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What does the Bible say about abortion?


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Philip Kosloski - published on 05/07/22

The Bible is clear in its defense of life from the moment of conception, laying the foundation for the Church's opposition to abortion.

While it is clear that the Catholic Church opposes abortion, many ask whether the Bible has anything to say about abortion.

Dignity of life in the womb

One of the most oft-quoted verses from the Bible in defense of life is from the book of Jeremiah.

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
and before you were born I consecrated you;
I appointed you a prophet to the nations.

Jeremiah 1:5

This simple verse affirms that God knows us before birth and that our dignity comes from God, even before we are born.

Thy hands fashioned and made me.

Job 10:8

The prophet Job also recognized that God is the one who made us, giving us dignity within our mother’s womb.

Upon thee was I cast from my birth,
    and since my mother bore me thou hast been my God.

Psalm 22:10

Another verse from the Psalms points out our consecration to God from the first moments of our life inside our mother.

Thou shalt not kill

With this in mind, when God said, “You shall not kill” in the book of Exodus, this includes all human life, from conception to natural death. It is generally accepted by Bible scholars that this refers to “murder,” or the intentional killing of another person, rather than the accidental death of someone.

Nevertheless, Jesus even went a step further, condemning unholy anger as an extension of this commandment.

“You have heard that it was said to your ancestors, ‘You shall not kill; and whoever kills will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment.

Matthew 5:21-22

While its true that the word, “abortion” is not in the Bible, God is clear in his revelation that he knows us intimately while in our mother’s womb, and condemns murdering human life.

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