Religion and Early Life 1
Christian Teachings on Religion and Early Life:
Roman Catholic Church:-Absolute Pro-Life
- Abortion is NEVER acceptable-evil- life begins at conception so abortion=murder and 10 commandments- 'DO NOT MURDER'
- "For you created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mother's womb" Psalm 139 v13
- "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart" Jeremiah 1 v5
- "God created man in his own image"
- "The unborn human being's right to live is one of the inalienable human rights" Pope John Paul II
- RC church sees adoption and fostering as acceptable alternatives
NOT ALL CHRISTIANS FEEL THE SAME WAY: David Steel (MP) proposed legalised abortion in 1967. Some Christians have a pro-choice approach- extending feelings of compassion to the woman.
Religion and Early Life 2
Protestant Church- Moderate Pro-Choice:
Abortion is wrong but it is sometimes acceptable for compassionate reasons
- "The lesser of two evils"- for example severe fetal disability
- Quality of life is considered over sanctity of life
- Christians should "Love their neighbour" and show compassion and empathy towards others.
- Abortion is allowed when the mother's life is in danger
- Abortion should be considered a "last resort"
Concerned over the number of abortions which occur and oppose abortion on demand.
Some Evangelical Christians:
Abortion is NEVER acceptable- Particularly evident in the USA abortion debate
A minority of Christians would be moderate pro-choice and very few would be absolute pro-choice
Religion and Prejudice 1
- "Do not ill-treat foreigners who are living in your land" Leviticus 19 v33
- "Love your Neighbour"
- "There is neither Jew Nor Greek, Slave nor Free, Male nor Female for you are all one in Christ Jesus" Galatians 3 v28
- Humans are created equally in the "image of God" Genesis 1 v26
- Jesus healed anyone regardless of race, gender or any other elements that may have led to them being socially outcast- e.g.- a Roman Centurion, Mary and Martha and Lepers.
Christian Teachings in Action:
Martin Luther King- Baptist minister who campaigned in a non-violent way against racial segregation in the USA during the 1950s and 1960s
Desmond Tutu: Archbishop of Capetown who used non-violent methods of campaigning against Apartheid in South Africa
Religion and Prejudice 2
Controversial Christian Attitudes to Prejudice:
Some Christian denominations do have controversial attitudes to prejudicial issues such as the role of women and the status of homosexual relationships
- The Roman Catholic Church does not accept women as priests and does not view homosexual relationships as legitimate.
- Some may argue that their is evidence of prejudice within the bible for example:
- Eve was the first to give into temptation in the garden of Eden
- Women were not allowed to be educated
Other Religion's views on Prejudice:
Islam: "Of His Signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the diversity of your tongues and colours"
Hinduism: "Do not do to another what you do not like to be done to yourself; that is the gist of the law - all other laws are variable."
Religion, War and Peace
Christian Attitudes to War:
- "Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called Sons of God" Matthew 5 v9
- "If someone slaps you on the right cheek offer him the left one also" Matthew 5 v38-9
- "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" Matthew 5 v44
- Jesus didn't physically resist and said "all who draw the sword will die by the sword" Matthew 26 v52
- Jesus went into a temple, overturned tables and drove out all who were selling and exchanging money in there- supports righteous anger when necessary
- Quakers are a group of Christians who are absolute pacifists
A holy war is a war which is fought to impose a religious view on another country or group of people. E.g.- the Crusades
Religion and Animal Rights
Christian attitudes to Animal Rights:
- "let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth" Genesis 1.26- Some have interpreted this as Dominion- Complete power and explotation of animals for human benefit while others have interpreted this as implying humans have a duty of stewardship- to take responsibility and care for the animals
- Sancity of life- all God given life is sacred (doesn't always apply to animals)
Hinduism and Buddhism:
- ALL life is connected and dependent on each other
- Ahimsa: principle of not harming any living being
- Karma: Your actions lead to the success of your reincarnation
Judaism and Islam:
- Similar to Christianity but neither eat pigs and both have specifically slaughtered meats Kosher and Halal respectively
Religion and Planet Earth
- "Let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth" Genesis 1.26
- "The Earth is the Lord's and everything in it" Psalm 24 v1
- MOST Christians believe that God intended for them to be the stewards of the planet and there are verses to support this e.g.- "Do not destroy trees"- Deuteronomy 20
- Believe that we are accountable to God for any damage done to his planet. God gave us free will and we should use it to make the correct choices.
- Climate change is a result of greed and sinfulness- good stewardship and compassion are required to begin to remedy the issue.
- In Genesis the Garden of Eden was created as perfect by God.
- Pollution is poor stewardship and goes against the teaching "love your neighbour"
- Christians also have concern over the unfair and unequal usage of natural resources and believe it is our responsibility to sustain them for future generations.