Christian and Pro-Choice … WHAT???

I’m a Christian and I’m pro-choice.  Don’t misunderstand me … I am not pro-abortion – I am pro-choice.  I believe that women have the right to choose when it comes to abortion and therefore I believe that abortion should be legal and safe for those who choose to have an abortion.

Now many will say that I can’t be a Christian and pro-choice.  They will say that the two are incompatible.  They will say that scripture does not support a pro-choice position.   The truth is that scripture has nothing to say about abortion specifically.

The closest scripture comes to addressing abortion is when it speaks of a miscarriage and that is only in the Old Testament. There, the ancient Jews did not treat miscarried fetuses as human beings.

For example, Job 3:16 refers to “like a miscarriage which is discarded,” indicating that a miscarried fetus is not given a proper burial, as would have been necessary for a human being.  And in Exodus 21:22-25 we read about the consequences to someone who assaults a woman and causes her to miscarry. If the woman is relatively unscathed the only payment is money.  However, if the woman is hurt in the process, the payment is an equal injury on the assailant.  Clearly here, the woman’s life is valued much more highly than the life of her fetus. This scripture appears to indicate that true injury occurs when the woman herself is hurt.  AND – it is interesting to note that Jesus didn’t say anything about abortion even though it was a common practice in his day.

Again – don’t misunderstand me … I don’t believe that the scriptures mentioned support abortion.  I am just saying that they are as close as it gets when it comes to scripture addressing abortion specifically.  I actually think that the silence on the issue speaks much more loudly.

26 thoughts on “Christian and Pro-Choice … WHAT???

  1. David

    Grace, no way! Do you realize that, if you recognize a wrong being done, and don’t do something to try and stop it, that you commit a mortal sin, just by not doing anything?? Truly, we must change hearts, for whether it’s legal or not, people who’s hearts aren’t changed will still try to get the procedure done. It’s never ok for us to do nothing. We may not be able to do much, but remember that Jesus can work with very little. Just look what he did with 5 small loaves, and two fishes.

    I don’t see that many pro-choice people are out to reduce the number of abortions. It seems to me their willing to allow the immorality of pre-marital sex and sex outside of marriage (sex just for pleasure), and having this “safety net” of aborting an inconvenient pregnancy. If pro-choicers could show that the acts that led to the pregnancy were part of the problem, maybe we could get somewhere.

    Reply
    1. gracerules Post author

      David – I’ve been thinking about what you said. I agree … if we recognize a wrong being done and do nothing then you are doing wrong… that is why I had to write this post. I think it is wrong to take away a woman’s choice when it comes to abortion.

      Reply
      1. David

        I’m glad you’re thinking…:)

        What about God’s rights? Being our creator, don’t we enfringe on his by doing what we wish rather than his will? Especially if you believe that you can’t take your next breath without God willing it?

        Reply
  2. gracerules Post author

    David, I wanted to get back to the discussion about abortion not being mentioned in OT/NT times. I think you are correct that Jewish people generally did not support abortion unless the mother’s life was at risk or the other children’s life was considered to be endangered although the Talmud states that a fetus is not legally a person until it is delivered and that position is directly associated with Exodus 21:22-25 that we discussed earlier – so I still find the silence about abortion to be significant — plus we have to consider that Paul in speaking to the gentiles never mentions abortion.

    I am not sure how or when they determined that they were pregnant – I’m assuming they had their ways between keeping track of menstrual cycles and recognizing symptoms but even back in the 300s BCE Aristotle came up with the delayed ensoulment theory (male fetuses didn’t have a soul until 40 days and female fetuses at 90 days) which led to the acceptance of abortion being acceptable in the first trimester … my point is that the Jewish people in the NT times would not have been ignorant about these matters so your dismissal about the silence doesn’t really match up with the facts.

    With those things in mind (Exodus 21:22-25, abortion being practiced during Bible times and the silence in the NT on abortion) I think that Christians are discredited when they insist the Bible is clear on this issue.

    I can certainly see why you draw the conclusions that you do but I can also see how someone can disagree with you and be a legitimate student of scripture and follower of Jesus Christ. My appeal to you is for you to uphold your belief for yourself with conviction but admit that there is not enough evidence to know for sure.

    This comment is getting longer than my original post but let me add that I believe that scripture is clear that murder is wrong but I do not find scripture to be clear about when life begins particularly in light of Job 3:16 and Exodus 21:22-25 (those scriptures are not specifically about abortion but they are closer to addressing the issue than any other) and so I don’t believe that scripture is clear that abortion is murder and therefore wrong.

    Reply
    1. David

      Actually, Jews were pretty silent about abortion practices, suggesting that it may have been going on around them, but not among them. Aristotle wasn’t known in the Judeo-Christian world until the middle ages. Again, my point was “among Jews and Christians”. Greeks, Romans, Persians, and so on were very possibly performing them, but not Jews and Christians, because of their reverence for life. The Bible is silent because it is stated very clearly “You shall not murder”. And again, I can point to the writings of the early Church which are not canonical, which tended to deal with Greeks and Romans, which spoke of the topic straight away. If Jesus had been truly silent on the subject, the early church would not have been so volcal. Remember where John, at the end of his gospel, says that everything that Jesus did in his life has not been written, but all the books in the world could not contain it?

      The point about abortion being murder; what is it inside the mother? It’s alive. It’s a life. Murder is taking an innocent life.

      Also, remember, I said that it’s better for us to change the heart of the person considering abortion, or the person supporting abortion. If someone is backed against the wall, you can throw all the Bibles you want at her, and she will not budge, in fact will probably be hurt worse. If you try to hold her hand, though, and talk with her about it, offer an alternative, you might help save a life. God bless!

      Reply
      1. gracerules Post author

        David, If you believe it is better to change the heart of a person rather than trying to compel them to do something by quoting scripture would you also agree that it would also be better not to keep trying to make abortion illegal? After all, do you really believe it will ever be made illegal? and doesn’t that type of action take up a lot of time, energy and efforts that could be better spent? and wouldn’t that eliminate the divide between many prolifer and prochoice ppl because the many prochoice people would love to reduce the number of abortions?

        Reply
  3. Scott Wilder

    I think you’re right and accurate to write that the bible has little specifically to say about abortion. But I do think that the bible has much to say about how highly God regards His created works.

    Pro-life / Pro-choice is a political discussion.

    A spiritual discussion would be what can we, God’s people, do to serve a woman or couple who feel backed into a corner and see little recourse except to abort a baby? Or how can we serve that same woman or couple if they’ve gone through with an abortion?

    I’ve found very few people interested in having that discussion.

    Reply
    1. David

      Scott, you are absolutely right. One thing we Catholics believe is that decisions made under duress are not mortal sins, so any woman who honestly feels backed into a corner with no other way out is absolved. Secondly, yes, we should be serving these folks and treating them with dignity. Once the deed is done, it’s done. We need to help them move past that, encouraging them not to make the same mistake again, but showing them different alternatives.

      Stopping abortions is really about changing hearts, and you don’t do that by yelling at people outside of the clinic. When someone is in trouble, any kind of trouble, we should take their hand and try to help them out of it.

      Reply
    2. gracerules Post author

      Scott, I agree with you and believe the only just way to participate in reducing abortions is through loving service to those you mention. Like you, I don’t find that many people want to go to that much trouble.

      Reply
    1. David

      Actually, Grace, sex outside of marriage is wrong. We should really start there. Marriage without the openness to accept new life into the family is also wrong. Birth control, in many forms, actually commits abortion, because some forms make the uterus unfriendly to the fertilized egg. These are definitely wrong. But all BC is wrong because it thwarts from God’s will

      Reply
      1. gracerules Post author

        Sex outside of marriage – that’s a whole other discussion. And wow – now you are saying that it is wrong to be married and not have children if you can…that’s really stretching things imo.

        Reply
      2. David

        “Openness to accept new life” does not mean that you have to have children, not by any stretch. When you marry someone, you are giving yourself 100% to the other person. If you contracept, you are not living up to your vow, even if you agree together to contracept. There are very efficient ways, known as Natural Family Planning, which allow you to keep track of yourself and not thwart God’s plan for you. It’s not your mom’s “rhythm method”, either. When used right, NFP is as effective as contraception.

        Reply
    1. gracerules Post author

      Jarred – thanks for stopping by – yeah, I’m not really surprised either…but I do think this is a discussion worth having. I think it takes away credibility from Christians and even scripture when people insist that scripture says something clearly when it clearly doesn’t. I don’t have a problem with Joey using Psalm 139 as a foundation for his belief but I do resent him insinuating that Psalm 139 clearly states that abortion is wrong. Scripture obviously doesn’t address abortion specifically even though it was common during Old and New Testament time and was supported by some then and opposed by some then. I find it strange that the New Testament addresses many things specifically but not abortion. Again – I think it is a serious matter but I don’t find that scripture says anything that should lead us to believe that we should make it illegal.

      Reply
      1. joey g

        Psalm 139 is not the foundation for my belief that abortion is wrong. My foundation for that is Exodus 20:13 (New International Version) You shall not murder. And then followed by Exodus 14 “You shall not commit adultery.” which often accompanies the desire to get an abortion. My reference to Psalm 139 (and to Jesus and John in the womb) was to recognize that life has already begun. Abortion, then, falls in the category of murder. And the Bible is very clear about that.

        I have already ceded to you that in the end, every choice is up to each individual. Accepting God’s gift of salvation is a choice to be made. Buying or stealing your food is a choice to be made. Some choices are legal, some are not. Some are beneficial, some are not. God is the one who gave us this freedom in granting us free will. Being against abortion does not mean that I am against choices. I enjoy my freedom. But not all of the choices that I get to choose from are legal. Just the same for you.

        The greatest commandment is to love the Lord your God with all of you heart. Next is to love your neighbor as you love yourself. Why not love your child, even in utero?

        Reply
  4. HaywoodStubble

    Interesting that I saw this tweet out of the kazillion that pass by each day. I am walking through the book of Proverbs in my devotional blog and am about to touch upon Proverbs 6:16-17, which says:

    “there are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him, haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood…”

    A growing baby in the mother’s womb is about as innocent as you can get. A close second is the elderly. If we’re not doing our utmost to protect those two classes of people in our society (any society, really), we’re doomed because it speaks volumes of our moral character.

    Reply
    1. gracerules Post author

      I respect your right to believe abortion is wrong but I find no evidence that you are called to deny people the right to choose for themselves.

      Reply
  5. joey g

    It is fantastic that you are loving and accepting. We all should be. Especially to non-Christian women who have had abortions. We definitely need to be loving and forgiving, but should definitely not be encouraging them to have more.

    Deuteronomy 30 puts it like this:
    19 This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live 20 and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

    Choose life is what it says. If you would like something in the New Testament, look at the the reaction of John the Baptist to Jesus when they are both still in the womb (Luke 1:41-43). That is a pretty clear interpretation that both are alive, even if still in utero. As is the announcement to both Mary and Joseph that she will carry our Savior. It does not say, he will become our Savior once he is born.

    Matthew 1
    22All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23″The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”[d]—which means, “God with us.”

    “The virgin will be filled with child”, not “the virgin will be filled with fetus”

    I am trying to put this as gently as I can but I strongly urge you to reconsider your view, especially as a proclaiming Christian. All choices are available to you, but not all choices are good for you. The biggest reasons I could think of for a Christian wanting an abortion are: embarrassment of such a constant visual for sex outside of marriage; or thinking that you (general you) cannot properly care for the child. If it is for the first reason, it indicates a thought that God is not big enough to forgive. If it is for the second reason, it indicates a thought that God is not big enough to provide. Most people struggle with both at some point in time. Hopefully, just not long enough to execute their own. God bless.

    Reply
    1. gracerules Post author

      Joey – I am not encouraging anyone to have an abortion and if I was involved with someone seeking abortion I would certainly want to help them examine any and all possible ways to avoid abortion but in the end it would be that woman’s choice. I believe that each woman should be able to choose for herself.

      Reply
      1. joey g

        In the end, it is indeed the woman’s choice. We all make choices at pretty much every moment we are living. You made the choice to write on this topic. I made the choice to respond. We choose to: eat, what to eat, when to eat; to get up, sit down, lay down; watch tv, change the channel; go to work, what profession to pursue, to work hard, to slack off; to call our moms, to send flowers; to park close to the store, to park far, to buy healthy, to buy tasty, to check for broken eggs; on and on and on.

        I encourage you to read the works of Paul. 1 Thessolonians 4-5 would be a good start. They talk about living pure and self-controlled. The tough questions of abortion come mainly because of rape and incest, but that is not the most common reason for abortion. The most common reason is lust and a lack of self-control. I myself struggle with self-control but I don’t try and justify it and say that I am right when I err. I pray and try to change. Paul also says that all choices are open to us, but not all choices are beneficial to us. Look to Adam and Eve, they were told not to eat from the one tree. They had the choice to eat or not. They chose to eat. An option? Yes. The right option? No.

        As to God’s thoughts on when life begins:

        Psalm 139:13-16 (New International Version)
        13 For you created my inmost being;
        you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
        14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
        your works are wonderful,
        I know that full well.
        15 My frame was not hidden from you
        when I was made in the secret place.
        When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,
        16 your eyes saw my unformed body.
        All the days ordained for me
        were written in your book
        before one of them came to be.

        God bless.

        Reply
  6. David

    This is what happens when lay people try to interpret the Bible by themselves. The meaning gets perverted.

    What part of the commandment not to murder do you think says that it’s a woman’s right to choose to take the life of her unborn child? For Exodus 21:22-25 shows that it’s life inside the womb, and if that life is taken, the husband has the right to take the life of the one who killed the baby.

    The fact is that abortion is not mentioned very much in the Bible because it was not something that was done by the Jewish people. Christians had to deal more with it, because the religion spread into pagan Roman Empire, where abortion and infanticide were more common. But the early Church had lots to say against it: http://www.catholic.com/library/Abortion.asp

    Reply
    1. gracerules Post author

      David – actually you are wrong – abortion was very common during old and new testament times and it is strange that many horrible acts are condemned in scripture but not abortion.

      I don’t misunderstand any part of the commandment “not to murder” but if we read scripture there is no indication that a fetus was considered equal to a human being so I don’t know that we can say we have any proof that abortion is condemned in scripture.

      My main point is that it is not as black and white as I have been taught in the church.

      I respect your right to believe abortion is wrong but I think you are going too far wanting to take away people’s choice. Even Paul neglected to list abortion in his list of vices. Abortion is not to be taken lightly but it does not appear to be condemned in scripture.

      Reply
      1. David

        Not among Jews and Christians, it wasn’t. Ancient Jews didn’t even usually know when they conceived, how could they even consider when there was life there?

        Lastly, do you know that it is a sin to give someone permission to commit sin? I’m not going to approve anyone having an abortion-if I encourage it, or allow it, that condemns my soul. Actually, Paul neglected to mention abortion, because he had already said that fornication itself was a sin, so any of the effects of fornication are sinful.

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      2. Rebecca

        The most important thing we need to remember is that the WORD of GOD says that God knew us in the womb. There is even a scripture that says that John the Baptist leaped in his Mommy’s tummy when Mary showed up and she was pregnant with baby Jesus. I think these scriptures are very important. I also think that if peole truly understood the miracle of conception in the first place and what all happens in this process their views would change very quickly. God is a God of trulh and righteousness and HE is a holy God but HE does offer grace for any sin that is repented of and I would never want to leave a person condemned if abortion was their choice. I do think it is important for us all to understand that the Bible is very clear on just how important the unborn child is to our Father in Heaven. If HE did indeed know us in the womb then it is important to understand that we are life as an embryo, especially to God. Even spilling the seed before it had the chance to reproduce was considered sin in the Old Testament. I think that is also very important. To minimize the quality of life for one person in order for the other seems sort of Hitler like to me. I do not support pro-choice at all. I cannot and will not go there with anyone who thinks that God does not have a hand in this miracle of conception. But I will also not stand on a soap box and say that God does not forgive those who have made this choice because they did not understand the part that God had in the unborn child’s life in the first place. Ignorance is a very dangerous thing and it can ruin, destroy, kill, steal, and manipulate the WORD of GOD. We must stand strong against abortion and if for no other reason because God is a righteous God and I think the scriptures are clear as to HIS HOLINESS. LIFE is given by God and for God. If we choose to take an unborn child we have made a choice to interfere with God’s plan. NO ONE HAS THAT RIGHT! And I will asure you that abortion was not and is still not practiced in the JEWISH LAWS. You must remember that Jesus Christ was JEWISH and that sort of thing then, was not a subject even discussed. I have researched this and researched this and abortion is still not a practice in the JEWISH LAWS. Please DO NOT say things you are very unaware of and in fact they did not even practice abortion The first recorded abotions were in China. Both elective and therapeutic abotions. It took place within the royal concubines and they only terminated female fetuses. So please do not say that they practiced abortion among the JEWS. It was a life for a life then and they were very serious. The scripture you provided left out that even if the woman was not harmed and the baby was miscarried the life of the one that brought the harm would be killed as well. Make sure you really study the WORD of GOD before trying to interpret our HOLY FATHER’S intent. HE is not a God that will be mocked and HE will not put up with this sort of thing FOREVER. The scripture says HE is long suffering but HIS longsuffering will end and then ALL who chose to speak on HIS behalf will stand before a HOLY GOD and give account for misguiding HIS word.

        Reply

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