Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Life Begins At Conception

Received a comment on a thread from last month which argued about whether or not certain verses I had shared (regarding the biblical view that life begins at the moment of conception) were appropriately used for that view.

Here is the comment:

UY wrote:


Peace!
I'm not a Christian, and thus do not take my position on abortion from the Bible.

With that caveat out of the way, I wanted to simply point out that the Biblical verses you reference don't mention point of conception, merely a vague reference to the 'womb'.

Consequently, those verses could easily be used to support permission for abortion only in the early weeks (before the foetus can kick, twins can struggle in the womb etc.)

September 23, 2008 5:41:00 AM PDT


The fact is that Scripture interprets Scripture. Using just one verse (or, even scattered verses) to make one's point may not be "in line" with what the whole of Scripture tells us. False teachers make that mistake all the time.

However, when it comes to the "life begins at conception" argument, an examination of such a concept through the utilization of several Scriptures DOES make the point for such a belief!

Since God knows the past, present and future, He knew each of us well before we were even born.

The prophecies in the Old Testament which pointed to the Messiah, his birth, his ministry, his rejection, his crucifixion, his death on the cross and resurrection from the dead were all fulfilled in Jesus Christ.

I'm sure that many readers here can add to the following response. Please feel free to do so!

Here is my answer to UY:

There are many Bible verses that reference the fact that God "knew" us before we were born while in the womb.

Job 31:15 Did not he that made me in the womb make him? and did not one fashion us in the womb?

Psa 71:6 By thee have I been holden up from the womb: thou art he that took me out of my mother's bowels: my praise [shall be] continually of thee.

Psa 127:3 Lo, children [are] an heritage of the LORD: [and] the fruit of the womb [is his] reward.

Psa 139:13 For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb.

Ecc 11:5 As thou knowest not what [is] the way of the spirit, [nor] how the bones [do grow] in the womb of her that is with child: even so thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all.

Isa 44:2 Thus saith the LORD that made thee, and formed thee from the womb, [which] will help thee; Fear not, O Jacob, my servant; and thou, Jesurun, whom I have chosen.

He knows our name before we are even born:

Isa 49:1 Listen, O isles, unto me; and hearken, ye people, from far; The LORD hath called me from the womb; from the bowels of my mother hath he made mention of my name.

Jer 1:5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, [and] I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

Conception is mentioned here:

Hsa 9:11 [As for] Ephraim, their glory shall fly away like a bird, from the birth, and from the womb, and from the conception.

God even sent angelic messengers to tell of certain births and give the name of the child beforehand:

Luk 1:13 But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John.

Luk 1:14 And thou shalt have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth.

Luk 1:15 For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother's womb.

Luke 1:15 is describing John the Baptist. Note that he was filled with the Holy Ghost (Spirit) even from his mother's womb. This gives us a hint as to why the unborn infant John "leaped in Elisabeth's womb" when Mary, who was with child (Jesus) came near!

Luk 1:31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.

Luk 1:41 And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost:

Luk 1:42 And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed [art] thou among women, and blessed [is] the fruit of thy womb.

Luk 1:44 For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy.

Jesus' name was given before he was conceived in the womb:

Luk 2:21 And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

We also read the fact that believers in Jesus Christ are "called according to his purpose."

Rom 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purpose.

Notice what Paul says about his former self (as a persecutor of Christians) before he was converted on the Road to Damascus by Jesus Christ, Himself.

Galatians Chapter 1

Note these specific verses, too:

Gal 1:15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called [me] by his grace,


Gal 1:16 To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood:


Gal 1:17 Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus.


Gal 1:18 ¶ Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days.


Gal 1:19 But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord's brother.


Gal 1:20 Now the things which I write unto you, behold, before God, I lie not.


Gal 1:21 Afterwards I came into the regions of Syria and Cilicia;


Gal 1:22 And was unknown by face unto the churches of Judaea which were in Christ:


Gal 1:23 But they had heard only, That he which persecuted us in times past now preacheth the faith which once he destroyed.

September 23, 2008 8:28:00 AM PDT

*******
Please see an excellent post written by Bill Muehlenberg on the topic of abortion over at Culture Watch:

Morality, Reason and Abortion

Conclusion:

The facts on abortion are so clear, and the case against it so strong, that the pro-death crowd has to resort to twisted thinking, convoluted reasoning, and dodgy morality to try to make its case. But baby killing is still baby killing, no matter how it is dressed up or re-packaged.

67 comments:

Joe Brummer said...

Christine wrote: "Since God knows the past, present and future, He knew each of us well before we were even born."

Joe replies:

If god knows the present and the past and the future, then he knows before he has even created you if your will burn in hell or not. If he knows prior to creating you that you will in fact burn forever, then why did he create you?

Sosthenes said...

Dear Joe,

Hell was created for the angels who fell. God doesn't want anyone to go to Hell but because He knows the future, God can warn you. I don't believe that God sends anyone to hell because we all have the ability to make a choice. And when we judge God, we judge ourselves because what you do with Jesus determines how you judge yourself. God didn't have to save anyone but it is admirable that there is a way to be saved.

Sosthenes

Christinewjc said...

He created us to love us; and be loved by Him. Our part is to love and worship Him, as our Holy God, in faith, righteousness, love, and truth.

However, when sin entered the world, sinful man was separated from Holy God.

There are verses in Philippians 4 that comes to mind which indicates what we are to meditate and "think on" as believers.

Phl 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;

Phl 4:7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Phl 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things.

Phl 4:9 The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.


Notice that the bolded verse lists things that are the complete opposite of sin.

God knows those who will choose to worship Him and be born again in Jesus Christ for salvation from sins.

But man doesn't.

Therefore, He has given us the Great Commission.

Mar 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Mar 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

I'm sure that you have heard it all already Joe. You just choose to reject it. Your choice is what condemns you.

2Pe 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

The unwillingness to "come to repentance" is what condemns any of us. However, repentance at the foot of Christ's cross and belief in him as Savior and Lord of our lives is what saves us.

1Cr 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

Matt W. said...

Joe,
Consider Romans 11:33 "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!"

Christine,
Are you familiar with the Stand To Reason approach to the abortion question? It is that there is only one relevant question. What is the unborn? The reason that is the only relevant question is summed up in this quote:

"If the unborn is not a human being, then no justification for abortion is necessary.
However, if the unborn is a human being, then no justification for abortion is adequate." -- Alan Shlemon of "Stand to Reason"

Clearly, on many levels, the unborn can only be Human Beings, since they are the product of the union of two human beings, even at the point of conception, they are the earliest stages of the life of a human being. To proclaim otherwise is to be totally dishonest.

Joe Brummer said...

Okay, again, I will bite....saved from who or what? God created everything and if there is something to be saved from, he created that too! So he wants you to be saved from him?

I try to understand this stuff but it clearly defies reason. He cannot know everything and then save you. He knew you would burn and still created you. There is nothing more to know. He knew and he still did it! That isn't love, that is masochism.

But next you will tell me I don't understand it because....a) I am not "in the spirit" or that I can't understand god's ways or some other cop out. Face, it He knew and went ahead with the creation to save you from him.

spud tooley said...

christine, i'm not going to split hairs with you on your verses, but as the original writer stated, none of these say life begins at conception. most, if not all, are figuratively poetic, too. if God knew me before i was conceived, then perhaps it is sin, too, to waste sperm through masturbation that had someone's name on it. for you to take a slap at your post at people who twist what the bible says into something they want it to mean, and to then do the exact same thing, is a common trait among bible owners, it seems.

what you don't want to believe is that the overwhelming number of people supporting limited abortion rights would like to see no babies aborted. you want to pin them all down as sex-mad, evil, God-hating baby-killers. they're not. you're stuck in a very narrow understanding of 'absolute truth', and are not honest enough to admit that the only absolute truth is that absolute truths always have exceptions.

suppose we all said, christine, you're exactly right. human life begins at conception.

what then?

i had a little insight come to me yesterday that i put in a post here.

mike rucker
fairburn, georgia, usa
mikerucker.wordpress.com

spud tooley said...

joe, the message of jesus christ has been screwed up for thousands of years by people just like the good folk here who are bringing it to you in their well-intentioned but all-too-inadequate presentation.

(a) God is not sending anyone to hell.
(b) God did not create anyone He knew would wind up in hell.
(c) Saving us from an eternal hell is not what Jesus' life, death and resurrection was all about.
(d) Your tithes and offerings are better spent at churches that don't preach this nonsense.
(e) When you read a comment at TalkWisdom, remember this cute little poem:

a one-a-see, a two-a-see
i think i see a pharisee.


mike rucker

Christinewjc said...

Joe,

In advance, I ask you to forgive me for using a very simple analogy (that some, quite frankly, may think is silly) in response to your last comment.

Remember the scene in the Wizard of Oz where the physical mode of transportation (hot air balloon) escaped without Dorothy in it? The "wizard" (who was only a man, after all) didn't know how it worked, thus he flew away without rescuing Dorothy. Dorothy lamented that now she would never get home. Then, Glinda, the good witch of the north appeared. The scarecrow said, "maybe she can help you."

Glinda then told Dorothy that she had "the power all along" to get back home. The Scarecrow, (obviously indignant upon learning this) said, "why didn't you tell her this before?"

Glinda replied, "She would not have believed me. She had to find it out for herself."

The question was asked, "what have you learned Dorothy?"

She replied that next time she goes "looking for her heart's desire, she won't look any further than her own back yard."

Though it's a weak analogy, perhaps our existence on this earth in our state of sin is similar to that lesson Dorothy needed to learn.

BTW, as a Rapture believing, pre-trib, Millennium-on-earth-ruled-by Christ believer, we get a "do over" with new bodies on the new earth. When Christ returns with His raptured saints, Satan and his demons are bound for 1,000 years while Christ reigns.

If you haven't heard of this before, it is a lot to consider. Perhaps I can do a blog post with details from the book of Revelation.

Christians may not always agree on end times eschatology. I respect those who hold to the mid-trib position - especially now because of all the turmoil we are experiencing! Amen?

However, in the case of post-trib belief, a careful study of the Scriptures does not (IMHO) appear to be upheld in Revelation.

Should I do a series of posts on this? It might make for a great discussion.

Joe wrote:

But next you will tell me I don't understand it because....a) I am not "in the spirit" or that I can't understand god's ways or some other cop out. Face, it He knew and went ahead with the creation to save you from him.

Joe, I can see that you are frustrated with some of the terminology that Christians use to explain the Bible's position on things. Prior to being born again in Christ, I often felt the same way. I think we all do.

As far as being "a cop out" is concerned, consider this. I do not know everything. No human person can! But I believe that the Bible teaches God's ways to us - at least what we need to know here and now - to point the way of salvation towards redemption through the cross of Jesus Christ. It takes faith, first. We must "believe that He is" before anything else can be accomplished.

You are correct in that Jesus saved us from the wrath of God because of sin. However, we could look at it as being saved from ourselves, too. Pride of life, evil, sin and death are the consequences of disobeying Holy God. We bring such consequences upon ourselves when we are not obedient. Just like a child who listens to his/her mother when she says, "don't run in the street" will be safe from ever being hit and killed by a car, we are safe from the eternal effects of the sin on our own souls because of what Jesus did for us on the cross.

Mike (spud tooley) objects to God the Father's choice of what had to be done to His Son to save us from the consequences of our sin. But if Christ didn't follow through, his righteousness could not be imputed upon believers and Christ would have re-entered heaven alone.

I expect that even these explanations will not satisfy you. But I am doing the best that I can to share why I believe what I believe and why Jesus is the only way to God.

Gary Baker said...

"christine, i'm not going to split hairs with you on your verses,"

he says, right before he begins to do so.

Here's a thought: Consider Jesus. The angel came and told Mary that she would have a child by the power of the Holy Spirit so that the child would be the Son of God. So, by Mike's reasoning, and large numbers of others, Mary could have aborted any time prior to the delivery. No problem. Just killing off the "fetus of God." Don't think so.

Aside from the poetic verses that state that God knew the writer (David in several cases, I believe) from before they were formed, think of the births that were foretold. Isaac, John the Baptist. These were people planned and with a God given future before they every were delivered.

"what you don't want to believe is that the overwhelming number of people supporting limited abortion rights would like to see no babies aborted. you want to pin them all down as sex-mad, evil, God-hating baby-killers."

Again, the liberal shows his true mastery of debate: He can win any argument as long as he gets to decide what his opponent is really saying. Otherwise, they would have to engage with reason and logic. You might try that sometime, Mike. I've given you several opportunities, and I present another one here. Discuss it. The past several times you have simply made yourself absent when I have challenged you to reasoned debate.

BTW - I checked your link. I can see why you consider it wisdom. The author basically takes the view that maybe the scriptures mean what they say, and maybe they don't. And so there is no responsibility to do anything.

Joe,

I'm not claiming any special wisdom about God's knowledge or intent. I can't come up with a good reason for why Christ had to die, except that God said beginning in Genesis that blood was necessary for the forgiveness of sins. I believe him. If I insisted that everything God did made sense to me, that would basically mean that I considered myself equal to God. To that end, I don't try to speak for him. I try to use the scriptures and what wisdom he gives me, but unless it's explicitly stated in the Scriptures, it's an educated guess and nothing more.

Some people are very fond of saying that it's the people too tied to the scriptures that cause the wars and suffering in the world. In my experience, it's far more likely to be the people who pick and choose which scriptures they believe. Take it for what it's worth.

spud tooley said...

Mike (spud tooley) objects to God the Father's choice of what had to be done to His Son to save us from the consequences of our sin. But if Christ didn't follow through, his righteousness could not be imputed upon believers and Christ would have re-entered heaven alone.

it's not that i object to it. you're drawing the line between the wrong dots, and mangling the real message. did God sit before the foundation of the world and say, you know, if ONE person out of ALL these people i make does ANYTHING i tell them not to, i'm going to require that SOMEBODY get the snot beaten out of them and die? that's absolutely absurd, and if that's the gospel message you believe, no WONDER people like Joe have a hard time accepting it. God comes off as a tyrant with stupid rules that He lives under and the blame is ours for not being able to do what we were created to be unable to do! and some add even further stupidity to it by saying, and 'God did all of THAT just for His own glory.'

you've got a comic book God who needs to be locked up in a sanitarium somewhere before He hurts someone.

if the message is God's-going-to-send-you-to-hell-because-you're-a-worthless-sinner, you've missed the whole guts of the bible. and, sadly, it's not really your fault, because a lot of what's in the bible is the words of men who may not have quite understood what they were writing about. further, their errors get compounded by others like you, christine, who drum up these errors in even sillier theologies that make God out to be the most misunderstood person in all of literature.

any separation from God was bridged by God. any misunderstanding of that will ultimately be cleared up by God, our poor attempts to explain it notwithstanding.

Christianity isn't exclusive. you have to be invited to the party, but big deal - everyone gets an invitation.

further, Jesus already did the RSVPing.

now bathe, get dressed, and show up on time, cause the fun's just beginning.

mike rucker
fairburn, georgia, usa
mikerucker.wordpress.com

spud tooley said...

gary, did you get your mommy's keyboard again? still in that first chapter of 'logic for dummies'?

here's something i'd like you to think about: in the early months of nursing two of our children, my wife somehow got pregnant again - i still can't figure it out, but it happened.

both of those pregnancies ended in miscarriages very early in term.

do you have the slightest understanding why?

since you don't, just like you don't have the slightest understanding of God after all these years in the church, i'll tell you, and then you can give the keyboard back to your mommy: nature has evolved us such that a mother has a none-too-slight chance to miscarry a pregnancy while breastfeeding a baby. it does this to increase the odds that the surviving child is properly nutured and allowed to grow.

so: am i guilty of murder because i knocked my wife up when she was breastfeeding, knowing that if she got pregnant the baby would likely be miscarried? is my wife guilty of murder because she continued to breastfeed a baby after she knew she had gotten pregnant? did God circumvent his own 'absolute law' about abortions and make an exception in our case because my wife and i couldn't keep our hands off each other?

your pioused espousal of apparently principled positions is pathetic.

period.

pbbbbbbbbbbbt.

mike rucker
and you know where i'm from
and where my website is

Joe Brummer said...

Actually, I did accept all of this for about 30 years of my life. I believed that Jesus was my savior, I believed in the trinity, I believed in salvation, I believed in sin. Then over time, I just stopped believing when I realized how little of it made any real logical sense at all and that the reasoning used to explain the stuff that made no sense, made even less sense. Then I heard about John Frum and the Cargo Gods and something clicked for me about all of it. There is no god. Finally, everything made sense, all of it!

Christinewjc said...

Mike,

Please try and calm down. Your anger over the sad situation that you and your wife experienced is understandable. But please don't use it as an excuse for surgical, chemical, or and other type of man-provided, deliberate abortion.

A miscarriage is not the same.

Please know that I grieve with you and your wife over the miscarried child. I miscarried (in second month) between my two children. Won't get graphic with details, but it was one of the most gut-wrenching moments of my life.

When my daughter was old enough to be told about the miscarriage, she once innocently said, "Well mommy, if you had that child, then maybe you wouldn't have had me."

Out of the mouths of babes...

Matt W. said...

All of Creation exists for the Glory of God. Lest you think that this makes God some kind of sick egomaniac, consider that God is absolute perfection, the ultimate Supreme Being, the only One worthy of Glory, and is Worthy of all Glory, so it would be sinful for Him not to Glorify Himself, so if He didn't, it would make Him less than who He is.

That being said, in order to bring the fullest Glory, He must show all of his Supreme attributes, and that includes Mercy and Grace. There can be no Mercy or Grace in the absence of sin and imperfection, and there is no need for Mercy or Grace if there is no judgement for the sin. Also, in order for the Grace and Mercy to be meaningful for those to whom it is given, and therefore bring the fullest Glory to God, some must also be Damned. So, yes, God did in fact create people that he knew would reject him and be condemned to hell for all eternity, not because he wanted them to be Damned, but because it had to be done to bring God the full Glory that is rightfully His.

I hope that I have not failed to articulate this well, and I hope some of you find this helpful.

Sosthenes said...

There are more comments than I have time for.

Someone asked why there is night if God is light. I answered that our eyes can only see one portion of the light spectrum because light has a larger wavelength than we can see. There are electromagnetic and radioactive parts to the light wavelength. So when anyone says that God doesn't exist, they are claiming something from a limited existence.

As for the existence of hell, the claim and revelation is there from the Bible.

You still have to explain the problem of evil.

As to hell's legitimacy, there are people who are in the occult and who were formally involved in the occult that believe in the supernatural.

There are Jewish commentaries of people who claimed to see Satyrs.

There are rock musicians who claimed to see devils.

I had two books on supernatural history. There are also people who study giants and there are history books about some of the accounts that people have seen.

Unger also wrote a book on what Demons can do to Christians but I haven't read that yet.

I listen to the radio and one of John Lennon's claims of inspiration was that a light came on in the back of his head, he saw someone perform and the basis of that was his inspiration for songs. That isn't a whole lot different from people claiming inspiration or hearing the voice of God whether they be spirits or God.

The three major religions are based on some of the same claims.

Most of the cultures have some evidence or story of a major flood.

Having absolute proof of God's existence wouldn't change anything and there are reasons why it could actually cause different problems.

The children of Israel were fed fourty years in the wilderness, they saw the plagues of Egypt, the cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night. People say, "Oh, if I could only see a feather float through the air right now, I would change." The miracles and the parting of the Red Sea didn't change a lot of people.

I have opposition from day to day and some of it is not normal as demons are more concerned with Christians than with other people who are not waging a war against the kingdom of darkness.

I know a woman who runs a homeless shelter and when some good people wanted to start a church in the community and do work for the community, there was abnormal opposition because it is a noticable fight between the kingdom of light and the kingdom of darkness.

But unless your eyes are built to see more than gamma rays then you can't really judge whether God can be seen or not with a physical existence without God's revelation. And the devil can work to confuse you because he has his agents here as well.

Gary Baker said...

"nature has evolved us such that a mother has a none-too-slight chance to miscarry a pregnancy while breastfeeding a baby. it does this to increase the odds that the surviving child is properly nutured and allowed to grow."

Nature has no reason, Mike. It has no will, except that of God, and absent that will there would be none of us.

I am sorry for your losses, and I am sorry about the bitterness you carry around within you. As for what you may be guilty of, you would know better than I.

Again, you substitute venom for reason. Perhaps if you got beyond your anger you might find some peace. Perhaps not. I have been told that anger is all some people have left. It is a sad thing.

spud tooley said...

my apologies to all if i sounded angry - 'jaw-droppingly appalled' would be a more accurate description. i hold no anger about the miscarriages, and fully understand why it happened.

'nature isn't God' is a copout, an attempt to have it both ways - that God is in charge of everything but not liable when He crosses His own 'absolute truths'.

gary, i pick on you out of fun. if it comes across venomous, please forgive me. i expect you to do it in return. my skin is sufficiently thick (though noticeably thinner as i've now lost 32 lbs...).

mike rucker

spud tooley said...

joe, i certainly understand the struggle. been there myself. but i've never been convinced that whatever i've 'finally' decided upon is the last word - i just continually look and ask questions.

accepting that some things don't make sense is a mature point, i believe. and then we have to ask ourselves if God is really asking us to understand - not believe possible, not accept as potentially true - but understand - something that doesn't make sense.

it's when people try to argue that what they've come to believe is 'obvious' or even 'logical' that i come a bit unglued.

all i can say is, keep searching. no 'sin' in that.

mike rucker

spud tooley said...

Also, in order for the Grace and Mercy to be meaningful for those to whom it is given, and therefore bring the fullest Glory to God, some must also be Damned.

this isn't a logical inference in the least.

by the way, do you believe in the clavinist view of 'irresistable grace'? please explain how that follows your (il)logic.

by the way, little of what you argue represents accurately anything i've said. put your scarecrows away, dorothy.

mike rucker

Christinewjc said...

There is a lot of comment replies and "catching up" to do.

Sosthenes is correct. Hell was created specifically for Satan and the 1/3 of the angels who fell with him.

After the fall, the loyal angels who stayed and obeyed God were sealed in their decision. But notice that it took an act of their (angels) will to resist iniquity and evil in order to obey and be sealed forever with God.

Though it is true that men are different and separate beings than angels, the decision and act of being born again is also sealed. Humans didn't resist the iniquity and disobeyed God. Thus, our need for the Savior.

The Bible tells us that once a person is genuinely converted, "no one can snatch them out of his hands."

That (IMHO) is a poetic way of saying that the elect are then sealed, too.

Christinewjc said...

Matt,

Romans 11:33 is a great verse! It definitely demonstrates that faith in Jesus Christ and God our Father is extremely important.

Those who attempt to know everything before making the decision to accept Christ as Lord and Savior will be sorely disappointed when they face God in eternity.

I think that God meant it when he led the prophet to inform us in the Bible the fact that - 'Without faith, it is impossible to please God.'

Hbr 11:6 But without faith [it is] impossible to please [him]: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and [that] he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Thanks for the reminder about Stand to Reason. Greg Koukl certainly makes the case that abortion should be considered unthinkable!

Christinewjc said...

Hey Spud,

You wrote:

a one-a-see, a two-a-see
i think i see a pharisee.


That's funny! So...were you looking in the mirror when you wrote it? ;-)

Christinewjc said...

Hi Gary,

You wrote: BTW - I checked your link. I can see why you consider it wisdom. The author basically takes the view that maybe the scriptures mean what they say, and maybe they don't. And so there is no responsibility to do anything.

Bingo!! That seems to be the mantra of the liberal, seeker-sensitive, emergent church, gay christian movement and every other skewed gospel out there!

And, what do most have in common? No need for repentance!

Your reply to Joe was really good. The Bible tells us that "without blood, there is no remission of sins."

Hbr 9:22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.

More verses here.

Jesus himself explained what was necessary:

Mat 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

In the Old Testament, we are told:

Lev 17:11 For the life of the flesh [is] in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it [is] the blood [that] maketh an atonement for the soul.

That is why the sacrifice of animals was practiced - as a temporary atonement for sin. Christ's sacrifice was the "once for all" of the New Covenant in the New Testament.

Hbr 10:10 By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once [for all].

This is another reason why the above groups dislike turning to, and discussing the cross of Christ. The prideful attitude, disdain, disbelief (and, for some, the "ick" factor) that Jesus had to shed his blood for the remission of THEIR sins is repugnant to them.

Jesus "despised the shame" of the cross and rose victorious for our sakes!

1Cr 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

Hbr 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Christinewjc said...

Joe wrote:

Actually, I did accept all of this for about 30 years of my life. I believed that Jesus was my savior, I believed in the trinity, I believed in salvation, I believed in sin. Then over time, I just stopped believing when I realized how little of it made any real logical sense at all and that the reasoning used to explain the stuff that made no sense, made even less sense. Then I heard about John Frum and the Cargo Gods and something clicked for me about all of it. There is no god. Finally, everything made sense, all of it!

So...do you consider yourself backsliden or not originally saved in the first place?

Matt W. said...

So Mike,
Were you under the impression that I was only talking to you? Don't you find that just a bit arrogant?

"but i've never been convinced that whatever i've 'finally' decided upon is the last word - i just continually look and ask questions."--And yet, every time you disagree with anyone you claim that they are illogical.

Please explain how it is that your view doesn't make all of life completely meaningless.

"by the way, do you believe in the clavinist view of 'irresistable grace'? please explain how that follows your (il)logic."--If you would explain how you see anything I wrote to be against this doctrine, I would be happy to explain, but I'm not sure what you're asking at this point.

Christinewjc said...

Matt,

Your entire comment that begins with "All of Creation exists for the Glory of God" is very good and true!

Those who would disagree would most likely change it to "exists for the glory of man."

Originally, Adam and Eve "walked with God" in the Garden of Eden. When they disobeyed His ONE instruction, they willingly drifted away from worshipping and glorifying Him - to "exist in the glory of man." Their sin led them from their proper place (worshipping, glorifying, and walking with God) to the rejection of God's Sovereignty and into a place of rebellion. The human race has been running away from Him ever since!

The desire to "be like God" was elevated to the iniquity position that Lucifer had - the desire "to be God."

We would laugh to think that a pet - let's say a dog - could "be it's owner." The dog doesn't have the capacity to do so. So it is with us, as created beings, to think that we could possibly be on par with, or equal to, or greater than the Creator of the universe!

Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and knowledge.

Pro 9:10 The fear of the LORD [is] the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy [is] understanding.

Pro 16:6 By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD [men] depart from evil.

Pro 8:13 The fear of the LORD [is] to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate.

Pro 1:7 The fear of the LORD [is] the beginning of knowledge: [but] fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Job 28:28 And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that [is] wisdom; and to depart from evil [is] understanding.

Psa 19:9 The fear of the LORD [is] clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD [are] true [and] righteous altogether.

Job 28:28 And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that [is] wisdom; and to depart from evil [is] understanding.

Psa 19:9 The fear of the LORD [is] clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD [are] true [and] righteous altogether.

Christinewjc said...

Sosthenes wrote: "Someone asked why there is night if God is light. I answered that our eyes can only see one portion of the light spectrum because light has a larger wavelength than we can see. There are electromagnetic and radioactive parts to the light wavelength. So when anyone says that God doesn't exist, they are claiming something from a limited existence."

The "claim from a limited existence" is what gets to me when people make foolish claims that "there is no God." How could they possibly know this? Evidence of his handiwork is all around us. The idea that everything was created out of nothing is ridiculous.

I was listening to a sermon last week where the preacher stated that on the subject of light and darkness. Note this verse:

1Jo 1:5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

In heaven, there will be no need for the sun or any other created form of light - for God will be the Light.

Those who outrightly reject the light of Jesus do so for this reason:

Jhn 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

Jhn 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

But Jesus came and shined his light on sinful men for this reason:

Luk 1:79 To give light to them that sit in darkness and [in] the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Act 26:18 To open their eyes, [and] to turn [them] from darkness to light, and [from] the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.

Jaded said...

I both agree and disagree with you on this topic, Christine. I agree that life begins at conception and therefore, based on my religious principles, abortion is wrong.

However, not everyone in this nation is a Christian. Because of this, not everyone believes that life begins at conception. We live in a nation of many cultures and beliefs. We can't allow one religion to force their doctrine on anyone else. I think I read here that you believe Obama to be a Muslim and are worried sick that he'll become president and force those beliefs on the nation. First, I don't believe he's Muslim, but secondly, he can't. It's not allowed. And if a Muslim can't legislate his faith upon the nation, neither can a Christian.

Besides, Christine, outlawing abortion won't stop it. You can't legislate faith. Preventing someone from having an abortion by removing the means to have the procedure doesn't stop the desire or the intent. If that's in their heart, it counts the same way. If you take away the free will that was given to us by God, then you will never allow them to make their own choices. I'm sorry, but I don't believe it "counts" if you follow God's rules by default.You have to follow them because you have faith and believe them. So, as a Christian, you can spread God's word and let people know what the Bible says about things like abortion. It's up to the other person to make a decision - to exercise their free will - after being armed with the Truth. It's not up to you to force them. That's not faith.

Just my opinion.

Joe Brummer said...

Christine writes: "So...do you consider yourself backsliden or not originally saved in the first place?"

Joe replies:

Great question. I consider myself a non-theist whose once believed I needed to be saved but no longer believes that. I once believed that Jesus was god, but my belief in Christianity and the bible no longer exists. I just stopped believing it. Now, at this point in my life, I could make myself believe it if I tried. I still hold to the philosophy that no one chooses what they believe. You either do or you don't. I do not believe.

To fully answer your question, the answer is no I was never really saved because there is nothing to save me from! I can't be "backslidden" which is not really a word I will add, because there is no place to have slid from.

Christinewjc said...

Joe,

It is a word. Unfortunately, I misspelled it:

Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1) - Cite This Source - Share This
back·slide /ˈbækˌslaɪd/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[bak-slahyd] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation verb, -slid, -slid or -slid·den, -slid·ing, noun

–verb (used without object) 1. to relapse into bad habits, sinful behavior, or undesirable activities.

–noun 2. an act or instance of backsliding: a backslide from his early training.


[Origin: 1575–85; back2 + slide]

—Related forms
backslider, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1)
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2006.
CITE THIS

Thanks for honestly answering my question. It certainly explains a lot.

However, you might want to change the claim that you genuinely believed in these things:

"I believed that Jesus was my savior, I believed in the trinity, I believed in salvation, I believed in sin."

Apparently, you only thought you believed in them - for a while.

Joe Brummer said...

no, I truly believed them. I didn't just think it, I truly believed that Jesus Christ was my savior, etc....but I was also raised from birth to believe that, so of course I did. You may not "think" I truly believe, but reality is that it isn't your place to say anymore than I can tell you what you think you believe or that you truly believe.

Christinewjc said...

Hi Jaded,

Nice to see you back! Missed you when your blog was deleted.

Anyway...I wonder if we could agree on one more thing. Do you think that it would be good for abortion provision being decided by the people in each state rather than the Roe v. Wade overarching (over-reaching, IMO) decision?

I know that CA, NY, NJ, MA, VT, and all the other liberal states would vote for it. However, those states where the people decide it should be illegal, would discourage unplanned pregnancies. It would also point those who get pregnant to either keep their babies or give them up for adoption. These are all positive developments.

I seem to recall that the mantra of the Democrats back in 1973 was for abortion to be "safe, legal and rare."

They were wrong about "safe" and "rare" - and they know it.
No one says that anymore.

Abortions increased by the millions. That's not "rare."

LEGAL botched abortion procedures have killed more women in one year (need to find statistics) than the amount of women who died due to back alley abortions before it was legalized.

It has also killed over 58 ? million babies in the U.S. since 1973.

That's not safe.

In fact, it's morally repugnant and deadly for the unborn babies.

Read abortion lies and myths.

The added harm is the awful, nagging regret that many women feel for years afterwards.

More info here

Fortunately, the Christian faith can help them find relief from their guilt and forgiveness.

Jaded said...

To be honest, Christine, I'm not sure how I feel about the decision being passed back to the states. I think that there are pros and cons to both sides of that argument. But, I don't have a definitive answer for you on that one.

Again, I agree with you on your reasons for not wanting abortion. I agree that there are those women who regret that decision for the rest of their lives. However, there are those who do not. Adoption is a tricky issue too, but that's a completely different topic.

I just keep coming back to the fact that God has given us free will for a reason. He leaves it to us to make choices based on the "rules" He's set forth. One must choose faith and obedience. You can't have it forced upon you. The law makers could outlaw abortion, but that wouldn't make women who don't break the law any more Christian...they aren't choosing not to abort their children because of their religious beliefs, only because they don't want to go to jail. Technically, they did what God wanted, but without faith and committment, it means little. There are many passages about doing good works etc., and still not being granted a spot in heaven.

I'm not disputing the statement that legal abortions have killed many women, but I would just add that perhaps the number of women who were having back-alley abortions wasn't accurately reported since it was illegal. There's no real way of knowing the accurate numbers with that scenario.

I think we're better serving people to let them know the Word and the Truth. What they do with it is up to them. You can't force it on people because they must come to God of their own free will. Otherwise, it's not faith. And I believe that safe sex programs, including those that teach abstinence, are helpful. Abortion is at its lowest rate since 1974, and teenage pregnancies and abortions are down dramatically. There are still groups where the numbers have increased, but overall, the numbers are down more than 33%. This is a good thing!

I do believe that if we are going to allow abortion to remain legal, there should be some stricter guidelines put in place. I do NOT believe that anyone should have an abortion after the first trimester unless the mother's life is at risk. I do NOT believe that minors should be allowed to have such a dangerous surgical procedure without parental consent. They can't get a tylenol from the school nurse but they can have surgery?! I DO believe that abortion should be available for those who are the victims of rape and/or incest, if they so choose. There is no way you can tell me that if a woman is brutally attacked, raped and left for dead that it is God's will for her to then give birth to a child that was conceived under those circumstances. Satan rules the earth. Who's to say it wasn't his will?

Anyway, this is such an explosive topic that we could all probably go on and on and on. I believe that we, as parents, have the responsibility to teach our children right from wrong. Their religious upbringing is our responsibility. It's not up to the government to legislate that for us. The bottom line is that I agree with all of your beliefs regarding abortion. I just don't think we can force our religious beliefs on anyone else.

Gary Baker said...

Jaded,

"I just keep coming back to the fact that God has given us free will for a reason."

I'm not meaning to pick on you, but I am curious about your line of reasoning. Would you take the same line for theft? (i.e., that we should not legislate against it because that would deprive people of free will?) How about perjury? How about murder?

If you really believe that life begins at conception, you have a problem with the line of reasoning you describe: If life begins at conception, then the only difference between the baby in utero and the child or adult walking around is location. Would you allow someone to exercise "free will" on whether or not to "abort" a thirteen year old child based on location?

I fully agree that there will be some clandestine abortions if it becomes illegal, though as mentioned above it is extremely unlikely that will happen. If Roe V. Wade was overturned tomorrow, then it would get kicked back to the states, and Christine mentioned that many states would preserve the process. How many illegal abortions and the percentage that would cause death or injury to women are unknowable. You mention the idea of increasing restrictions. Back to the same problem: What are the moral restrictions to place on killing if you consider that it is a human at conception?

Despite the negatives mentioned, I can think of one huge positive in overturning Roe V. Wade: The destruction of the belief that abortion is a "right," and therefore something to be cherished and defended. As Christine also mentioned, the NARAL gang takes greater umbridge at the possibility of limiting this one non-right than stomping over the rest of the Constitution entirely. Abortion's status as a "right" gives it a moral legitimacy that is hard to overcome, especially given the history of deference it receives in colleges, courtrooms, ACLU, etc.

I firmly agree that you cannot legislate faith. My goal is to work through lawful means to preserve an environment where faith can be exercised absent public censure. If this seems to be a bit of hyperbole, consider the comments Sarah Palin has received solely for her pro-life and Christian views. I am trying to create a better America for my daughters to mature in. Sitting on the sidelines is not an option.

spud tooley said...

Don't you find that just a bit arrogant?

what - you mean the world doesn't revolve around me?

If you would explain how you see anything I wrote to be against this doctrine, I would be happy to explain...

hmmm. i forget what i meant. maybe it'll come back to me. sorry.

Please explain how it is that your view doesn't make all of life completely meaningless.

please explain why it does.

and while you're at it, please explain 'my view'. i'm interested to see what i think. or what you think i think.

there is no reason life can't be meaningless. i certainly don't believe it is, but it's not a given that life has meaning.

mike r.

spud tooley said...

If life begins at conception, then the only difference between the baby in utero and the child or adult walking around is location. Would you allow someone to exercise "free will" on whether or not to "abort" a thirteen year old child based on location?

gary, should a woman who did something strenuous during her pregnancy that resulted in a miscarriage be charged with murder?

mike rucker

Christinewjc said...

Dropped in for a quick reply.

That was a really good argument you presented, Gary.

From what I know of Jaded, I do believe that compassion for women in an unplanned pregnancy position is the reason she feels abortion should be legal. I can sympathize with such a position. I can have empathy for women who feel forced to make such a decision.

But as Gary had so excellently stated in his comment - the overturning of Roe as a "right" would be a huge positive step towards a much more moral direction for our nation!

Gary wrote:

Despite the negatives mentioned, I can think of one huge positive in overturning Roe V. Wade: The destruction of the belief that abortion is a "right," and therefore something to be cherished and defended. As Christine also mentioned, the NARAL gang takes greater umbridge at the possibility of limiting this one non-right than stomping over the rest of the Constitution entirely. Abortion's status as a "right" gives it a moral legitimacy that is hard to overcome, especially given the history of deference it receives in colleges, courtrooms, ACLU, etc.

Christinewjc said...

Mike,

For some odd reason, "The Riddler" character in Batman came to mind as I read your latest comment.

"Riddle me this" seems to be your manner of communication these days.

My conclusion?

U R Confused...

spud tooley said...

i r knot.

mr

Jaded said...

I never said that legal and right are synonymous. But we live in a secular society. Not all people believe that life begins at conception. That is a Christian concept. I have a Jewish friend to told me that in his faith, life begins when you have a soul and you don't have a soul until you draw your first breath. In his religion, a fetus is not a life. He's no less devout in his convictions than I am in mine. Certainly, I can tell him that I believe differently and why, but I can't force him to adhere to a set of standards or to a morality that isn't part of his own faith. Neither should the government enact laws that are based solely on religious beliefs, no matter what the religion happens to be. When that occurs, you end up with a theocracy, and pretty much no theocracy in history has ever ended up well, including those that involved Christianity.

Thank you for you thoughtful words, Christine. I do feel for any woman who finds herself in a situation where she has to decide what to do with the life she has conceived. It's less of a dilemma for those who aren't Christian, however. I think that we should educate women in that situation that she does, in fact, have other options, including turning to the church for guidance. Once she is armed with all of the information, she then has to make that decision for herself. We can NOT force her hand by removing the choices we feel are wrong. That's almost like cutting down the apple tree in Eden to keep Eve from being able to take a bite. Her choice was her own, and there are consequences for our choices. If you have children, you can never sit on the sidelines. Your primary responsibility is to teach your children what you feel is important...to instill a sense of morality and a set of values in them. If you do that based on the principles contained in the Bible, it won't matter if abortion is legal AND free...they would never consider it because of their upbringing. But you could outlaw abortion and make it punishable by death and women would still do it. Which is better - to leave them alone to let them hack away at the child with a coat hanger or to give her access to better medical care to make sure she doesn't kill herself in the process? I understand that the argument "They're going to do it anyway" isn't ideal, and it's not necessarily a reason to allow something like abortion. However, because we live hand in hand with many cultures, religions and beliefs, we can't draft laws that are based only on Christian principles. In a democracy like ours, every voice counts, not just the Christian voices.

We, as Christians, have the responsibility placed on us to spread the Word of God. If we are successful in our task, it won't matter if abortion is legal. But that is up to us and the church, not the government. I don't believe that I am sitting on the sidelines, I'm just not out trying to outlaw abortion. Instead, I am trying to spread the Word of God so that people can get to know Him. Once they do, abortion will no longer be an option for them, legal or not. There is more than one way to fight this battle, in my opinion. Whether you agree with me or not, I am certain that I am doing what I am supposed to be doing. I have a good relationship with the Lord, and have for more than 25 years. If your calling is something different, that's between you and God. I would never question that.

Christine, just as something completely off topic, you will be somewhat tickled to know that I have been attending an evangelical church lately. I think there are still some major differences between some of the things I read here and what my pastor says, but it's a lovely place and they have welcomed my daughter with open arms. Would you ever have imagined?

Matt W. said...

Mike,
Please correct me if I'm wrong here, but it seems, just from what you've said here in this thread, that you believe that we really don't know what God does/doesn't want us to do (if He wants anything from us at all), and that we can't trust the Bible to really tell us. That we won't be damned no matter what we do, and we won't be judged by God on the basis of anything.

To me, this line of reasoning would lead to meaninglessness. Basically we would be looking at a system based on every man for himself. There would be no moral absolutes at all. Murder would be ok, rape would be ok, theft, abuse, anything else, would be fine if I decided to do it, it wouldn't mean anything, I wouldn't be held accountable for it, because I wouldn't have any way to know the basis for how I should act, so really, whatever I decided to do is just dandy. If it's against the law and I get caught and punished, well, that's ok too because someone with power made that rule, and so, I can go ahead and do whatever I'm willing to pay the price for, but there will be no accountability before God. I could live a "good" life if I chose to, though even a good life wouldn't mean anything anyway, but there would be no real difference in the long run between a "good" life and a "bad" life.

I don't think that you can argue that meaninglessness is fine either, because, if that's the case, why are you hear arguing anything at all? Unless you just like to argue, which, I guess would be ok, but then, even that wouldn't mean anything, and it seems that it must mean something to you, because you do seem to care what other people think.

Am I wrong?

Christinewjc said...

Jaded,

How nice to hear that you and your daughter have found a very welcoming church. That is really good news.

Hey - would like your opinion about something.

Why do you think that the liberal, pro-choice feminists hate Sarah Palin so much? Do you think her choice to keep her 5th child - a Down Syndrome baby boy whom she called perfect in a speech, threatens them in some way? Does it bring home the thought that maybe abortion is wrong when it's used to abort 90% of pre-natal babies diagnosed with Down Syndrome?

I thought that Laura Ingraham made some really good points about this on the O'Reilly Factor a while back.

I think it's sad that these types of women reject her for that one reason! One person, even as a V.P. candidate, cannot possibly have the power to overturn Roe v. Wade. Bush is pro-life and while being president for 8 years didn't overturn it.

Yet, the liberal feminists make it sound like the sky is falling and that one woman's own choice to keep her Down Syndrome baby will take Margaret Sanger's dream of eugenics through abortion away from them.

I think that the way Gov. Palin and her family has been targeted and treated in the media, Hollywood, among liberal feminists, among liberal bloggers, and the Obama followers is tragic, sad, cruel, unjust, rabidly intolerant, disgusting, and utterly miserable.

At least Hillary Clinton didn't bash Palin - and isn't out to destroy her like all the rest seem to be. Perhaps it is because Clinton was treated so badly by the media and the Obama campaign during the primaries - she decided not to lash out against Palin, despite the fact that they don't agree politically.

spud tooley said...

I don't think that you can argue that meaninglessness is fine either...

you're twisting my words, matthew. i only said that a meaningful existence was never a given.

Unless you just like to argue...

moi?

man's imperfect understanding of, explanation of, and/or recording of what he thinks God does has no bearing whatsoever on the actions themselves. as 'history goes to the victor,' the eye cast backwards must always take into account new knowledge and experiences.

mike rucker

Jaded said...

I am not a big supporter of Sarah Palin, but it has nothing to do with her political policies, nor her inexperience. I'll tell you why...

As the mother of a child with disabilites, I must say that I believe Sarah Palin made the WRONG decision when she accepted the nomination for VP. A disabled child is more labor intensive than a typical child, and a typical child needs all of your attention! I don't believe that God makes "mistakes" when it comes the the children He blesses us with. So, she and I have the children we were intended to have. However, KNOWING what it takes to effectively parent a child with a disability, I am shocked that she'd put this job ahead of the needs of her family. Yes, I know I will hear from those who say that it's sexist to say such a thing, but it's not a gender issue, it's a morality/responsibility issue. Biden should have declined the nomination if he were in the same situation. Obama and McCain should have decided against running if they were in that situation as well. Of course her husband will be there and will be the primary care giver, but I do NOT understand why, when you've just given birth to a child with a profound disability and you have a pregnant teenager to take care of, you'd choose to do something that takes you away from your family even more than your current job does.

Women are obviously capable of working and raising children. I do it myself - I run a successful music studio. However, I had to cut back on the hours I work. Was that a hardship financially? Yes. But being entrusted with a child like my daughter required more time with her and less time working, so that's what I did. And God provided for us, because I was doing what He intended me to do. I honestly believe that. But the Palin children so clearly need MORE time with BOTH parents, not less. The fact that she'd choose to spend less time raising her children concerns me. I keep wondering if her own family isn't her top priority, how can my family mean anything to her? How can I trust her to make decisions that will benefit other families if she's willing to spend less time with her own? That really bothers me, Christine.

As for the liberal media, well, if you remember when Jamie Lynn Spears ended up an unwed, pregnant teenager, everyone took a turn at her like she was a pinata. Even people like Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh condemned the situation and said that the parents were to blame...that if they'd been good parents, this would never have happened. Now those same people are saying that the Palins are handling this well, and that Bristol is to be commended for "choosing" to keep the baby. It's a very different, and in my opinion hypocritical response. Bristol Palin chose to keep her baby because she actually HAD a choice. Based on her upbringing, she chose to have the baby rather than abort it, just as Sarah did with her own son. This kind of makes the point I was trying to get at earlier - abortion was available but because of their faith, they didn't consider it to be an option. The choice they made means more because they could have just as easily chosen to have an abortion. But as far as the media is concerned, I think they latched on to the fact that the conservative media was brutal about the Spears situation and very accepting of the Palin situation. In response, they've lashed out. In some ways, I can understand this. It can't be both ways. If it's the Spears' fault that their child got pregnant, then it must also be the Palins' fault. If the Palins' are doing the right thing by supporting their daughter through a difficult time, then it was right for the Spears family to do the same. It can't be wrong for one and right for the other. So I think that the attacks are a retaliation situation. Personally, I don't think either girl should have had their pregnancies picked apart in the media, so I think both sides were wrong to start with. You know me, Christine - I think that there are problems with both major parties!

I worry about the Palin children. They're being thrust into the limelight and uprooted at a time when they need stability and consistancy the most. That perfect baby boy needs more of both of his parents. Do you remember JC Watts? He was a very prominent African American Republican in Congress. When his son entered his teen years, JC decided not to seek re-election because his family needed more of his time. He still works and runs a business, but being in office took too much of his time from his family. When his wife pointed that out to him, it hit him hard and he decided to do something about it. And he wasn't in a position as important as that of Vice President. I commend him for that decision. I worry that Sarah Palin made the wrong one.

Sosthenes said...

"It's up to the other person to make a decision - to exercise their free will - after being armed with the Truth. It's not up to you to force them. That's not faith."

Jaded,

I was listening to a teaching on the radio today and the pastor was teaching about Cain and Abel and how if we're not our brother's keeper then we're our brother's murderer.

Another pastor said that love ceases to be love if it doesn't protect.

And I'll add that faith causes us to react:

Hebrews 11:33 Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions,

"Subdued" is katagōnizomai and it means to struggle or overcome so if faith subdues kingdoms then how can you justify faith being without works?

Sosthenes

Christinewjc said...

Jaded,

So, does this mean that you are voting for Obama? If so, no wonder you haven't commented here in months! I'm sure that you have objected to the many posts I have done against his candidacy.

We will have to agree to disagree on this one. Gov. Palin has more help than either you or I would in a similar situation. She has two grown daughters who are old enough to help care for the child. From what I have heard, her husband will be a full-time dad at home. They can also hire a nanny to help with the child.

I think that quality time counts more than quantity time, but that's just my opinion.

Perhaps the family talked it over and made the decision for her to go for it. Since Gov. Palin sees it as an opportunity to serve our country, I'm sure that the rest of the family agrees. Her oldest son is already serving our country - in the military.

I commend the entire family for their unselfish decision. They will have to leave their current paradise in Alaska and live in Washington, D.C. It will most likely be culture shock for them. However, they will learn a lot from the experience. They will probably go back to Alaska often enough to be happy.

Comparing Spear's situation with Palin's daughter is unfair. I don't think I need to say more about that.

Also, if JC Watts was offered the V.P. slot, perhaps he would consider coming back into politics.

I noticed that you didn't answer my question about (specifically) pro-choice feminists and their ugly treatment of Gov. Palin. Here it is again:

Why do you think that the liberal, pro-choice feminists hate Sarah Palin so much? Do you think her choice to keep her 5th child - a Down Syndrome baby boy whom she called perfect in a speech, threatens them in some way? Does it bring home the thought that maybe abortion is wrong when it's used to abort 90% of pre-natal babies diagnosed with Down Syndrome?

Sosthenes said...

Jaded,

Yes, a special needs child does need more attention but Pailin's husband has reportedly taken off to handle the children and that baby has other siblings as my siblings helped take care of me. This wouldn't be their first child so I'm sure that they're a pro at it by now and I would have to ask you what is wrong with parents who leave their kids all day in day care or what is wrong with single parents?

My foster parents had relatives who has an adult special needs child and he drools all the time. They don't wipe the drool up all the time because they would run out of paper towels. And they sometimes go on vacation without the child because if they didn't then they wouldn't have a vacation or rest.

What makes a special needs child more important than regular children?

Sosthenes

Christinewjc said...

While posting at my other blog - Protect Biblical Marriage - I ran across a bi-sexual man's testimony that included a heart-wrenching confession about his former girlfriend getting pregnant and subsequently having an abortion.

You will have to scroll down quite a ways (more than half way down the page) to see the photo, but there is [Warning: Graphic!] a photo of an 11 week old aborted fetus on the page. When I saw the tiny feet, I could not hold back the tears. To think that over 58 million babies have been aborted since 1973 here in the U.S. makes me so ill!!

David MacDonald Testimony

That baby was only 2 1/2 months old in the womb. Still considered a "first trimester fetus."

Heartbreaking...
Sad...
Evil...
Sickening...

Abortion used to be considered UNTHINKABLE in this nation. It still should be.

Jaded said...

"If we're not our brother's keeper then we're ourour brother's murderer." Sorry. I can not agree with that. Just because a pastor on the radio said it doesn't mean he was right.

And unless you HAVE a special needs child, you couldn't possibly begin to understand. Having a relative who has a special needs child isn't even coming close. Implying that it does come close is a slap in the face to anyone who raises a child with special needs. And quite frankly, if my child needed drool wiped from her mouth all day long, I would it. That would be my job as her parent. The alternative is to allow her the indignity of drooling all over herself. Frankly, the notion that someone would allow that indignity in order to avoid buying extra paper towels is ridiculous to me. Perhaps you were making a joke, but I can't believe anyone would even say such a thing. You actually make my point for me by saying that they need to take a vacation from their child or they'd never have rest. Really? If a special needs child doesn't require any more time and dedication than a typical child, then why would they need a rest? I thought I would be prepared since I have a Master's in Special Ed and taught special needs kids for a living. THAT doesn't come close. Never once did I say that a special needs child was more important than a typical child. I said they were more labor intensive, which you have validated. Re-read what I've said and you will see that. Also, I did not use the term "regular" because using that implies that my child is irregular, or broken, or wrong. Please refrain from using that terminology around other parents with special needs children because it shows just how little you understand about them. Please don't try to argue otherwise because you will simply dig your hole deeper, and I am not interested in reading feeble attempts at being politically correct or having compassion. I have spent years working with special needs children and adults. I raise my own child with special needs. I advocate for other parents who need help navigating the school system when it comes to the rights of their special needs children. Knowing someone who knows someone who has a child they allow to wallow in his own drool is as insulting and attempt to indicate knowledge as I've ever seen.


And to say that they'll have more help with nannies, etc...again, I have to say NO THANK YOU. Having a Nanny raise your child is not the same has having both parents involved. It's not the responsibility of the other children to raise this child either. It's unfair to even suggest that it is. They are children and they did not make the decision to have a child. Some parents put their children in day care because they have no other choice. This family HAS a choice, and the choice includes making it more like a single parent family than a 2 parent house hold. Their choice now includes nannies raising the children when they could have avoided that. This choice relies on the other children in the family to raise a baby with special needs. Children are not equipped to raise children, especially one that will need specialized care. Don't forget - there will soon be 2 infants in that house hold, and the matriarch has chosen to spend more time working. Chosen. It wasn't a necessity. Christine, can you honestly say that it is better to spend a couple of good hours a week with your kids than to have been with them every day as they were growing up? Can you honestly say that if given the choice, you'd choose a nanny or day care over raising them yourself? Again, this family got to make a choice, they weren't in a situation where they HAD put their kids in day care. Ask any parent who does have to put their kids in day care whether they'd spend more time with them if they could and I'd bet you every single one of them would say YES. They use day care because they don't have options, not because they want to spend less time at home. It sounds very much to me like people are trying to sugar coat the reality of this situation, which is that those kids need both of their parents more of the time. I don't look at it as a selfless act...I see it as selfish. She gets to have her dream job and her kids have to be ripped from the only home they've ever know, forced to live out difficult issues in the public eye and they get even less of their mother. I'd feel the same way if it was a male in the same situation. Sometimes, we need to take care of things at home first.

As for my choice for president, I don't know. I look at the current state of the economy and think that both men running had their hand in creating this mess. How can I believe that either one of them will get us out? I just don't think that Obama is evil like you do, and I don't think that McCain is the white knight in shining armor, as it were. But then, I don't think Democrats are always bad and Republicans are always good. There's a whole bunch of corruption on both sides. I'm just starting to feel that voting for McCain is voting to take a mother away from the children who need her, whether she acknowledges that or not. And if the radio pastor was correct, then I would be personally responsible for making that little boy's life even harder than it's going to be, since I know how hard it is to raise a child with disabilities.

Christinewjc said...

Jaded,

I will admit, my experience around children with disabilities is limited. Most of it was many years ago.

In high school, there was a fellow classmate whose younger brother (age 7, I think) underwent a new idea (at the time - in the 70's) called "patterning" to help him regain motor ability. As I recall, it required a grueling schedule with lots of people helping the child get through the exercises. I was a volunteer and saw first hand how much care he needed - besides the exercise schedule he was enduring. I remember that he wore a diaper and had the mind of a two year old. I'm not sure what his disability was. I don't remember. Could it have been muscular dystrophy?

Anyway, the family eventually gave up the "patterning" routine. It helped a little bit, but not enough. Years later, I had heard that he died. Very tragic. However, I believe that his short life touched many other lives - including my own. While chatting with his older sister (who was VERY shy and appeared to not have any friends) I found out how much he was loved by his family. His extended family of care-givers loved him too.

As a side note, he would drool a lot, too. We didn't always wipe it away while working with him. In fact, people would kiss him goodbye - drool and all - on the lips, when they would leave. Despite the grueling routine of "patterning," the boy loved the company!

My second encounter with disabled children was when I was a P.E. teacher for an elementary school. I had an Adaptive P.E. class for children with special needs. They were a challenge at times, but the joy on their faces when they did what the "normal" kids could do (one favorite was the parachute with bean bags - shaking it so the bags drop in the center to the floor). The K - 3 classes were favorites of mine, but the special ed. class was fun, too.

There are so many stories I could share about how the "normal" children would react (the good, the bad and the ugly) when they entered the gymnasium as the adaptive class would leave. Led to many teachable moments.

On to your questions.

You asked:

Christine, can you honestly say that it is better to spend a couple of good hours a week with your kids than to have been with them every day as they were growing up?

Two cliche-like sayings:

1. There is motherhood and there is also "smotherhood."

My friends and I would often trade off babysitting each other's children so we could have "mom's day out."

2. Absence makes the heart grow fonder.

Kids need interaction with other kids at any age. Mine started young - in other friend's homes. They also went to pre-school for a few hours a day. If I didn't do these things for them, they probably would have been bored.

Can you honestly say that if given the choice, you'd choose a nanny or day care over raising them yourself?

For me? No. But others who make that choice (you are for "choice," on things other than abortion...aren't you?) should not be scolded, either.

Sosthenes said...

"Just because a pastor on the radio said it doesn't mean he was right."

Jaded,

That is very true but... I've challenged pastors to find out that my knowledge is about a half a page long and they have about twelve or twenty pages on a given subject. And believing a pastor is wrong is a lot easier than proving a pastor is wrong.

Thankfully I don't have a special needs child but my son was recently in the hospital. They gave him an X-ray and said he didn't have pneumonia but they wanted to keep him overnight. I came straight to the E.R. from work and I was chasing my son around in the E.R. so when they called down to send him up to a room they were like "We have to find him." And when we went up to my son's room, I said to the doctor,"He doesn't have pnemonia. Why are we here?" She threw a couple of hints that he could go home and I said that she would have to make that decision and that I didn't have a problem with going home.

I'm the adult child of sinning parents and I've been with both my mother and father in nursing / rehabilitation homes and I've had the family compete over how much care or observation my parents should have. There comes a point where sheltering replaces care and where my siblings thought they could do more than what the health care providers could do and yet they don't know better than the trained professionals and my own doctor doesn't listen to me when I visit because he has studied medicine and I haven't. My opinions mean nothing when it comes to the realities of medicine and his belief system is even different than mine.

I don't think that siblings caring for a special needs child is wrong because they are part of the family and should contribute to the family because they are members. They shouldn't be expected to do all of the work but I used the word "contribute" because they are part of the family and there may be age appropriate tasks which they could do. I think that my son needs a sibling because to think that Mom or Dad can provide him with a suitable playmate to meet all of his emotional needs is wrong.

Why should a special needs child not be allowed to have the spotlight? When I was going to school, they put all of the learning disabled kids in the same class and never a child with a higher score in the same age group entered in. By limiting exposure, kids with lesser scores were never allowed to hear more intelligent questions which would have made them question and think which is part of learning.

By sheltering the child and not allowing him to be in the limelight with a politician because that isn't "fair" means that there won't be more people learning about special needs and questioning what role society should play to help others.

I wanted to go to the library at school and all of the teachers would lock the doors to it. They would say something like "Who wants to learn here, anyway?" It is a fulfilled prophecy because those at the bottom fulfill our expectations because the teachers never open the door of the library for the kids who do want to read because we do poorly in their class and their reasoning is that "we don't want to learn" so that is why they keep the doors locked. It is their fulfilled prophecy.

So why isn't the public allowed to see the life of a special needs child for four years?

Gary Baker said...

Jaded,

I would still appreciate some comment on how you can consider an unborn child a life and allow it to be eliminated as a choice while granting more protections to children (adults, etc., that are walking around).

As for other comments regarding Sarah Palin and the Spears girls, I think that you have a valid point. If we consider the parents responsible for one and not the other then, all things being equal, that is hypocrisy. Here's a question though: Have you done any research to verify that things are even close to equal? For example, you can get at least some view of what kind of surroundings and examples the Spears girls had from the papers and tabloids. What do you know about the environment and examples provided by the Palins? I haven't researched it specifically, but I'm sure the information is out there. My guess is that if you did a comparison you would find a great difference on many levels as far as friends, activities, moral training, etc. Now, even given all of that, personally I would be very cautious about laying anything specifically at either parent's doorstep. I try to make the best possible environment for my kids, but I have a feeling that down the line they are going to do some things I would prefer they not. When push comes to shove, eventually they are going to make their own decisions.

I notice that you spend a great deal of time concerned about how much consideration the Palin children are getting, their needs for attention, the burdens that might be placed on the other children. Just out of curiosity, do you have any idea how much "face time" the Obama children are getting while mom and dad are working more than full time? Your experience is with special needs kids. Mine is with gifted kids, as in my own. Every child needs proper attention and a proper environment. Having one full time caregiver parent is a lot more than many get these days. You mentioned double standards and hypocrisy. Why criticize the Palins and not the Obamas? Why the extreme concern for one? I mean, I know that special needs children have "special needs," but I'll side with the comment above. I don't see one class of child any more needful or deserving of special parental consideration than another. That's not intended to be disrespectful of the challenges special needs parents face. That's a statement based on the faith that God gives us the children that we are suited to raise. If any of us fail in that regard by not doing our best, we will answer for it. I can't bring myself to think of one as more important than another (except that I am primarily responsible for my own).

I agree that neither the Spears nor the Palins nor anyone else should have their family submitted to that kind of public scrutiny, but I'll blame the press for that one. Just because they have the right to print the story, that doesn't make it ethical or necessary. More hypocrisy: I seem to recall the media echoing great privacy rights concerns with regards to things like abortion records and potential searches by homeland security, yet they'll strip a family bare to sell papers or get video, pictures, etc.

And yes, for what it's worth, if you think that more should be required of a mother than a father in the present situation, I do think that's sexist. I would be the first to agree that A PARENT should be taking personal charge of the situation. I see no reason why the mother is more obligated. In my experience, more women than men would want to, but I'm married to another engineer and I know that not all women fit the same mold.

Mike,

I noted your question up there. I invest considerable thought and energy into the comments I post, and while I have good sense of humor (I think) I treat spiritual matters with great seriousness. If I put the time and effort in, I expect anyone I converse with to do the same. Your "teasing" and lack of response to my other comments and inquiries makes it difficult for me to trust that you will respond in good faith. I'm afraid it just isn't worth the aggravation.

spud tooley said...

God gives us the children that we are suited to raise.

i would be appalled by this statement, but it is nebulous enough to mean anything. but it seems you're implying that someone raising a healthy, fully functional child and someone raising a child that requires much more attention have equal tasks because God assigned the kids based on what the moms could handle?

mike rucker

Gary Baker said...

Mike,

"Your "teasing" and lack of response to my other comments and inquiries makes it difficult for me to trust that you will respond in good faith. I'm afraid it just isn't worth the aggravation."

spud tooley said...

is there an echo in here?

?ereh ni ohce na ereht si


mr

Umm Yasmin said...

Wow this thread moved quick. As the original UY - I thought I'd post a response.

Because God knows the past, present and future, and He knows exactly who is going to be born, He would of course know and be able to forecast and predict through scripture *only* those "products of conception of an egg and sperm" that actually develop into human beings.

This is actually the Islamic position. That ensoulment - the moment that a soul is breathed into a foetus, and thus becomes human - does not occur at conception but many days later.

Now, I am not a Christian so the Biblical verses don't have authority for me, but I note they certainly can be read in the Islamic way (and that is what the Qur'an says its for - to interpret and authenticate what are genuine in previous scriptures). All of those verses you quote, indicate that the baby in the womb is more developed than just immediately after conception, ie. leaping in the womb; twins struggling etc.

And God's foreknowledge would only apply to those foetuses that actually had ensoulment and became human. Thus, any product of conception has the same rank and status as an early miscarriage, or spilled sperm, or the introduction of genetic material artificially inserted into a cultivated egg etc. etc. etc.

Christinewjc said...

Here's a great quote for the day:

"Abortion is advocated only by persons who have themselves been born."
– – Ronald Reagan

spud tooley said...

quite similar to the calvinist view of election, is it not?

aren't you up awful early? did 'the globe' or 'world weekly' put up some new obama stories or something?...

mr

Sosthenes said...

Yasmin,

Christians were obligated to accept the New Testament of Muhammad's day (seventh century A.D., 10:94) so why not you?

Sosthenes

Christinewjc said...

Mike,

Our dog woke me up that early. Went back to sleep an hour later.

While checking my email, I found that quote.

Gary Baker said...

Jaded,

I need to amend a previous statement. I do not consider you a sexist. I don't know you well enough to determine whether you are or not. Based on what you relayed, I consider you to have a sexist attitude in that particular view. I detest overly broad statements about people based on limited data. I usually do not apply them. I apologize for doing so in your case.

Umm Yasmin said...

Sosthenes said:

"Christians were obligated to accept the New Testament of Muhammad's day (seventh century A.D., 10:94) so why not you?"

Peace!
Very briefly, the ayah you referred to (10:94) is part of a passage where God informs us of the historical fate of those who rejected his revelations in the course of history (as a warning to us today).

The punishments given to people throughout the course of human history is something with which the Jews and Christians are well familiar. Hence if I were to ask any Christian or Jew reading this thread:

"What is the punishment given to people if they reject God's covenant."

I am pretty sure you would all answer, 'punishment, damnation, and hellfire unless they repent'.

This is not the same thing as saying that the text of the New Testament is the 'Injeel' given to Prophet Jesus, but that's a different conversation.

Warm regards
Umm Yasmin

Sosthenes said...

Yasmin,

That is pretty good but it isn't a complete revelation of God's message.

Luke 9:53 And they did not receive him, because his face was as though he would go to Jerusalem.

Luke 9:54 And when his disciples James and John saw [this], they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did?

Luke 9:55 But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of.

Luke 9:56 For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save [them]. And they went to another village.

The covenant was based on God's faithfulness and not man's faithfulness and because man can't be faithful, Jesus had to go to the cross.

You can make people submit but you can't change a stubborn man's heart. You can make me submit but I'm rebelling on the inside.

The law came by moses by grace and truth came by Jesus Christ (John 1:14-17).

It is the grace of God that changes people's lives.

Romans 2:4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?

God initiates love and we respond:

1 John 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us.

spud tooley said...

sosthenes - that was well said.

i especially like this comment:

You can make people submit but you can't change a stubborn man's heart. You can make me submit but I'm rebelling on the inside.

in light of every knee bowing and every tongue confessing that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of the Father, i welcome you into the ranks of God-will-save-all universalism! it took my stubborn heart and head a long time to admit it, too - but it's good to see there's always another old dog a few tricks behind me. calvinists have one thing right: that irresistable grace deal. how did we not understand that? right there in front of us all the time.

welcome aboard, man!

mike rucker

Sosthenes said...

Mike,

Either I deceived you into thinking that it was that easy or you must think that you can get away with something with me.

It is a good answer for someone of a different faith but you should know better.

Sosthenes

Christinewjc said...

Well, look at this stat:

Parents key to cutting abortions on minors
Procedures drop 13.6 percent when just mom or dad notified


No wonder Planned Infanticide hates parental notification laws. It cuts deeply into their profits from in utero baby killing.

Umm Yasmin said...

Peace!

It is true, Sosthenes, that we understand the requirements of accepting God's covenant differently. For Christians, it is acceptance of the substitutionary atonement, for Muslims it is acceptance of absolute monotheism and responding to the revelations that God gives us through His Prophets.

Nevertheless, we can agree on the idea that God asks something of us (however you understand that something to be).