Peninsula Community Church
Moral Compass – God Values Human Life
October 28, 2012
Text: … Psalm 139:13-17 For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!
A discussion on the value of human life no longer centers solely on the unborn but now the elderly and the aged are in the crosshairs of those who have a diminished view of life. For many years the focus was on the act abortion but in recent years the discussion has turned to issues regarding end of life issues. During the debate over the recent health care bill and because of such people as Dr. Kvorkyan, known as the suicide doctor this issue is now on the forefront of a moral discussion. One of the discussions that was front and center on the new health care bill was that “death panels” and boards would be organized in order to determine the level of care that one will be able to receive. The idea that has been propagated is that the cost of treatment will be weighed against the quality of life and life expectancy of the individual. While the bill does not explicitly refer to death panels there is a lot of gray area where the government can control costs by controlling the kinds of procedures that will be approved. Thus, the natural outcome and the unintended consequences of many of the measures put forth in this bill will require a rationing of healthcare to one degree or another which could limit the care that will keep on alive simple on the quality of life or the cost of providing care for them.
We have seen this with the abortion issue in that the argument to support Roe VS. Wade was that abortion would never go beyond the 1st trimester but as we know now doctors can abort in most cases up until the time the baby is born. In fact to assure that the baby will not survive the abortion the doctor will inject the baby with a saline solution. In 2008, the last year data is available, the total number of abortions for that year was 1.21 million. That is 3322 a day. It is also important to note that an abortion according to Planned Parenthood can cost anywhere from $350 to $950. This would mean that this is a multi-million dollar business and may be as much as 1 billion dollars a year. It is also interested note that 40% of minors reported that neither of their parents knew they had received an abortion. This is in a nation where schools cannot even give out an aspirin without parental approval.
For me personally, the problem I have is that when the government has control over any issue the tendency is that it will become political because bureaucrats will now determine the outcomes and those outcomes will be politically motivated.
Before I go much further let me make an observation. As we look at how God values life, I am keenly aware that there may be some you have been negatively impacted by abortion to one degree or another. You may have experienced it personally or you may have had someone close to you that experienced abortion. But, you need to know that while God values life he also offers forgiveness to those who fall short of God’s plan and purpose for life. While the government focuses on the political expediency of life, the Bible offers us a view and a standard for understanding what life is and how life is to be valued.
First of all we see that God is the creator, sustainer and provider of all human life. In Genesis 1-3 we see that God created mankind in His image. The difference between mankind and the animal kingdom is that God formed and shaped and breathed life into the soul of mankind whereas animal kind was only spoken into existence. It is in this act that God established the value of mankind above and beyond any other part of his creation. In Colossians 1 we come to understand this as Paul reminds the Colossians that God was the creator and sustainer of all of life. It is for that reason that we must trust God and value what God values.
The problem in a discussion of the value of life is that every since mankind’s first sin, man has struggled to control God and has tried to replace God with himself. This is called the depravity of man which means that because of that first sin in the Garden of Eden that man from that point forward has the potential to sin. There is no greater place that this is a reality than in the discussion of the sanctity of life. By aborting unwanted children we are attempting to control what God has created and we are determining what God should do. If we can diminish God’s character and who God is we can feel better about our sin.
It is for this reason that we see that God values all human life from the womb to the tomb. This is clearly presented in Psalm 139 where David states that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. Look at David’s words. For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!
Notice that in this passage that God knows us in the womb as it is He that has formed us and shaped us but he also talks about that our days are numbered by the Lord as well. He knows the number of days we will live before we ever begin to live them. And He values this life until its end of days. A second idea is at play here and that is that murder is murder. It cannot be redefined as acceptable based on one’s age or inability to speak for themselves. This why God was clearly focused on teaching that murder was a sin.
The third concept that is presented through scripture is that our bodies belong to God. There is this debate in the world today that people say that this is my body and I am in control of it and nobody can tell me what to do. This plays into the spirit of independence we have and that we do not want anyone to tell us what to do. Perhaps there is some truth to this but the fact is we are temples of the Holy of the Spirit. We do not own our bodies but we are stewards of our bodies. Listen to Paul’s words in 1Corinthians 6:15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never!
We belong to God and we are His therefore we must honor God with our bodies and what we do with our bodies.
The final thought here is that God has created us with the ability to choose and therefore we must choose to align ourselves with Biblical values that support life and liberty. In Christian circles we call this free will. But with free will there must be responsibility. For example I believe in choice and I believe in a woman’s right to choose. Now before I am stoned as a heretic let me tell what I mean by this. For me there is a choice but the choice must be made early in the process.
Think about this for a moment. If we were to be obedient to God’s plan for marriage and refrained from pre-marriage sex we would not be having this discussion. But the reality is that we once again we are motivated by our sinful desires and passions that are difficult to control unless we have submitted these to God’s will and His plan for our lives.
There is a choice to be made and Paul in his letter to the Romans discusses this choice. But, if we reject the truth we can become futile in our minds and their hearts have been darkened. Romans 1:21-28 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.
Proverbs 1:29-31 Because they hated knowledge and did not choose the fear of the LORD, would have none of my counsel and despised all my reproof, therefore they shall eat the fruit of their way, and have their fill of their own devices.
The fact is that while our bodies belong to God we can deny that existence and will face the repercussions of denying the truth of God’s import in our lives.
Job offers a counter offer to this in Job 34:4 when he states “Let us choose what is right; let us know among ourselves what is good.”
Deuteronomy 30:19-20 I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live, loving the LORD your God, obeying his voice and holding fast to him, for he is your life and length of days, that you may dwell in the land that the LORD swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.”
How are your choices? How about those who are running for office? What is their view of the sanctity of life? Do they cherish life? Or, do they say they support life but do not support laws that support life? If we support life, how do we do at supporting those who decide to keep their children rather than having an abortion? You see the world knows what the church is against but do they know what we stand for. We stand for life from the womb to the tomb. And we stand for helping those who choose life over abortion or end of life death. May God help us!