The Bible and Abortion
Here are quotes from members of the Secular Web (SecWeb--The Internet Infidels)
relevant to the Bible and abortion.
SecWeb Member: velvetfinger:
Abortion and the SAB
from the Skeptics Annotated Bible lists 'crimes' that are punishable by death.
Being a disobedient child
Being a witch
Worshipping another god
Breaking the Sabbath
Not being a virgin on the night of the wedding
Rape victims who don't cry out loudly enough
Abortion is not on the list.
I was under the impression that the Bible opposed abortion. Isn't that why
some fundamentalist christians have gunned down doctors who perform them?
Is abortion opposed by the bible?
SAB > What the Bible Says About > Capital Punishment
* Gen.9:6 "Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed."
For disobedient children
* Ex.21:15 "He that smiteth his father, or his mother, shall be surely put
* Ex.21:17 "He that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put
* Lev.20:19 "For every one that curseth his father or his mother shall be
surely put to death: he hath cursed his father or his mother; his blood shall
be upon him."
* Ex.22:18 "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live."
* Ex.22:19 "Whosoever lieth with a beast shall surely be put to death."
* Lev.20:15 "And if a man lie with a beast, he shall surely be put to death:
and ye shall slay the beast."
* Lev.20:16 "And if a woman approach unto any beast, and lie down thereto,
thou shalt kill the woman, and the beast: they shall surely be put to death;
their blood shall be upon them."
For worshipping another god
* Ex.22:20 "He that sacrificeth unto any god save unto the LORD only, he
shall be utterly destroyed."
For breaking the Sabbath
* Ex.31:14 "Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you:
every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death."
* Ex.31:15 "Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath
of rest, holy to the LORD: whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he
shall surely be put to death."
* Ex.35:2 "Six days shall work bedone, but on the seventh day there shall
be to you an holy day, a sabbath of rest to the LORD: whosoever doeth work
therein shall be put to death."
* Lev.20:10 "And the man that committeth adultery with another man's wife,
even he that committeth adultery with his neighbour's wife, the adulterer
and the adulteress shall surely be put to death."
* Lev.20:11 "And the man that lieth with his father's wife hath uncovered
his father's nakedness: both of them shall surely be put to death; their
blood shall be upon them."
* Lev.20:12 "And if a man lie with his daughter in law, both of them shall
surely be put to death: they have wrought confusion; their blood shall be
* Lev.20:14 "And if a man take a wife and her mother, it is wickedness: they
shall be burnt with fire, both he and they; that there be no wickedness among
* Lev.20:13 "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both
of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death;
their blood shall be upon them."
* Lev.24:16 "He that blasphemeth the name of the LORD, he shall surely be
put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him."
For not being a virgin on the night of the wedding
* Dt.22:13-22 "If any man take a wife, and go in unto her, and hate her ...
and say, I took this woman, and when I came to her, I found her not a maid:
Then shall the father of the damsel, and her mother, take and bring forth
the tokens of the damsel's virginity unto the elders of the city in the gate....
But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the
damsel: Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father's
house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die:
because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father's
house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you."
For Rape Victims who don't cry out loudly enough
* Dt.22:23-24 "If a damsel that is a virgin be betrothed unto an husband,
and a man find her in the city, and lie with her; Then ye shall bring them
both out unto the gate of that city, and ye shall stone them with stones
that they die; the damsel, because she cried not, being in the city; and
the man, because he hath humbled his neighbour's wife: so thou shalt put
away evil from among you."
--End SAB Quotes--
SecWeb Member: liamo:
Here is a tract from the ffrf: What does the bible say about abortion? [url]http://www.ffrf.org/nontracts/abortion.html[/url],
it should answer your question perfectly!
What Does The Bible Say About Abortion?
Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc.
What Does The Bible Say About Abortion?
Absolutely nothing! The word "abortion" does not appear in any translation
of the bible!
Out of more than 600 laws of Moses, none comments on abortion. One Mosaic
law about miscarriage specifically contradicts the claim that the bible is
antiabortion, clearly stating that miscarriage does not involve the death
of a human being. If a woman has a miscarriage as the result of a fight,
the man who caused it should be fined. If the woman dies, however, the culprit
must be killed:
"If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from
her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished according as
the woman's husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.
"And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life, Eye for
eye, tooth for tooth . . ."--Ex. 21:22-25
The bible orders the death penalty for murder of a human being, but not for
the expulsion of a fetus.
When Does Life Begin?
According to the bible, life begins at birth--when a baby draws its first
breath. The bible defines life as "breath" in several significant passages,
including the story of Adam's creation in Genesis 2:7, when God "breathed
into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul." Jewish
law traditionally considers that personhood begins at birth.
Desperate for a biblical basis for their beliefs, some antiabortionists cite
obscure passages, usually metaphors or poetic phrasing, such as: "Behold,
I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me." Psalm 51:5
This is sexist, but does nothing other than to invoke original sin. It says
nothing about abortion.
The Commandments, Moses, Jesus and Paul ignored every chance to condemn abortion.
If abortion was an important concern, why didn't the bible say so?
Thou Shalt Not Kill?
Many antiabortionists quote the sixth commandment, "Thou shalt not kill"
(Ex. 20:13) as evidence that the bible is antiabortion. They fail to investigate
the bible's definition of life (breath) or its deafening silence on abortion.
Moreover, the Mosaic law in Exodus 21:22-25, directly following the Ten Commandments,
makes it clear that an embryo or fetus is not a human being.
An honest reader must admit that the bible contradicts itself. "Thou shalt
not kill" did not apply to many living, breathing human beings, including
children, who are routinely massacred in the bible. The Mosaic law orders
"Thou shalt kill" people for committing such "crimes" as cursing one's father
or mother (Ex. 21:17), for being a "stubborn son" (Deut. 21:18-21), for being
a homosexual (Lev. 20:13), or even for picking up sticks on the Sabbath (Numbers
15:32-35)! Far from protecting the sanctity of life, the bible promotes capital
punishment for conduct which no civilized person or nation would regard as
Mass killings were routinely ordered, committed or approved by the God of
the bible. One typical example is Numbers 25:4-9, when the Lord casually
orders Moses to massacre 24,000 Israelites: "Take all the heads of the people,
and hang them up before the Lord against the sun." Clearly, the bible is
Most scholars and translators agree that the injunction against killing forbade
only the murder of (already born) Hebrews. It was open season on everyone
else, including children, pregnant women and newborn babies.
Does God Kill Babies?
"Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones."--Psalm
The bible is not pro-child. Why did God set a bear upon 42 children just
for teasing a prophet (2 Kings 2:23-24)? Far from demonstrating a "pro-life"
attitude, the bible decimates innocent babies and pregnant women in passage
after gory passage, starting with the flood and the wanton destruction of
Sodom and Gomorrah, progressing to the murder of the firstborn child of every
household in Egypt (Ex. 12:29), and the New Testament threats of annihilation.
Space permits only a small sampling of biblical commandments or threats to
* Numbers 31:17 Now therefore kill every male among the little ones.
* Deuteronomy 2:34 utterly destroyed the men and the women and the little
* Deuteronomy 28:53 And thou shalt eat the fruit of thine own body, the flesh
of thy sons and of thy daughters.
* I Samuel 15:3 slay both man and woman, infant and suckling.
* 2 Kings 8:12 dash their children, and rip up their women with child.
* 2 Kings 15:16 all the women therein that were with child he ripped up.
* Isaiah 13:16 Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their
eyes; their houses shall be spoiled and their wives ravished.
* Isaiah 13:18 They shall have no pity on the fruit of the womb; their eyes
shall not spare children.
* Lamentations 2:20 Shall the women eat their fruit, and children.
* Ezekiel 9:6 Slay utterly old and young, both maids and little children.
* Hosea 9:14 give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts.
* Hosea 13:16 their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with
child shall be ripped up.
Then there are the dire warnings of Jesus in the New Testament:
"For, behold, the days are coming, in which they shall say, Blessed are the
barren, and the womb that never bare, and the paps which never gave suck."--Luke
The teachings and contradictions of the bible show that antiabortionists
do not have a "scriptural base" for their claim that their deity is "pro-life."
Spontaneous abortions occur far more often than medical abortions. Gynecology
textbooks conservatively cite a 15% miscarriage rate, with one medical study
finding a spontaneous abortion rate of almost 90% in very early pregnancy.
That would make a deity in charge of nature the greatest abortionist in history!
Are Bible Teachings Kind to Women?
The bible is neither antiabortion nor pro-life, but does provide a biblical
basis for the real motivation behind the antiabortion religious crusade:
hatred of women. The bible is anti-woman, blaming women for sin, demanding
subservience, mandating a slave/master relationship to men, and demonstrating
contempt and lack of compassion:
"I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt
bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall
rule over thee."--Genesis 3:16
What self-respecting woman today would submit willingly to such tyranny?
The antiabortion position does not demonstrate love for humanity, or compassion
for real human beings. Worldwatch Institute statistics show that 50% of abortions
worldwide are illegal, and that at least 200,000 women die every year--and
thousands more are hurt and maimed--from illegal or self-induced abortions.
Unwanted pregnancies and complications from multiple pregnancies are a leading
killer of women. Why do antiabortionists want North American women to join
these ghastly mortality statistics? Every day around the world more than
40,000 people, mostly children, die from starvation or malnutrition. We must
protect and cherish the right to life of the already-born.
Do Churches Support Abortion Rights?
Numerous Christian denominations and religious groups agree that the bible
does not condemn abortion and that abortion should continue to be legal.
* American Baptist Churches-USA
* American Ethical Union
* American Friends (Quaker) Service Committee
* American Jewish Congress
* Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
* Episcopal Church
* Lutheran Women's Caucus
* Moravian Church in America-Northern Province
* Presbyterian Church (USA)
* Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
* Union of American Hebrew Congregations
* Unitarian Universalist Association
* United Church of Christ
* United Methodist Church
* United Synagogue of America
* Women's Caucus Church of the Brethren
* Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice
* Catholics for Free Choice
* Evangelicals for Choice
Belief that "a human being exists at conception" is a matter of faith, not
fact. Legislating antiabortion faith would be as immoral and unAmerican as
passing a law that all citizens must attend Catholic mass!
The bible does not condemn abortion; but even if it did, we live under a
secular constitution, not in a theocracy. The separation of church and state,
the right to privacy, and women's rights all demand freedom of choice.
Nontract No. 7. Published by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc.,
PO Box 750, Madison WI 53701.
Of related interest, see also Why Abortion? by Anne Nicol Gaylor.
--End FFRF (Freedom From Religion Foundation) Quote--
SecWeb Member: Treacle Worshipper:
One has to wonder, when 1 in 4 (yes, 25%) of first pregnancies end in (natural)
miscarriage, how people can imagine that there's any higher power that cares
about the unborn.
(Statistics given by NHS doctors to each of 3 friends of mine who have had
1st-pregnancy miscarriages in the last 12 months.)