The Sanctity of Life
“In the beginning God created….” All human life is created by and from the hands of God and is therefore precious. Man and Woman are created in the image of God1 and as a result are holy unto Him. From the moment of conception, God forms and fashions us into unique creations and He controls our destinies.2 As image bearers of God, Man and Woman have inherent worth. Mankind’s worth is further demonstrated by the incarnation of Jesus Christ and His sacrificial death and resurrection so that we may receive forgiveness for our sins and be reconciled to Him.3 Our bodies are described as a temple for the Holy Spirit, that is to be presented as a holy and living sacrifice.4 We are called to honor children as a blessing5, honor each other in relationships6, respect our elders7, and hold all life as sacred.8
At Fellowship Bible Church, we believe that human life possesses a beautiful sanctity which is endowed by our awesome Creator-King. This belief in the sanctity of life leads us to specific stances on a number of issues, including those below.
Fellowship Bible Church soundly and completely believes that abortion is the murder of a defenseless child who is created in God’s image.9 This encompasses any intentional termination of a pregnancy, including the use of abortifacient drugs (i.e. “morning after pill”). To borrow from a statement of the Christian Medical and Dental Association on the moral worth of human life, “The moral worth of human beings is absolute and eternal. God has created humans in his image; therefore, human life has intrinsic moral worth.
To further borrow from this beautifully written statement:
“The beginning and continuity of the moral worth of human life are concurrent with human life itself. Human worth begins with the one-cell human embryo and lasts lifelong. A living human being is an integrated organism with the genetic endowment of the species Homo sapiens. This includes the inherent active biological disposition for ordered growth and development in a continuous and seamless maturation process. It also includes the potential to manifest such fundamental traits as rationality, self-awareness, communication, and relationship with God, other human beings, and the environment. Thus a human being, despite the expression of different and more mature secondary characteristics, has genetic and ontological identity and continuity throughout all stages of development from formation of the human being until death. Human embryos are not “potential” human beings; rather, they are human beings with potential. Moral worth is not dependent on potential.”
Read the full statement from Christian Medical and Dental Association Here.
Although the culture around us would prefer to make exceptions to such a stance, any exceptions inherently place more value on one life over another, which is contrary to Scripture.10 Having said that abortion is murder of a human and thus sin, the Gospel tells us that Jesus Christ died and rose as a propitiation for all sin.11 Abortion often leaves deep spiritual and emotional scars on parents’ hearts–the amazing news of the Gospel is grace and forgiveness for this as well as any other sin! As a church, we desire to care for those who are struggling with the realities of a past abortion or a current “unplanned” pregnancy by welcoming them, offering them support and counseling, and supporting ministries that offer support and alternatives like foster and adoptive care.
PEOPLE WITH SPECIAL NEEDS
As we have noted already, ALL human life is created in the image of God and is thus sacred.12 This includes people with severe illnesses, chromosomal aberrations, and injuries that cause the LORD’s precious children to exist with impairments to physical and cognitive functioning that are often severe. Such impairments do NOTHING to lessen the worth of these individuals in the eyes of the Father, in fact, He uses them to glorify Himself in powerful ways unique to them.13 In fact, Jesus Christ was notably drawn to the crippled and sick during His time on Earth.14 At Fellowship Bible Church, we believe that the Gospel compels us particularly to reach out to families of individuals with special needs. We would completely reject any and all cultural or governmental policy efforts that would seem to diminish the worth of these precious souls.
END OF LIFE CARE/EUTHANASIA
The intentional taking of human life is wrong.15 The Oxford Dictionary defines euthanasia as “the painless killing of a patient suffering from an incurable and painful disease or in an irreversible coma.” It is critically important to note the use of the word “killing.” That word implies intent to end life, which is an altogether different issue than that of a suffering patient being allowed to die painlessly, such as when pain medications are administered to a patient with a terminal disease with the intent of easing suffering, or when, for perceived quality-of-life issues, a patient chooses to forgo life-sustaining technologies that might otherwise maintain his/her physiological functions. At Fellowship Bible Church, we believe that physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia defy God’s commandment not to murder.16 Alternatively, trusting in the Bible’s promises that the LORD is sovereign over the number of our days and months17, Fellowship Bible Church believes that the use of palliative care treatments (such as pain medications towards the end of life) and a patient and/or family’s well-informed decision not to pursue certain treatments or technologies that they view as more burdensome than beneficial, are well-supported by Scripture. Such decisions are always difficult and emotionally wrenching for patients and families. The pastors and elders of Fellowship Bible Church stand ready to attempt to offer not only comfort but Biblical counsel in these incredibly difficult situations. (Recommended resource: Basic Questions on End of Life Decisions: How Do We Know What Is Right? By John Frederic Kilner)
1Genesis 1:27; 2Psalm 139:15-16; Job 10:8-9, 11-12; Jeremiah 1:5; Isaiah 49:1,5; 31 Peter 1:18-19; John 3:16-17; 41 Corinthians 3:16-17; Romans 12:1; 5Psalm 127:3-5; Proverbs 17:5-6; 61 Peter 3:1-7; 7Leviticus 19:32; Proverbs 23:22; 8Exodus 20:13; 9Genesis 1:27; Exodus 20:13; 10Genesis 1:26-27; Galatians 3:28; 111 John 1:9; 1 John 4:10; 12Genesis 1:27; 13Psalm 127:1; Psalm 8:4-6; Job 12:10; 14Matthew 10:7-8; John 9:1-11; Luke 4:18; 15Exodus 20:13; Genesis 9:5-6; 16Exodus 20:13; 17 Jeremiah 1:4-5