by J. Randal Matheny
Some months ago, I began answering the questions to the compendium of a religious catechism. Following is yet another question and answer.
Question 471 of the compendium asks, “Why must society protect every embryo?”
Christians, more than pagans, have always valued human life, because they know that man, alone of all creatures, was created after God’s likeness.
“Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.’ So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:26-27 ESV).
Life cannot be measured in economic or social terms, but by its intrinsic worth in the eyes of God. Each individual is capable of sustaining a relationship with God, of receiving eternal life, and must therefore be considered as a worthy recipient of life and a deserving subject of preservation.
Since human life is precious, every effort should be made to preserve that process by which life comes to exist and is sustained. Not only the embryo, but the martial relationship, the exclusive sexual relationship between husband and wife, the integrity of the nuclear family and the worth of the individual, all are pieces of the whole in the Christian value of life.
Those who interfere with this sacred process of the beginning of life are guilty of shedding blood, and a nation’s laws should punish accordingly this heinous crime. Exodus 21:22-24 shows the divine perspective of life for life (Leviticus 24:17) against those who cause abortions. (Taking a life is so serious that the life of the killer must be taken: Genesis 9:5-6; Acts 25:11; Romans 13:4.) God demands such punishment for it belongs to the sovereign God who gives life (Genesis 2:7) to take it as well (1 Samuel 2:6).
Christians can expect, however, that societies and nations, led as they are by the ungodly, will refuse to respect the sanctity (special nature) of human life. When they can influence public policy, they will certainly want to weigh in for laws that protect human life before birth, as well as in favor of the weak: children, handicapped and the aged.
Together with the sanctity of human life, Christians will proclaim the necessity of chastity, virginity before marriage, faithfulness to one’s mate and the integrity of the marriage relationship.
God will judge those so-called Christians who vote more for their pocketbook than from their conscience, or those who aid and abet abortions. The blood of millions of aborted children cries from the American trashbins for justice. And justice they will receive, at the hands of the God who does not forget (Amos 8:7).
Biblical Answers to the Questions in a Religious Compendium.