Contraceptives, Abortion, and Infanticide

Birth Control Pills

Abortion has long been a hot topic in our society. Recently, contraceptives and infanticide have joined it. The issue over contraceptives started getting a lot of attention after a Georgetown law student testified before a Congressional committee to argue that others should pay for her contraceptives. Regarding infanticide, a pair of “ethicists” have argued recently that “after-birth abortions” are reasonable and acceptable in certain cases. What these three topics have in common – contraceptives, abortion, and infanticide – is that they all have to do with human reproduction.

When addressing these issues, it is important that we do so from a Biblical perspective. Below are two verses that are good to keep in mind as we begin to consider these things:

Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed, for in the image of God He made man” (Genesis 9:6).

Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth. How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them; they will not be ashamed when they speak with their enemies in the gate” (Psalm 127:3-5).

Man is made in the image of God. This certainly applied to the first man – Adam (Genesis 1:27) – but the verse above makes it clear that it applies to every individual that descended from Adam as well. The second passage reminds us of the fact that children are a blessing from God. Though many in our culture view children as a burden or a necessary evil, Christians are to have a different perspective and cherish each child.

Now to consider our three topics: contraceptives, abortion, and infanticide.

Contraceptives

Contraception refers to the various things that are used to prevent pregnancy. No Scriptural argument can be made that all forms of contraception are wrong in all cases. Therefore, they would fall under the realm of conscience, just as would be the case in regard to eating certain foods (cf. Romans 14:22-23), provided the contraceptives in question only prevent pregnancy. Some forms of birth control can also terminate pregnancy. This is another matter entirely.

However, contraceptives are often used as a “safety net” for those who engage in fornication. In David’s affair with Bathsheba, her pregnancy led to a lot of stress and poor, ungodly decisions – including David arranging to have her husband killed (2 Samuel 11:2-21). People today want to commit fornication, as David and Bathsheba did, but do not want to face any consequences. So they resort to contraception.

What they forget is that even if they eliminate all earthly consequences, there are still spiritual ones. Fornication and adultery are sins that will prevent one from inheriting the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9). God has provided a relationship in which sexual desires can be fulfilled – marriage (Hebrews 13:4). Therefore, we are to flee fornication (1 Corinthians 6:18). Using contraception to avoid pregnancy does not lessen the severity of the sin of fornication.

Abortion

For all the arguments made in favor of abortion, it all boils down to this – abortion ends a human life. It ends the life of one who was made in the image of God (Genesis 9:6) and has already been recognized by God. The Lord told Jeremiah, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I have appointed you a prophet to the nations” (Jeremiah 1:5). The psalmist wrote, “For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in Your book were all written the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them” (Psalm 139:13-16).

Pro-abortion advocates argue that a woman has a right to control her own body. In one sense this is true – she could choose to not get pregnant. It should be no surprise to her how she becomes pregnant – it has been happening the same way since the beginning with Adam and Eve (Genesis 4:1). The choice she made was to engage in the behavior that causes the pregnancy. However, the child in the womb is not part of her body, it is its own body – one who is made in the image of God.

Why do abortions happen? There could be several possible reasons:

  • Abortion could be done as a matter of convenience. This is quite often the case in our society. A mother believes a child will cause her to have to sacrifice time, money, friends, career, etc. – it would be too much of an inconvenience. This type of attitude shows one to be arrogant and self-centered – the opposite of what we should be as Christians (Philippians 2:3-4) – and without natural affection (Romans 1:31).
  • Abortion is often promoted, defended, legalized, and funded by those who wish to gain some political advantage and put (or keep) themselves in positions of power. God planned to punish the sons of Ammon because “they ripped open the pregnant women of Gilead in order to enlarge their borders” (Amos 1:13). Though the Ammonites were aborting these babies themselves and those who defend abortion are only approving it for their own advantage, their fate is no different. Paul explained that those who practice sin and those who approve of the practiced sin will face the same condemnation (Romans 1:32).
  • Abortion can sometimes be done as a form a genocide – targeting a particular group of people based upon race, economic status, or other factors. What we must always remember is that all men are made in the image of God (Genesis 9:6) and have all descended from one man – Adam (Acts 17:26). Therefore, all are equal (Galatians 3:28) and no group should be singled out for prenatal termination.

Infanticide

It may seem unthinkable that the killing of infants would ever become an accepted practice, but it is not. The Jewish people, though they were chosen by God, engaged in this type of practice. Through the prophet Jeremiah, God said of them, “They built the high places of Baal that are in the valley of Ben-hinnom to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire to Molech, which I had not commanded them nor had it entered My mind that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin” (Jeremiah 32:35). It should come as no surprise if/when the same sort of thing happens today.

The “ethicists” who argued in favor of “after-birth abortions” argued that newborns were not persons and, therefore, could be killed. We might be appalled at what they are advocating – and we should be – but they are at least consistent. There is no difference between killing an unborn child and one who has already been born. The Scriptures use the same Greek word (brephos) to describe both a born child and an unborn child (Luke 1:41; 2:12).

Not everyone is able to justify or carry out infanticide. It requires one of two things – either an ungodly hatred toward the infant or, as was the case with the Israelites and I believe is the case with many today, an unwavering devotion to a false ideology. The Israelites were devoted to Molech. Today many are devoted to progressive and humanistic ideologies – the right to life is granted by man, not God; the state is the provider, not God; people (in many of these cases, fornicating women who become pregnant) are not to be personally responsible for their actions; children are a burden, rather than a blessing from God. These godless philosophies will justify a crime as heinous as infanticide. Yet so many believe they are innocuous mentalities.

Conclusion

The wise man wrote, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people” (Proverbs 14:34). How far our society has fallen!

God instituted capital punishment for murder (Genesis 9:6) and has given civil authorities the responsibility to carry out that punishment today (Romans 13:4). Yet instead of carrying out this divinely-appointed duty, we hear elected leaders arguing over whether or not they should be paying for or subsidizing these actions.

We must not remain silent on these issues, but must teach all those we are able to teach in order to help spread the truth of the gospel and combat the errors of humanism and progressivism.


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Comments

  1. Terrible the things that get justified. And terrifying how “normal” society can try to make killing babies seem. Simply heartbreaking.

  2. “As humans, don’t we have the right to elevate sex into something more meaningful, without necessarily planning for children?” pro-birth control comment on another website
    Sex without a view to procreation doesn’t elevate us; it lowers us to be as the beasts. As far as we can tell, no nonhuman living thing knows anything about any connection between sexual congress and reproduction. The males respond to chemical stimulants (pheromones) exuded by the females. The males seek only sexual release, which appears to provide intense pleasure to the male.
    Only humans recognize a relationship between sexual relations and subsequent childbirth.
    Following, only humans plan to engage in sexual relations yet avoid procreation.

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  2. […] right” issue. Yet abortion is not about a woman’s “right,” it is murder. [See my article: Contraceptives, Abortion, and Infanticide.] The divinely ordained role of government is to punish those who do evil (Romans 13:4). Abortion […]