December 19, 2017

“Then the Lord God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature” (Genesis 2:7).

When does life begin? Some say life begins at conception. Others say it begins when the fertilized egg adheres to the uterus or when brain waves are present or when the heart starts to beat—and some say, incredibly, that life begins when the baby is outside the womb. (The day is coming—is already here—when some will say that life begins only when the child is wanted.)

What does the Bible say about this? There are a couple of verses that come to mind that should help the Bible-believing Christian settle the matter. The Holy Spirit speaking through David says in Psalm 51:5, “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.”

This verse verifies that we are sinners, tainted with original sin from the moment of conception. The Bible also tells us that “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23a).

Think about it. If the wage of sin—and we have it from conception on—is death, how can it be exacted on the guilty party if he or she is not alive? Life begins at conception!

We read in Psalm 139:13 that God is the author of life:

“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.”

Psalm 139:16 says:

“Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.”

 In Job 10:10-11 we get a graphic look at the process of fertilization and embryonic development: “Did you not pour me out like milk and curdle me like cheese? You clothed me with skin and flesh, and knit me together with bones and sinews.” In fact, God’s hand is in the creation of life even before fertilization, as He is familiar with the very sperm and egg used in the process of the creation of a new life!

Jeremiah 1:5 reads:

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”

You see, human life really began here on earth on the sixth day of creation when God formed the first man, Adam, from dust and personally breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living being! Life was meant to continue without unnatural barriers as man received the blessing from God: “Be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:22a).

Any interruption of that process is an attempt by man to play God and Creator. Because God breathed into the nostrils of Adam, we know that every life that proceeds from that man is precious to God, and it ought to be precious to us as well.

Just how precious? God surrendered the life of His only Son to redeem us from our sin, and every time we take the life of another, we, in effect, say, “big deal.”

That’s what’s really wrong with abortion, euthanasia, infanticide, and murder. But, thanks be to God, in spite of our misguided ideas about the origin of human life, He still sent His Son to die for our sins, and there is no sin that Jesus did not pay for on the cross. Through faith in Jesus and confession of our sins, we are promised complete forgiveness.

Here are a few things to think about: Have you ever experienced an interruption in a conversation with someone? How about an interruption in plans? How did those interruptions make you feel? How do you think God feels when we “interrupt” the lives of others? Can we trust God to regulate the size of our families?

Prayer: Father, You are the Author of life and we thank You for the gift that it is. Forgive us when we devalue it in any way. Heal our land from the scourge of legalized abortion, and turn our hearts back to profound respect for all life. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Duane Matz served as a lay pastor with the Association of Free Lutheran Congregations (AFLC) from 1999 to 2009, as well as an announcer on Christian radio station WEMI – The Family in Appleton, Wisconsin, for 25 years. Now retired, he and his wife Joan are members of Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church in Greenville, Wisconsin.