The abortion thread

rodion

Robin
Orthodox
I tend not to be persuaded by emotional arguments. Feeling emotions is fine but acting on them contrary to the truth and God's will is error.


Why does victimhood matter? Everyone dies, and to not be born into such a world as this might be seen as mercy.
Murder is a crime that is defined by law. If the killing in question is legal, then it is not murder, by definition.

Is anything Fr. Spyridon said contrary to the truth? I don’t really see exactly how it is an appeal to emotion. Dismissing it as such just sounds like handwaiving a point of view you dislike.

A secular state ruling that abortion is not murder, does not render it thus in the eyes of God who has been very clear on the matter via his Saints and prophets throughout time. When laws of the state are dramatically in conflict with the law of God, we follow God.
 

carnaby

Sparrow
Other Christian
Is anything Fr. Spyridon said contrary to the truth? I don’t really see exactly how it is an appeal to emotion. Dismissing it as such just sounds like handwaiving a point of view you dislike.
I will not contradict any Orthodox teachers. Rhetoric is a useful tool and I use it. But it simply has limited utility in teaching me anything.
A secular state ruling that abortion is not murder, does not render it thus in the eyes of God who has been very clear on the matter via his Saints and prophets throughout time. When laws of the state are dramatically in conflict with the law of God, we follow God.
What you write is true. And naturally among the believers, abortion is evil and a great sin. But the secular, that is, the inhabitants of the Kingdom of Darkness, are not condemned by their sinful actions, they are condemned their lack of faith. We cannot save them by writing more laws, nor by wringing our hands at the evil they do.

Our country is a kingdom divided, and it cannot and will not stand. The Kingdom of God should not be so divided. If the USA was a "Christian Nation" then we wouldn't need laws against abortion, because the law would be written on our hearts. That is what we need to show the world, so that they can see us and have faith. Fighting on their ground will only further divide and will not bring them to salvation.

Which is more important?
 

Dovetail

Pigeon
Orthodox
Unfortunately that video is pure rhetoric and I find its appeal to emotion uncompelling.

You cannot derive an 'ought' from an 'is'. All dialectic arguments about ethics necessarily either (a) make at least one non-analytic assumption, (b) appeal to emotions as premises. The former tend to be unconvincing and ultimately arbitrary (e.g. Kant's Categorical Imperative), while the latter are practically far more effective, and at least remain within something like the same domain. However, within the Church we can properly argue from Scripture and the Tradition of the Church, which are the witness of God. Moreover, because the law is written in the heart and not in stone, once the logic of this is thought through, you can see that this is the union of both (a) and (b).

The only fully articulated argument defending abortion you have offered is nothing but a basic appeal to emotion, on which you refused to expand when challenged.

It's also worse I think to be born to a mother who neither wants nor loves you, than to be aborted. I know that would have been my preference if my mother had felt that way about me.

Would Leonidas have cared if Persians had been aborting their innocent babies? Of course not, fewer enemies for him to fight.

If you are a Christian, why do you hold up pagans as examples to follow (why should I care what Leonidas cared about)? Why not pick an example from the history of the Church, either before Christ or after? Might it be because you are advocating a position that is blatantly against God's commandments, as testified to by the universal witness of the Church? (Link is to a Catholic site, however all these sources are pre-schism).

To make clear: I am not pro-abortion. I simply do not care if my enemies abort their own babies. Everyone dies.

The unambiguous command of God is to 'love your enemies'. There can be nothing more opposed to love than not caring whether they follow the commandments of God or not (except perhaps deliberately tempting them away from it like the demons). There are so many scriptural examples to cite here to show how horribly opposed to God this position is... Moses, Elijah, Jonah... All of these were sent to preach repentance to those who acted in opposition to God. Luke 9:54-56 might be the most directly pertinent.

The law, God's or ours, does not bring salvation, only wrath.

St Paul is referring to the Mosaic law here, as is fairly transparent by context. Are you talking about the Mosaic law, or do you think that God's commandments lead to wrath? Is that why you ignore them, and base your arguments on vague emotive premises?

Nobody is justified by following commandments - because our justification only comes from Christ. However, keeping the commandments of Christ, seeking them out, meditating upon them, is not optional, and certainly not bad as you seem to suggest.

John 14:15: 'If ye love me, keep my commandments.'

Matthew 7:21: 'Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven...'

Psalm 118 (Septuagint):1-4:
Blessed are they that are blameless in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord.
Blessed are they that search out His testimonies; they shall seek Him with their whole heart.
For they that work iniquity have not walked in His ways.
Thou hast commanded that Thy commandments be kept most diligently.
 
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carnaby

Sparrow
Other Christian
The only fully articulated argument defending abortion you have offered is nothing but a basic appeal to emotion, on which you refused to expand when challenged.
You misunderstand me, I am NOT defending abortion. Also, as I stated earlier, while I am somewhat immune to rhetoric, I also know it is a useful tool when arguing with most people.
If you are a Christian, why do you hold up pagans as examples to follow (why should I care what Leonidas cared about)? Why not pick an example from the history of the Church, either before Christ or after? Might it be because you are advocating a position that is blatantly against God's commandments, as testified to by the universal witness of the Church? (Link is to a Catholic site, however all these sources are pre-schism).
I do not do this. This is merely an analogy. You are right though about picking examples from the Church.
The unambiguous command of God is to 'love your enemies'. There can be nothing more opposed to love than not caring whether they follow the commandments of God or not (except perhaps deliberately tempting them away from it like the demons). There are so many scriptural examples to cite here to show how horribly opposed to God this position is... Moses, Elijah, Jonah... All of these were sent to preach repentance to those who stood in opposition to God. Luke 9:54-56 might be the most directly pertinent.
Because I see no spiritual value in forcing someone to follow God's commandments. Without faith, it counts as nothing. If you haven't changed their hearts to God, you have done no good at all.

St Paul is referring to the Mosaic law here, as is fairly transparent by context. Are you talking about the Mosaic law, or do you think that God's commandments lead to wrath? Is that why you ignore them, and base your arguments on vague emotive premises?
I certainly do not ignore God's commandments. I'm not going to FORCE anyone to follow them. There is no path to salvation that way.

Nobody is justified by following commandments - because our justification only comes from Christ. However, keeping the commandments of Christ, seeking them out, meditating upon them, is not optional, and certainly not bad as you seem to suggest.

John 14:15: 'If ye love me, keep my commandments.'

Matthew 7:21: 'Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven...'

Psalm 118 (Septuagint):1-4:
Blessed are they that are blameless in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord.
Blessed are they that search out His testimonies; they shall seek Him with their whole heart.
For they that work iniquity have not walked in His ways.
Thou hast commanded that Thy commandments be kept most diligently.
And so I do. Now, would I be justified by following God's commandments because YOU or someone else forced me to? Even if murder and all kinds of evil was in my heart? As it is, I follow God's commandments because I love him and because my life is not my own any longer.
 

Dovetail

Pigeon
Orthodox
I will not contradict any Orthodox teachers. Rhetoric is a useful tool and I use it. But it simply has limited utility in teaching me anything.

What you write is true. And naturally among the believers, abortion is evil and a great sin. But the secular, that is, the inhabitants of the Kingdom of Darkness, are not condemned by their sinful actions, they are condemned their lack of faith. We cannot save them by writing more laws, nor by wringing our hands at the evil they do.

Our country is a kingdom divided, and it cannot and will not stand. The Kingdom of God should not be so divided. If the USA was a "Christian Nation" then we wouldn't need laws against abortion, because the law would be written on our hearts. That is what we need to show the world, so that they can see us and have faith. Fighting on their ground will only further divide and will not bring them to salvation.

Which is more important?
Ok, this makes more sense, although I still disagree.

I agree that purely external righteousness is of very limited value, and is only really good if it either leads to or reflects internal faith and repentance. Overvaluing external shows of righteousness is one of the 'temptations from the right' as we sometimes call them, or Pharisee-ism. If someone doesn't sin because they are unable to, but would have if they could have, many of the Saints teach that it is as if they had committed the sin anyway. The principles for this are laid out in the Sermon on the Mount.

However, this is to interpret the issue of abortion's legal status in only one dimension, when there are many others. For example, how do we give witness to Christ in the modern world? Opposing abortion preaches Christ through the wisdom of His commandments in a culture where Christians are not (yet) able to give witness through martyrdom. You may mock the declining abortion rate as merely 'numbers', but I disagree. A million deaths is not just a statistic, it is a million tragedies. Two hundred less abortions are two hundred less tragedies. And who knows - perhaps some portion of those women who chose not to abort their babies did so because the overturning of Roe vs Wade made them rethink their life choices and turn towards Christ. It's not as if it is impossible to get an abortion in the modern US if you really want to. An entire generation has been counselled not to commit this sin. They may ignore that counsel, but that is their free choice, and does not undermine the value of it having been given in the first place. In the future, if the new legal status gets 'set in stone' as it were - i.e. becomes the accepted status quo - then this value becomes less or even non-existent. But in the changing of laws there is a great deal of spiritual power and momentum. Unfortunately, we see this all too often in the wrong direction, but we should rejoice when it is in the right one.
 

carnaby

Sparrow
Other Christian
Overvaluing external shows of righteousness is one of the 'temptations from the right' as we sometimes call them, or Pharisee-ism. If someone doesn't sin because they are unable to, but would have if they could have, many of the Saints teach that it is as if they had committed the sin anyway. The principles for this are laid out in the Sermon on the Mount.
Seems it has zero value to God, see the parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector Luke 18:9-14.

However, this is to interpret the issue of abortion's legal status in only one dimension, when there are many others. For example, how do we give witness to Christ in the modern world? Opposing abortion preaches Christ through the wisdom of His commandments in a culture where Christians are not (yet) able to give witness through martyrdom.
"By their fruit you will recognize them."
You may mock the declining abortion rate as merely 'numbers', but I disagree. A million deaths is not just a statistic, it is a million tragedies. Two hundred less abortions are two hundred less tragedies.
Is the effect cumulative? Or is it on a weighted scale as the number goes up? Numbers of tragedies never appeal to me, I completely understand why they are so compelling and yet, every tragedy is an individual thing. I think lumping the numbers together detracts from that, makes it less human. When I say that I don't care about abortion, I obviously don't really mean it, but when I say I don't care about numbers, I really do.
And who knows - perhaps some portion of those women who chose not to abort their babies did so because the overturning of Roe vs Wade made them rethink their life choices and turn towards Christ. It's not as if it is impossible to get an abortion in the modern US if you really want to. An entire generation has been counselled not to commit this sin. They may ignore that counsel, but that is their free choice, and does not undermine the value of it having been given in the first place. In the future, if the new legal status gets 'set in stone' as it were - i.e. becomes the accepted status quo - then this value becomes less or even non-existent. But in the changing of laws there is a great deal of spiritual power and momentum. Unfortunately, we see this all too often in the wrong direction, but we should rejoice when it is in the right one.
To be clear: I would be very pleased if the law of the land in the USA or even the world was no abortions ever.

However, I think it is counterproductive to focus on abortion today. That's just my opinion. I believe that Roe V Wade was correctly decided in 2022 as a matter of law. But I also think that going forward, zero effort should be made in Blue states to change their abortion laws. Thought of as an opportunity cost, there are much better uses of our time and energy.

By all means, outlaw abortion in Red states. That will make them very Red and help people choose where to live, especially when the country falls apart.
 

Pete345

Kingfisher
Orthodox
Something, something....abortion is a Jewish sacrament...*cough cough*

 

Roosh

Cardinal
Orthodox
Woman dies from taking abortion pill:

 

God's lonely asperger

Woodpecker
Protestant
Woman dies from taking abortion pill:

I can't help but feel the world would be a better place if this was a more common ocurrence. On one hand, it's celebrating someone dying, but on the other, she was literally killing someone not even born yet, which is worse depending on who you ask. No person who would do that is good or righteous. The only thing I can think would change this is the chance (very low these days) of repentance.
 

carnaby

Sparrow
Other Christian
Woman dies from taking abortion pill:

People indeed do die tragically and suffer many other horrible fates as subjects of the Kingdom of Darkness. I do not think we should be surprised, after all, is it not the legal right of the king of a kingdom to do as he pleases with his subjects? If one is truly a subject of the Kingdom of Light, there is nothing to fear, as Satan can only test us with God's permission.

Further, it is at least arguable whether or not, or to what degree, we are to meddle in the Kingdom of Darkness. I will have to think about this further. Certainly, we may help those who wish to leave Satan's realm, and show the rest there is another way, but in the end they must choose to leave, and my soul laments so many will not.
 

carnaby

Sparrow
Other Christian
I can't help but feel the world would be a better place if this was a more common ocurrence. On one hand, it's celebrating someone dying, but on the other, she was literally killing someone not even born yet, which is worse depending on who you ask. No person who would do that is good or righteous. The only thing I can think would change this is the chance (very low these days) of repentance.
I think you are right, because people learn from suffering, discipline, and punishment.
 

carnaby

Sparrow
Other Christian
I don't think any of these apply to normal women, so I can't imagine this with women with fornicate and have a "body count" higher than their own number of years alive.
I suppose it depends. God disciplines his children whom he loves. Those in the Kingdom of Darkness... well, they are at the mercy and whim of the Devil. I am honestly unsure whether or not they are our concern. I know we are to seek and save the lost, but who are the lost? The NPCs in Satan's Kindom, or the chosen wherever they are? I do not think the body of the non-believers on earth are the lost. I'm curious what Orthodoxy says about this, I will ask in another thread.
 

God's lonely asperger

Woodpecker
Protestant
I suppose it depends. God disciplines his children whom he loves. Those in the Kingdom of Darkness... well, they are at the mercy and whim of the Devil. I am honestly unsure whether or not they are our concern. I know we are to seek and save the lost, but who are the lost? The NPCs in Satan's Kindom, or the chosen wherever they are? I do not think the body of the non-believers on earth are the lost. I'm curious what Orthodoxy says about this, I will ask in another thread.
I think about the "chosen" and NPCs (also did that specifically when I wasn't religious) determinism thing that Calvin talked about very often. I'm kinda inclined to believe it mostly due to Machiavellian thinking that I have in general, but I have mixed feelings on it, and I generally try to act without thinking about denominations much, like Martin Luther (the white one, for the Americans reading) would say he did not like when people called themselves anything other than Christian.
It's also really weird to think you're an organic robot made by God. Saw a video about determinism some days ago by Luke Smith, and it had the thumbnail of Calvin seething over not being able to answer a "are you a robot" captcha.
Sorry if I'm being off-topic by talking about Calvinism.
 

Pete345

Kingfisher
Orthodox
I suppose it depends. God disciplines his children whom he loves. Those in the Kingdom of Darkness... well, they are at the mercy and whim of the Devil. I am honestly unsure whether or not they are our concern. I know we are to seek and save the lost, but who are the lost? The NPCs in Satan's Kindom, or the chosen wherever they are? I do not think the body of the non-believers on earth are the lost. I'm curious what Orthodoxy says about this, I will ask in another thread.
Remember the parable of the sower sowing seeds? We have a responsibility to share the Gospel to EVERYONE. However, not every seed (encounter telling the Gospel) will yield a sprout or come to root. A person must willingly pray the Holy Spirit enters them and be baptised. Some will do this, and others will reject it. God gave each of us free will to choose or reject Him. However, those who reject Christ willingly, or do not act on the Gospel, that is between them and God. We do not need to chase people down endlessly. At the same time, don't throw pearls before swine (those who mock, belittle, and reject Christ).
 

carnaby

Sparrow
Other Christian
Remember the parable of the sower sowing seeds? We have a responsibility to share the Gospel to EVERYONE. However, not every seed (encounter telling the Gospel) will yield a sprout or come to root. A person must willingly pray the Holy Spirit enters them and be baptised. Some will do this, and others will reject it. God gave each of us free will to choose or reject Him. However, those who reject Christ willingly, or do not act on the Gospel, that is between them and God. We do not need to chase people down endlessly. At the same time, don't throw pearls before swine (those who mock, belittle, and reject Christ).
Thank you for making me think of this. Combined with Matthew 15:21-28 it is profound.
 
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