Christian Ethics - Lesson 15

Abortion (Part 1/2)

Dr. Nash discusses abortion and the need for believers to not be timid and speak up on this issue while he equips his listeners to do so. The final measure of mankind's humanity is how humanely people treat one another. The speaker uses the example of the Nazi holocaust to illustrate how the unthinkable can become thinkable when a culture's view of human life changes drastically.

Ronald Nash
Christian Ethics
Lesson 15
Watching Now
Abortion (Part 1/2)

Contemporary Moral Issues


I. Abortion (part 1)

A. Introduction

1. Most evangelicals agree that it is a major social evil.

2. The test of a culture - How does it treat people?

3. The key issue - Is the fetus a human being?

4. Charles Colson

B. John Jefferson Davis, Evangelical Ethics

1. Profitability of the abortion industry

2. Irresponsible males

3. Opposition of the early church

a. No explicit biblical prohibition

b. Deductive argument can be made from Scripture

i. The Bible condemns taking innocent life.

ii. Abortion takes innocent life.

iii. The Bible condemns abortion.

4. Supreme Court decisions

a. Roe v. Wade

i. Permits abortion up to birth

ii. Borders on infanticide

b. Planned Parenthood of Missouri v. Danforth

5. Methods of abortion

a. Vacuum curettage

b. Dilation and curettage

c. Hysterotomy

d. Saline injection

6. Medical advances

7. Three basic positions

a. Abortion on demand

b. Abortion on indication

c. Life of the mother

C. Biblical Evidence

1. Exodus 21:22-25

2. The personhood of the fetus

a. Job 3:3

b. Psalm 51:5

c. Luke 1:41, 44 and 2:12, 16

d. Psalm 139:13-16

e. Jeremiah 1:5

f. Common sense

i. Caution

ii. Hunting analogy

  • Gain insights into philosophical ethics and Christian responses, and the Christian role in society regarding the state, justice, economics, and education.
  • In this lesson, Dr. Nash introduces you to the concept of hedonism, which is an example of a consequentialist ethic. He reviews non-hedonistic consequentialist philosophies, psychological hedonism, and ethical hedonism.
  • This lesson introduces you to the theory of deontological ethics and Emmanuel Conte. You will learn that the deontological ethic judges morality by examining the nature of actions and the will of agents rather than goals achieved.
  • In this lesson you will learn about the system of ethics that focuses on virtue and introduces the Four Cardinal Virtues, which are temperance, wisdom, justice, and courage, and emphasizes the importance of being the right kind of person who possesses the traits of character, and C.S. Lewis's book "Christianity" provides an informative treatment of the Four Cardinal Virtues and the Three Theological Virtues.
  • You will gain insight into C.S. Lewis's views on Christian ethics and the morality analogy he presents, where morality is like a fleet of ships that must fulfill three conditions to succeed: every ship must run properly, the relations between ships must be proper and orderly, and the fleet must head to the right destination.
  • You will learn about the importance of distinguishing between society and the state. Society is a voluntary organization of people, while the state is the group of people who claim a monopoly on the use of coercive force within a geographic boundary. By understanding this difference, you can prevent the government from interfering with your voluntary associations.
  • You will gain an understanding of how the professor's theory of the state in Social Justice in the Christian Church aligns with the New Testament. He explains that the state is a God-ordained institution to check against sin, and he is a moderate anti-statist who recognizes the need for government but also the inherent evil in any concentration of human power. The New Testament recognizes constraints upon governmental power, and Revelation 13 is an example of how the state can symbolize anti-Christian government. The lesson also discusses the concept of justice and how it is often invoked without a clear understanding, suggesting that Christians should study ancient Greece for a better comprehension of the term.
  • In this lesson, you will gain insight into the evangelical civil war that happened 20 years ago, learn about its early stages recorded by Clark Penick, understand the harmful effects of left-wing evangelicalism, and see how many evangelicals on the left became enamored with their own self-virtue in what they thought was a crusade to help the poor.
  • By studying this lesson, you will gain insight into the major differences between capitalism, socialism, and interventionism. You will learn that interventionism is often responsible for economic crises that are attributed to capitalism. You will also learn about the overlapping and continuum nature of economic systems and the gray area where an economic system may be viewed as socialism or interventionism.
  • This lesson discusses the decline of old liberation theology and how some of its proponents are now advocating for capitalism and democracy as being what the poor of the third world need, and presents shocking quotations from individuals characterized as evangelical, such as Jose Marquez Bonino, who promotes Marxism and praises tyrants like Castro and Mao Tse tung, as well as material about the three major kinds of Marxism that have existed in the world.
  • This lesson will provide you with a comprehensive understanding of interventionism and its role in the Great Depression, including the fact that blaming capitalism for the depression is based on four myths, and that interventionism actually deepens recessions by disguising the information produced by a market economy.
  • Through this lesson, you will gain an understanding of the crisis facing American education, as highlighted by Alan Blum's book The Closing of the American Heart and the author's complementary book. The focus is on the importance of values, standards, and morality in education, and the need to reopen the American heart to reopen the American mind. The lesson introduces the three kinds of illiteracy currently affecting Americans at every level of the educational process, with a particular emphasis on functional illiteracy, which refers to the inability to read, write, or use numbers well enough to get along in society.
  • In this lesson, you will learn about the incompetency of public school teachers in America, caused by academically weak students being attracted to the profession, lack of content courses in their college curriculum, unimpressive and radical left-winged professional educationists, and the National Education Association being an enemy of America's young people, with four essential steps to improve education, including getting a clear focus on the educational role of the family, increasing local control of education, changing the curriculum to prepare students for life after school, and changing teacher education programs.
  • Gain knowledge of the difference between the biblical ethic and other philosophical systems. Though it may seem simple, it is an underlying system that can lead to complex issues. The divinely revealed scriptures are the starting point for moral reflection, but not a ready-made answer. Some New Testament commandments are archaic or obsolete, and many modern moral problems are not discussed in the Bible.
  • You will gain insight into the pro-life stance and be equipped to inform others. Christians need not be timid about talking about these issues.
  • This lesson explores the arguments and counterarguments surrounding abortion, arguing for caution and conservatism in ending any life, emphasizing the need to balance the right of the mother with the rights of the infant, and briefly touching on the issue of rape and how it complicates the matter.
  • As you go through the lesson, you will learn about infanticide and euthanasia, and how the disrespect for unborn human life has led to an increase in cases of infanticide, along with some suggestions for what Christians should do in the case of children born with life-threatening handicaps.
  • In this lesson, you will explore the five major passages of Scripture related to homosexuality, including different interpretations of the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, and concludes that the Bible clearly condemns homosexual activity.
  • This lesson explores the topic of capital punishment in the context of Christian beliefs, arguing for consistency and emphasizing the need to view Old Testament laws in the context of specific situations that are no longer applicable.
  • This lesson discusses the three approaches to war and peace and distinguishes between principled pacifists and hypocritical, unprincipled pacifists, who are members of the political left and denounce American military actions but support violent revolutionary organizations.
  • You will gain an understanding of the growing issue of divorce and remarriage within the church, the responsibilities of Christian leaders in addressing it, and the need for Christians to think through what the Scripture teaches on these matters and formulate principles that will guide their thinking and conduct.
  • This lesson provides insight into how responsible Christians can make ethical decisions about birth control, considering the importance of intention, distinguishing between ethically acceptable and unacceptable forms of birth control, and emphasizing the importance of wise and careful means in achieving family planning goals.

Theoretical and theological basis for Christians  living an ethical life.

Dr. Ronald Nash

Christian Ethics


Abortion (Part 1/2)

Lesson Transcript


[00:00:01] All right. We're going to spend today talking about abortion. And I am going to make an assumption. I'm going to assume that nobody in this room, no one in this class needs convincing, needs personal persuasion. On the on the pro-life matter. I may be mistaken on that. Well, anyway, that's an assumption I'm making. And I am therefore also going to assume that my task today is is not to persuade you personally. My task today is to arm and equip you so that you will be in a better position to persuade other people. And let me say this I have yet to hear, and I'm not going to tell you how old I am. I have yet to hear a sermon on abortion in my whole lifetime. Every church I have been a member of has been nominally at least, pro-life, opposed to abortion. And yet, looking back at the timidity and the reluctance of preachers to take a Sunday morning service, to lay out a program, to lay out an argument with regard to the abortion issue, one wonders how how wise Christians reach that opinion. So let me encourage you. Depending upon the position of leadership in which you find yourself not to be, not to be the least bit timid about talking about these issues, let's not allow our position on these issues to be simply things that we deal with in private counseling. If if these positions are correct, then they are viewpoints that need public airing. That's my task for today to try and give you ammunition that you can use in communicating the truth on this important matter in a church service setting.


[00:02:33] Let's begin with an introduction. Most evangelicals agree today that abortion is a major social evil about which they cannot be silent. I said most evangelicals feel groups that are exceptions to this. Radical feminists. And I'll give some content to that term later on. I'm not and I'm not speaking pejoratively of all feminists. I'm speaking pejoratively about radical feminist. They they oppose the general evangelical stance on abortion. And it is that general evangelical stance is also opposed by a disconcertingly large number of professors that evangelical colleges and seminaries. And I'll give you some examples. I'll name a few people a little bit later on. But whether I name them or not, let me say this, that if you if we today were undergraduate students at some of the better known evangelical colleges or seminaries, you would find some of the major professors who are anointed to deal with this issue, being supportive of abortion in many cases and being critical of the pro-life position. While evangelicals might disagree over what should be done in cases of rape and incest, and we want to talk about that later on. Almost all agree that killing a fetus as a form of birth control or gender selection or eliminating unwanted, unwanted babies is immoral. Francis Schaefer captured the spirit of millions of evangelicals when he and his coauthor, SI Everett Koop, began their book. Whatever Happened to the Human Race with these words? Cultures can be judged in many ways, Schaefer said. But eventually, every nation and every age must be judged by this test. How did that culture treat people? Each generation, each wave of humanity evaluates its predecessors on this basis. The final measure of mankind's humanity is how humanely people treat one another. That's the end of the quote.


[00:04:54] The Nazi holocaust that killed millions of Jews occurred because the German nation allowed the unthinkable to become thinkable. Something very similar has happened in the United States, according to Schafer, and I quote again what we regard as thinkable and unthinkable about how we treat human life has changed drastically in the West for centuries. What? Western culture has regarded human life and the quality of the life of the individual is special. It has been common to speak of the sanctity of human life until recently in our own century, with some notable and sorry exceptions. Human beings have generally been regarded as special, unique and non expendable. But in one short generation we have moved from a generally high view of life to a very low view of life. A low view of life that is that is that is apparent not only in the way large numbers of Americans view the unborn, but also in the way in which not only with regard to the unborn, but also with regard to the newly born. The practice of infanticide and also the practice practices that would effectively lead to mercy killings of either seriously impaired adults or the aged poor. Francis Schafer This shift in values reflects perhaps better than anything else, the fact that American society has abandoned its Judeo-Christian base for a humanistic base that elevates man and his wishes over God and his will. Americans are now part of a culture that terminates about a million and a half fetuses a year. By the end of 1991, approximately 28 million abortions will have been performed in America alone since the Roe v Wade decision of 1973 28 million. This statistic makes the Nazi Holocaust look like the work of rank amateurs. If one believes that a fetus is a human being and that, incidentally, is the key issue here, what is the fetus? If it is a human being, one does not have to be an evangelical to feel outrage at this carnage and to feel shame over what it reveals about the moral tone of America.


[00:07:26] If you become convinced that the fetus is a human being, then you can get energized over this whether or not you are a practicing Jew or Christian. Chuck Colson has written. When it comes to human life, Christians cannot concede any ground. We are called to take up the cause of the weak, the helpless, the defenseless. It is our duty that which in large part defines us as citizens of the Kingdom of God. Christians, in short, must be unequivocally, resolutely and unapologetically pro-life. Well, that's my introduction to this business. Let me now draw your attention to a number of points made in Jack Davis's book. First of all, please note, as Davis points out, that abortion is a very profitable business for thousands of people in the United States, while for thousands of people in whatever country permits this in the last year in which statistics were available to Jack Davis and this book was published, I guess, in 1986, 1985. So we're looking at data that is almost ten years old. Abortion was a $700 million a year business in the United States, taking into account inflation and everything else. I think any of us could easily proclaim that abortion has become over $1,000,000,000 a year business in the country today. Notice also this fact, and I'm going to reinforce this I'm going to undermine underline this later on, The biggest beneficiary of abortion are irresponsible male. The biggest beneficiaries of abortion are irresponsible men. Ron Sider for all the fighter and I disagree. Sider makes a point of this radical. I'm sorry that Feminists for Life make a point of this. When when a woman accedes to a man's entreaties to abort the child she is carrying because the man doesn't want the financial or the social responsibility for taking care of that child.


[00:10:05] The woman, in effect, betrays her own gender, but woman, in effect, is submitting herself and her psyche and her body to. The pain on the pain that will benefit not her so much as it will benefit the irresponsible male who impregnated her. You've already heard the statistic that one and a half million of these operations takes place a year. So we get we get a clear feeling for the quantity of this. Beginning on page 131. Davis adds an important point that I had overlooked myself. He points out the enormous opposition to abortion in the early church. We're talking here about 100 A.D. to well, he takes it all the way up to Saint Augustine. Shortly I will be admitting, as any wise Christian will admit, that in the literal sense of the word, the Bible does not mention abortion. It does not prohibit abortion. But there is this evidence from the early church is, I think, especially important as giving us an insight on what the first century church, which was the church that produced the New Testament, what it thought about abortion. You take a careful look at that material that Jack Davis begins to give you on page 131. Now, let me also add this. Just because the Bible does not specifically condemn abortion by name does not mean that opponents of abortion are without biblical support for their position. Here's the way the argument would work the Bible. This would be the major premise. The Bible condemns murder. And consistent with our earlier analysis of principles and rules. What we're doing here is we're looking at the Fifth Commandment, Thou shalt not murder. Which means the taking. Well, why don't we. Let's alter this. This is not. Instead of just saying the Bible condemns murder, why don't we say the Bible condemns the taking of innocent human life? That's our major premise.


[00:12:57] The second premise is abortion is the taking of innocent human life. Therefore, the Bible condemns abortion. But that would be an example of the line of thinking that we're using here. So if if this line of thinking is correct, that is, once we grant and we're going to offer you some reason, some arguments in a few minutes as to why abortion is the taking of innocent human life, we're going to offer you some considerations from Scripture that support the belief that according to Scripture, the fetus is an unborn human being. Then you can reason from the general principle about the immorality of murder to the immorality of abortion. Jack Davis goes on to make a couple of additional points that many average Christians don't understand. For example, many Christians don't understand that Roe v Wade 1973 was not only possibly the worst, the worst instance of trampling upon the US Constitution, but the Supreme Court decision in Roe v Wade actually permits abortion up to the moment of birth. Four years before I looked into this, I used to think, Well, there are certain limits on what Roe v Wade permits, perhaps the first trimester, the first three months of pregnancy, maybe under more exceptional circumstances, the second trimester, but certainly by the time we get to the third trimester. No one in his right mind is going to permit the taking of of a viable fetus. But Roe v Wade, under under condition, under various conditions, does permit abortion up to the moment of birth, which which brings us to the gray area, the borderline between abortion and infanticide. Jack Davis presents some numerous several examples of aborted babies being born alive and then actually strangled by the attending physician. Based upon the testimony of eyewitnesses or simply being smothered or simply.


[00:15:28] Being left left to expire. Another important Supreme Court decision. Planned Parenthood of Missouri versus Danforth 1976 forbade any parental veto, any third party veto over the right to life of the fetus. Parents of a teenage girl who becomes pregnant have no right have no rights in this matter. They have no right to veto the decision of a pregnant minor. Nor, according to this same Supreme Court decision, do the fathers of the of the fetus. If the mother chooses to abort the fetus, not even a father has the right to veto this. That was the 1976 rule. Planned Parenthood of Missouri. What a euphemism that is, isn't it? Planned Parenthood sounds so nice. Sounds so innocent when in fact, what Planned Parenthood has become is a refuge of what some people would regard as baby killers. That's the way in which Planned Parenthood chooses to operate. Some people would think there is also interesting and important. It's not interesting. It's sickening information in Davies's book about the surgical methods by which abortion occurs. I think there's important ammunition here because most people have no idea. Most men are right. And most women who have not not gone through this have any idea how fetuses are aborted. The material that DAVIES presents is graphic. I guarantee that if any of us if many sensitive, humane people were in an abortion clinic, we're in a room where an abortion was being performed, what they would see would clearly sicken them. There are various methods that are used. Davis refers to Vacuum Curettage, which is a technique that first pares the fetus apart and suction that out of the uterus. There is dilation and curtains and see which cuts the fetus to pieces and then scrapes what remains off the wall of the uterus.


[00:18:12] Once one gets into the 13th to 16th weeks of pregnancy, it is necessary to go in and actually crush the bones and the skull of the developing fetus. Crush the bones in the skull. There is another technique that you can get all of this from. Davis hits the Artemis, which is the performance of a small c c section which removes the fetus and simply, if it is still alive, allows it to die. Here we have a case. This is a this is a technique that has fallen into some disfavor, obviously, because of its more disk. See, what if you can't see what's happening to the fetus, then this is acceptable. But if through, let's say this hysterectomy procedure, the fetus, a living fetus, is removed from the uterus and then simply allowed to expire. Then this. This bothers people. And then there's the. Then there's the marvelous technique. And with salt, solution is injected which burns the baby and sometimes results in a in a live delivery when the. Help me out here. What was the name of this? The silent Scream in this incredible film which showed the responses of fetuses to to the to the approaching weapons used by the abortionist. One could see in this film the fetus recoiling from the sharp instrument, certainly giving evidence of pain. There's an interesting, interesting phenomenon here. Many pro abortionists really don't want women to undergo techniques, technology that allows them to see the fetus the shadow of the fetus that personalizes. You see, once you see this little baby, this developing human life, once you see its hands and it's like. And you see it moving and you see it's sucking its thumb. Then the idea of killing it becomes much more difficult. If we treat it not as a developing baby, but if we treat it as a thing, then what happens when the skull and the bones are crushed and the thing is vacuumed out and simply flushed down the toilet? Then it's easier to deal with.


[00:20:53] But these new imaging techniques make it more clear that what we're dealing with here is something that is human. Davis also helpfully points out the advances in medical technology that make it possible to correct medical problems. In the case of the fetus, where where doctors can diagnose the fetus as having certain problems, they can actually go into the uterus. They can perform surgery on the fetus and they can correct these problems in a way that saves that saves the child from us. More serious medical problems that arise later on. Then Davis points out that there are three basic positions that people take with regard to abortion. And he's put he's his concern here is to identify which of these positions is more consistent with a biblical position. The first of these positions is abortion on demand, which is the view that there can be no restraints or restrictions upon the decision to abort. Abortion on demand assumes that the fetus is not a human being, is not a human person. Therefore, one can treat it in the same kind of amoral way in which you treat a hangnail, I suppose, or in which you treat any unnecessary, any unnecessary growth on or in the body. The third position, and I will come back to the second one in a moment. The third position is the life of the mother position. According to this view, the one and only justification for ending the life of the baby is a circumstance which threatens the life of the mother. What we have here is a dilemma where unless something is done, not just one person will die, but two people will die, the mother will die and her child will die. Both. And most evangelicals recognize the morality of this third position.


[00:23:25] But in this unfortunate, traumatic situation in life, the decision should be made to spare the life of the mother. The middle position is called abortion on indications, and it is obviously a halfway house between the extreme position, the pro-abortion position, number one, and the pro-life position. Number three, according to the second position, there are any number of circumstances where the greater life with a greater value of the mother's life or health or well-being or comfort justifies abortion of the fetus when that fetus poses a threat to the mother. Now, it is in the second kind of case that people have justice for. People who would stop short of abortion on demand would nonetheless argue that perhaps abortion is justified in cases where, for example, we know that the fetus will be born seriously handicapped, either physically handicapped or mentally handicapped. Again, depending upon the person who holds this position, some people would say that rape would constitute a justifiable instance for aborting the fetus. So here too, it seems here there is clearly a view that the fetus is not a human being and thus there is no moral issue involved in aborting it. Here there's the recognition that abortion is immoral when it is simply done for reasons of convenience. It is done if it is done as a matter as a substitute for birth control or gender selection. There are times when abortion is evil. There are times when abortion is justified, even though in these other cases it may not technically threaten the life of the mother. Now, what the scriptures say about this. Because as we're going to indicate to you a little later on, there are evangelicals who will deny the relevance of the Bible on this abortion issue. There are evangelicals who will argue that the Bible is not only silent.


[00:26:07] These are the specific issue of abortion. They will argue that the Bible is really silent on the humanity of the fetus as well. So it's important that we we get straightened out on that. Now, the first text I want to refer you to is Exodus chapter 2122 through 25. I guarantee you, if you go out there and do battle on this issue, you're going to run into you're going to run into evangelicals who will cite this text in a way that is designed to undermine the pro-life position. Here's one translation of this passage. When men strive together and hurt a woman with child so that there is a miscarriage and yet no harm follows, the one who hurt the woman shall be fined according as the woman's husband shall lay upon him and he shall pay. As the judges determine if any harm does follow. Then you shall give life for life, eye for eye, tooth for a tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn. Wound for wounds. Stripe for stripe. An eye for an eye, which is sometimes called the let's tell illness principle. A life for a life. An eye for an eye. A wound for a wound. All right. Now let me quote from an evangelical Dolores. Done it. Do you And an ETI published an article in Jett's Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society in June of 1990. In fact, Beckwith's article was a response to Donuts article. Here is what done, it says. According to Exodus 21, the destruction of a fetus is penalized in this text, far less severely than is the killing of the mother. If the mother dies, then the Lex stallion supplies a life for a life. In other words, if two men struggling end up harming a pregnant woman so that the woman dies, then the perpetrator of the crime dies.


[00:28:26] But Exodus 21 seems to suggest that if only the if only a miscarriage result and the fetus is killed, then the fetus is treated as less valuable than the mother. All right. These these religious, pro-abortion people really dig in to this particular text. Now, if we let them get away with their reading of this, they they have a position that will cause a great deal of mischief in the thinking of many Christians. Now, let me cut to the quick on this. I think the pro-abortion, evangelical does a serious injustice to this text from Exodus 21. There are several reasons why. Reason number one, and you find Jack Davis making this clear. Jack Davis looks at the Hebrew word for miscarriage, and he argues based on grammatical reasons that what happens See, we have two men struggling and apparently in their struggle, they strike the woman and the woman goes into labor and gives birth. But according to the Hebrew word that's used here. Davis argues we have not. Not the abortion, not the miscarriage. We have a live birth. The baby is delivered live, not dead. See, that's based on the on the linguistic word, the evidence here. So that would explain the difference between what happens to the woman who dies and what happens in the previous birth to the to the delivered baby. The baby has not died. There is nothing in this text about punishment that results in a dead fetus being born. That's important. Now, once you. Now let me go back and read the text again. As long as. As soon. As long as we understand that the delivery that is being mentioned here is the delivery of a live baby. Okay. And men strive together and hurt a woman with child so that there is a delivery, a live delivery, and yet no harm follows.


[00:30:58] You see, neither the baby nor the mother has been injured. We simply have an inducement of labor. There is no harm. Then the husband of the woman has the right to determine the punishment because there has been a wrong committed here. But it is not a wrong that has that is issued and any serious harm. So the husband will determine what penalties will apply and he shall pay as the judges determine. Now, the next verse, if any, harm does follow. All right. And the implication there is if any harm follows to either the baby or to the mother. All right. But if any harm follows. We're not just talking about harm to the mother. We're talking about harm to the baby or to the mother. Then you shall give life for a life I for I tooth for two. So the point is this Exodus 21 does not devalue the fetus in respect to the mother. Exodus 21, properly interpreted, assigns the same value to the fetus as it does to the mother. What? What, what the pro abortionist evangelical does in the rest of his argument is simply offer different interpretations of the biblical passages that pro-life Christians appeal to. All right. And I'm going to try and give you of the flavor of these alternative alternate readings of these passages. Now, pro-life Christians argue that scripture teaches Scripture teaches that human life begins at conception. That the fetus, if you understand certain key biblical text correctly here, the fetus is a human being from conception, and there is thus an unbroken development of human life that begins in conception and precedes to death. Now here are here. Here are some of the more interesting biblical texts that I think either explicitly or implicitly teach the personhood, the humanity of the fetus.


[00:33:39] Job three three. Job three three reads like this. Let the day perish on which I was to be born. And the night which said a boy is conceived. Now the Hebrew word for boy is get bare. And this is a word which in other Old Testament texts is translated male or man or husband or in job three three. It's translated as boy, because obviously we're dealing with a very young, even an unborn human being. In other words, the whole implication of Job three three, given the given the usage of the Hebrew word here, is that this is a human being that is conceived. Psalm 51 five reads as follows Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity and in sin. My mother conceived me. I don't know what the pro-abortion people say about Job three three. I do know what they say about Song 51 five. They argue that Psalm 51 five says nothing about the humanity of the developing fetus. They deny that Psalm 51 five teaches. But that fetus was David, the person, rather that fetus was simply something that would eventually become David. All right. That that is their line of response to many of these texts. But the simple fact is that David says in sin, did my mother conceive me? All right. This text is not just referring to the fact that David was born in sin. That he has been a sinner from birth or from conception. But sin is somehow attached irrevocably to his human nature. He is identifying himself with that unborn fetus. And here is even, I think, a more interesting collection of texts. What may refer you. And you've got to use both of them here. Luke 141 and 44 And you compare that then with Luke two, 12 and 16.


[00:36:14] I think this is this may be the most impressive biblical evidence for the humanity of the fetus. You're familiar with both of these texts? Luke Chapter 141 and 44 We read and it came about that when Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby were referring here to John. The baby leaped in my room. The baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. That's verse 41. And Luke 144 says, Behold, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy. Now when we turn to Luke, chapter two versus 12 and 16, the infant Jesus is called a baby. In other words, the very same Greek word is assigned to the newborn baby Jesus that was assigned to the unborn fetus. John, same word. And this will be a sign for you. You will find a baby wrapped in clothes and lying in a manger. And they came in haste and found their way to Mary and Joseph and the baby as he lay in the manger. Psalm 139, Psalm 139, verses 13 through 16 without its form. My inward parts outraged with me and my mother's womb. I will give thanks to the for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. The psalmist here is identifying himself with that unborn baby. Wonderful. All thy works and my soul knows that very well. My frame was not hidden from the one I was made in secret and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth by an eyes of sea. My unformed substance. And I'll give you just one final. We could talk also about Jeremiah and Jeremiah, Chapter one, where God says, Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.


[00:38:27] I have appointed you a prophet to the nations. Hear what the pro-abortion evangelical says is that God here in Jeremiah one five is talking about knowing Jeremiah even before he was conceived. All right. Clearly the abortionist thinks that rules that that makes this particular text irrelevant, but it does not make this text irrelevant. God, for new all of us before we were conceived, God has known about all of us from eternity. We must not confuse epistemology with metaphysics. We must not confuse what God knows with what is the case. Jeremiah here is is clearly giving is clearly endorsing the view that we're we're defending that there is a humanity to the fetus. But look, let's add another point here. I suppose we were left without any scientific or biblical evidence that we could use in determining the humanity of the fetus. Now, I believe a scientific case for the humanity of the fetus can be made, or at least a philosophical case for the humanity of the fetus based upon some scientific data. But let's let's assume for the sake of argument that no scientific or philosophical argument is is available. And let's also assume, for the sake of argument, that Scripture really is equivocal or silent on the issue of the fetus so that we are driven to a state of total agnosticism, let's say we don't know. I think we do know on biblical evidence. I think we can know on the basis of philosophical reasoning and scientific evidence. But let's suppose we can't. Suppose we're left without any guidelines as to whether the fetus is a human being or not. The question then becomes, what do we do? What do we do? And I think common sense says we erred on the side of caution, even if a determinative answer were unavailable with regard to the humanity of the fetus.


[00:41:03] We should erred on the side of caution. If you're out hunting. This is a good analogy. And you see what looks to be to you to be a hunter bowl animal over there in the woods and you mistakenly kill a human being. I'm afraid the courts are going to take a dim view of your of your your claim that you didn't you didn't know it was a human being. We have a we have moral responsibilities in this matter. And if we if we are in a position where we cannot be sure, common sense tells us that we must erred on the side of caution. It is it is obviously clearer that we should not take what could be human life in conditions where a final answer on the humanity of that fetus is available to us.