About Life


The world we live in is moving away from the truths and principles set out clearly in the word of God with increasing rapidity. The common view is that only you can decide what is right for you’ or what your truth is’: but the Christian is measured by a higher standard. We should always seek to find out what God says, what His standards are and try our utmost to live by them. One example of this is in the value we place on life. While we cannot deal extensively with this subject, I want to remind you of what the biblical standpoint is on such an important issue, so that you can apply these principles when faced with emotive arguments or presented with difficult circumstances.

Life is precious

The Bible teaches that life is precious and has value because every human being is made in the image of God. Gen. 9. 6. This is the reason why taking a human life is prohibited, as it is explicitly stated in the sixth commandment in Exodus chapter 20 verse 13, ‘thou shalt not kill’. This over-riding principle holds true regardless of the temptation to abort life in light of any deformities, disabilities, or deterioration that may exist in the unborn child. Whenever we are discussing abortion or euthanasia, we must remember that God values life and holds us accountable should we choose to violate His prohibition by taking a life - Hands that shed innocent blood’ are ‘an abomination unto him’, Prov. 6. 16. 17.

Life is provided

Life and death are in God’s hands — Job chapter 33 verse 4 tells us, ‘the Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life’. We are also told that ‘he giveth to all life, and breath’, Acts 17. 25. God not only gives life, but He also sustains it. Our breath is in His hands, Dan. 5. 23, and only He has the moral right to determine when life ends. We do not have the right to determine when someone is no longer fit to live, or of any value in society, and whether their life should be terminated. Every life is precious to Him and is provided by Him. Every child, regardless of physical attributes or mental capability, is a ‘heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward’, Ps. 127. 3.

Life should be protected

If we believe what the Bible teaches, that life is precious and taking a life is prohibited, then the only question with regards to abortion is at what point does an unborn baby become a human being? We know that killing a child is wrong but does a baby only become a human being when they are no longer dependent on their parents? Or when they are new-born?

Or when they first have a heartbeat? What does the scripture say? While it does not give us a specific timeline, it is clear, from Psalm 139 verses 13 to 16, that God creates, cares for, and knows each baby in the womb in a miraculous way. We are indeed fearfully and wonderfully made’, v. 14. The words used in verse 15. ‘curiously wrought’ have the thought of needlework or embroidery, giving us a clear understanding of the intricate care God has for, and the value He places on, babies in the womb. From the point of fertilization, each baby has its own unique set of DNA and is a distinct being that, within a matter of a few weeks, will start developing organs and a central nervous system. In Luke chapter 1 verse 41: chapter 2 verse 12, and chapter 18 verse 15, the same word is used to describe an unborn baby, a new-born baby and infants. From this we see that God places no distinction on the importance of a child’s life regardless of the stage of development. From the moment life exists, at the time of fertilization, that life should be cherished and protected, regardless of the challenges that could be faced post-birth or the circumstances that brought about the conception of the child.

Life has purpose

The final point I want to consider is the purpose of life. God provides life and sustains life for a purpose. ‘All things are created by him, and for him’, Col. 1. 16. God has a purpose for each life - even if life, for some, appears in our limited estimation to be less meaningful or worthwhile. Our lives here on earth are only temporary which makes them even more precious, as it is only in this life that we can prepare for eternity. Therefore, we should live our lives and make our decisions with an eternal perspective. Circumstances that we would not choose for ourselves can develop Christian character and can be used as a means of glorifying God. Many a saint caring for terminally ill loved ones has been a living example of the unconditional love of God. Their gracious character and peace in the face of tremendous difficulties is a bright testimony to carers and unsaved relatives, and. indeed, other believers looking on. Prematurely terminating a life, either at the beginning or end of life, would rob us of the opportunity to glorify Him. Scripture reminds us that ‘as for God, his way is perfect’, Ps. 18. 30. His will for our lives is perfect, even if our understanding of it is at times clouded by the difficulty of present circumstances that we are called to pass through.

The dilemmas and difficulties that are often raised in relation to this subject need an abundance of grace and compassion. The principles of the preciousness, provision and purpose of life should, however, reaffirm our appreciation of the sanctity of life and instil in us a desire to protect it.