Made in God's Image: Part One PDF Print E-mail
Written by Rev. Dr. Mark D. Atkinson   

Six Scriptural Themes Indicating Why We are Pro-Life

“We can be obedient and faithful to God in almost every area of our lives. However, if we are not being obedient and faithful in that one area where Satan is attacking, then our obedience and faithfulness in all the other areas is without value.” —Martin Luther

Ethan7smAs a people of faith, we continue to address the subject of abortion because this is the area of our corporate national life in which the Evil One has won a tremendous victory. Abortion is the moral question of our age. There are many things being debated within the public square, but there is no other question that is of greater moral consequence and significance. One hundred and fifty years ago the pulpits of this country thundered with the truth that there was no more pressing national issue than the issue of slavery. Today those pulpits ring a similar message on behalf of the unborn.

The abortion debate is about more than abortion. It is about the nature of human life. It is about the nature of human community. It is about whether human rights are a product of human decision or governmental gift or, as the Founding Fathers declared, are an endowment from our Creator. There is no issue of greater national or personal significance. There is no matter closer to the heart of God.

So, my purpose is to remind us of some of the reasons the church is a prolife community. Our focus is upon theology, not politics, not cultural debate. What are the salient points that we believe? What does the Scripture teach regarding the nature of human life and the unborn? This six-part series will look at six Scriptural themes indicating why we are pro-life.

A. God places a higher value on human beings than on the rest of creation

Gen. 1:27-28; Job 10:8 - 12; Ephes. 4:24; Psa. 119:73

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. (Gen. 1:27)

Briefly, there is a difference between the words create and make. In Genesis 1, the word create is used in three places: creation out of nothing; the creation of animal life; and the creation of human life. Everywhere else in Genesis 1, the word for make, shape, or form is used. The word create is used to refer to something God is doing that is new or different. He is taking the creation a step higher.

Note how God speaks of mankind’s creation, saying, Let us create man in our own image. God’s word has shaped the creation process to this point, dividing night from day, sky from sea, animal kingdom and the world of plants. Now we are told that God’s character, his nature, his identity, will guide the creation of mankind. This is the sixth, the last day of creation. It is the highpoint. Mankind is the crown of creation.

The idea of man as the crown of creation is reflected throughout Scripture. God weaves this truth into creation itself in the dominion mandate that follows the creation of mankind. We are told.

And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth” (Genesis 1:28).

You and I, as sons and daughters of Adam and Eve, have inherited that dominion mandate. We have been made in the image of God and we have dominion over the world God has created.

The book of Psalms affirms that God shapes and molds us individually in our mother’s womb. Psalm 139 declares this truth. Here is another verse from the Psalms (119:73) confessing this truth:

Your hands have made and fashioned me; give me
understanding that I may learn your commandments.

God forms us and molds us in the womb for a purpose. He does so that we might understand him and his ways.

The first thing we say as to why we are prolife is that God places a higher value upon human beings than upon the rest of creation.


This series is from a sermon preached by The Rev. Dr. Mark D. Atkinson, at Fairview Presbyterian Church (EPC) in Glenmoore, PA, on Sanctity of Human Life Sunday, January 20, 2013.


Ahead in this series:

Part 2: The meaning and purpose God has for each human person begins before birth
Part 3: God forbids us to kill innocent life
Part 4: God requires us to protect and care for the needy and the helpless
Part 5: Scriptural teaching regarding the value of human life and our responsibility to protect and care for innocent human life applies in every case
Part 6: God freely offers forgiveness and restoration to the repentant

 

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