The Sanctity of Human Life

January 21, 2014

This article was posted for the 41st anniversary of Roe v Wade that made abortion legal in our land and started our national holocaust.
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Once, a well-known conference speaker held up a crisp, new twenty dollar bill in a room full of over two hundred people. He asked who wanted the bill? Every hand in the audience went up. Then he crumpled up that bill, and again asked that question, “Who wants this twenty dollar bill?” Again all the hands went up. Then he threw the bill on the floor and stepped on it and rubbed it around on the ground until it was all dirty. “Now who still wants the twenty dollar bill?” he asked. All the hands went up once again. Isn’t that interesting? It seems that no matter what he did to the money, the crowd still wanted it.

Why is that? It is because the twenty dollar bill had not lost any value. It was dirty and crumpled, yes, but it still was worth twenty dollars. That value isn’t because the paper it is printed on has value, but because it was printed by the U.S. Treasury. It was backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. Government.

But what I wanted to illustrate with this story is the value of human life. Human life is not valuable because we are perfect or productive. It is not valuable because we are beautiful, rich, intelligent, athletic, or famous. We are no less valuable because we have grown old and decrepit, or because life has beaten us up, crumpled us, and soiled us. We are valuable because we have been created in the image of God.

Genesis 1:27 records the event of creation: “So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” Every human being bears God’s image. No other part of creation can make that claim. Of all of God’s creation, man is at the pinnacle. We are the part of creation that God is most proud of. Man is dearest to God’s heart. It is only us in our supposed sophistication and wisdom who look down on those whom God created. It is only us who value them as worthless.

You can understand God’s heart. Have you ever done a piece of needlework, or some wood working project, or maybe a piece of ceramics and given it away as a present only to have that grand effort of yours hidden away inside some closet because the recipient didn’t appreciate it? How would that make you feel?

I’ll tell you how it made me feel because I’ve “been there, done that.” One year for Christmas when I was much younger I did oil paintings for all my relatives. Yeah, I used to think I was an artist back when I had more time. But I gave each of my relatives a painting of a milk can holding a mailbox personalized with their name and address. To tell you how good of an artist I was, the only painting that was actually hung up was the one I gave to my mother. How’s that for motherly love? But she hung it out in her back utility room where nobody would see it. I was crushed. I really haven’t painted anything since.

So, imagine how God feels when He has personally created each of us, yet society considers some of us as throw-away. That throw-away might be an unborn child that experts say is somehow less than perfect, so it is aborted. It may be an elderly person who is incapacitated by illness and is no longer a productive member of society. Now they are just a drain on society’s resources. Surely they wouldn’t want to stay alive, we reason, since they no longer have “quality of life.” Soon, life is no longer sacred to us.

First it was the unborn as Roe v Wade in 1973 made them expendable if they weren’t wanted. But it didn’t stop there. As Francis Schaeffer, the 20th Century prophet and intellectual, predicted, or should I say, warned, “Abortion was just the start down a slippery slope that denigrated human life.” That slippery slope would eventually lead us to Euthanasia (common in Europe) and physician assisted suicide. “Nah!” people said, “It could never happen.” But it has. Now the citizens of Oregon were the first to vote to make physician assisted suicide legal.

Why? Because people think their answers, their viewpoints, their solutions are equal to God’s. So we get to decide which unborn baby gets to live and which one we will cause to die through abortion. We decide when someone is no longer useful and their life should be ended. What a slippery slope that is. Once we decide the unborn, the elderly, the disabled, the terminally ill are only problems to us with no intrinsic value, it becomes all too easy to dispose of them. But every human life is sacred. Every human life has intrinsic value. Every human life has been created in the image of God.
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Rev. Daniel Packer is pastor of the Orrington Center Church in Orrington, Maine. He is an active proponent of Biblical morality. His e-mail address is


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