Summary: A sermon for the Sanctity of Human Life Sunday (after reading and meditating on this sermon from Sermon Central's Ed Wood at: http://www.sermoncentral.com/sermons/gods-hand-in-creating-life-ed-wood-sermon-on-abortion-98204.asp I had enough for a sermon)
There were 3 preachers in Barnie’s Coffee shop discussing the time when life begins. They each gave their opinion of when life begins. One preacher said "Life begins when the child takes his/her first breath." The other said "NO," then he finished, "It begins when the child is conceived." But the last preacher said "You both have the wrong answer! Life begins when the last child leaves home and the dog dies!"
Thesis: Eccl 11:5 helps us to see that 3 things are God’s Work
Creation of body is God’s work ("how the body is formed in mother’s womb")
Many translations of this verse say, “(know not) how the bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child (KJV)”. The body is formed around the bones. The bones are the building block of the body. This is speaking about the human body.
“You knit me together in my mother’s womb.” Psalms 139:13, NIV. “My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body.” Psalms 139:15, 16, NIV.
Unborn babies have detectable heartbeats at 18 days and detectable brain wave activity at about 40 days after conception. Arms and legs appear during the first month after conception. Fingerprints are discernible during the second month. All bodily systems are functioning by the end of the second month after conception.
By the end of the 5th month, the baby weighs about one pound, is about 12 inches long. Hair is on the head. There are eyebrows, eyelashes. Nails are present, at the fingertips, at the toes. At the beginning of the 6th month, the baby can cry, can suck, can make a fist. She kicks, he punches. The mother can feel all of this. His eyelids, until now closed, can open. She may look up, down, sideways.
“So what, God is putting together all the parts but it is still a fetus until it is born and takes its first breath.” An argument for this comes from the account of Genesis 2. “the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” Genesis 2:7, NIV. “See there, the man breathes and then and only then is he a living being. After the fetus is born and takes its first breath on its own can it be called a baby, a living being.”
Not so fast, there is another phrase at the beginning of Ecclesiastes 11:5. In translating from the Hebrew it is difficult to know whether this phrase is grouped together with the second phrase or if it stands on its own. A big part of the trouble is that there is one Hebrew word (ruach) to describe 3 different words in English: breath, wind, or spirit. NIV has it stand on its own “you do not know the path of the wind.” For time being rejecting that.
The second way to translate this is to make that one Hebrew word ruach mean “spirit.” This is what the KJV does, “As thou knowest not what is the way of the spirit,” however, the KJV still separates the two phrases. Here is what the English Standard Version says, “As you do not know the way the spirit comes to the bones in the womb of a woman with child, so you do not know the work of God who makes everything.” This is a description of the spirit/soul being also formed in the womb. The entire human being is formed and present in the womb
The Creation of the Spirit/ Soul is God’s work
Rich Deem says this, “Many Christians believe that the Bible is silent in regard to God’s view on life before birth. Although the Bible does not specifically define when life begins, it does give us enough information to formulate a solid biblical position.”
Even though the Bible does not use these terms, human life begins at the moment of conception. George Faull says, “We are not merely a product of chance, we are a product of God’s thoughts” for God is the Maker of all things. Scripture indicates that the fetus is a person and has a spirit, even in the womb. Almighty God is involved in the prenatal state from conception to birth. Melody Green writes, “God doesn’t wait until a baby moves or becomes completely ready for life outside his mother before he knows it, loves it, and recognizes it as a tiny human being. So why should we think differently?”
“What I Saw at the Abortion Clinic” by Richard Selzer. In this article he talks about witnessing a 19 week old fetus being aborted by an injection procedure no longer in use. He described the abortionist sliding the needle of the syringe into the woman’s belly, and then, he writes, “I see something other than what I expected to (see) here... it is the hub of the needle that is in the woman’s belly that has jerked. First to one side. Then to the other side. Once more it wobbles, is tugged, like a fishing line nibbled by a sunfish.” This image horrified him. Selzer concludes his essay: “Whatever else is said in abortion’s defense, this vision will not vanish from my eyes. And it has happened that you cannot reason with me now. For what can language do against the truth of what I saw?”