would seek to understand these arguments. That you do not is obvious. The passages I have brought up err more on my side than on yours. I did not address the many condemnations because they are known already. My point was to show there is dissension on the issue, not a false consensus. I have made it clear REPEATEDLY I do not believe the Bible condones abortion. It simply does not condemn it.

    Your pictures are just another attempt to horrify people into a lifestyle that further enslaves women to their own bodies. Happily keeping them home, barefoot and pregnant because they no longer have a right to be people. Only breeding tools. That is the type of thing that disgusts me. Using emotion and hate to circumvent the real issue. You are an advocate of the subjugation and abuse of your own gender.

    Rachel, the reason some are charged with double homicide whena pregnant women is murdered is because some lawmakers know they cannot pass a law banning abortion. SO they seek any possible way of providing ‘legal’ rights to the fetus in hopes of using that as a stepping stone. Its a red herring meant to circumvent a debate they know they’ll lose. Finally, why don’t you look up images of a very early stage embryo. They are barely distinguishable from a cow or kitten, let alone as a unique human being. If you consider my definition of a ‘person’ then you would know I do not support late term abortion. I feel that the choise must be made before formation is complete. However i imagine you probably skipped that part, all happy and bouncy on your way to the tenous and fragile moral highground you’ve been seeking throughout this discussion.

  74. Ryan said

    Craig,
    There is no true risk. We are spiritual creatures. If I were somehow incorrect on this, then I of course would be geatly sorry to those whom I had wronged. I must assume that a just and righteous God would account for the fact that our span on this Earth is a mortal one, subject to errors in judgement and interpretations that would be forgiven if we had truly believed we were doing right by others. Even if a zygote has a soul, that soul would no more be destroyed by a chemical imbalance than it would by an arrow or sword.

    Also, the laws you have cited are on the books due to the long term affects ofsuch behaviour on a born human child. Not because of potential for miscarriage. It is not an issue of intent, actually. But one of negligence. You have not answered my question. Should a women in a highly stressful job, who has a miscarriage, be arrested for criminal manslaughter? This is homicide through negligence. Still awaiting your answer there.

    You also must have missed the part where I said I’d be disgusted by someone seeking blue eyes, or brown hair. Uniqueness and imperfection should be celebrated. I simply believe the sin involved in such a thing would be that of vanity, not of murder.

  75. Rachel Custer said

    Ryan,

    How can it be homicide through negligence if the fetus is not a human being? And no, I am not avoiding the Biblical arguments because of my “fragile faith.” I am dismissing them because I feel they are taken out of context, misused, and inappropriate. I feel Jarrod addressed these same points quite well, and didn’t feel a need to address them again in the same manner.

    “Home, barefoot, and pregnant,”…hmmm. Not exactly what I want for myself; who’s using emotional arguments now? No, Ryan, I feel it is important for people to look at the pictures of what happens to these fetuses. If they truly are pro-abortion, they will have no problem looking and still being pro-abortion. It’s necessary that we acknowledge exactly what we are talking about when we are talking about abortion.

    And yes, the pictures are from 11 weeks and up. But this is what a 7-week-old, or 5-week-old, fetus will be in 2-4 weeks. What point do you feel is an appropriate cutoff point? You say you don’t believe in late-term abortions…what do you consider late-term? Where exactly does a fetus jump from a “blob” to a human being, and what causes you to believe it has made that jump? These are necessary questions, and every pro-choice person may have different answers. Who do we allow to make the decision?

    What Craig says is applicable. There are some people who believe they should be able to “abort” a viable fetus at near-term. There is no way to prove your position on when a fetus can be aborted relative to those people’s positions. Craig is basically saying, it’s a slippery slope, ending with designer babies and killing because we don’t like certain physical qualities.

  76. blake anderson said

    good job

  77. J Mack said

    Rachel,

    You are correct in your arguments and if you would, let me provide you with a little more ammunition. The basis of legality for abortion in America does not rest on the ability to determine “when life begins”. Life is a biologic definition by which even the most ardent abortionist cannot avoid. Life begins at conception. Ryan argues from an untenable position. He is trying to justify abortion in terms of whether a fetus is alive. If he is trying that he loses before he starts, biblical proof or not. A fetus is alive by any biological definition out there. As a physician, I can tell you authoritatively that is true.

    The justification for abortion is even worse. It is based on the sixteenth amendment to the constitution. It rests on whether that life has attained “personhood”. Ironically, the very same definition used to justify abortion was used to justify slavery, i.e. that slaves weren’t “people” and therefore could be kept like intelligent animals. In the largest leap of societal regression since the slave era, the supreme court arbitrarily, and without justification decided that pre-born babies were not worthy of protection under law established by the sixteenth amendment. In other words, they simply decided that they “weren’t people”.

    To illustrate just how arbitrary that is, just consider the case of partial birth abortion. The baby is halfway down the birth canal at which time it may be summarily executed by inserting a probe into its soft skull and essentially pithing the poor child. If by some chance of fate the mother pushes too hard and the child gets clear of the birth canal, then it is worthy of protection under the law. It is really that arbitrary.

    So arguing on the basis of life is really an argument peripheral to the problem. I also think you are absolutely correct that trying to justify abortion on a biblical basis can only be attempted by one who does not understand the Bible in the context of a living God.

  78. Frank Carlton said

    Open-ended reason in the human free mind may always remain fallible. The exercise of free will with regards to those subjective creations of the mind is productive of arbitrary effects which cannot be verified outside the mind. This is a unique and equal human condition. The transformation of such effects may carry a wide range of significance for an individual. This act is marked by the attachment of an arbitrary subjective creation of the mind to an objective (verifiable) effect. Essentially, free will creates an absolute to which open ended reason is anchored and which carries meaning and utlility for individual identity.

    In this society, religious freedom occurs one individual at a time and free will exists only in the individual. It is considered a nonsensical absurdity that free will may be rendered uniform or institutionalized. It should be obvious that the individual who would exercise his free will carries the societal responsibility to apply and confine those absolute effects created by the mind to oneself.

    Now, those individual and societally invasive arbitrary effects such as religious and political claims to know God’s will and his methodology are not acceptible within this nation system of justice. Freedom of the individual mind is a battleground.

    If the current thirty-five year failed invasion by conservative and theocratic asperations are not
    soon pronounced dead, this dysfunctional source of misery
    may become uncontrollable. The wisdom of enflamming passion is a suspect hubris. Protection of the one act of God’s will which each of us may self evidently verify is moral. The human mind is the only known source of concepts of morality, goodness, truth, beauty, etc. That freedom of mind is prerequisite to reasoning God. Simple attempts to render that mind uniform is ill advised.

    The standard warning applies, do not make a devil’s bargain with yourself. The freedom that one must yield to assume the burdens of one’s moral beliefs should be a carefully considered sacrifice. If one has the idea that requiring others to share this burden under application of force, some maturation may be needed.

    Sorry, these loose musings are hurried and unedited. They are a recreational moment of liberty as I focus upon the care of my 93 years old dad (now failing in health) in an effort to keep him in his home. Parting advice, hang on to your liberty, respect your neighbor’s opinions, but confine them to your neighbor.

  79. Angelo said

    Bible references should be consistent with the entire Bible or, at least, with those scriptures relative to the faith for which you are arguing. For example, Christianity has roots in the Old Testament but also refines some passages. Perhaps most notably, Christ increased the punishment for adultery to include merely looking at another man’s wife lustfully. But even Old Testament scriptural doctrines and views were subject to change. Again, perhaps most notably, is the issue of idolatry. Moses once destroyed a Golden Calf that his brother Aaron, allegedly under pressure from others, had made and then had the people consume it’s powder. Then later Moses is instructed by God to make a copper serpent and have people look at it to be relieved from biting serpents. This same copper serpent, which had been saved for many years, then became a like an idol people worshipped until it was destroyed by one of David’s descendants (pretty sure that’s what happened to it, not 100% right now.) Or just compare two chapters in Ezekiel: 14 and 20. Note in 14:6 idolatry is condemned and in 20:39 it is (grudgingly) tolerated. Now compare this with Christ’s statement that all manner of sin and blasphemy may be forgiven except blasphemy against the Holy Ghost. So I assert that the Bible must be considered as a whole. I am of the conviction that neither God nor Christ endorse abortion.

  80. Angelo said

    I did research the copper serpent issue and found myself to be remembering correctly. Indeed, Hezekiah, a descendant of David, destroyed the copper serpent (2 Kings 18:4).

  81. Angelo said

    Another great passage that explains the malleability of God’s word is Jeremiah 18.

  82. Angelo said

    Jarrod Brigham posted earlier:

    Exodus 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 judge determines. But if any 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.” If the child/fetus dies, the man dies as well.

    Obviously, the passage deals with an unintentional accident (yet involving carelessness) that results in miscarriage. And from what I’ve read in other translations, and my initial understanding of the passage, is that the death of the child is assumed; and the punishment for harm is only if the mother is wounded or dies as a result of the miscarriage.

    In my opinion, this is why pro-choice is so convenient for the judicial system. By making undergoing abortion a choice for an individual the court excuses any responsibility or liabilty. However, this does not seem to be completely legal to me. The judge, that granted the choice, is trained to execute judgment according to the law. Also, doctors are under oath and licensed in medicine. The individual to whom the choice is given has no prerequisite of formal training. To have the judicial system grant this individual complete control in the life of another is not legal because the individual is not necessarily qualified to execute judgment in lieu of a judge or to decide medical matters in place of a doctor. In order for the life of another person to be legally terminated it would have to be found guilty of trespassing the law to an extent worthy of death by a judge and a jury or for their to be sufficient medical reason (subject to legal review) to terminate the life.

  83. Angelo said

    My citation in the previous post is unclear. I did not fully designate the passage I cited. Following is the cited passage originating from Jarrod Brigham:

    >>>Exodus 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 judge determines. But if any 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.” If the child/fetus dies, the man dies as well.<<<

    All other content of the post is my own, yet much of it is in reference to the above citation.

  84. Angelo said

    Apparently in Exodus 21:22-25 the death of the fetus is not actually assumed in the original Hebrew. The injury apparently results in the ‘child coming out’ of the woman. So it could be said that the death penalty applies if the child dies.
    But one is left to question which of the men would be more culpable. I can imagine a situation where two men are fighting near a corner of a building and a woman rounds the corner and one man is accidentally pushed into the woman. If the man that was pushed had initially attacked the pusher who is more culpable of the injury to the child?
    Current abortion is not like this but an assault on life in a premeditated manner. Biblical judgement against murder by accident is more lenient than for premeditated murder. In Exodus 21:22-25 the death penalty is given for accidental murder because it involves a pregnant woman and a child.

  85. Angelo said

    Also perhaps the death penalty is issued in
    Exodus 21:22-25 because of the carelessness of the ‘strivers’. There is a law concerning accidental murder of someone while working with an axe. The axe head flies off and someone is killed. There is no death penalty but basically life imprisonment. But carelessness could be involved if the axe was not properly maintained.

  86. Angelo said

    Deuteronomy 19: 1-13 is a Biblical passage illustrating the difference between accidental and premeditated murder.

  87. Angelo said

    It should be said that the Christian doctrine of not resisting violence and not seeking retaliation is directly related to the protection of children in utero and the avoidance of the situation described in Exodus 21: 22-25. However if one were to be grabbed and thrown toward a pregnant woman I believe it would be Christian to avoid contacting the woman so as not to cause abortion if at all possible.

  88. Angelo said

    I find the current system of abortion to be void of morality in many ways. There is no right granted to the male (other party) to voice any authority in the life of the child so as to protect it from undue harm. The current system of pro-choice does not protect but endanger. It is like a ‘sweat-shop’ where judicial decisions are made and the laborers are not payed. Whether a female chooses to have an abortion or not there is never any wage supplied for making the decision. Abortion is like slavery in this regard. Abortion is an act of oppression toward women and children and is often promoted as a. Abortion is freedom from responsibility and liability for anyone able to directly or indirectly profit from it and a grievous burden, both for those being tempted by it, and those pursuing it. The demoralization of a society is the first step to the victimization of it.

    Concerning personhood, creation, and the Bible there a few things one must consider. Jesus often edited Moses’ work to refine it in some points. One instance is the issue of divorce outlined in Matthew 19:3-12. Jesus also said that there would be a Comforter, a Spirit of Truth, a.k.a. the Holy Ghost that would lead Christians into all truth. (John 16:13)

  89. Angelo said

    My answer to the question, “Is there a moral justification for abortion?” is no. Also, I often consider that a more moral approach to abortion would be self-defeating. Suppose that wages were supplied to the makers of the choices and that the choice was a more democratic one (such as between both parties of conception), would abortion be any less wrong? My answer again is no, but what is the probability of saving lives? Of destroying them?

    The Bible is full of implications against women, especially the New Testament. ‘If it weren’t for Eve…’ but the sentence doesn’t always end , ‘…we would not be here.’ Sexism is religiously promoted and accepted and to have a slogan like ‘In God We Trust’ implies that women and Satan are to blame for all abortion. Freedom for women is when men are held accountable for their own sin.

  90. Angelo said

    In reference to Genesis chapter 3:

    The various scriptural implication concerning ‘original sin’ (though not necessarily authoritive) and the national slogan of, “In God We Trust” allow for the blaming of women for abortion. This is not freedom for women but the allowance of the greater burden of all sin to be placed upon them.

    Concerning original sin, once adapted for Christ’s statements (essentially that speech defiles someone more than diet), all sin is no longer the fault of Eve. For Eve testifies of the truth, that Satan deceived her but Adam is found to be blaming Eve for his own actions.

    So the original sin is the blaming of and/or betraying of a companion.

    And death is brought to humanity through the persecution of the righteous for their testimony (remember Eve) and also thru the condemnation of betrayal (remember Judas Iscariot)

  91. Angelo said

    Many people think that extremism is bad or evil, but it is necessary for righteousness. Truth itself can be said to be an extreme and lies or lying another. One is good and the other is bad. A half truth is not necessarily half good because the lie corrupts what truth there was until it is just a lie. (See Haggai 2:10-14)

    So it is that the promotion of a ‘middle road’ that is sympathetic to most and is coupled with the condemnation of both extremes also leads to the promulgation of sin. Integrity and truth do not always exist as a majority. (See 1 Kings 22)

  92. Angelo said

    Again I will comment on Exodus 21:22-25. If there exists ambiguity in the verses one must consider to what end is the amibiguity intended and also what inferences can be attributed to the amibiguity so as to clarify it. In Deuteronomy 13:3 there is a depiction of a test-giving nature of God. That is to say that God has the right to test us not that we have the right to test God. So the ambiguity could be toward this aim, to test us as to which interpretation we shall give it; whether inclusive of the child or not.

  93. Angelo said

    Just to be clear, the punishment of Exodus 21:20 is directed at the owner and not intended as further punishment for the dead or dying servant.

    But also the the preceding verse, Exodus 21:20, might imply, since it allows punishment for the death of a slave who has been struck by it’s owner only if the death happens in a short expanse of time from the attack and not otherwise, and since in Genesis 3:16 Eve is ‘ruled over’ by Adam much like a slave or servant would be, that the death bringing punishment in Exodus 21:21-25 would be attributed more in the case of the woman than for the child.

    Yet these inferences themselves could be part of the ‘test.’

  94. Angelo said

    It appears my punctuation is unclear below. I will reiterate my comment.

    So another inference could be made of the proceeding verses of Exodus 21, especially of any ambiguity: that it (the ambiguity) may be a test and that the punishment for failing the test could be severe.

    Exodus 21 is an interesting chapter because it is referenced in Jeremiah 34 and the portion that is referenced is the first portion (Exodus 21:1-6) which deals with the treatment of fellow Israelite servants that are owned by Israelites. Essentially that an Israelite servant is to be liberated after 6 years of service unless that servant states otherwise. In Jeremiah 34 the misconduct of the people concerning the breaking of this law (Exodus 21:2-6) leads to severe punishment. So another inference could be made of the proceeding verses of Exodus 21, especially of any ambiguity, that it may be a test and that the punishment for failing the test could be severe.

  95. Angelo said

    In my opinion the immorality of abortion is exacerbated by abortion being promoted as a freedom for women by a nation (America) and a person (B. H. Obama) that have, or profess to have, allegiance with God while the available scripture pertaining to that [inferred] God is, or may be viewed as, unfair toward women. You may have noticed that my version of ‘original sin’ is novel and may be characterized as religious extremism by some. I developed that particular theological notion form my analysis of both Old and New Testament scripture and on careful reflection of any variance in Christ’s teachings with those of the apostles. Unfortunately I had found the apostles to be attempting to re-subjugate women much as those who had reclaimed their liberated servants in Jeremiah 34 bringing condemnation on themselves. (See also 1 Cor. 11 & 14, and 1 Peter 3 and compare them with Luke 10:27, Matthew 23:8-12, and John 20 1-18.) It is important to note that my views have not been adopted, to my knowledge, by any religious or national association to be representative of their own interpretation of ‘God.’ If the adoption of my views were ever to be the case, my views may or may not alleviate the implied condescencion inherent in the coupling of a theme of national devotion to God with the proferring of choices that may conflict with the ideal(s) of that entity (God).

  96. Angelo said

    Also one should be aware that there is a New Testament scripture that essentially rejects the notion that God tests or tries people (James 1:13). I am aware of that scripture, and I feel it has it’s own validity; yet both Ezekiel 14:9 and the aforementioned Deuteronomy 13:3 allow for the interpretation that God has the right to, and actually does, test us.

  97. Angelo said

    It appears the illusive ‘common ground’ is best found in the disapproval of the application of terms or phrases (such as ‘In God We Trust’, ‘One Nation Under God’, ‘God Bless America’…etc) that inbue, imply, or relate to God in a haphazard, abusive, or unauthorized manner. Jeremiah chapter 23 ahould help clarify this view because it vividly depicts how certain phrasology pertaining to [the entity of] God can further infuriate and call to response an already angry God.

  98. Angelo said

    Another chapter of the Old Testament that has relevancy for understanding God’s views on the morality of abortion is Ezekiel 18.
    Disclaimer:
    I, Angelo, the author (not the moderator) of this and previous posts bearing my name, Angelo, am not responsible for any misinterpretations of my views due to any moderations by an(y) editor(s). In my postings I often made mistakes in grammar and punctuation and later attempted to clarify them. Due to the moderation, it may appear to some that I have [unclean] predictive ability over my own errors, thereby affecting how my religious and personal views are valued. It is the intention of this disclaimer to discredit any such implications.

  99. Angelo said

    Note to the reader(s) and the editor(s):
    I, Angelo, have reviewed all my previous posts and am hereby submitting a more finalized version of my statements.

    In my opinion, Bible references should be consistent with the entire Bible or, at least, with those scriptures relevant to the faith for which one is arguing. For example, Christianity has roots in the Old Testament but also Christ refines some passages. Perhaps most notably, Christ increases the punishment for adultery to include merely looking at
    another man’s wife lustfully. But even Old Testament scriptural doctrines and views were subject to change. In the Old Testament, perhaps the most notable incidences are with the issue of idolatry.
    Idolatry is [generally] against the law (Exodus 20:4). Therefore Moses destroys a golden calf that his brother Aaron, allegedly under pressure from
    others, had made and Moses has the people consume it’s powder [as punishment]. Yet God later instructs Moses to make a copper serpent and have people look at it to be relieved from biting serpents. This same copper serpent, which had been saved for many years, then became like an idol that people worshiped
    until it was destroyed by Hezekiah, one of David’s descendants (2 Kings 18:4).
    By comparing two chapters in Ezekiel: 14 and 20, one can obtain a similar [apparent] contradiction. Note that in 14:6 idolatry is condemned and in 20:39 it is grudgingly tolerated. Through comparing these examples with Christ’s statement that, ‘..all manner of sin and blasphemy may be forgiven except blasphemy against the Holy Ghost…’ it becomes
    apparent that the Bible is best viewed as a whole to aid in understanding the messages contained therein. I am of the conviction that neither God nor Christ endorse abortion but that abortion, as a sin, may qualify for forgiveness.

    Another great passage that explains the malleability of God’s word is Jeremiah 18.

    Concerning personhood, creation, and Biblical scripture there are a few things one must consider: Christ often edited Moses’ work to refine it in some points. One instance is the issue of divorce outlined in Matthew 19:3-12. Christ also said that there would be a Comforter, a Spirit of Truth, a.k.a. the Holy Ghost that would lead Christians into all truth. (John 14-16)

    Another chapter of the Old Testament that has relevancy for understanding God’s views on abortion is Ezekiel 18.

    Exodus 21:22-25 is a law concerning the [inadvertent] stimulation of miscarriage. There is some ambiguity in the verses as to whether the
    retributive punishment for harm or death applies for the child or solely for the mother. Some translations indicate that the death of the
    child is assumed so that the punishment for harm is only if the mother is wounded or dies as a result of the miscarriage. However, the death of the child is not actually assumed in the original Hebrew. The injury basically results in the ‘child coming out’ of the woman. So it could be said that the death penalty applies even if only the child dies.
    If there exists ambiguity in scriptural verses one must consider to what end is the ambiguity intended and also what inferences may be attributed to the ambiguity so as to clarify the matter. In Deuteronomy 13:3 there is a depiction of a test-giving nature of God. That is to say that God has the right to test us; not that we have the right to test God. So the ambiguity could be toward
    this aim, to test us as to which interpretation we shall give it: whether inclusive of the child or not.
    But also the preceding verses, Exodus 21:20-21, might imply, since it allows punishment for the murder of a servant who has been struck by it’s owner only if the servant dies in a [relatively] short expanse of time from the attack and not otherwise, and since in Genesis 3:16 Eve is ‘ruled over’ by Adam much like a servant would be, that the death bringing [retributive] punishment in Exodus 21:22-25 would be attributed more in the
    case of the woman than for the child. Yet these inferences themselves could be part of the ‘test.’
    Exodus 21 is an interesting chapter because it is referenced in Jeremiah 34 and the portion that is referenced is the first portion (Exodus 21:1-6) which deals with the treatment of fellow Hebrew
    servants that are also [temporarily] owned by Hebrews. Essentially the law states that a Hebrew servant is to be liberated after 6 years of service unless that servant states otherwise. In Jeremiah 34 the misconduct of the people concerning the breaking of this law (Exodus 21:1-6) leads to severe punishment. So another inference could be made of the proceeding verses of Exodus 21, especially of any ambiguity: that the ambiguity may be a test,
    and that the punishment for failing the test may be severe.
    One should be aware that there is a New Testament scripture that [essentially] refutes the notion that God tests or tries people (James 1:13). I have taken consideration of this scripture, and I feel it has its own validity; yet both Ezekiel 14:9 and the aforementioned Deuteronomy 13:3 allow for the interpretation that God has the right to, and actually does, test us.
    Another potential caveat of Exodus 21:22-25 is that one is also left to question which person(s) would be more culpable of misconduct and therefor potentially receive the [death] penalty or if both or all perpetrators are to punished equally.
    Let us imagine a situation where two people are fighting near a corner of a building and a pregnant woman rounds the corner and one person is
    accidentally pushed into the pregnant woman. If the person that was pushed into the pregnant woman had initially attacked the other person; which, if either, person is more culpable of the injury to the pregnant woman and/or child?
    Current abortion is not like this but an assault on life in a premeditated manner. Biblical judgment against murder by accident is [usually] more lenient than for premeditated murder. In Exodus 21:22-25 perhaps the death penalty is given for accidental murder because it involves a pregnant woman and a child, or perhaps because of the carelessness of the perpetrators; or yet some other [unseen] reason.
    There is a law concerning accidental murder of someone while working with an axe. The axe head flies off and someone is killed. There is no death penalty but basically life imprisonment. Yet carelessness could be involved if the axe is not properly maintained.(Deuteronomy 19 contains the passage illustrating the difference between accidental and premeditated murder.)
    It could be said that the Christian doctrine of not resisting violence and not seeking retaliation is directly related to the protection of unborn children and the avoidance of the situation described in Exodus 21:22-25. However, if one were to be grabbed and thrown toward a pregnant woman I believe it would be Christian to avoid contacting the woman so as not to cause a miscarriage if at all
    possible. I believe this because of the call to be, ‘…wise as serpents and innocent as doves.’

    In my opinion, avoidance of culpability, rather than women’s freedom, is why ‘pro-choice’ is so attractive for the legal system. By making
    [undergoing] abortion a choice for an individual a convenient excusing of liability is also made possible. However, this does not appear to be completely legal or ethical to me.
    Those making the choice [to have an abortion] available are trained to execute judgment according to a set of laws. Yet the individual to whom the choice is being made available has no prerequisite of formal training [in those laws]. To have a legal system grant an individual the opportunity to terminate the life of another is not legal if the individual is not necessarily qualified to substitute for those previously executing judgment or deciding medical matters. Furthermore, to have a legal system indiscriminately grant individuals
    the opportunity to terminate another’s life is not ethical because that opportunity would inevitably be tempting individuals to terminate another’s life. Abortion, as any other sin, does not liberate but enslave.
    I find the current system of abortion to be void of morality in many ways. For example, there is not, at any time, a right granted to the male (other party) to voice any authority in the life of the child so as to protect it from undue harm. Therefore
    the current system of pro-choice does not protect but endanger. Pro-choice is a lot like a ’sweat-shop’ where judicial decisions are made and the laborers are not payed. Whether a female chooses to have an abortion or not there is never any wage supplied for making the decision. Abortion is like slavery in this regard. Abortion is an act of oppression toward women and children and is often promoted as a freedom. Abortion is freedom from responsibility and liability for anyone able to directly or indirectly profit from it but a grievous burden, both for those being tempted by it, and those pursuing it. The demoralization of a society is the first step to the victimization of it.

    My answer to the question, “Is there a moral justification for abortion?” is ‘no.’ Also, I often consider that a ‘more moral’ approach to abortion would be self-defeating. Let us suppose that wages were supplied to the makers of the choices and/or that the choice was a more democratic one (such as between both parties of conception), would abortion be anyless wrong? My answer again is ‘no.’ Yet what is the probability of saving lives? Of destroying them?
    In my opinion the immorality of abortion is exacerbated by abortion being promoted as a freedom for women by a nation (America), and a person (B. H. Obama), that have, or profess to have, allegiance with God while the available scripture pertaining to that [inferred] God is, or may be viewed as, unfair toward women.
    Nonetheless, the separation of sexism from religious doctrine may or may not mitigate any [unfair] implicit condescension inherent in the
    coupling of a theme of national devotion to God with the proffering of choices that may, or actually do, conflict with the ideal(s) of that entity (God).
    Most documented religions contain [interpretable] injustices toward women, and Christianity is not exempt. The religious or scriptural promotion of sexism, while a national slogan of “In God We Trust” is simultaneously being propagated in a pro-choice society, allows for the overt blaming of women for abortion. This is not freedom for women but the allowance of the greater burden of all sin to
    be placed upon them. Freedom for women is when men are held accountable for their own sin.
    Consequently, the illusive ‘common ground’ may best be found in the disapproval of the application of terms or phrases (such as ‘In God We Trust’, ‘One
    Nation Under God’, ‘God Bless America’, etc.) that imbue, imply, or relate to God in a haphazard, abusive, or unauthorized manner. Jeremiah chapter 23 should help clarify this view because it vividly
    depicts how certain phrasology pertaining to [the entity of] God can further infuriate and call to response an already angry God.

    Concerning the concept of ‘original sin’, once adapted for Christ’s statements (basically that speech defiles someone more than diet), all sin is no longer the fault of Eve’s consumption and sharing of fruit. For Eve testifies of the truth, that Satan deceived her, only after Adam betrays unnecessary
    information about her in an apparent attempt to attribute blame to Eve before an inquiring God.
    (Genesis ch. 3)
    So, in my opinion, the original sin is the betraying of a companion. And death is brought to humanity through the persecution of the righteous for their testimony (remember Abel, etc., Christ) and also through the condemnation of betrayal
    (remember Cain, etc., Judas Iscariot).
    To my knowledge, none of my views have been adopted by any religious or national association so as to be representative of their own interpretation of ‘God.’
    My interpretation of ‘original sin’ may appear unusual and could be classified as religious extremism by some. I developed this particular theological notion from my analysis of both Old and New Testament scripture and on careful reflection on any variance in the teachings of the apostles with those of [our] Christ. Unfortunately I have found the apostles to be attempting to re-subjugate women much as those who had re-appropriated their liberated servants in Jeremiah 34 bringing condemnation on themselves. (See also 1 Cor. 11 & 14, and 1 Peter 3 and compare them with Luke 10:25-28, Matthew 23:8-12, and John 20 1-18.)

    There is a popular consensus that extremism is undesirable. Yet some forms of extremism are necessary for righteousness. Truth itself can be said to be an extreme and lies or lying another. Consider how a ‘half-truth’ has no integrity because the lie corrupts what truth there was until it is just a lie. (Haggai 2:10-14)
    A similar situation exists in the promotion of a ‘middle road’ that is sympathetic to most and which employs the condemnation of both extremes. This scenario would allow for the promulgation of sin because integrity and truth do not always exist as a
    majority. ( 1 Kings chapter 22)

    It may well be that the most detrimental act that a [Christian] religion can perpetrate
    is the devaluation or otherwise invalidation of the Lord’s Prayer. (Matthew 6: 9-15)

  100. Angelo said

    Furthermore, life is [potentially] eternal. Life beginning at conception (or prior to) does not [necessarily] end at abortion. The Christian concept of a battle of Armageddon, wherein Satan and his angels fight against Michael and his angels indicates a possibility that the souls of the aborted (and of those used for embryonic stem cell research) may be enlisted to fight alongside Michael. Whereas advocacy of abortion (and embryonic stem cell research) may be [part of] the recruitment process for Satan’s army. However, [sincere] repentance allows for a reorientation of the soldier.

  101. Angelo said

    The admonishment of Judas Iscariot by Christ is potentially the most applicable scripture both for and against abortion:
    “The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.” Matthew (26:24)
    It is important to note that this statement is issued against a man, not against a child. Therefore, Christ is not endorsing abortion but rather condemning betrayal [as a waste of one’s life].
    Another scripture that might seem to encourage the act of abortion is John 6:63:
    “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”
    However, this is a general statement that can not be applied solely against the unborn nor for any age or ability bracket of humanity.
    Yet another pertinent scripture is Matthew 10:28:
    “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
    This statement reaffirms the resurrection and indicates a separation of the destruction of the body and the condemnation of the soul. This scripture is invaluable to the aforementioned argument that the one(s) endorsing abortion may be subject to a greater punishment than death.

    Consider that [applicable] sin is forgivable under favorable circumstances of repentance and faith; but that endorsing sin is an act of rebellion that leads to the absence of the circumstances necessary for forgiveness.

    ——-

    I conclude that Biblical scripture does not endorse abortion. However, Biblical scripture is supportive of sterilization and advocates abstinence:

    “Neither let the son of the stranger, that hath joined himself to the LORD, speak, saying, The LORD hath utterly separated me from his people: neither let the eunuch say, Behold, I am a dry tree.
    For thus saith the LORD unto the eunuchs that keep my sabbaths, and choose the things that please me, and take hold of my covenant;
    Even unto them will I give in mine house and within my walls a place and a name better than of sons and of daughters: I will give them an everlasting name, that shall not be cut off.” (Isaiah 56:3-5)KJV

    “For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.”
    (Matthew 19:12)KJV

    ———–

    Another relevant scripture that is often translated differently is Revelation 13:10, “He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.” KJV
    I am unaware of the original greek intent but many newer translations are stating, “..whoever is meant for/to…shall..”, or perhaps more perversely “…whoever is destined for/to…shall…”

    Isaiah 33 and 57 are worth consideration also.

    ————

    Some srcipture verses which may be perceived as justification for abortion to prevent the death of the mother are:

    “…[Christ] said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
    But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.(Matthew 9:12-13)KJV

    and:

    “But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless.” (Matthew 12:7)KJV

    These scriptures may not be conclusive and may best be viewed in context
    and along with others (such as the aforementioned John 6:63 and Mathhew 10:28) to help establish their correct intention toward a certain application.

  102. Angelo said

    Perhaps John 12:24-25 may help support the argument that Biblical scripture does not endorse abortion [at any time].
    Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.
    He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.”(KJV)

    Another immoral aspect of abortion is the use of a person such as B. H. Obama to promote abortion under the guise that he is representative of liberty. When, in fact, the use of a member of a [formerly] oppressed group of people to do something that is controversial and [potentially] bringing eternal condemnation is a greater form of oppression than the former. And the fact that Obama has blended his promotion and support of abortion with the words of a[nother] people’s fight for liberty (Si se puede/ Yes we can) is further immoral behavior.

    Consider Matthew 23:15:
    “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of’ hell than yourselves.” (KJV)

    ——-

    Disclaimer:
    Due to the fact that some persons may be predisposed to blaming themselves rather than others while some persons may be predisposed to blaming others rather than themselves, and due to my conviction that all abortion is sin; I find it necessary to argue that promoting abortion is a greater sin than undergoing one, and that making the choice to have an abortion available is a greater sin than choosing to obtain one. However, it is my belief that those choosing to obtain abortions, as well as those promoting abortion and those making abortion available, are yet still worthy of life, love, liberty, and forgiveness.

    (It may also interest the reader to consider Ezekiel chapter 33 and Matthew chapters 12&23 as it may have been these chapters of the Bible, more so than others, that helped form this argument and belief of mine.)

  103. Angelo said

    Correction: I do not intend to accuse America or it’s president of sanctioning ALL abortion, for it is only ‘legitamately’ (for which concept of legitamacy is addressed in Roe v. Wade, etc., & FOCA) requested and authorized abortion that is being, or may be, endorsed. Neither do I have the intention of concluding, from solely any publicy available data, that America or its president has absolutely NO intention of protecting unborn life. Hoewever, it is still my opinion that the abdication of authority to protect the unborn, initated by Roe v. Wade and [potentially] increased with FOCA, indicates cumulative (governmental, legislative, judicial, etc.) incompetence in rendering justice for the unborn greater than any potential incompetence of any individual recipient of abdicated authority. Futhermore, it is my intention to illuminate any and all condescension which may unnecessarily, unethically, immorally, or illegally induce, seduce, oppress, or otherwise discourage pregnant females (and/or persons) and thereby affect their ability to deliberate. One such potential instant is with the use of an implied, or otherwise manifested, allegiance to a/the God while certain scriptures pertaining to the views of a/the God indicate an intolerance of women who choose whom to kill and whom to save(Ezekiel 13:17-22). It may further interest the reader to consider that any and all American initiated condescension (which may lead to derogatory imputations against females, persons, or individuals) may be as fundamental to my argument of American incompetence as any abdication of authority by America; Also, any and all unwillingness, inefficiency, or inability of America to alleviate, mitigate, or eliminate that condescension would be at least equally indicative of incompetence in my opinion.

    Disclaimer: (Continued)

    In the event that the right to choose abortion at any and/or all times is granted to pregnant females or individuals, it is not my intention to advocate or endorse retribution (social, oersonal, political, religious, or otherwise) against the females or individuals obtaining abortion, governments potentiating abortion, or persons performing abortions. Neither do I advocate the aborting or taking of unborn life by those unauthorized to do so. Neither is it my intention to justify or facilitate the granting of the authority to abort unbrn life to individuals; nor is it my intention to justify or advocate the use of granted authority for the purpose of aborting unborn life or for terminating and/or killing partially born life. However, neither is it my intention to infringe upon people’s religious rights, freedoms, and/or obligations; nor is it my intention to stifle, nullify, or otherwise vitiate any and all [accurate] transmission of a/the God’s words. Especially in the event that those words may be intended to forewarn nations, peoples/persons, or individuals of any and/or all impeding consequence which may affect the mutual fellowship, trust, respect, or status of that/those party/parties and a/the God.

  104. Angelo said

    Disclaimer: (Continued)

    Furthermore, it is not my intention to promote my declaration of cumulative American incompetence in rendering justice for the unborn or partially born as a justification for any oppression, enslavement (monetary, mental, physical, religious, or otherwise), or degradation of females, persons, or individuals. Neither am I advocating an illegal, violent, or otherwise harmful solution/revolution for/against incompetent government. However, I do believe that the current system of allowing abortion may precede a system that mandates abortion.

  105. Angelo said

    Disclaimer: (Continued)

    I have previously promoted a relative view of sin wherein some sins are considered greater than others. This is in keeping with the Christian teaching that forgiveness of [applicable] sin is often dependent upon the trespasser’s ability or desire to forgive others their sins, especially in cases of relatively incomparable amounts of sin. My use of this concept of valuating sin is in no wise an advocation or promotion of retalliation toward any individuals, governments, or persons congruent with any implied valuation of their sin(s). However, I do intend valuation of sin to help serve: a) as a warning concerning the impending judgment by God of the immortal soul of an individual, and b) as a reminder of the importance of the act of forgiving to the attainment of forgiveness.

  106. Angelo said

    Note to the editor(s) and reader(s): In the interest of protecting myself and others and for the pursuit of clarity; I, Angelo, the author, but not the [sole] editor, of this and previous comments bearing my name (Angelo), do submit this more finalized and comprehensive disclaimer.

    Disclaimer:

    1) Due to the notion that some persons may be predisposed to blaming themselves rather than others, while some persons may be predisposed to blaming others rather than themselves, and due to my conviction that all abortion is sin; I find it necessary to argue that promoting abortion is a greater sin than undergoing one, and that making the choice to have an abortion available is a greater sin than choosing to obtain one. However, it is my belief that those choosing to obtain abortions, as well as those promoting abortion and those making abortion available, are yet still worthy of life, love, liberty, and forgiveness.
    (It may also interest the reader to consider Ezekiel chapter 33 and Matthew chapters 12&23 as it may have been these chapters of the Bible, more so than others, that helped form this argument and belief of mine.)

    2) It is not my intention to conclude that pregnant females/persons are inferior to an American system in regards to rendering decisions as to the continuation of life of the unborn. To the contrary, the very fact that America has been contrite to sanction an(y) abortion is, in my opinion, sufficient causation to suggest that America does not have the intention of protecting unborn lives and is therefore incompetent in deliberating justice [for them]. Moreover, the American system may have attenuating motives (such as: protecting secrets, promoting religious or racial equality, balancing economic situations, etc.), or be otherwise confined by corruption, which may affect its judgment. Coincidentally, even though the current system may appear beneficial for the unborn as the Court(s) may be protecting them in some instances; the eventuality of the situation is that the/those Court(s) may not continue to do so and that obligation may be surrendered to those whom will inevitably be making the decisions. In my opinion, the inability of the Court(s) to maintain authority in the life of the unborn, irregardless of [prior] effectiveness of protection, invariably endangers the unborn more than the eventual assumption of authority by the pregnant female (irrespective of how oppressive or unfair that transfer of authority may be deemed by those assuming the authority, others, or those granting or forfeiting the authority), as the authority to save is relinquished as well as the authority to kill; and the relinquishing and/or abdication of authority [to save and/or kill/termintate life] was initiated by the Court(s), therefore potentially and primarily incriminating it/them.

    3) It is my intention to argue that it is better for the unborn to be protected than not protected. However, it is not my intention or argument to conclude that women are inferior to men at protecting the unborn; nor is it my intention or argument to conclude that the unborn should not have inherent protection independent of the will of their government, mother, [perceived] owner(s), or parent(s). Neither is it my intention to conclude that persons, irregardless of age, nationality, race, sex, consensus of worthiness of the title: ‘person’, or any other criteria, be viewed as property for the sole purpose of justifying their murder.

    4) I do not intend to accuse America or it’s president of sanctioning ALL abortion, for it is only ‘legitimately’ (for which concept of legitimacy is addressed in Roe v. Wade, etc., & FOCA) requested and authorized abortion that is being, or may be, endorsed. Neither do I have the intention of concluding, from solely any publicy available data, that America or its president has absolutely NO intention of protecting unborn life. Hoewever, it is still my opinion that the abdication of authority to protect the unborn, initated by Roe v. Wade and [potentially] increased with FOCA, indicates cumulative (governmental, legislative, judicial, etc.) incompetence in rendering justice for the unborn greater than any potential incompetence of any individual recipient of abdicated authority.

    5) Furthermore, it is my intention to illuminate any and all condescension which may unnecessarily, unethically, immorally, or illegally induce, seduce, oppress, or otherwise discourage pregnant females (and/or persons) and thereby affect their ability to deliberate. One such potential instant is with the use of an implied, or otherwise manifested, allegiance to a/the God while certain scriptures pertaining to the views of a/the God indicate an intolerance of women who choose whom to kill and whom to save (Ezekiel 13:17-22). It may further interest the reader to consider that any and all American initiated condescension (which may lead to derogatory imputations against females, persons, or individuals) may be as fundamental to my argument of American incompetence as any abdication of authority by America. Also, any and all unwillingness, inefficiency, or inability of America to alleviate, mitigate, or eliminate that condescension would be at least equally indicative of incompetence in my opinion.

    6) In the event that the right to choose abortion at any and/or all times is granted to pregnant females or individuals, it is not my intention to advocate or endorse retribution (social, personal, political, religious, or otherwise) against the females or individuals obtaining abortion, governments potentiating abortion, or persons promoting or performing abortions. Neither do I advocate the aborting, terminating, or taking of unborn or partially born life by those unauthorized to do so. Neither is it my intention to justify or facilitate the granting of the authority to abort, terminate, or kill unborn or partially born life to individuals; nor is it my intention to justify or advocate the use of granted authority for the purpose of aborting, terminating, and/or killing unborn or partially born life.

    7) However, neither is it my intention to infringe upon people’s religious or national rights, freedoms, and/or obligations; nor is it my intention to stifle, nullify, or otherwise vitiate any and all [accurate] transmission of a/the God’s words. Especially in the event that those words may be intended to forewarn nations, peoples/persons, or individuals of any and/or all impending consequence which may affect the mutual fellowship, trust, respect, or status of that/those party/parties and a/the God.

    8) Furthermore, it is not my intention to promote my declaration of cumulative American incompetence in rendering justice for the unborn or partially born as a justification for any oppression, enslavement (monetary, mental, physical, religious, or otherwise), or degradation of females, persons, or individuals. Neither am I advocating an illegal, violent, or otherwise harmful solution/revolution for/against incompetent government. However, I do believe that the current system of allowing abortion may precede a system that mandates abortion.

    9) I have previously promoted a relative view of sin wherein some sins are considered greater than others. This is in keeping with the Christian teaching that forgiveness of [applicable] sin is often dependent upon the trespasser’s ability or desire to forgive others their sins, especially in cases of relatively incomparable amounts of sin (for reference the 18th chapter of Matthew in the Holy Bible (KJV) is hereby indicated). My use of this concept of valuating sin is in no wise a promotion or justification of retaliation toward any individuals, governments, or persons corresponding to any implied valuation of their
    sin(s). However, I do intend valuation of sin to help serve: a) as a warning concerning the [Christian concept of] impending judgment by God of the immortal soul of an individual [contained in the 25th chapter of Matthew in the Holy Bible (KJV)], and b) as a reminder of the importance of the act of forgiving to the attainment of forgiveness.

    10) Furthermore, in referring to any authority of America or to any authority of any American law or system; it is not my intention to justify, pardon, or neglect to condemn any and/or all American initiated rebellion against any church, any teachings and/or doctrine(s) of any
    church(es), the teachings/words/authority of [J.] Christ, and/or the [teachings of a/the] Holy Bible or other sacred, secular, or ‘separate’ (for which separation may be indicated by America or others) literature.

  107. School kid 101 said

    i say abortion isnt murder

  108. […] I have written at a website about [the morality of] abortion ( visit replies 79-106 @ https://iusbvision.wordpress.com/2006/11/21/is-there-a-moral-justification-for-abortion/ ), and the following argument, or postulation, is in many ways a continuation of my replies […]

  109. […] P.S.: Here’s a link to one of my earliest online attempts to address a controversial subject. In it I reference Scripture a lot, in part trying to formulate a perspective I felt was not well known. https://iusbvision.wordpress.com/2006/11/21/is-there-a-moral-justification-for-abortion/ […]

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