Thinking with grace rather than justice, part 9; John 15:18.

Thinking with grace rather than justice, part 9; John 15:18.


Taboo: Any social prohibition or restriction that results from convention or tradition.


2. Abortion has become one of the greatest distractions to Christianity in recent history.


Why am I doing this? It would be so much easier to pass this over, but as we are inclined by G/HS to study the kosmos that same Spirit inclined me to take up this topic.


Concerning such things as abortion, homosexuality, birth control, morality, etc. the Church at large, meaning the biggest and most organized denominations have gotten involved in these ills of society in an effort to correct them. “The Church will lead the way,” is their battle cry. Lead the way in what? Interestingly many of the things that are considered social ills were not thought to be so in generations past. Slavery, alcohol (prohibition), Indians, etc. were once the hot topic. How long a skirt was, smoking, pants on women, hair length on men, facial hair (on men), jazz music, rock music, etc. at some point have been the top priorities of the popular church. Why hasn’t grace been the top priority?


I have many biblical commentaries and I like several of them particularly. But when it comes to this topic almost none of them state the case as God has.


ABORTION (from McClintock and Strong Encyclopedia)

The crime of procuring abortion is little noticed in the earliest laws. It is a crime of civilization; in a barbarous state of society the parallel crime is infanticide (i.e. murder of infants). The practice was horribly prevalent among the Romans of the empire, although punishable with banishment and sometimes with death, and was a ground of accusation by the early Christians against the heathen. Tertullian (200 AD) denounces the practice as homicidal, declaring it to be but the anticipation or hastening of murder. "Prevention of birth is the precipitation of murder." Minucius Felix (a few decades later) declares it to be parricide (murdering of a parent). The Council of Ancyra ( A.D. 314) limited its punishment to ten years' penance (in this same council they doled out penance for bestiality and other such things). The Council of Lerida (324) classes the crime with infanticide, but allows the mother to be received to communion after seven years' penance, even when her sin was complicated with adultery. The Council of Trullo classes it with homicide. Pope Gregory III (730 AD), in the next century, reverts to the ten years' penance, but modifies the sentence to a single year in cases where the child has not been formed in the womb: this is based on Ex 21. By the Visigothic law, the person who administered a draught for the purpose was punished with death.


What’s missing here? Scripture!


He did quote Exodus 21, in which there is an important list of verses under God’s Law.


Ex 21:12 He who strikes a man so that he dies shall surely be put to death.


Ex 21:13 But if he did not lie in wait for him, but God let him fall into his hand, then I will appoint you a place to which he may flee.


Ex 21:14 If, however, a man acts presumptuously toward his neighbor, so as to kill him craftily, you are to take him even from My altar, that he may die.


Ex 21:22 And if men struggle with each other and strike a woman with child so that she has a miscarriage, yet there is no further injury, he shall surely be fined as the woman's husband may demand of him; and he shall pay as the judges decide.


Ex 21:23 But if there is any further injury, then you shall appoint as a penalty life for life,


Ex 21:24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,


Ex 21:25 burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.


Justice scales are adjusted so as to be in balance.


Another likeable author that I enjoy went on and on about homosexuals and their struggle in the church, of which I agree in part, but I think he misses the main issue, and he goes on to say that the Bible doesn’t talk about it much, at least not as much as grace, forgiveness, and mercy; of which I agree completely, and then he went on and on about abortion and its evils and never mentioned that the Bible doesn’t address it hardly at all if at all. What was missing in his communication? Scripture! Why be academically sound with one taboo and emotional on another? 


I am not condoning or condemning. I must admit that I have my own emotional attachment to the subject or practice, but in order to be clear, as clear as we are on the work of Christ on the cross, we must go to the Scripture. The Scripture is clear on the boundaries of life being from birth to death and not conception to death. Does this condone abortion? No. Did the scripture condone slavery? No. Did it condemn slavery? No.


What we will see is that the Bible, most specially the NT, talks to individual believers and not to a nation or a group. How can you control the thoughts or actions of another? You cannot, the Bible tells us not to even try or to even judge and to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling.


The Romans practiced abortion and just as often or even more often they would leave an unwanted new-born in the field or alley or wherever for the animals to get and kill if it didn’t die from the elements first. It was called exposure and it wasn’t a capital offense until 374 AD but offenders were rarely if ever prosecuted. No one’s told you that have they? The Greeks did the same thing. They didn’t call it murder because the belief was that the gods might rescue it or some passerby and if not then that’s what the gods wanted.


According to mythological legend, Romulus and Remus, twin infant sons of the war god, Mars, survived near-infanticide after being tossed into the Tiber River. According to the mythology, they were raised by wolves and later founded the city of Rome. How convenient.


Why didn’t Jesus and Paul speak out about it and tell the Christian community to band together and put a stop to it?


In the Church-age the target of grace and truth is the individual believer and not the society as a whole. The blessing from God to a society depends upon the pivot of individual mature believers.


It does not depend on their involvement in social issues or in government. As goes the believer so goes the nation. What was Christ busy doing? What was Paul busy doing? Christ came to seek and save those who were lost and Paul was a minister of that gospel, as were the other apostles.


People are responsible for their own decisions and God will deal with each one of us. If someone dropped an infant on your doorstep you might raise it as one of your own in love; that’s mercy. Another person might throw it in the trash; that’s evil. But who is to decide another’s mercy or evil? Each will answer to God, but not in justice, in grace.


Each person will answer to God alone for human good, certain evils, grace, mercy, or divine good, but never for person sin outside of rejecting Christ.


This is of course outside the laws of the nation which has authority from God to prosecute criminals justly. Yet even then, God will be the ultimate Judge.


I believe that’s why God led me to this part of life in the kosmos. It gets people emotionally charged and opinionated and when that happens the justice scales come out and grace is tucked away as if it never was.


Pro-life and pro-choice have divided believers and unbelievers as well as political parties. The reason this falls under a taboo is that the fight for one or the other is emotionally charged and not Biblically based. Show me a verse where God forbids abortion. He is curiously silent on the subject.


What would also be a taboo is if I didn’t have the fortitude to teach this. It would be a lot easier for me to pass it over since it is such an emotionally charged subject, but I would be falling under the yoke of popular opinion and not the truth. God does have much to say about life in the womb.


Gen 1:27 And God created [barah – to make something from nothing] man in His own image, in the image of God He created [barah] him; male and female He created them.


barah (Gen 1:27) = to create something out of nothing, needing no preexisting materials.


God’s image is not a biological system surrounded by a large organ called the epidermis, but a soul that has mentality, volition, self-consciousness, conscience, and emotion.


Chalked up to evolution by the masses this immaterial part of man is impossible to evolve just as his complex organic biological mechanisms.


Gen 2:7a Then the Lord God formed [yatsar – make out of preexisting material] man of dust from the ground,


yatsar (Gen 2:7) = to make out of preexisting materials referring to the body of man or his biological mechanisms.


This is the only time He would do this in the forming of the two first humans since after this the biological part of man is made mediate in the womb of the mother.


Gen 2:7b and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life [plural – soul and spirit]; and man became a living being.


Only after the breath of lives did the man become a living being.


Gen 1:26 Then God said, "Let Us make [asah – to form or make after a pattern] man in Our image, according to Our likeness;


asah (Gen 1:26) = to form or make after a pattern. The form is the image of God which is spiritual and not physical. God is not bounded by a body.


Isa 42:5

Thus says God the Lord,

Who created [past tense] the heavens and stretched them out,

Who spread out [past] the earth and its offspring,

Who gives [present] breath to the people on it,

And spirit to those who walk in it,


A fetus does not breathe until it exits the womb.


The development of biological life in the womb is entirely dependent on the mother. Soul life is dependent entirely on God. The original breath of life — the moment Adam became a human being — set the pattern for the first dramatic instant of human life for all humanity. A newborn baby draws its first breath when God imparts His divine breath into the infant’s nostrils. This is soul life created and combined with the biological life of the newly emerged child.


Every soul was known in eternity past. They are God’s possession and He imputed them to bodies at birth as He wished. If there is a still birth or an abortion God knew about it in eternity past and no soul was destined for it, but for some other body.


Certain passages of Scripture declare the continuation of God’s direct role in creating human life after the Fall. These passages speak literally of immediate, not mediate, creation by God.


Isa 2:22

Stop regarding man, whose breath of life [neshamah] is in his nostrils;


Isa 57:16

"For I will not contend forever,

Neither will I always be angry;

For the spirit would grow faint before Me,

And the breath of those whom I have made.


Numerous other passages of Old Testament Scripture confirm God as the continuing Creator of human life.


After the Fall God did not delegate the prerogative of reproducing human life to mankind.


The Book of Job affirms that God continues to establish human life. During overwhelming suffering Job unquestionably recognizes God’s indispensable role. After Job lost his wealth and saw his servants and children slain, he states:


Job 1:21 "Naked I came from my mother's womb [mibeten],

And naked I shall return there.

The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away.

Blessed be the name of the Lord."


min – from; beten – womb. The Hebrew combines them into one word – mibeten = from the womb.


Another preposition could easily be used to indicate “in the womb.”


At death the soul and the body separate and return to their origins, Eccl 12:7.


Eccl 12:7

then the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.


The body formed in the womb of the mother is formed directly from the ground. Our increase in mass in the womb and after birth comes from what we eat. Fruits and vegetables come from the ground and the animals eat those to build their own muscle which we eat. The chemicals that make up every part of our biological mass and function come from the ground.


[slide: periodic table]


Almost all of them can be found in trace amounts but these are the main 25 and all our found in the soil.


Job 33:4 The Spirit of God has made me,

And the breath of the Almighty gives me life.


Zech 12:1

Thus declares the Lord who stretches out the heavens, lays the foundation of the earth, and forms the spirit of man within him


As the body and brain form in the womb the genetic code of the mother and father are in every cell along with the father’s OSN. When the soul is imputed by God at birth it is immediately influenced by the genetic code and OSN. I picture it like putting milk in a vat full of cultures which will quickly infiltrate the milk’s molecular balance and curdle it; or a perfectly healthy person walking into a day care in the middle of winter and getting infected with a flu virus or cold. The soul breathes and the first thing it breathes is genetic information and OSN virus. The soul immediately becomes a prisoner of the OSN and so God does not become the author of sin, nor of the tendencies of the sin nature.


The boundaries of physical life:


Eccl 3:2

A time to give birth, and a time to die;


Isa 9:6

 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;


Matt 11:11

"Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist;


Luke 2:11

for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.

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