When does a pre-born baby take on the status of a person?
In a previous blog posting titled, Personhood – What Is It?, I said that a person has intrinsic value with rights and responsibilities. Personhood, is to have the intrinsic value of a human being with all the rights and responsibilities that go along with being human.
In the blog posting titled, Personhood – Image of God, I showed that this special intrinsic value is given to mankind as part of their creation and “included a body formed from the dust of the earth and a soul, breathed into man by God.” The passages presented show that Adam became a living being when the breath of God was “breathed” into him. Generally we accept that new born babies are fully human with both body and soul.
Where do we find comfort in life and in death? Is not a search for this comfort at least part of what is involved in activities like organ donation, invito fertilization, writing a living will and in considering euthanasia?
We often treat dying like an enemy to be avoided and battled against. If we are told that one of our vital organs is failing and our death will result unless we get a transplant, then it makes sense that we seek comfort in the possibility of a transplant. If a loved one has been involved in a serious accident and is on life support machines dying, some of us look for comfort in the idea that our loved one’s organs may be able to be used to give life to someone else. When it comes to living, most of us at some point in our lives desire to have children. It can be very distressing when no children come. How many of us look for comfort in invitro fertilization? Many of us have watched loved ones, or heard stories of people, who live in much suffering and pain in the latter days of life. Do we seek to find comfort in protecting ourselves from having to endure such pain, through the use of living wills and euthanasia? To what extent are we to seek comfort in things such as these?
Worldview and Ethical Issues from a Biblical Perspective