Faith Column: Defining life
This Sunday, January 19th, is Sanctity of Human Life Sunday – a time once a year when we pause to remember the legalization of abortion by the 1973 Supreme Court ruling in a case called Roe v. Wade. That decision created a division in the country: Are you “pro-choice” or “pro-life.”
Life is not defined by what a doctor, scientist, or an attorney say. They don’t have a philosophical basis for not killing babies or for defining the value and purpose of a human life. Science says a human being is only an evolved biochemical phenomenon and the law upholds that statement. Therefore, a baby, or adult, is only a complex collection of cells and is equally disposable.
That thinking denies thousands of years of worldwide knowledge of the spiritual side of reality; and the truth is, we can’t have it both ways – either all life is biochemical period, or something deeper and spiritual is part of all life. If a human life is only a biochemical phenomenon, then values are biochemical processes of the brain; therefore, all values are equal – they all have the same basis in the brain.
But if there is a spiritual component to human life, then there is a higher standard of value to which we can appeal, and the value of a human life is not based on human opinion. So, the real issue is what you believe. If we are created beings, then all values should be based on an understanding of the Creator.
The Bible tells us about the beginning of life on earth in Genesis 1. God created everything; verses 27 and 28 give tell us about the creation of human life: God created human beings in His own image … male and female He created them. God blessed them and God said to them, “Be fruitful, and multiply!” (NET translation)
Created in God’s image means created to be like Him.; God wants to be the Father of a huge loving family Everyone has a unique personality and character that reflects some aspect of God’s personality and character. Every individual has been created to fulfill a purpose in God’s plan for life on earth and in His kingdom. We also have the freedom to choose to love and respect Him and His plan for our lives, or to choose to go our own way but that choice has irrevocable consequences.
The Creator is the higher standard of value to Whom we can appeal. He alone has the right to determine how His creation is to be used. Genesis chapter 3 tells us the first people God created to have relationship with Him decided they would rather do the one thing He told them not to (God calls that sin). That one decision resulted in their banishment from the garden and caused a dramatic change in the way they could relate to God. Everyone after them has had to live with the consequences of their sinful choice and make our own decisions in our own day and time.
What we believe affects how we think. How we think determines what we do and say. If human beings are only an evolved biochemical phenomenon, the concept of a Creator becomes a superstition: something unseen and considered not to really exist. That frees everyone to do what seems right in his or her own eyes. But if the Creator is real, everyone will have to answer to Him for the way they spent the life He gave them. So give some thought to what you will say to Him if…or when…that time comes.
Victoria Van Couvering is the Executive Director of Hope Pregnancy Center in Craig.