There can be a lot of confusion, political bias, and anger that sets in once we begin discussing sensitive issues like this. So before getting into the issues, I want to clarify a few things.
1. I believe this issue far transcends politics, and my goal in this is not to convert you to a political party. I don’t typically write on more politically charged topics, but I think this one is worth it. And I do believe that political action based on one’s conviction about this matter is important. My goal is to, at the very least, allow you an inside look into why I, and others like me, think the way we do on this issue.
2. If you aren’t willing to engage the issue seriously, and openly reason through differing perspectives, then maybe you should ask yourself, why? If where I stand on this issue and my reasons makes you “mad”, then ask yourself, why? Could it be that I made a good point that’s convicting you? If you feel convicted and are tempted to ignore that feeling, why do you think that is? Everyone should fully examine this issue and know what they are supporting.
3. If you hold to a different view, then that doesn’t mean I will suddenly dislike, unfollow, or criticize you because we have a different opinion. I just happen to think there are far better reasons for my view than yours!
4. And lastly, I am going to do my best to keep this brief and simple, not to write a manifesto on all of my views regarding abortion issues. I have thought MUCH on this topic for nearly a decade now, so I will try to narrow down the content to what I think is most significant.
The Big Question
At the core of the issue lies this question: When does a human life begin? One could answer: at conception, 3 months of pregnancy, when the heart begins beating, when the child could live outside of the womb, etc. I concur with the majority of the scientific community in that human life begins at conception. This excerpt is taken from the statement entitled “When Human Life Begins” from the American College of Pediatricians:
The predominance of human biological research confirms that human life begins at conception—fertilization. At fertilization, the human being emerges as a whole, genetically distinct, individuated zygotic living human organism, a member of the species Homo sapiens, needing only the proper environment in order to grow and develop. The difference between the individual in its adult stage and in its zygotic stage is one of form, not nature. This statement focuses on the scientific evidence of when an individual human life begins.
Everything that is needed for a human (like you & I) to exist is present in the moment of conception. Though a heart is not yet existent in that moment, it will be in a matter of a few weeks! While the child can’t make decisions about their life yet, they will if they are allowed to continue living!
There is a strange, unfounded, idea out there that there is a difference between “personhood” and a “living human” to justify abortions. Perhaps there are different traits of a person that come to light over time (that make them more personable?), but it seems arbitrary and reaching to make the distinction since a human life intrinsically has value.
Also, a human baby doesn’t magically become a person when he or she starts kicking or hiccuping in the mother’s tummy. There is no objective reason to think that a baby (fetus, zygote, newborn) would magically change species or gain value based on its form or stage of development. I heard something like this said once: “Size, stage of development, time, and 8 inches down the birth canal do not change the humanness of a baby”.
In the 180 Movie available on YouTube (warning: some graphic images), there is a comparison made between Hitler’s Holocaust and what is happening in the U.S. (and other countries) because of abortion. Back then, Hitler felt that there were some things about the Jews that made them not fully human and thought it was justifiable to kill them off. People in the video were asked what they would do if they were forced by Nazi’s to kill helpless Jews and then were asked, in light of that, when it would be okay to kill an unborn child. The responses of the people in the video were rather surprising.
A significant foundation for my conception of human value is built on the idea that God values, and has given high value to, humankind, including those not born yet but that are still human (although in the womb). We can know this because:
- God created mankind in His image (imago dei). This unique creation of humanity, above all of the rest of the created things, tells us that God has a special relationship with humans and values them deeply: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27, all Scripture, unless noted otherwise, is from the ESV).
- God knows and cares about human life before He forms a person in the womb and before birth: “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you…” (Jeremiah 1:5).
- God is directly involved in fetal development, intricately forming the child. This gives us an explanation for the miracle of the creation of human life in the moment of conception: “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” (Psalm 139: 13-16).
- Children are a gift, a blessing from the Lord: “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward” (Psalm 127:3).
I believe that it is morally wrong to kill an innocent human being with no significantly justifiable reason. In other words, these passages mean something significant to me:
- “You shall not murder” (Exodus 20:13)
- “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image” (Genesis 9:6)
- “If men struggle with each other and strike a woman with child so that she gives birth prematurely, yet there is no injury, he shall surely be fined as the woman’s husband may demand of him, and he shall pay as the judges decide. But if there is any further injury, then you shall appoint as a penalty life for life…” (Exodus 21:22-23, NASB)
And when it comes to abortion (almost always meaning elective abortion or the choice to kill an unborn child aka: “abortion on demand”), I do not see this “choice” as a significantly justifiable reason to kill a child. Why? Well, to name a few reasons:
- Almost every pregnancy occurs due to consensual intercourse.
- Although rape (and incest) are very traumatizing and difficult situations, the child simply does not deserve to be punished for the crime’s of their parent.
- It is hypocritical, taking the future rights of a baby boy or girl (future man or woman) via killing them.
- There are other options! (Adoption Agencies, Pregnancy Centers, etc.)
- Even if a child will likely have a disability, they still have a right to continue living. Also, I’ve heard many stories where these children were born and turned out perfectly fine! Even if they were born with a disability, many of these children have loving families who care for them and they are a blessing to their families.
- The child does feel the pain of being ripped apart or burned alive by chemicals during an abortion. There is video evidence of ultrasounds used during abortions that show the child writhing in pain while trying to avoid the surgical instrument that is ripping them apart. If you don’t believe this, then do some serious research on the subject for yourself!
- The child has not committed any action deserving of execution.
- The child has a Constitutional right to life.
- The child is not a parasite to be “lopped off”, but rather a uniquely created child who needs the care of a mother to continue living through pregnancy.
- The child is both the mother and father’s child and thus, they both bear responsibility to care for their child to which the Bible says: “But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever” (1 Timothy 5:8). Men need to step up and be responsible for their actions!
I believe that people possess the ability to choose what they do or do not do. However, what they choose to do in itself may or may not actually be a good thing to do, especially in regards to this issue. And if choosing to have an abortion is in fact morally wrong, based on the premise that the unborn are indeed human, then there is no real justification for it.
Furthermore, because (scientifically speaking) an unborn human life, with all of its unique genetic coding and faculties, begins at the moment of conception, they retain every right to life that should be protected for a 25 year old adult, 2 year old child, or 1 hour old infant. It is not enough to say that the child, because it is not able to consciously interact with its environment or fend for itself, is not worthy of protection from abortion.
It is arguable that children cannot consciously (or at least with memory and meaningfulness) interact with their environment until after several months, if not a year or so, of growth and development. So, would it be “okay” to kill a child who would be say, a year old? No! A minute old (post-birth)? No! The same logic applies to the unborn. The only significant differences here between a fetus and grown adult are time, location, cognitive ability, and stage of development. Notice that none of these factors take away from the value of a human life. Just like we wouldn’t say an infant has “less value” than his or her mother. The mother may be able to do more at her stage of life, but she once was also helpless in her mother’s womb. These developmental factors are necessities of life, not measurements for intrinsic value…
The Tragedy of Abortion Culture
I want to acknowledge that what some women have to deal with in regards to sexual abuse is horrific and traumatizing and I fully desire that they get all of the help that they need. I have met women who have had abortions, even because of rape, and they made sure to note that their abortion only added to their grief and suffering in life. If you are a victim of the abortion industry, someone forced you to have an abortion, you are struggling with regret from your abortion, or you are considering having one, then please know that there are resources out there! There is also healing and forgiveness in the Lord: “He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds” (Psalm 147:3, NASB).
Honestly, a major undercurrent of this issue is that most people just want to have sex, without any marital commitment, with no limits, and they end up with the consequence of what sex was designed for. Except, this leaves them void of the sacred covenantal love of marriage that the consequence was designed to be a part of. In this situation, no matter how “difficult” the circumstances (the parents are very young, money is scarce, one parent is not supportive, etc.), should a helpless baby be killed for the preferences or irresponsible actions of their parents? I know this is not always the exact case, but my goodness…. when adoption is the better option, why not allow the child to have the chance at a home and a family who will care for them!?
I will add that the Church needs to improve on offering these men & women resources. Is there someone in your church community that is willing to adopt a child from a woman considering abortion? Maybe your church can do something with that! Or maybe you could collect diapers, clothes, & other supplies or offer to cover certain expenses for these men & women who feel that they will struggle to raise a family due to finances. I would also recommend networking with a local pregnancy center to find out ways that your church can partner with them.
The truth of the matter is that because of abortion clinics like Planned Parenthood, there have been over 61 million “legal” abortions since Roe v. Wade in 1973… 61,000,000+… One source indicates that a more accurate number, which includes chemical abortions and other methods, falls somewhere around 308 million…
If the unborn are indeed human, then what does that mean for us? Have we committed one of the greatest atrocities in history as a nation? What will history think of us? I am considerably confident that I know what God thinks of this. The death toll is far higher than any deaths in any war that the U.S. has been involved in… God have mercy on us.
I have to ask, if you’re at a place where you believe that abortion is a right, just please take a moment to ask yourself this:
What would it mean if I’m wrong… ?
And if you’re unsure about this issue, is it really worth the risk to not stand up for the unborn if they are really living, human, baby girls & boys? Is it really worth sticking to the party line on this one?
“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves,
for the rights of all who are destitute.
Speak up and judge fairly;
defend the rights of the poor and needy” (Proverbs 31:8-10, NIV)
Planned Parenthood, which makes most of its money on abortion, was founded by Margaret Sanger, who said this among other things:
“We don’t want the word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population…”
— Letter to Dr. Clarence J. Gamble, December 10, 1939, p. 2
If you want to be educated on what Planned Parenthood is really like, then I encourage you, even if you disagree, to check out the new movie Unplanned. It is a powerful telling of Abby Johnson’s story, a former leader within Planned Parenthood, and why she left the abortion industry. It also opens up discussion on important issues about the topic.
10 thoughts on “My Thoughts on Abortion”
Note: 61 million surgical abortion procedures. This number doesn’t take into account the number of chemically induced abortions, which a pro-life pharmacist organization estimates to be about 250 million since Roe v. Wade. That brings the total to 310 million, nearly the entire current population of the U.S. In 50 years, we’ve managed to cut our population in half, at a point when our birth rates have plummeted below sustainable levels. We are literally killing our entire country slowly.
I forgot to include: Pharmacists for Life International. That’s the organization I referred to, and their site pfli.org estimates 308 million killed since Roe v. Wade.
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Thank you for sharing! I forgot about those statistics. I’ll consider including them after checking out that page!
You’re welcome. The importance of the true number can’t be understated.
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I think the key to a woman’s freedom is the right to abortion. If we take that choice away from her, then she can never be equal and we accept a vicious circle of suffering. We know from other countries where abortion is illegal, that abortions are still performed, but in dangerous ways. God wants us to choose freely, so this choice should be made individually by every woman without fear of being judged. I’ve also written on it recently. It’s my latest blog post.
Hi, thank you for visiting and contributing to the conversation, I greatly appreciate it! I do have a few questions for you in response to your comment (I’m listing them out to help organize my thought process):
1) Were you able to read my article in full? There are some points there that deal with some of the issues you brought up.
2) Do you believe that unborn children in the womb are human and thus, have value and a right to life? The foundation of the issue surrounds that question. If they are (as science indicates among other things), then we have a serious question of moral problem regarding the abortion issue. Especially considering the number of abortions apparently exceeds 308 million since Roe v. Wade (that’s including chemical abortions and other means). I challenge everyone who cares about these issues to consider the question honestly; “what would it mean if I’m wrong about this”?
3) If the unborn are human, would you still believe that the problem is not allowing women to “choose” to kill their unborn children? It seems like the “women’s choice” argument mainly serves to distract people from the real issue. I believe women are free to do a whole lot of things! Although, while people are free to do many things, this does not mean that they are free to harm or kill other people in the name of “choice”. That action would be considered evil, not good.
For instance, if someone like Hitler thinks a certain people group (i.e. the Jews) are subhuman or not as valuable and that it would be more convenient for his goals, financial stability, etc. to kill them off, then would we protect his right to choose? No way, right!?
4) If the unborn child is a baby boy or girl (with value & a right to life), then why would taking their life, when typically the mother has freely chosen to have sex which caused that new individual human life to form, be a choice? The issue is less about freedom and more about whether aborting a child is morally wrong. If so, then why should we cherish someone’s right to end an innocent human life?
And if there is an issue about freedom here, wouldn’t it be the suppression of the freedom of millions of little girls (and boys) who’ve been aborted that now will not be able to exercise that freedom rather than the mother’s freedom?
5) And lastly, what evidence do you have that would suggest that God “wants us to choose freely” regarding abortion? Especially when, or if, that choice is not good & morally wrong? It is significant to note here that God’s Word says the following:
– “You shall not murder” (Exodus 20:13)
– “If men struggle with each other and strike a woman with child so that she gives birth prematurely, yet there is no injury, he shall surely be fined as the woman’s husband may demand of him, and he shall pay as the judges decide. But if there is any further injury, then you shall appoint as a penalty life for life” (Exodus 21:22-23)
– “Behold, children are a gift of the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward” (Psalm 127:3)
Hi Jake, I did read the whole article, but I don’t agree with the comparisons you make. Can I refer to my article for you to understand my perspective better? It’s here https://purplenoiz.com/2019/04/13/abortion-is-it-about-protecting-those-poor-souls-who-dont-have-a-voice-or-is-it-patriarchy/
2) There is a moral issue, but every woman needs to solve that on her own for herself. I am against limiting a woman’s freedom of choice. Whether I’d abort or not is my issue.
3) Saying that the foetus is human, doesn’t mean they are like an existing human being. I really don’t like that you bring Hitler in here. Hitler killed a lot of human beings who were alive and had ties to this world. They had family and friends and as such can be mourned. So by killing them, Hitler created a lot of suffering. He made the conscious human beings suffer by torturing and killing them, and he made society as a whole suffer. A foetus is an idea of a human being. They don’t exist yet, they don’t have a LIFE. So, I don’t agree that aborting a foetus creates the atrocity you think it creates. And I think a woman’s right to live and choose weighs heavier, because if we take that away from her, again you create a vicious circle of suffering.
4) You can’t suppress someone who doesn’t exist. You’re assigning rights to human life which isn’t a human being yet. So no, as long as you don’t exist you can’t have the same rights as someone who does exist. Just because a foetus has the potential of becoming a human being, doesn’t mean they already deserve to be treated like one.
5) To me it’s simple. Yes, those rules exist, but the human is defined by their free will. So the only judgement that can be made is by God himself. We should not judge women for getting an abortion. So, we shouldn’t criminalise it. Your next question will be: why is committing murder a crime then? Our society is build to make sure humans can coexist. By killing an actual, existing human being we create suffering and anger and a million other bad things that will effect the coexistence of humans in a negative way. Our society would not be able to exist. That’s why there is this law. It really has nothing to do with God.
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Please forgive me for my delay in responding. I was going to reply to you much sooner but there were some things that demanded my attention over the past month, causing me to take a short break from my blog.
To pick up where we left off, I had read your post on the abortion issue. And after looking at your response to my questions, I wanted to make some observations and ask some follow up questions. Again, I don’t mean to appear condescending in any way by numbering my points, but I feel that it helps to organize my thoughts and maintain the flow of the conversation.
1) You defined the fetal stage of development as follows: “A foetus is an idea of a human being. They don’t exist yet, they don’t have a LIFE”, “You can’t suppress someone who doesn’t exist. You’re assigning rights to human life which isn’t a human being yet”, and “a foetus has the potential of becoming a human being”. If a fetus is only an idea of a human being, not alive, and a potential human being, then why would the evidence suggest that science, God, and logic disagree with you on each of those points? Quite literally, the scientific community alone acknowledges that the unborn are not only each individual human beings, but alive! If there was no “life” present within the fetus, he/she would not even begin or continue to grow. Also, a human fetus clearly does exist, or it would not be a growing uniquely human fetus, DNA and all. This matter of whether the unborn child is human and thus has a life worthy of protection IS the crux of the issue.
When would you say is the point where a non-human fetus would suddenly completely change its genetic coding and become a human? I would argue that not only is that sort of “change” simply improbable, but quite frankly, it would be absurd! An organism, or to use the pro-choice term “clump of cells”, doesn’t suddenly become or turn into a human by traveling 8 inches down the birth canal. Nor would he/she earn their humanness by meeting an invisible standard based on which organs they have or the time surpassed within the womb.
2) If the unborn are indeed human beings, with the only major differences between fully grown, infant, and elderly humans and the unborn being size, level of development, intelligence, and dependency, then they each hold value and are worthy of our protection. And given that literally millions of defenseless, living, and feeling (future) women and men have been killed in abortion, I would challenge you with this statement: “How can you claim to be for women’s rights, if you’re looking to restrict a woman’s freedom? How can restricting a person’s freedom ever be called feminist? How does that go hand in hand?”… This is a statement that you made in your article (to those reading this the link is in the previous comment). You may object here to point out that you were talking about grown women. Yes, you were. BUT every grown woman, like yourself, was once a female fetus. Fetal development is a NECESSARY stage of our human development, changing nothing about our humanness.
Therefore, when you advocate for a woman’s freedom to have an abortion, what people with my perspective see is someone taking away a little baby girl or boy’s life, often for the sake of convenience and due to consensual sexual choices which caused the child’s life to begin in the first place. And by doing so, they take away that child’s constitutional right to life, their right to choose (which would come with a little time), their future hopes and dreams, the love that they would share with their family and friends, the potential impact that they would have on our society for good, and the support of organizations that sanction and perform such heinous acts. And to add to this, mother’s and father’s are often hurt after the abortion of their child whether it be emotional with grief or physical and psychological injury to the mother with effects from the procedure or PTSD. Iv’e heard from several women who have had abortions, even in the “hard” cases, and deeply regret it even years later. I understand that people with your perspective do not necessarily believe that this is what is occurring or desire that harm come to anyone and thus, I do not assume that you have such an intent.
3) You base a lot of your views on the premise that a fetus is not a human being and then build on that with a maxim of absolute autonomy that essentially trumps any need for moral accountability. But, in all honesty, what would it mean to you if you found out that you actually are wrong about the humanity of an unborn child? What are the stakes if you and others who champion abortion on demand for the sake of “choice” are wrong? What if the 310 million abortions and counting (including chemical) in our country have actually been the sanctioned killing of innocent unborn human children… ? What if you are in support of big corporations, such as Planned Parenthood, that actually make their money off of killing children? If you found out that unborn fetus’ are actually human beings, then would it change your mind?
Look, I’ve read your article and I know you also care about helping women financially etc.
But what I usually find shocking when talking to pro-lifers is this: They are essentially pro-birthers. It’s not about offering the foetus a human life which includes a right to healthcare, education and housing. It’s about the right to be thrown in this world no matter what the situation of the mother is. Was she raped? Will having a child push her into poverty? (And make no mistake here, you say ‘abortion out of convenience’ (how dare you being so judgemental!), most women do not take this decision lightly and they literally make that decision because they are being left alone with the financial responsibility.) Would it not be easier to solve this by offering free and accessible contraception? To offer the woman financial support to consider raising a child and give her an actual choice? You literally said that when you think of the freedom of choice you think of the potential life was taken. Why do you not consider the consequences of the choice to keep that life within the limitations the situation of a woman holds? Single parent? Financially? Can’t afford prenatal care?
Why do you think the state should interfere in this matter by policing and punishing women? Texas is considering the death penalty for women who get abortions! It can’t get any more hypocritical than this. Pro-life?! Really?
We are not debating whether I am for or against abortions. I am for choice. Every woman must have the right to choose what to do with her own body. What I am saying is this: I will not ever make this choice for any other woman, and none of us should take that choice away from her!
You choosing to protect unborn children, is pushing for more social injustice, injustice towards women and more so towards women of colour because they find themselves in financially dire situations more often. They have even less privileges, and you are actively advocating for taking away from the little they have already.
Of course, there are women who regret abortions, but there are also women who do not regret it and think of it as the right decision for themselves in the specific situation they were in. So how is that an argument?
As long as the society we live in punishes the choice of having a baby by making you poor and more vulnerable, how is it even a fair choice? How can you feel comfortable with advocating for limiting that choice even more?
It’s not just a debate about whether a foetus should have the same rights as an actual human being. There is so much more to this debate!