Which passages of the Bible do you agree with? And which ones cause you to go looking for another passage to prove your own point? Which path leads to God’s kingdom?

When Does Abortion Become Murder?

The Pennsylvania woman DID NOT flush her healthy baby down the toilet. She instead KILLS HER BABY by stashing the precious child in a toilet tank. Flushed was bad choice of words (I apologize), but the point of the post has not changed. What is sad is to see so many hung up on that one detail instead of the tragedy itself. So again I make the point that she killed her child and is facing capital murder charges…SO WHY IS IT CONSIDERED MURDER? Had she went to an abortionist an hour earlier and had her baby slaughtered and ripped to pieces than it would not have been considered murder?
Faithfully, Ellie S. Benghazi

Hello Ms Benghazi,

Thank you for writing with your profound questions.

This is indeed a struggle, especially with an event so tragic. I see that you are Christian, so I will work with those values.

SO WHY IS IT CONSIDERED MURDER? Had she went to [a doctor] an hour earlier and had her baby slaughtered and ripped to pieces than it would not have been considered murder?

This is an excellent question. In a society that says one state of aliveness is important and another is not, how do we determine what is and isn’t murder? Executing a prisoner is not murder. A soldier killing an unarmed person is not murder. A police offers shooting an unarmed teenager is not murder, neither is a neighborhood watch vigilante doing the same thing. And if this woman hadn’t killed her child, the child may have grown up without health care. Would it have been murder if the child died from disease? Would it be murder to offer the choice between minimum wage and a life of crime?

I understand your confusion greatly. The world offers no easy answers. So let’s look at the law.

Pennsylvania law says: It would have been murder.

Pennsylvania law requires a counseling session before any abortion, and then at least 24 hours after that. She would have needed an illegal abortion, and it might have been considered murder. Plus most babies take much more than an hour to be born, so even if she started an hour before going into labor, the baby would have been born by the 24 waiting period, and that doesn’t even include the time it would take to make an appointment – which has to be done after the counseling session. Ever tried to make an appointment with a doctor in less than 24 hours? It doesn’t happen unless you have MONEY, and this woman does not seem to be rich.

Whoever told you that she could have gotten a last hour abortion, getting away with murder, was a liar. This was a desperate woman who was unable to seek help of any kind. She needed love, and all she got was hate and fear.

How can we justify an opinion of when life begins? Well, here’s mine in a Christian context:
Ezekiel 37:5-6 “This is what the Lord God says to these bones: ‘I will make breath come into you, and you will come to life. 6 I will join you together, make flesh grow back on you, cover you with skin, and put breath in you to make you come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.'”

Job 33:4 “The Spirit of God has made me. And the breath of the All-powerful gives me life.”

Human life clearly begins with breath, and a fetus does not become a baby until it leaves the mother and breathes.

However, I think that is a bit strong, and in the final months of the fetus being a fetus, I think there needs to be some serious consideration. Many couples would love to adopt a newborn, and even if the mother’s life is at stake, a baby can survive out of the womb, get life’s breath earlier than designed, and live a long and healthy life. But now we are leaving the Bible and going into my opinion. And I should consider your opinion (which I think is clear) and the opinion of women who are not free to choose their own lives, as well as my own.

I’m going to have to go with Jesus, and his love everyone commandment, here, which means I’ll have to love the millions of women whose lives are saved, and also the millions of people who cannot afford higher taxes to pay for unwanted babies, and a foster care system that is already burdened with children whose parents could not take care of them, and the hundreds of millions of children whose lives are saved and made better by their parents being able to decide when to have them, and making sure that they can raise them and educate them to be the best people they can manage.

None of this helps if you believe that abortion is murder, which you might believe if you hold the opinion that it begins at conception, or if you believe as many scientists do, that life begins before conception – about 3.5 billion years before, and has been an unbroken chain of life from the first organism to all ~107 people who just died in the past minute.

So, is abortion the same as murder?
Exodus 22:23
“If men fight with each other and hit a woman who is going to have a child so that she loses her baby but no other hurt comes to her, he must pay whatever the woman’s husband says he must, as agreed upon by the judges.”

Doesn’t seem to matter when that happens, so by the bible you could have an abortion with 1 hour to go. Looks like Pennsylvania Law is more strict than Old Testament Law.

What if one of the adults are hurt?
Exodus 22:24-25
“But if there is other hurt also, then it is life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, cut for cut, sore for sore.”

So a clear distinction is made, losing a baby is not “harm.” Wow. Also, look at that sexism. The husband gets to decide? Since when do husbands get to decide what is and isn’t fair? Who decides what is and isn’t harm?

It shouldn’t be too surprising for the time before Christ, but the cruelty is greater than you and I share with this tragedy in our minds. I’m going to stick with Jesus and say that aborting a woman’s pregnancy is determined by the woman, not her husband or anyone else. I know this because if I were pregnant, and needed to make such a hard choice as getting an abortion, then it would be up to me, not some man, to decide if that is or isn’t harmful. I would also consult with a doctor and search deep within myself to make sure I can live with the choice I’m going to make.

We also live among non-Christians, and have to come to an agreement. But lucky, in this case, an hour before or days later, the facts are pretty clear. I don’t think I have to tell you that this is clearly a woman in a state of emergency. As if killing her own child wasn’t enough, she comes out of the bathroom, stained in blood, and watches TV? She needed healing long before now. She wasn’t able to ask for help for herself, much less her child or her pregnancy. We are meeting her at the end of a tragic and heart breaking story.

Maybe this woman had a chance to get an abortion, not an hour before, but months before. Maybe when she first discovered she was pregnant, she decided to get an abortion. But then she talked to her friends, her family, her church, and her doctor, and they all convinced her to keep the baby. They reminded her of the joy of children, of how hard but rewarding they are. So, she decided that God had a plan, for her to be a mother at the young age of 26.

And then she was in a sports bar, and went into labor, and realized that she cannot raise a child. Everyone in her life told her what they wanted to believe, not what she needed to hear. And now, she’s trapped an alone in a filthy bathroom, giving birth to a new human that she’ll have to raise alone. Of course, none of this is true, but truth never is found in our fear and anger. So, she imagined this child’s future, being raised by a mom with so many problems, in a world that doesn’t care about life after a child is born, and she made the worst choice she’s ever made in her life.

As you do, I hope God’s love and forgiveness find the mother and her child and heal them, one in life, one in death. And I hope we come away from this seeing, once again, how compassion for all humans, not just the ones inside wombs who have yet to breathe, but humans from ages zero all the way to death, compassion and love could have prevented this tragedy.

Let go of your revulsion and hate and fear over what she did, and embrace your love and compassion to help us create a world where this will, hopefully, never happen again.

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