Hot Issue: Abortion and the Biblical Worldview

Abortion has been a hot political issue since the Roe vs. Wade decision was handed down in 1973. That was 35 years ago. I, for one, cannot remember that far back. I cannot remember abortion not being an issue of conversation. It is one of the most polarizing issues in American politics today. Every few months someone will make a statement that the issue is basically settled in the collective American mind. What is interesting is that you have to keep listening to find out which way he or she will say its been settled – proof that the abortion debate rages on.

Just last week, presidential candidates Obama and McCain gave vastly different answers to questions regarding abortion. McCain stated his strong Pro-Life stance, notably in front of an audience very sympathetic to that view. His voting record backs up that statement very well, warm audience or not. Obama gave the typical politician’s nuanced answer – which some issues certainly deserve. In the end he (also supported by his voting record) gave a strong Pro-Choice statement.

The issue is as open as ever in the American mind.

Recently though Nancy Pelosi (current Speaker of the House) weighed in on the issue. Her statement however was of particular interest to me, as I consider the issue with respect to the Biblical Worldview. She commented on the Catholic Church’s teaching regarding the issue.

As reported by Salon, she stated that, throughout history, the Catholic Church has been unable to define when life begins, and that within the church, this is an “issue of controversy. ”

This is an interesting statement considering what the Catholic Church actually teaches. Archbishop Donald Wuerl says that abortion has been declared evil “since the first century” and that it isn’t considering a change. Ever.

My favorite statement from the Archbishop: “Regrettably, knowledge of Catholic history and teaching does not seem to be one of [Pelosi’s professional skills.” For the record, Pelosi is Catholic.

The stark contrast in the statements made by Pelosi and Wuerl show the clash of the worldviews.

The Biblical Worldview is that life is formed at the point of fertilization. When that new genetic code is formed from the parental strands, there is new life. Everything is in place for a baby to be born some nine months later. This is also known as syngamy. Objectively, there is no way to define the initiation of new life at any other point. There is no other fundamental change in type after this. There is only growth.

As has been stated before, the Bible teaches that man is created with a certain worth and dignity stemming from the fact that he bears the image of God. There is no way to change this. Life is valuable. It reflects God’s glory. An assault on life is an assault on God. This worldview is based in objective truth as revealed by God. It is important for us to meet this issue with this in mind.

The opposing worldview is one of personal autonomy and moral freedom. It is not, as Pro-Choice proponents say, an easy decision for a woman to make, but it is her decision. This idea of personal autonomy set against the authority of God is almost as old as the innate dignity of the image of God. We can trace it back to the original sin when man decided to make up his own law.

It can be noted that this view of personal autonomy has waxed and waned throughout history but has never been absent. Our modern form has been touted by such historic philosophers such as Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who was known for flashing women in the streets of Paris. He later moved to the wilderness to live as a law unto himself. We can at least admire him for his consistency.

We are dealing with a group that holds that abortion is bad, but that ultimately it is a woman’s right to choose that must be upheld. The woman must keep her personal autonomy. I would agree that not all things should be governed. There shouldn’t be a law against every bad thing. We need to have rights to make our own decisions.

But consider why abortion is bad. It ends human life. That is huge. There aren’t other laws to protect our rights to do this. There is no law to protect murderers. Murder is bad, but it is ultimately the would-be murderer’s right to choose, which must be preserved. That’s foolishness. We are now sacrificing our children to our great god of personal autonomy.

This is a clash of worldviews and an issue for us all to consider with all seriousness. We live in a country that protects the right to slay the unborn at will. This is a country that is ruled by the people. This blood-guilt is on all of our hands. The blood of the unborn calls out from the ground and we are responsible. As we consider the Biblical Worldview and allow it to permeate our lives, we must apply it even to the hot issues or our day.

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Published in: on August 27, 2008 at 7:09 am  Leave a Comment  
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