For the month of March, our church is focusing on the Sanctity of Human Life and how we can support ministries that specifically help with unplanned pregnancies. Because we are focusing on this, I thought it would be beneficial to write a series of blog posts on Pro-Life Apologetics. My hope is that these posts will equip you to discuss the issue of abortion with your friends and family and help convince them that abortion is an insidious evil that needs to be stopped.
Over the past 44 years, 56+ Million unborn human beings have been murdered in America. The main reason given for these killings is convenience. Some have tried to justify these murders by claiming that the victim’s quality of life wouldn’t have been very good, so it is reasonable to murder them in order to avoid the real tragedy of living below the poverty line. Abortion is a heinous evil that is happening all around us, although it is kept out of sight, hiding behind the guise of a medical procedure. We live amid a culture of death, but as Christians we have been called to do justice (Micah 6:8). It is an injustice for vulnerable, innocent people to be killed merely because they are unwanted. As believers in the life giving God, it is our duty to fight for the lives of these unborn human beings. So, how can we do this? Well, I think it starts by showing our friends, family and neighbors that abortion is the taking of an innocent human life, and not merely the removal of non-human tissue.
Most people who believe abortion is permissible do so based on the faulty premise that an unborn baby is not a human being. If we can show people that the unborn are human beings, they will most likely change their stance on abortion because most people do not think it is permissible to murder innocent, defenseless human beings. What I want to share with you in this blog is a simple method that will help you dialogue with abortion advocates about the humanity of the unborn.
Remember that the only question worth discussing in this debate is: “What is the unborn?” If it is a human being, there is no argument that will justify killing it. If the unborn is not a human being, then there is no need for arguments to justify it. No one tries to justify why they removed their gall bladder, tonsils, or an abscessed tooth, and if the unborn is merely tissue, there is no need to justify its removal. When talking about abortion, many people get off track from the real issue and begin arguing about choice, rape, and finances. Don’t fall for this. Stay on topic and discuss the only issue worth discussing, “What is the unborn?”.
Memorize the S.L.E.D. test. This is an acronym that stands for Size, Level of Development,Environment, and Degree of dependency.
Does the size of a person determine their value? Most would say that it doesn’t. Are professional NFL or NBA athletes more or less valuable because of they are generally bigger than the rest of the population? Are infants less valuable because they are smaller than most of the rest of humanity? Does size equal value? It doesn’t. A human person is valuable, not because of their size, but because of the type of being that they are. Although a human being is smaller in size during the nine months it is in the womb, it is no less valuable than larger human beings.
Level of Development
Is human value based upon our abilities? Are female toddlers who have not gone through puberty and cannot reproduce any less valuable than adult women who can reproduce? Are middle school boys less valuable than adults because their brains have not developed to the point of having critical thinking skills such as abstract thought? Of course not. Human value is not determined based on what abilities or lack of abilities a person has. Just because a fetus’ brain or respiratory system hasn’t developed to a certain stage does not make them any less human.
Does a person’s location determine their value? If a person crosses an international border into another country, are they less valuable? If a person goes from the second story of their house to the first story, are they less than human? It does not make any sense that a human being can lose their value based on a change of location. Whether a person is in the womb or out of the womb cannot change their value or who they are.
Degree of Dependency
If a person is dependent on something for their viability, does that make them less than human? Diabetics are dependent on insulin, college students are typically dependent on their parent’s money, those with heart failure are dependent on their pacemakers. Are people in these situations less valuable than other human beings? Of course not. The argument that a baby in the womb is not a person until it is viable to live outside of the womb is untrue. That type of logic is flawed. I have yet to meet a newborn who is self-sufficient to survive on its own. Newborns are helpless. They cannot feed themselves, change their diapers, or even roll over. No one argues that a newborn baby isn’t a human being just because it is dependent on others for its survival. Why is it different when the baby is dependent on its mother while in the womb?
The S.L.E.D. test is a great tool to help show that there is no reason for believing that an unborn human is any less valuable than those who have been born. When you can convince others that the unborn is a human being, they will typically abandon their support for abortion.
Next week we will discuss how to keep a conversation focused on the main issue of the abortion debate, “What is the Unborn?”.