imageI’ve posted on a Biblical basis for personhood of the preborn, and then most recently blogged on God’s ownership of us and His creation.  The next thing to look at as we discuss a biblical/theological framework for the pro-life position is the question – who has the prerogative over human life and death?

“‘See now that I, even I, am he,
and there is no god beside me;
I kill and I make alive;
I wound and I heal;
and there is none that can deliver out of my hand,” (Deuteronomy 32:39, ESV)

The Lord in this verse and the surround passage speaks of Himself as the only true God who controls all of life and history.  In the verse above he says – “See now” – this is a personal assertion and suggests strong feeling on God’s part.  The Hebrew word is this passage means “understand.”  What did God want the Israelites to understand as Moses was reciting the song that the Lord gave to him?  That the Lord is God.  This assertion is made even more emphatic by repetition of the first person pronoun.  “I, even I and the assertion “am he”

The reality of the Lord being God is seen in what He does: He can put to death and He gives life – in that He can rescue and He creates.  He is the one who wounded Israel due to their disobedience and He is the only one who can heal.  No one can rescue Israel’s enemies out of his hand.  He is God.  He is in control.

In relation to abortion – God has exclusive prerogatives over human life and death.  Not the mother (or in some instances, the state, like in China’s case which has practiced forced abortions to enforce their one child policy), but God alone.

Another passage that relates to this one;

The Lord kills and brings to life;
he brings down to Sheol and raises up, (1 Samuel 2:6, ESV)

Sung by Hannah who was considered barren as she prayed to God the only One who can change her circumstances.  Throughout her entire prayer in 1 Samuel 2 you see that God is control.

“You shall not murder,” (Exodus 20:13, ESV)

The theological presumption behind this commandment is that all humans have been created in the image of God, (Genesis 1:26-27).  Hebrew possesses seven words for killing, the word used in Exodus 20:13 is rasah and it appears only forty-seven times in the Old Testament.  This is the only word that could signify murder where premeditation and intentionality are present.

Because of this, one can not rightly apply this command to accidental killing, self-defense, capital punishment or just war.  Except when God specifically delegates that right to man (government – see Romans 13) God alone has the right to take a human life.

And for your lifeblood I will require a reckoning: from every beast I will require it and from man. From his fellow man I will require a reckoning for the life of man.

“Whoever sheds the blood of man,
by man shall his blood be shed,
for God made man in his own image, (Genesis 9:5-6, ESV)

God demands the accounting, a reckoning for the taking of a life of another.  He also requires it of the pre-born.

“When men strive together and hit a pregnant woman, so that her children come out, but there is no harm, the one who hit her shall surely be fined, as the woman’s husband shall impose on him, and he shall pay as the judges determine. But if there is harm, then you shall pay life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe,” (Exodus 21:22-25, ESV)

Who has prerogative over human life and death?  God does both for the born and pre-born.  We put ourselves on shaky ground (to put it mildly) when we try to assert a right (mother’s choice) which belong to only Him.

Originally posted on 2/8/2008 at Caffeinated Thoughts.

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