Issues of Life and Death: War and Abortion
I. Hawk? Dove? Pro-life? Pro-choice? What is the Highest Good?
A. Being Godlike, in charge of our lives, expressing our will, demanding our preferences is not a good thing, the oldest sin in the Book.
B. Being Christlike, submitting our will in faithfulness to the revealed will of the Father, in order to glorify Him (and us) is a good thing.
C. "we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." Not ends in themselves but means to greater good: glorifying God.
Similarly, virtue, wisdom, justice, love of our neighbor, are subordinate to the love of God with our heart, mind, soul, and bodily strength.
II. Murder is Bad, Justice and Obedience are Good
A. God commands us both not to kill (for personal vengeance/convenience (95-97%)/benefit) and to kill (for justice and defense)
Ex 20: 13 "You shall not murder. Dt 20:16 of the cities of these peoples which the LORD your God gives you as an inheritance, you shall let nothing that breathes remain alive 17 but you shall utterly destroy them: the Hittite and the Amorite and the Canaanite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite, just as the LORD your God has commanded you
Jer 5:5 "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations."
Psalm 51:6 "surely I have been a sinner from birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me."
Luke 1:41-44 when Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb...as the sound of your greeting reached my ears...
Ps 139:13 for you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb... All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." By 21 days, the first heartbeats have begun. At 45 days, brain waves can be detected. By the ninth and tenth weeks, the thyroid and adrenal glands are functioning. By 12 or 13 weeks, he has fingernails, sucks his thumb, recoils from pain, and has his own unique fingerprints. The only things that developing life needs to become what we are, are time and nurture. www.defendingtruth.org/content.asp
B. God forgives the guilt of our sin, but doesn’t always spare the consequences
1Jn 1:7 the blood of Jesus, his son, purifies us from all sin.
1Cor 6:9-11 "neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the spirit of our God."
Shelley Winters, while being interviewed on the Donahue show, suddenly blurted out that she had two abortions. "i am a very lonely woman," she confessed. "I would give up everything - my money, my academy awards, my career - if only i could have those children now." she broke into uncontrollable sobs while the audience responded with sympathetic applause and Donahue quickly switched to a commercial. Focus on Fam.
B. God holds us responsible for how we respond to both His commands and those in need
Pr 24:11Deliver those who are drawn toward death, And hold back those stumbling to the slaughter. 12 If you say, "Surely we did not know this," Does not He who weighs the hearts consider it? He who keeps your soul, does He not know it? And will He not render to each man according to his deeds? Pr 31:8,9 "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."
III. Everything should be done for the glory of God (primarily) & the benefit (highest good) of others & ourselves
A. Things done for prideful (to be our own lord, need-meeting outside of God) and/or selfish (at the expense of others) reasons are folly.
1Co 6:19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.
B. We have the right (responsibility) to choose: to obey God in faith - resulting in blessing, or to disobey in rebellion - resulting in cursing
Dt 30:19 ...I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live;
C. We need wisdom to determine what needs to address, and how (James 1:5-8)
IV. The Subjective Will of God can only be known if we are following the emphasized Objective Will of God (make repro disciples)
Gal 6:9And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith
Questions for Reflection/Discussion/Response:
1. Why do people tend to value life more than God does? Is the goal of life to be free from pain, avoid death, or something else?
2. How should a Christian respond when legally ordered to do something clearly unjust? That violates their conscience?
3. How does one balance the competing demands on one’s time and energy? Where does political activism fit with other responsibilities?
4. If life is not going to be used for God’s purposes, then for what purposes does it exist?