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August 19, 2008

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Yes indeed…but we all know religious conservatives are the ones who are supposed to be “anti-science.”

We must never forget that.

Thanks Melinda.

"Professor" B. Hussein Obama: "When does life begin? Heck if I know! Abortions for everyone!"

When identical twins are formed from one egg, does the original "person" die and two more come to be? Or does personhood begin a little latter at some point yet not accepted by science or the courts?

God's Law states, "And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man's brother will I require the life of man. Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man." [Genesis 9:5, 6.]

The soul is in a man with the presence of the blood. And identical twins had already begain before they had there own blood.

And it is known scientific fact that the child and the mother have different blood.

So from a forensic stand point it is possible to argue abortion (after about two weeks from conception) is murder.

For the philosophers out there, there is this from the Maverick himself.

http://maverickphilosopher.powerblogs.com/posts/1219103951.shtml

Paul's question about twins has always snagged me. If an individual comes in to existence at the moment of conception, then what happens when twins form? Maybe it's the same as if a clone were formed?

Just been reading through Randy Alcorn's "Why Pro Life". Highly recommend his common sense logical and even-handed examination of the issue.

Hi Jason, nice one but I think his statement was that the question was too tough for someone of his pay grade. What a dodge since he's voted consistently pro abortion. It has been reported that he even voted against modifications to existing law that would've protected the baby that survived an abortion. Instead he was in favor of infanticide by his vote.

Brad B

Jesse,

Perhaps just as perplexing as the issue of twins is the issue of the chimera in which two fertilized embryos combine to form a single fetus. I can see how these issues can be a problem for a theist.

The point I was trying to bring out is there is explicit evidence when it should be unquestionable as to when there is personhood. As to the first 16 days that can be debated. But from that 17th day on. There is blood, and then a nervous system. From that point on there should be no doubts. Forensicly murder is provable.

Frank Beckwith said something about twinning in his book, "Politically Correct Death." It's been a long time since I read it, but I vaguely remember him saying something like it may create puzzles with identity, but it doesn't diminish the fact that life begins at conception. I'm sure there's more to it than that, but that's all I remember.

Greg did a great job discussing the issue of abortion as it related to Obama’s laughable and cowardly response to Warren’s question about the rights of babies. Apparently Obama of Nazareth is incapable of articulating a coherent position on this issue. His response, replete with non sequiturs and prevaricating sophistry, betrays a spinelessness on this most important of moral issues. But in order to avoid appearing like one who enables and facilitates the murder of children, Obama has attempted to kick the dust in everyone’s eyes, raising every sort of irrelevant fact as though it were helpful in the discussion, in hopes that he will appear progressive and tolerant instead of just cowardly and at odds with life and the great Christian tradition on this issue.

Greg was right to point out that the fact that women struggle immensely with these decisions is completely morally irrelevant. What really, Obama, is supposed to follow from that mundane and worthless observation in terms of the morality of abortion? Is that in any way evidence or reason to think abortion ought to be legal?

By the way, I hope you all know that Obama opposed the partial-birth abortion ban of 2003, even though it contained an exception for the life of the mother, the exception reading as follows: “This subsection does not apply to a partial-birth abortion that is necessary to save the life of a mother whose life is endangered by a physical disorder, physical illness, or physical injury, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself.”

So, it is nothing but dung out of his mouth to pretend like his opposition to such bans has its basis in a concern for the lives of mothers. He has not voted in favor of restrictions on late term abortions even though there was an exception for the mother’s health, contrary to what his politically opportunistic answer to Warren might suggest.

In the end, all we got from Obama on this issue is what philosopher Harry Frankfurt would call “bull__.” “Women struggle so much,” “pro-choice, not pro-abortion,” “exceptions for the mother’s life,” “oh this issue is so hard,” “no one really knows if a baby is a baby, it’s a matter of faith that can’t be disputed,” “wouldn’t it be great if there were less abortions,” “bla bla bla bla bla bla bla…” And every drunken sophomore at every university in the country has their little hearts warmed by this nonsense, thinking to themselves, “Oh, what an enlightened and middle-of-the-road position to take on such a difficult moral quandary. Isn’t it great that Obama is so understanding and sensitive to all the facets of this issue. Aww, he’s so cute.”

I wish someone would ask him (in front of the nation) a question that is actually interesting, like, “Obama, being that partial-birth abortion involves sucking the brains out of the skulls of children in the third trimester, do you think it is progressive and enlightened to make sure that women always have the legal opportunity to do this (so long as they wring their hands in sufficient moral perplexity, of course), or is that issue also above your pay grade?”

--Lora

"When identical twins are formed from one egg, does the original "person" die and two more come to be?"

First of all, identical twins are not fully identical. There are differences between them from what I understand. Second point is that you are not making yourself very clear as to what the "original person" is that you are talking about that allegedly dies. If twins form they are genetically distinct indivduals from both parents and, if I understand it correctly, are to seperate individual organisms that develop independently within the womb. So, I don't see how they came from one individual that, according to you, has been replaced by the twins.


"Or does personhood begin a little latter at some point yet not accepted by science or the courts?"

I have no evidence that points to individualization of a human being at any other time than conception when the unique genetic signature of the individual is determined.

"God's Law states, "And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man's brother will I require the life of man. Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man." [Genesis 9:5, 6.]"

This passage is referring to the shedding of man's blood that, generally speaking, occurs during murder. But murder can occur without the shedding of blood. Poisoning is one example. Does that mean that if you posion someone in an act of murder, you will not be held accountable for that murder simply by the fact that no blood was shed during the comission of the moral crime of murder? I think that Jesus precluded that possiblity when he said that (paraphrased) if a man hates, he has committed murder already in his heart. I think that the passage you cite simply points out the general principle and drives the point home with the vivid imagery of blood being spilled during the comission of the crime in question (i.e. murder). This imagery serves to emphasise the horrible nature of the crime and attempts to evoke a stronger response of revulsion from the reader, as such a crime should.


"The soul is in a man with the presence of the blood. And identical twins had already begain before they had there own blood."

A soul is an immeterial thing. In what way does blood(a material thing) have anything to do with that? There is an inherent problem with tying blood with a soul when conjoined twins are brought into the equation. When they share a circulatory system they also share the blood, but it is quite obvious that they are two distinct living souls. Sometimes they can also be successfully seperated through surgical means in such situations and then can live independent lives. What does this prove? It proves that the blood does not in any way effect the fact that we are speaking of two distinct souls.

A more relevant passage Gem 1:27 where it clearly states that when god created man and woman he created them male and female and God recognizes this point as a point where they in fact exists as human beings. Analogous to that in biology would be at a point when the gender of the organism is determined and that is the poing of conception, if I understand my bology properly.


"And it is known scientific fact that the child and the mother have different blood."

This is simply not true. There is a blood type prediction calculator that I used on the web that clearly shows that it is possible for a child to inherit a blood type of the mother.


"So from a forensic stand point it is possible to argue abortion (after about two weeks from conception) is murder."

It is easy to use CSI language, but a lot harder to actually understand the science that it describes and then present it accurately in a debate over such important topics as when human life begins.
In that way you, Paul, have been instrumental in demonstrating this kind of difficulty that folks out there have in a proper understanding of these begining of life issues. Thank you for your contribution.

"And it is known scientific fact that the child and the mother have different blood."

"This is simply not true. There is a blood type prediction calculator that I used on the web that clearly shows that it is possible for a child to inherit a blood type of the mother."

Actually, the fetal circulatory system develops independantly of the mother. While a child can inherit the blood *type* of the mother, like eye color and so on, it is simply not the case that they share the same blood, a common misconception.

In any case, I agree that the Bible isn't making a forensic arguement.

HELLOOO from the Taiwan airport. I’m transferring flights and had a second. And GOSH! So many horrid statements. Well it is common knowledge that scientists often make horrible philosophers.

Here we go:

>> Dr. Hymie Gordon (Mayo Clinic): “By all criteria of modern molecular biology, life is present from the moment of conception.”

Who wrote the criteria? Can we use mine?

>> Dr. Micheline Matthews-Roth (Harvard University Medical School): “It is scientifically correct to say that an individual human life begins at conception.”

This one is pretty general. He’s just saying that the scientific community consensus sides with citing “conception” as the starting point of life. Ok. But as my mom used to say, if everyone jumped off the Brooklyn bridge does that mean you should too…

>> Dr. Alfred Bongioanni (University of Pennsylvania): “I have learned from my earliest medical education that human life begins at the time of conception.”

And I have learned from my earliest education that evolution is true…

>> Dr. Jerome LeJeune, “the Father of Modern Genetics” (University of Descartes, Paris): “To accept the fact that after fertilization has taken place a new human has come into being is no longer a matter of taste or opinion . . . it is plain experimental evidence.”

Then Dr. Jerome LeJeune, if you have truly developed an experiment in which a cluster of matter can be scanned and revealed to be human or not human, then you must have invented a measuring device to test for this “human-ness”. Can you please publish the schematic of such a device?

ok gotta go

No one is allowed to respond until you read this:

www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life

and this:

www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophy_of_biology


"And it is known scientific fact that the child and the mother have different blood."

"This is simply not true. There is a blood type prediction calculator that I used on the web that clearly shows that it is possible for a child to inherit a blood type of the mother."

"Actually, the fetal circulatory system develops independantly of the mother. While a child can inherit the blood *type* of the mother, like eye color and so on, it is simply not the case that they share the same blood, a common misconception."

It was not made clear as to what Paul meant by "have different blood". In what way is the blood different? Perhaps the word "different" was a poorely chosen word, but that is also unclear from the statement. The manner you described it is more precise, but how do you know that Paul meant it the way you do? You are simply guessing. At any rate, what Paul was going on about had nothing to do with the issue under discussion.
BTW-I am aware of the fact you raised and it is not a common enough misconception for me to hold is as true.
We can all throw out any notion that I hold to misconceptions and take it from there.

"In any case, I agree that the Bible isn't making a forensic arguement."

Well, it would seem that we both disagree with Paul on this.

I'm home now, and I have Beckwith's book, so I looked up that part about twinning and recombination. Apparently what I was remembering earlier wasn't what Beckwith said, but what he quoted Robert Wennberg as saying. Wennberg said this:

"Imagine that we lived in a world in which a certain small percentage of teenagers replicated themselves by some mysterious natural means, splitting in two upon reaching their sixteenth birthday. We would not in the least be inclined to conclude that no human being could therefore be considered a person prior to becoming sixteen years of age; nor would we conclude that life could be taken with greater impunity prior to replication than afterward. The real oddity--to press the parallel--would be two teenagers becoming one. However, in all of this we still would not judge the individual's claim to life to be undermined in any way. We might puzzle over questions of personal identity...but we would not allow these strange replications and fusions to influence our thinking about an individual's right to life. Nor therefore does it seem that such considerations are relevant in determining the point at which an individual might assume a right to life in utero." (Politically Correct Death, p. 97)

Tony,

>>”Who wrote the criteria? Can we use mine?”

No. Not if you actually follow science. You can’t use your own definition or criteria for carbon or nitrogen either. Sorry.

It doesn’t stop some from trying though - obviously.

Here's a different viewpoint.

If you view a human being as a knowledge creating entity, then a human is a mind, not a body.

The mind grows by conjecture and refutation. However, there's very little sensory input in the womb, so there's not much material to form conjectures about.

Hence a human doesn't come into existence until after the body is born.

Here's an amusing claim: humans begin at *day 49* of gestation when the pineal gland forms.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hLdxcCxcsfw&feature=related

Not so credible, but at least the claim is pretty specific and so it sticks its neck out.

Sam-- Thanks for the quotation from Wennberg. That put to rest the issue in my mind.

> If you view a human being as a
> knowledge creating entity, then a
> human is a mind, not a body.

Well, that's a big "if", isn't it?

I suppose you could justify just about any action against someone else by selecting a convenient "view" of what a Human Being is.

Kevin,

>> Not if you actually follow science. You can’t use your own definition or criteria for carbon or nitrogen either. Sorry.

Hmm, bummer i wanted to use mine.

Then whose criteria should we use?

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Species_problem

Hi Mike,

My interest is in when human life begins; I'm not taking a position on abortion.

The post expresses a biological view of humanity, but is that the correct one?

Many people believe that what makes human beings unique is their ability to reason and create knowledge. Other mammals don't have this ability, yet they too are conceived when sperm meets egg.

People are more than their bodies: I suspect that's something we agree on.

Peggy Noonan – WSJ – dropping a little wit and wisdom:

“As to the question when human life begins, the answer to which is above Mr. Obama's pay grade, let's go on a little tear. You know why they call it birth control? Because it's meant to stop a birth from happening nine months later. We know when life begins. Everyone who ever bought a pack of condom knows when life begins.

To put it another way, with conception something begins. What do you think it is? A car? A 1948 Buick?”

"Hi Mike,

My interest is in when human life begins; I'm not taking a position on abortion.

The post expresses a biological view of humanity, but is that the correct one?

Many people believe that what makes human beings unique is their ability to reason and create knowledge."

I don't know that we actually "create" knowledge. We can acquire knowledge that much is sure. If knowledge is a justified true belief that relies on the corospondence form of objective truth, then we don't create knowledge, but knowledge can be gleaned from the objective reality around us. Aquisition of this type of objective truth that corresponds to reality is essential in proper decision making that allows us to make choices critical to our survival. If we created knowledge then we would also have to have the "magical power" of changing the laws by which the world around us operates to match the knowledge that we created. Even if such were the case, the person standing next to you would have to have the same magical ability to negate your magical powers so that another set of rules that he magically creates to match his created knowledge were not made null and void and his created reality did not crash down around his ears.
This line of thiking is FANTASY, but it is your line of thinking Thomas R.


" Other mammals don't have this ability, yet they too are conceived when sperm meets egg. "

Let's come back to the real world Thomas. No mamal has the ability to create knowledge, in the strictest sense of that concept.
However, other mamals are capable of acquiring knowledge...(I.E. learning) at a certain level that is far below that of human beings.


"People are more than their bodies: I suspect that's something we agree on."

Ok. I am a bit suspicious of this because of your use of the word "mamal" to link the human body to that of other mamals as you present your argument. But our agreement is not what makes it an objective reality.

Just what reasoning did you use to arrive at this conclusion?

It is very simple. If shedding the blood of the yet unborn child is not distinguised from the blood of the mother as another person's blood, not the mother's own blood. Then it can be argued that abortion IS NOT really MURDER. The fact that the unborn child is a human life form can be regarded as irrelevant.

I'm of the opionion that after the unborn child has his/her own blood that qualifies him/her as a person. That was the intent of my argument.

My argument regarding this is that another person other than the mother can be forensically determinded. Even if they both have the same blood type. It is called DNA. And that difference is there from the moment of conception.

"And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man's brother will I require the life of man. Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man." [Genesis 9:5, 6.]

When the yet unborn child has blood, and it is shed by abortion. It is murder.

"It is very simple. If shedding the blood of the yet unborn child is not distinguised from the blood of the mother as another person's blood, not the mother's own blood. Then it can be argued that abortion IS NOT really MURDER."

If shedding of blood is essential for an act to be murder then gassing people is not murder either. Paul, you are missing the point.

" The fact that the unborn child is a human life form can be regarded as irrelevant."

What does that mean? What is a "human life form"? Is it irrelevant that you are a human life form too? Should it then be sanctioned that you be killed with the state's approval? Come on Paul, start thinking outside of your pro-choice box.


"I'm of the opionion that after the unborn child has his/her own blood that qualifies him/her as a person. That was the intent of my argument."

When you label a developing organism as being human, which you did, then it is a human being. Human organisms are personal kind of beings. As such, they are human beings the moment they begin their development and that happens at conception. You keep coming back to a coloquial expression that includes the word blood to back up your claims that the passage is referring to forensic evidence of personhood. The passage was meant to drive home the point of the serious nature of murder, not to define what a human being is.

"My argument regarding this is that another person other than the mother can be forensically determinded."

Sure it can. It's called genetic fingerprinting. You don't need blood cells for that.

"Even if they both have the same blood type."

Thanks for proving my point.

"It is called DNA. And that difference is there from the moment of conception. "

Exactly right. Now you are on the right track.

"And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man's brother will I require the life of man. Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man." [Genesis 9:5, 6.]

"When the yet unborn child has blood, and it is shed by abortion. It is murder."

Yes it is, but it is that before you have blood as well. You have admitted as much when you said that the DNA differs from the mother. So, it seems to me that from your own understanding, you should be able to see that this is indeed the case and that blood is not an essential component in determining what is and what is not a human being(i.e. person).

Thomas R: My comments are bracketed.

“If you view a human being as a knowledge creating entity, then a human is a mind, not a body.”
[Classically, a human is a mind/body unity so to define it as only mind OR only body is not correct.]

“The mind grows by conjecture and refutation.” [A one-day old infant is not growing its mind by conjecture and refutation. There is no reasoning or cognition at that point. Our infant and adult minds also grow from sensory input.]

“However, there's very little sensory input in the womb, [I think that premise is highly debatable. There is probably all the sensory input a mind at that stage of development can handle.]

…so there's not much material to form conjectures about.” [Again, unborn babies do not form conjectures; they grow primarily by sensory input.]

“Hence a human doesn't come into existence until after the body is born.” [Based on the fact that most of your premises are flawed or questionable, your conclusion does not go through and the argument fails.]

“Many people believe that what makes human beings unique is their ability to reason and create knowledge. Other mammals don't have this ability, yet they too are conceived when sperm meets egg.” [Reasoning may make humans unique, but it does not make them alive, which is the question you are asking. All mammals are alive at conception. Because humans develop conscious features of mind that say, guinea pigs do not, is irrelevant to the question at hand. Essentially, your statements in this argument are a non-sequitur.]

"A soul is an immeterial thing. In what way does blood(a material thing) have anything to do with that?" -- Louis Kuhelj

In Leviticus it states, "For the life[soul] of the flesh [is] in the blood:" (17:11)

The body-soul connection is the blood. Without the blood the soul and spirit leaves the body.

Now as I mentioned identical twins come from the same egg. Two persons from one genetic cell. If more cells were to be separated that early in which twins would be formed, more than twins would be formed. Not just two persons, but more. So personhood takes place sometime between the egg becoming the human cell and that person or persons having their own blood.

My argument was not intended to limit murder to only the physical spilling of blood. But that the presence of blood signified the evidence of personhood. Souls.

Paul,

You might recall the concept of synecdoche from your high school English classes. This is a rhetorical device where a particular instance is used to stand in for a general category of items - such as "backstabbing" referring generally to any act of betrayal.

We all know God is not above using figurative language throughout the Bible. Such language lends itself to great economy and depth. (Jesus has given the world some of its greatest treasures of figurative expressions.) When God said (or inspired others to say) eye for eye, tooth for tooth, blood for blood, He was elucidating universal principles of justice by picking a few illustrative examples.

If we take a figure of speech literally we devise sheer nonsense, and if we take literal passages figuratively, we alter their meaning de facto. By the way, how many hands do you have left on your body? How many Christians daily carry around a wooden cross-beam and truly follow Jesus? Was the power and glory of "the cross" contained in the pieces of wood on which Jesus died? Or do these things refer to something else?

Paul,

I'm not sure how the Leviticus passage answers Louis' question.

You're drawing the distinction between physical (body) and immaterial (soul-spirit-mind), but then the verse says the life of the body (not the mind, or the soul, or the human spirit) is in the blood. If the physical life is in the physical blood, what does that tell us about the non-physical aspects of a human?

You seem to equate life with soul (due to your bracketing these two together). This equation does not appear in the text, nor in any other text of which I am aware (albeit in pantheism). The wording is precise, clear, and explicit - the life of the FLESH is in the blood. I've heard of the mind-body interface occurring in the brain as the mind's command center of the body; I've never heard of the blood as the mental/spiritual interface with the body. How would this work?

Hi Sage S,

Thank you for our comments. As for the short quote from Levitcicus, the Hebrew translated "life" is the Hebrew for "soul."

". . . for the soul of the flesh is in the blood;" -- Darby translation.

When Jesus said, "I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep." (John 10:11.) The Greek for "life" is the Greek for the "soul" and refers to Christ's shedding of His blood.

". . . because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors." -- Isaiah 53:12.

I am of the view point that abortion by and after the 17th day of conception is unquestionably murder (referencing Genesis 9:5,6.)

Paul,

""A soul is an immeterial thing. In what way does blood(a material thing) have anything to do with that?" -- Louis Kuhelj

In Leviticus it states, "For the life[soul] of the flesh [is] in the blood:" (17:11)"

I think that you are just a bit off track on this passage. I think that the problem is equating life with soul. If it was not possilbe for life to be removed from the soul, then you might have a point, but scriptures prove just the oposite. The scriptures tell us that a soul can die. Ezekiel 18:4 is very clear on this point where it states that "The sould that sinneth it shall die." Even within the passage you cite, it is clear that it is speaking of life in a physical sense, not spiritual one. Revelation 2:11, Revelation 20:6 and Revelation 20:14 all speak of a second death that will follow for some after the first death when the physical body dies in the medcal sense. I get nothing within the verse you quote from Leviticus that would lead me to think that it is speaking of anything but the physical life as it is understood even by secular science. It speaks along the lines tha blood is necessary for physical life to continue, but it states absolutely nothing about a soul.

"The body-soul connection is the blood. "

I don't think that the passage you quoted establishes that in any way and there are other passages that clearly deny this.

"Without the blood the soul and spirit leaves the body."

It can leave the body with the blood fully kept in the body as well. People have been known to die of high fevers and poisonings, which leave the supply of blood untouched. So, I don't think that your argument establishes this as an absolute given and it seems that this sits on a very thin reed.


"Now as I mentioned identical twins come from the same egg. Two persons from one genetic cell. If more cells were to be separated that early in which twins would be formed, more than twins would be formed. Not just two persons, but more. So personhood takes place sometime between the egg becoming the human cell and that person or persons having their own blood."

I don't find this terribly compelling. There would have to be a much more cogent argument made for me to give it much weight.

"My argument was not intended to limit murder to only the physical spilling of blood. But that the presence of blood signified the evidence of personhood. Souls."

Well, maybe it was so, but I just don't think you've made a strong enough case for it to be sustainable.


The sould that sinneth it shall die. Ezekiel 18:4

Hi,

this raises an interesting question.

can someone please clarify then how christians seem to accept IVF, while rejecting abortion? I'm a Christian, and I'm against abortion of course, but how can any christian justify IVF, since it often involves 'reduction' or the killing of fertilized eggs?

A lot of Christians haven't thought through what's involved. There's nothing wrong with IVF, as long as you only fertilize and implant the children you're willing to carry to term.

Paul,

Thank you - I do remember this aspect of Greek and Hebrew now, their having one word that means both "soul" and "life." However, soul and life are not therefore interchangeable terms. Consider love - the Greeks have four words, and we only one. Agape, philia, storge, and eros delineate distinct categories of love, whereas we have one word that serves for all its forms. Do we consider the various forms interchangeable due to the arbitrary constraints of our language? Does someone's love for chocolate fall into the same ontological category as their love for humanity, or for their spouse, or for God? Clearly these all mean something very different, and the meaning is evident from the context. The same I believe is true regarding soul and life.

Idiosyncrasies of language do not suggest deep spiritual truths. Using it this way treats it like a mystical device for finding secret knowledge where none exists. Soul and life are very different THINGS, regardless of what words (or word) we assign them.

Louis Kuhelj,

For one thing, I do not believe in the immortality of the soul. So I believe the soul that sins shall indeed die (Ezek 18:4.) Though I also do believe in the current possession of eternal life of believers in Christ. And when a believer dies he goes to be directly to be with his Lord (2 Corinthians 5:8.)

I should point out; those who do believe in the immortality of the soul do so because of the truth that merely killing the body does not kill the soul (Matthew 10:28.)

That being said, Christ's death on the cross was the death of His soul (Isaiah 53:10, 12.) And that was completed before He physcially died (John 19:28, 30.) The point being Christ was conscious while suffering on that cross - His soul having died - completing the atonement for sins. Which shows that the death of the soul is not the end of consciouness. Because what is called the worm never dies. (Ps 22:6; Isaiah 66:24; Revelation 14:11.) You don't have to agree with my understanding.

So my position is that the unborn unquestionably have a soul as evidenced by the presences of having his/her own blood as distinguised from the mother's blood.

I think it is very relevant to issue of personhood of the unborn.

"The life[soul] of the flesh is in the blood, . . ."

That is how I see it.

Sage S.

The terms "soul" and "life" can have non-interchangeable meanigns. Usage and context will make the difference. A "dead soul" can be understood to mean nothing more than a "dead body." But not that the "soul" itself has actually then being dead. Death being understood as separation from life in one way or another.

I'm of the opinion that the presence of the blood belonging to the unborn signifies the presence of the unborn's soul and shows personhood.

If one does not want to agree with that, does not make it not true.

For me it solves the problem of twins from one egg and the two fertilized eggs combining to become one person issues.

If it does not, then twins are the result of one person dying and two more coming to be. And two persons dying and another comes to be.

It is one way or the other.

Paul,

"Louis Kuhelj,

For one thing, I do not believe in the immortality of the soul."

What then survives to have eternal life?


" So I believe the soul that sins shall indeed die (Ezek 18:4.) "

Do you think that spiritual death is the exact same thing as physical death? I refer you back to the account of Genesis and the warning that God gave to Adam and Eve. The day that they would eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, they should surely die. Did they die physically the day that they disobeyed God? No, but they died spiritually. What does that look like from the perspective of God? Before the fall the two would walk with God every day in the garden and I am sure communicated with him as well. This kind of activity would indicate a relationship that after the fall they no longer enjoyed. The break in relationship because of disobedience resulted in a separation from God. Did not Jesus say that he was the life? Of course he also said that he was the truth and the way as well, but the point here is that separation from God is a separation from life and certainly the source of life. God, not being mortal as we are, does not view death in the same way as we do in terms of mortality and this difference is reflected in the biblical passages that I have cited. The alternative to this understanding can only lead to one that would point to an admission that God's sovereign will was thwarted when Adam and Eve did not immediately physically die after disobeying God in the garden. That paints a picture of a different kind of God...one that is not all powerful and one who cannot perform that which he promises. That, to me at least, does not sound like the God of the Bible.

"Though I also do believe in the current possession of eternal life of believers in Christ. And when a believer dies he goes to be directly to be with his Lord (2 Corinthians 5:8.)
I should point out; those who do believe in the immortality of the soul do so because of the truth that merely killing the body does not kill the soul (Matthew 10:28.)

That being said, Christ's death on the cross was the death of His soul (Isaiah 53:10, 12.) And that was completed before He physcially died (John 19:28, 30.) The point being Christ was conscious while suffering on that cross - His soul having died - completing the atonement for sins. Which shows that the death of the soul is not the end of consciouness."

I think I know where you are coming from, but Jesus was a unique case. He died for the sins of others. I don't think it is appropriate to compare what happened to Him on the cross to what happens to us when we die. You cannot get a clear picture from that example what is generally true with the rest of us...mere human beings who are not also God.


" Because what is called the worm never dies. (Ps 22:6; Isaiah 66:24; Revelation 14:11.) You don't have to agree with my understanding."

-smile- Ok.

"So my position is that the unborn unquestionably have a soul as evidenced by the presences of having his/her own blood as distinguised from the mother's blood."

We agree that there has to be something that is distinct from the mother that identifies the individual as being an individual human being within the womb itself. On that general and broad concept we are in perfect agreement. Well, I don't know from what you have said so far, but I get the impression that you think that DNA is only present in the blood? I might be wrong about that and if I am, forgive me. However, the distinct and unique DNA signature exists way before there is a circulatory system or any blood flowing through it. That DNA fingerprint is distinct from both mother and father and as such identifies the growing organism as a distinct one and a unique one as well. So, I don't think that you really need blood to make such a clear distinction between mother and developing child. If the developing child is a male, it is even easier to make that distinction from the mother as the chromosomes are distinctly different from the mother and again, the blood is not necessary to make that determination. I am sorry, but I just don't find this whole line of argumentation for when a human being is worthy of our protection particularly compelling. Now, maybe someone else might find that it is to them, but I an mot moved by this.

"I think it is very relevant to issue of personhood of the unborn.

"The life[soul] of the flesh is in the blood, . . ."

That is how I see it."

You have the liberty to do so. However I believe that true liberty can only be found in the truth.

Louis Kuhelj,

" 'For one thing, I do not believe in the immortality of the soul.'

What then survives to have eternal life?"

The soul, of course.

You cited Ezek 18:4, "The soul that sinneth it shall die." That my friend explicitly shows the soul is not immortal.

You do understand "immortal" means, "can not die?" The only way one's soul is not going to die, is to know God and so have eternal life. (John 17:3.)

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" ' So I believe the soul that sins shall indeed die (Ezek 18:4.) '

Do you think that spiritual death is the exact same thing as physical death?"

Not at all. Death is separation from life. Man from God, body from soul, etc.

Adam & Eve died the day they eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil (Genesis 2:17 warned.) It wasn't their souls nor their bodies that died that day. But they did die that very day. They would die latter in physical death, because they were kept from the tree of life (Genesis 3:22, 23.)

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". . . but I get the impression that you think that DNA is only present in the blood? I might be wrong about that and if I am, forgive me. . . ."

I never said that. What I said was, "It is called DNA. And that difference is there from the moment of conception." I understand DNA is found in the nucleus of living cells.

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But as you said, ". . . that true liberty can only be found in the truth."


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