Christian's Belief in the 'Sanctity of Human Life' and Abortion
Explain what Christians believe about the ‘sanctity of human life’ and
especially their responsibility for those at the beginning and those
at the end of life. Use Bible passages and the Christian Church
teaching to support your answer.
The definition of abortion is the deliberate termination of a human
pregnancy, the natural expulsion of a foetus from the womb before it
is able to survive independently. In 1967 abortion was made legal in
the United Kingdom. Since the abortion act was passed the number of
abortions per year has increased from over twenty three thousand in
1968 to one hundred and eighty six thousand in 2001 (23,641-186,274).
This year in the in the UK only there were over 200,000 abortions.
That’s about 547 abortions a day just in the UK. Since the abortion
act passed the number of 16-24 year olds having an abortion has
dramatically increased by 5%. But most the abortions in 2005 come from
25-34 year olds. Over 35% all abortions in the UK come this age group.
The 1967 Abortion does not give the right of the woman to an abortion
but protects from prosecution a doctor who performs one. If two
doctors certify that in their opinion, formed of good faith, should be
carried out. Two reasons why an abortion might be legal is risk of
injury to the physical or mental health of the mother greater than if
the pregnancy was terminated. Risk to injury to the physical or mental
health of existing (i.e. born) children.
Many Christians believe in the sacredness of life. The word sacred
means holy and deserving respect. Therefore sacredness of life means
life should be respected, as all life is holy and connected with God.
Also considered to be too holy to be changed. And that life should be
dedicated to God. This gives Christians a distinctive worldview. This
is also a very distinctive outlook on life. This still applies to
those nearing the end of their lives and is based on the bible.
Christians are equally committed to caring for those people whose
lives are diminishing by ill health or old age. The Catechism of the
church states that ‘those whose lives are weakened deserve better
respect. Sick or handicapped persons should be helped, to lead lives
as normal as possible’. It is in this context that the issue of
Euthanasia. The word Euthanasia comes from the Greek words of eu-good
and thantos-death. The sacredness of life is portrayed in many bible
passages Exodus 20:13 ‘You shall not murder’. Also proverbs 21-44
believe in preserving and supporting life. In the New Testament Jesus
demonstrates compassion & concern for those who are dying. Jesus also
portrays compassion for threatened groups Mark 10 groups like women,
children, poor and the blind. Corinthians 6:18-20 describes our bodies...