Sin and Salvation (Part 1)

The concept of sin seems to be rather unpopular these days.  The word itself tends to evoke a connotation of religious dogmatism in the minds of many people I have interacted with.  The eye roll that you get when the label of “sin” is used to describe this or that human behavior.  But what is sin?  Is the concept really just a religious construct?  And what about Salvation? What does that mean?  Have you ever been asked “Have you been saved” by an evangelist?  I’d like to explore these ideas and share some of my thoughts about this.

Sin and Salvation are two of the dominate themes within Christendom.  The earliest Christians proclaimed Jesus as the messiah who died for the sins of the world.  (1 Peter 3:18, 1 Cor 15:3-5, Romans 4:25)  But what IS sin?  One of the Greek words for sin used in the New Testament is hamartia, [1] and it is translated into English as a sin or a failure.  The simplest definition that I find the easiest to understand is missing the mark.  Imagine an archer aiming for the bulls eye but missing, that is analogous to what sin is regarding human behavior.  Notice that this definition presupposes that there is a bulls eye to be aimed for.  Just as an archer would be a perfect marksman if he hit the bulls eye every time, to be sinless would mean to behave perfectly in every situation.  Further, there must be an objective (or “divine”) moral law if there is to be any sin.  It makes no sense to speak of “missing the mark” if there truly is no standard of how we ought to behave.  This is the fundamental reason that many modern people have rejected the notion of sin.  It is because moral relativism has been widely accepted.  If moral relativism is true then the concept of sin does not exist because there is no target to be aimed at.  If you accept moral relativism as true, then I can see why the notion of sin would be absurd to you.  If you are a naturalist or a materialist (Someone who believes ultimately matter is all there is, everything derived from matter), then you must face the “is/ought” problem eventually.  I won’t be able to cover that here though.

Now that I have established an understanding of what the Christian worldview means when it speaks of sin, let us now look to the reasonableness of such a concept.  As previously stated, I have found that many people are very turned off by the term “sin.”  The idea that there is some sort of divine law which we are capable of transgressing against is offensive to them.  After-all, who are you or I to tell anyone else that what they are doing is wrong?  How does anyone go about establishing the moral authority to claim that they know the truth regarding how human beings ought to behave?  These questions deserve consideration, but for now I’d like to focus on examining sin more.  It seems to me that this concept of sin rests upon the assumption that there truly is a God who created and ordered this universe the way it is.  Thus, anyone who rejects the proposition “God exists” is unlikely to accept the idea that we are sinners.  However, is even that reasonable?  Watch the news or open up a news paper and you will find story after story of human beings missing the mark.  Child kidnappings, rape, murder, war, injustice, and on and on.  It seems to me that sin is simply a reality.  I know that I personally miss the mark quite often.  I am not even capable of following standards that I set for myself perfectly, much less the perfect moral standards that God sets.  Have you ever tried to make a rule for yourself or some kind of standard?  From anything to what you eat, or how often you promise to work out, to studying X amount of time.  Do you perfectly follow even your own standards that you create yourself?  If yes, then I am shocked and amazed.  Please let me know how you do it.  Each person has one or more of the vices that they struggle with I would maintain.  [3]  Refer to the chart in reference 3 and you will see a list of Biblical vices and virtues.  As a side note, I have found that because each person is unique and different, their struggles are also unique and different.  Bob might struggle with lust while Jim struggles with sloth.  Bob will feel justified in talking about how lazy Jim is, and Jim will feel justified in talking about (or even just thinking) how lustful Bob is.  It is also very easy for us to notice the faults of others.  They seem to stick out like a sore thumb in our minds, but it is all too easy to ignore our own vices.  Why do you think that is?  A topic for another time.

What I want to emphasize here is that the notion of sin seems to me to be an incredibly reasonable idea that perfectly characterizes the reality in which we live. Well, the skeptic would rightly point out here that even though this idea of sin might be reasonable given the human experience, it certainly doesn’t prove that there is some kind of divine law out there.  To this I would say you are right.  I don’t think a lot of things can be proven.  We can’t prove that the world wasn’t created 5 minutes ago and we implanted with all the current memories we have.  We have no independent evidence for a whole host of things all reasonable people believe.  Consider the following list of things, and try to think of any independent evidence that you could appeal to in order to try and prove their truth.

  1. Our belief forming processes are sometimes reliable.
  2. Sense experience is sometimes reliable.
  3. Memory is sometimes reliable.
  4. The world has existed for more than 5 minutes.
  5. There is an external world.

We accept the truth of all of these things, but if you try to prove any of them you end up reasoning in a circle.  So if you ask me to prove that there is a divine law all I can do is give some reason and evidence, but even I don’t think it would constitute a proof.  Rather, it is like finding dozens of clues that all point in the same direction.  Circumstantial evidence can create a powerful case for the truth.  If you don’t believe that there is a God, then I doubt anything I have said here will change your mind.  However, I hope at least you have a better understanding of what Christians mean when they speak of sin.  In Romans 3:23 Paul says that ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.  The person who believes in God recognizes that their transgressions fall short of Gods perfect standard, and that we are incapable of making amends for that debt.  Different religions provide different ways to attain some kind of salvation, but I’d now like to focus on what Christianity means by the term.


I would like to introduce the concept of Salvation in part 2.




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Life, Death, Distraction, and Hope

I have not experienced much death in my life.  Apart from my fathers dad passing away when I was in my earlier teen years, I can’t remember having to deal with the reality of death up close and personal.  Especially not as an adult, until this year.  My Aunt Monica Ward passed away very recently and the family and friends celebrated her life on May 5th at Travis Avenue Baptist church, which was her home church her entire life.  Due to this I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the reality of death, how it impacts those left behind, and the positive effects it can produce.

The finality of death has a way of putting life into perspective.  When someone is dying or passes away, many of the distractions of daily living lose their significance.  The things you disagreed on, the problems you had, the frustrations of minor inconveniences, etc. all fade away and the central focus becomes spending time with that person and focusing on what matters.  When someone you love passes away you don’t look back on their life and hold onto all the times they annoyed you, but you remember the good times and the love and experiences you shared.  Why?  Because the simple, final, and decisive nature of death forces us to stop and reflect on what really matters.  It forces us to look reality in the face, and it forces us to set the distractions aside.  Diversion and indifference are pillars of society.  We keep so busy we miss life.    I do this all the time.  I know I’m doing it, but I do it anyway.  I’m nothing short of insane.  It seems the world is full of insane people who recognize the truth when they are confronted with the reality of death, but don’t change much about their lives in response to the realization.  As I write this I wonder if any of the research or thinking I’m putting into this will actually change anything I do.  Its my own fault if it doesn’t.

In one of my favorite books (Christianity for Modern Pagans) Dr. Peter Kreeft asks a question that he called a “simple child’s question”.  He “asked it of philosophers, theologians, psychologists, sociologists, anthropologists, historians, economists, and even ordinary, sane, real people; yet no one could give me a simple, straight answer.”

The question is….”Why doesn’t anybody have any time today?  Where did all the time go?”

Indeed.  Think about it for a moment.  Shouldn’t we have more time given all of the modern technological advances?  Why are we so distracted from what matters?  Dr. Kreeft further states “we ought to have much more time, more leisure, than our ancestors did, because technology, which is the most obvious and radical difference between their lives and ours, is essentially a series of time-saving devices.”  He goes on to give several examples of what he means, but isn’t it astounding that we never have any time?  I am constantly saying “I don’t have time” for this or that.  Or “I’m so busy.”  The answer that he proposes to why we divert ourselves (which he got from Blaise Pascal, who got it from Jesus it seems to me) is that “We want to complexify our lives.  We don’t have to, we want to.  We want to be harried and hassled and busy.  Unconsciously, we want the very thing we complain about.  For if we had leisure, we would look at ourselves and listen to our hearts and see the great gaping hole in our hearts and be terrified, because that hole is so big that nothing but God can fill it.”  Profound insight.  I am afraid it may be true.  We want the hunt and not the capture.  Once we accomplish a goal its onto the next.  Rolling a boulder up a hill, watching it fall down, and then pushing it back up.

How then should we live?  I don’t have to tell you. (Who cares what I think anyway?)  I think we all intuitively know.  Especially if we sit silently in a room and reflect on what matters, but the problem is we don’t.  We are constantly diverted.  The problem I know I have, and what I think most people have, is not that we don’t know what to do.  God gave us mind, will, and emotion with which we can discern what we should do if we are honest.  However, I simply don’t do it.  I don’t do what I know I should do all the time.  I should make the moments count with my family and friends more than I do.  I should work less and make more time for family.  (See info-graphic on top regrets of the elderly at the end)  I should work my hardest when there is work to be done, and rest when it is time to rest.  However, I divert myself in various ways and I forget.  I don’t want to forget, but I do.  Death has a way of forcing us to remember, and we should remember.  I should remember.  What use is unapplied knowledge?

So far I’ve talked about how diversion is a serious problem we all face, and how the reality of death can wake us up to how we ought to live.  This isn’t ground breaking information, but I wanted to write it at any rate.  Now I want to talk about hope.  What is hope?  It is to trust in, wait for, look for, or desire something or someone; or to expect something beneficial in the future.  Everyone has hope in something.  I have spent a lot of time talking to people of atheistic and skeptical worldviews and one of the common themes is that they hope in humanity, science, and technology.  Their hope is that human beings will continue to grow more empathetic and as science progresses we will diminish pain and suffering.  A great thing to hope for I think. However, I can’t help but point out that this provides no hope for the individual human life that is staring death in the face.  Given a naturalistic worldview, there is no hope in the end for me or you, only oblivion.  Is it even possible to live without hope?
Side note: everyone who knows me know that I enjoy “heavy metal” music.  Strangely enough, I happened upon a band called “Adestria” recently, during this time of thinking about death and my Aunts passing.  I listened to one of their songs called “More than you know” several times and for some reason I really liked it, even though I wasn’t really consciously paying attention to the lyrics.  I probably liked it because it starts off slow with just singing, and I enjoy it when heavy bands write a slow song.  I kept getting goosebumps at this certain part though, and so I went back through it and paid attention to the lyrics.  Immediately it hit me that this song was about someone passing, specifically one of the band members mothers passed from Cancer.  (I looked it up)  They have a lot of good lines in the song that really resonated with me as I contemplated all of this.  A few are below

–As time runs out, everything he never said, every chance he never took, plays over in his head.”

–And he screamed at the sky!  The body of a woman that he still loves, lays lifeless before his eyes. (At this part they switch from singing to screaming and I get goosebumps every time still…even just reading it…)

–A hollow vessel at rest, opens up to the skies.  Does death give way to peace, or just oblivion?

Not exactly happy lyrics, but these lyrics expressed quite perfectly what I was thinking and feeling.  Look up the entire song, it ends hopeful.  They painted a picture of the reality of the thoughts of people who have lost someone.  I found it very interesting that I randomly came upon this song at this exact time…..


My Aunt had a lot of hope as she struggled with cancer.  All the way to the end.  I don’t just mean hope for recovery either.  I mean hope that no matter what, she would receive something beneficial in the future, namely life with God in the next life.  She hoped that the mark she left behind would be one of faith and trust in Christ.  That those she left behind would not forget her source of strength and what she thought about where they should turn when life gets hard.  Why did she have this hope?  Because she trusted in Jesus.  In John 10 it says…”So Jesus said to them again, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door…if anyone enters through me he will be saved.”  She had hope because she knew Jesus and he saved her soul.  He gave her peace to the end, even when she was frustrated with her material body when she lost the ability to speak normally.  She knew that Jesus provides the answer to the biggest human problems; sin and salvation.  We all screw up.  Sin means missing the mark.  Salvation is the deliverance from sin and its consequences.  The Christian worldview maintains that death is a consequence of sin, and it’s not the way it is supposed to be.  The Bible teaches that sin results in separation from God because he is holy and good.  In this life and the next.  Jesus is the salvation of mankind and bridges the gap between us and God, and that every man can be saved by grace through faith in Christ. (Ephesians 2:8-9, John 3:16-18, Galatians 2:16)  The Bible also teaches that God desires that all men would be saved from the consequences of sin and that we would “come to the knowledge of the truth.” (1 Timothy 2:4)  The truth is that Jesus saves.  Its a cliche you’ve heard, but don’t let mere repetition keep you from contemplating what is means.  You can count on 2 things happening in your life, you are going to die, and you’re going to screw up sometimes.  Who has the power to save us from ourselves?

Aunt Monica’s mission to the end was to share the life that Jesus gives with as many people as possible and I will forever be inspired by that.  It would not have been possible for her to maintain the positive attitude she did without her firmly having hope.  The peace, hope, and joy that comes from knowing God through Jesus is what sustained her and it is what I look to in my own weakness.   I know that I am not strong, but it is ok. (Psalm 54:4)  For He is strong, and my hope is in the one who died and rose (John 3:16-18) for us all.  The good news is that if you are reading this it is not too late, there truly is hope.  I hope something here has been of interest or edification to someone.  God bless you all.  You pray for me and I’ll pray for you.  Pray that we would all not only understand the truth but apply it.  I pray that I would not forget the things I’ve said here and that I won’t look back at the end of my life and say all the things in the image below.

Top 10 regrets of the elderly, interviewed at nursing home

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The Pursuit of Happiness

If I were to ask you the question “what do you seek” in your life, I would be willing to bet that happiness would be a top answer.  I’ve asked this question to many people, and the answer I get is quite often happiness.  But what is happiness?  What does it mean to BE happy?  Is happiness a feeling you get when things are going well for you?  Is it something that we should pursue singularly?  I’m not able to answer all of these questions in a comprehensive way, but what I would like to do is share some ideas I have found along my journey.  Things that might help others think more clearly about this.


I think that those who answer the question “what do you seek” by saying “happiness” are being very honest, and they recognize a fundamental need that we all have.  There is another great need though that must not be neglected.  Dr. Peter Kreeft summarizes what I am thinking of below.

“Truth (our head’s food) and happiness (our heart’s food) are the two things everyone wants, and not in crumbs but in great loaves; not in raindrops but in waves.  Yet these are the two things no one gets except in little crumbs and droplets.”

Have you ever had a moment in your life where you thought “I am just too happy right now, I need something bad to happen in my life.”  No.  Of course not.  Because what Dr. Kreeft is saying here is true.  Everyone wants “great loaves” of happiness in their lives.  We want it to be like the ocean, a constant bombardment crashing down on our lives and penetrating our daily lives.  However, what is the reality?  Are we always happy?  Have you experienced great pain or hurt in your life?  I know that I have.  While we all desire happiness we must also recognize that we also desire truth.  Would anyone really be ok with having a lover that was only tricking us into thinking they loved us?  Behind our back they cheated and did horrible things, but to our faces pretended to love us.  Wouldn’t you want to know if this was the case?  What I want to point out here is that the head seeks to know truth and the heart seeks happiness.

Next I would like to suggest that no mere human being can give us truth or happiness.  Why?  Other human beings are finite, we are like aqueducts that carry water (in this case the water is truth/happiness), rather than fountains that pour out water.  Something has to fill the aqueduct, we need a fountain from which to source truth and happiness.  We are not the source.  I think we all know this if we are honest.  I do not think that any human being is capable of fulfilling this role sufficiently, and we are not supposed to be capable of such a thing.   St. Augustine is famous for having said that “Our hearts are restless until they find their rest in thee.”  He was referring to God.  The eternal I AM.  I believe this to be the only reasonable fountain from which we can continue to draw to fill the aqueducts of our lives.  For God is the only perpetual novelty.  Jesus said that those who seek find.  Consider this commentary by Dr. Kreeft on this for a moment.

“Unless this promise is a lie, and Christ a liar, there can be only two causes for not having found God, that is , for unbelief: (I) not seeking him, or (2) time.  For eventually, however long the delay, all seekers find)  And seeking is an act of will, that is, a moral choice,  Computers do not seek, they only obey their programming.  For they have no will.  One of the things that delay our finding God is ignorance.  That can indeed be addressed by purely rational apologetics.  But the primary obstacle is an attitude of the will, and this must be addressed by a different kind of apologetics: Pascal’s kind.”

I would like to point out here that this seems to me to be a very profound truth that Jesus is highlighting in his short statement.  “Seek and you will find.”  Consider this question.  How likely is it that you will find something if you are not looking for it?  Sure, its possible that you might stumble upon it, but is that very likely?  No.  Considering anything in your life.  Would you have fallen in love with someone if you had not sought them out once the spark between you happened?  Would you have come to know them in a deep and meaningful way if you just sat around waiting for them to come to you?  We seek things we want to know and understand.  If God desires loving relationship with us, then lovers understand that it takes both parties actively seeking the other for there to be a loving relationship.  We ought to consider that it might be the case that the reason we don’t know God is because we are not seeking him.  It is entirely possible that God is seeking us but we are not seeking him.  Everyone has questions and things that don’t seem to make sense to them.  Remember, the head seeks truth, but in this life we rarely find certainty in anything.  We are all living our lives based on faith (trust) in something.  Where is your faith and why?

I have a lot more I could say, but I will end it now.  Ask yourself the question: are you sitting back living your life waiting for God to find you?  Or do you want to know him and are honestly seeking truth?  Seek the truth in all things, and cultivate honest intentions so that we do not lead ourselves astray.  Ask hard questions and dig deep.  But be aware that you need both truth and happiness.  Can you really have one without the other?


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Should I ____________?

What are the things that you know you should do, and aren’t doing?  What things are you doing that you know you ought not be doing?  These questions have been on my mind lately.  Finding definitive answers is not always easy.

Sure, it is easy to say “I should pick up after myself when I make a mess.”  That’s a no brainer, and in an ideal world I would always pick up my messes when I make them.  (I’m sure my wife would be thankful for that, God bless her)  Even questions like “should I smoke” or “should I exercise” are not too hard to answer either.  Should I eat breakfast?  Should I take a bath everyday?  (Is it REALLY necessary??)  Should I read my Bible more?  Should I eat more vanilla ice cream?  (yes…yes you should)  Should I go to bed?

But….what about questions like “what should I do for a living?”  Or “am I discovering God’s plan for my life?”  What should I study in college?  What should I do after college?  Should I question God or the Bible?  If so how much?  How does God relate with me and how is he relevant in my life?  Should I put the toilet paper in pull down or pull up?  These types of questions are not quite as easy as the former questions.  I would like to point out a common issue that is relevant to all of these questions.

The answers to all of these questions rest in this idea of teleology.  (purpose)  Think about it for a moment.  What is the purpose of the thing in question?  How you answer the question, will largely depend on what you think about the purpose of the thing in question.  Every time you answer any of these questions you must appeal to this idea of purpose in some way.  We eat breakfast because our purpose is to be healthy and nourished.  (or even more simply, to not feel hungry)  We exercise because our body has particular functional purposes that operate best when they are trained and worked out consistently.  We take a bath because the purpose is to remain clean and smell good.  You’ll notice that how you answer all of these questions depends on what you think the purpose is behind each of them.  You may have a slightly different purpose behind how you answer some of these questions, and thats ok.  This raises another question though, is the purpose of some things the same for everyone?  That is to say, are some purposes objective and concrete?

What about the deeper questions?  What SHOULD I do for a living?  How does one go about answering this?  Well, what is your purpose for living?  What you should do for a living ought to be based upon your purpose for living right?  (At least to a point)  So this raises an even more difficult question, do we all have the same purpose for living, or do we just create whatever purpose and meaning we want?  Now, lets be clear.  There are various levels of purpose as well as levels of responsibility.  Your immediate family such as wife and children are the first responsibility.  (Aside from God, taking care of family will flow from being in relationship with Christ)  The reason is because what you do directly affects them more than anyone else around you.  There may even be multiple purposes involved in a particular issue.  The purpose of going to college may be to get a job and make some money to support your family.  That is a great purpose right?   Is that the ultimate (final) purpose of going to college?  Well, no I don’ t think so.  I would say that the ultimate purpose of doing anything is to glorify God.  If that is your ultimate purpose, then how you answer all of the difficult questions will rest upon this ultimate purpose.  So you should always be asking yourself, will this glorify God?  What does it even mean to glorify God?

Glorify: describe or represent as admirable, to reveal or make clearer.

The ultimate and final end of teleology if the glorification of God.  Why?  God is goodness, and is the only thing worthy of our admiration ultimately.  Why?  What do I mean when I say God IS goodness?  I mean that his very being is goodness, everything about God is good, and everything he does is good.  Goodness is a part of the essence of God, it is his very nature.  Evil is merely a privation of goodness, and all evil stems from a lack of God.  So when I say that God is the only person worthy of our admiration ultimately, I mean that ALL goodness points to God, because God IS good.  God IS love.  My purpose and your purpose is to love and to be loved.  How can we REALLY know what love is if we do not experience the very foundation of love itself?  You can have a taste of it, but lack the deeper understanding and realization.

If you are in a point in your life where you are struggling to decide Should I  ____________?  Or maybe you just do things because you think your supposed to and don’t really think about why your doing them.  Slow yourself down, and ask yourself some questions.  Why am I doing this?  What am I even living for?  We will all constantly be put in situations where we have to choose to do x, y or z.  Knowing what to do will not always be possible, but understanding what your purpose is will help you make better decisions everyday.
P.S. Random after thought.  I think that in order to ground all of the lesser purposes one must have an ultimate purpose for their life.  What is the sense in having a bunch of little purposes in your life if they lead to nowhere?  It would be like chasing a carrot, catching it, and then ceasing to exist forever.  Why chase the carrot?







Posted in Personal Reflection, Theological Thoughts for The Believer

Internet debating, Worth it?

Ever get the feeling that the time you spend talking with people online about controversial topics is a complete waste?  I know I do, and I’ve been told by more than one person that it is in fact a waste of time.  Generally the critiques fall into one of the following few statements.

1.  Your never going to change their mind, so why are you wasting your time?

—-The purpose of a hearty debate is not to change your opponents mind, but to present and defend a particular view.  Further, to cross examine others views.  This objection puts a spin on the purpose of debate.  This objection also ignores the value of the audience that may be listening or reading.

2.  What you think about it doesn’t matter to other people.

—-This is probably very true of the large majority of the population.  Hence the shallowness and spin of the news and political debates.  (Gets better ratings than real debate)  Mostly rhetoric, and little substance.  Most people from all walks of life do not desire subsnative dialogue, and are uncomfortable with their views being challenged.  (Or even having to articulate what they think)  Whether it be politics, religion, or what sports team one likes.  Most conversations on these matters are not respectful conversations involving two people genuinely interested in understanding the other person, rather the norm tends to be each person or one person expressing their views and not caring about debating it.  Long story short, it seems that people truly don’t care to take the time to think deeper about their ideas, or to hear others ideas.  (Unless its about the latest movie or something superficial)  So objection two is valid only if I’m talking with someone who doesn’t care about what I have to say, if that is the case then I sure hope they tell me so I don’t waste my time.

3.  Whats true for you may not be true for them, and so you can’t agree anyway.

—Is it true that whats true for you is not true for me?  If so, why are you telling me?  What I’m doing is true for me right?  This is a silly objection, and makes a mockery of truth.  It is one of those sneaky half truths that sounds like it could be right, but is dead wrong.  The kinds of truths that are “true for you and not for me” are shallow truths like “Matthew likes Vanilla Ice Cream” while “Bill likes chocolate.”  Yes, some things are true for you and not for me, Preferential truths if you will.

4.  Don’t you have better things to do with your time?

—-Probably.  Like reading books or talking with people in person.  Those are always a higher priority, but it is ok to discuss online as well.  Why are you judging me? 😉

5.  Who cares who is “right” or “wrong”, we can’t know anyway

——Do we know that we can’t know?  If so, how do we know that we can’t know?  I think objective right and wrong do exist, but is not so easy to pinpoint at times.  Due to the complex nature and ripple effects of sin.


These are just a few comments I have heard myself.  With my brief responses.

So, why do I spend a fair amount of time each week talking with people from drastically different perspectives?  Simple answer is because I like to, I enjoy hearing the perspectives of others.  The other side of the coin is that I enjoy articulating my own perspective, and learning skills on how to refine my own perspectives and techniques.  Whether or not we ought to debate boils down to one simple question; does truth exist?  If the answer is yes, then we ought to seek truth and debate issues.  Now, I would want to defend the necessity of debate as I believe it to be a good thing which we ought to participate in.  We ought to challenge our own thinking, and figure out why it is that we believe what we do.  We may not even always arrive at a definitive answer as to why, but each time one does this they get a little bit closer to the root.  Often times one may merely appeal to intuition, and that is ok at first.  However, I personally feel compelled to uncover my own intuitions about things, and then figure out if they are based in truth or not.  As a lover of philosophy, that is what I am seeking, truth.  I think we can discover the truth, and that we ought to try.

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Abortion: Whats the real issue?

I’ve been having a lot of conversations recently about abortion.  Admittedly, I’ve been disappointed, heart broken, and deeply saddened by the arguments I hear from the “Pro Choice” side.  In this post I’d like to simply ask the question, what do you think is the real issue behind abortion?  Is it the choice of the mother?  Is it the life of the child?  Whats the most important underlying question that needs to be answered underneath it all?

I’d like to make a few comments before you read through the arguments from others I ran into.
1.  I don’t decide truth anymore than you do.  We are only capable of discovering truth, not deciding it.  Either the unborn human fetus is a living human being or it is not, or else it is some other kind of being.

—-Example, I didn’t decide that the force due to gravity at sea level on earth is 9.8 m/s^2.  Someone discovered this, and then we tested it and verified it.  I take it on authority that it is true, even though I’ve never run an experiment myself.  I have good evidence to think that the authorities I’m trusting are reliable.

2.  My opinion does not matter.  Who cares about my opinion?  I don’t even care about it, I’m wrong all the time.  The best I can say about my opinion is that when it happens to align with truth, that’s the only time it matters.  Whether or not it does align with truth is another story, but that is my objective.

3. What is truth?  That which corresponds to reality.  Or, as Plato said 2400 years ago, “Then that speech which says things as they are is true, and that which says them as they are not is false.” (Cratylus, 385B)

A few examples of arguments I heard.  Starting with an analogy, quoted directly.

“Hypothetical situation.

You go on vacation to… Belize. My husband was born and raised in Belize. Belize City is a TERRIBLE place to be. The crime rates are high, the locals can be quite hostile and rude to tourists and is frankly quite scary.

However, it’s the only way to get to the beautiful islands. There is a water taxi that will take you to the islands for you vacation.

So you’re in Belize City. You have taken all the precautions, you are not travelling alone, you have your valuables hidden and you are not just standing around in the streets.

Suddenly, you are grabbed by guy and dragged into an empty building. He takes your money, hits you a few times and says that you are going to be his personal sex slave.

The police are out there but the only way you will be able to escape the building is if they shoot the guy. Should they?

You consented to going to a more dangerous area, that means you consented to being robbed and beaten, right?

And why should your right to being comfortable be more important than his right to live?

Pro lifers like to take sex and make it a punishable act. You have sex, you deserve a baby. Suddenly a baby becomes a punishment.

So pro lifers, what is different from my story and a woman getting pregnant from sex?

If a guy ran up to you on the street and demanded one of your kidneys some of your blood how is that different from being raped and being forced to give your body to a fetus?”

Various quoted arguments:

“Have you been pregnant Matthew Bryan Turner?  How exactly do you know that it isn’t a punishment? Morning sickness, bloating, stretch marks, peeing constantly, sore backs, gaining weight, changing of hair texture in some cases, contractions, vaginal tearing, c-sections, prolapses…. the list can go on. If this is all happening against your will you can bet your ass it’s a punishment.

So you’re saying that you get to decide who’s worthy of having a right to life?” (I most certainly wasn’t….)

“If unwanted pregnancy isn’t a punishment then I guess rape isn’t either.”

“The only thing that matters is whether a person’s bodily autonomy is more important than anther’s right to life. Whether that fetus is a legal person or not is entirely irrelevant.”

“Pregnancy can kill or at the very least harm a woman’s body. Hence the fetus’ right to life is gone.”

“Matthew, if a girl is being raped and she kill him in self-defense, she is not charged for murder. Because it is considered as self-defense. I sure hope you won’t tell that raped girl ”You killed him just for an inconvenience”.”

“All of our legal rights DO come from the government. Really? Are we going to argue about where our rights come from? If you think that having an abortion is MORALLY wrong, fine. Don’t have one. It shouldn’t be a problem, considering you’re a man.”

“”Innocent” is just an adjective, you can only say the fetus is innocent if it is sentient. Also, some rapists and murderers are known to rape and kill during their sleep unwillingly. It’s not because they were not doing it voluntarly that women are not allowed to defend themselves.
You know, women are much more innocent human beings.
The unborn is an attacker. It’s taking my body ressources and damaging my whole body. If I don’t give consent, it has no right to continue using my body.
And it’s similar mentally too. If someone forced me to remain pregnant, I’d feel raped. I’d be depressed. Around the same emotions. But of course, some people lack empathy and will never understand that.”

“Also, consider this consequence – Everything that gets banned, someone *will* find an illegal alternative. These illegal alternatives (i.e., during abolition, moonshine, or lately, synthetic marijuana like K2) are generally *more* deadly or hazardous than the former legal alternative. By restricting choice, we’re only pushing these women to find an illicit alternative that could be risky to their health, and would therefore be a self-defeating law.”


I did have a link to the thread where these ideas came from, but those who said them didnt like their ideas being critiqued publicly.  The group it came from is a public open group, so I don’t need permission to quote ideas in public forums.  I just am using these ideas for perspective and analysis for educational purposes.  No mockery or illintent, which should be obvious.

You see, when it comes to taking life, I think that the most important fundamental question that must be answered is twofold.  What kind of being are we killing?  Why are we taking the life?  Did you know that 75% of abortions are for convenience sake?  Is lack of financial stability or having an “unwanted” pregnancy good reasons to kill the unborn?

Why am I posting all of this?  Well, I’d like to hear anything you may have about these arguments, and continue the discussion.  Also, don’t forget to answer: Whats the most important underlying question that needs to be answered underneath it all?

Please comment and share.  All comments moderated, and a strict code of ethics enforced.  Be nice y’all.


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