Also connected to issues involved in abortion and the sacredness of life is euthanasia. Our beliefs in the value of life influenced by the church also affect the way we see euthanasia. Euthanasia is the act of bringing
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Abortion and Euthanasia Human life is sacred, this means life is precious and that no one has the right to take life away only God. The Christian church teaches life is a sacred gift from god. In the bible we read, 'Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish and the sea, the birds of the air, over the livestock, over the world and all the over creatures that move along the ground '. The teaching of the Catholic Church is expressed in the declaration on procured abortion (1974) in this the church points out that respect for human life is not just a Christian duty. 'So God created man in his own image, the image of God created him, male and female he created the' (Genesis 1:26-27). Created in the image of one God... has the same nature and the same origin of all.... Enjoy an equal dignity. The equality of all rests on essentially on their dignity as persons and the rights that flow from it. (taken from the Catechism of the Catholic church 1994) Contraception and birth control may be used for a variety of reasons, when pregnancy or childbirth might harm the medical or physical condition of the Mother. They are also used to limit the number of children in order not to damage living standards. The various Christian churches have different views on contraception. The Roman Catholic Church says that the use of contraception is against natural law.
Christianity teaches that all life comes from God. 'Be fruitful and increase in number, fill the Earth and subdued it. Rule over the fish of the sea, and the birds of the air, and every other living creature that moves on the ground. (Genesis 1:26-28) It also teaches that life is sacred. 'Your body is a temple of the Holy spirit' (1 Corinthians 6:19) For this reason it would be wrong and against Christian teaching to commit suicide or to take life of another person. The 6 commandment is 'You shall not kill' (Exodus 20:30) It is clear from the bible that human beings are not to choose whether they die. 'For every thing there is a reason, and a time for every matter under heaven, a time to be born, a time to die, a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted' (Ecclesiastes: 1-4) The Roman Catholic Church is opposed to euthanasia because it is seen as murder. In Evang velsium vitae, the Pope said that to cause death in this way was 'A grave violation of the law of God'. The churches concern is to bring the light and the life of Christ to everyone who needs it. It clearly teaches that those whose lives are diminished or weakened in anyway should be treated with special care. In particular, the sick, the handicapped, the elderly should be helped to live as normal life as possible. Whatever its motives, euthanasia does mean putting a premature ends of lives of such people.
There arguments for euthanasia. A person may reach a point where his or her life is not worth living. These applies to people whose minds are so deteriorated that they are helpless and unable to live with any dignity at all. People who are brainstem dead and have no hope of recovering consciousness but whose bodies are still technically alive. Some people support voluntary euthanasia eg EXIT and believe that the law should be changed. They believe that a person who is incurably ill should be allowed by law to have a painful (if this is their expressed wish). They also believe that doctors should be able to help patients that cant be cured to die peacefully, provided the person has signed a statement making their wishes known 30 days before. ' We have 20.000 requests for living wills each year, showing that a large proportion of the British people would like to see voluntary euthanasia become legal. Everyone should be able to have the mercy of a painless death Richard Hume of EXIT, the voluntary euthanasia society. In a living will a person asks for euthanasia in the event that they become terminally ill and unable to communicate their own decisions to relatives or doctors. Jesus did not agree with voluntary euthanasia, as we read. Simons Mother in law was sick in bed with a fever and as soon as Jesus arrived he was told about her. He went to her took her by the hand and helped her up. The fever left her and she began to wait on them. (Matthew 2 30-31) Jesus did not believe in euthanasia as he healed her and did not kill her.
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