Christianity - Ethics




Arguments for and against abortion:

  • For abortion:

The mother's life and rights outweigh those of the foetus or embryo.
In the case of r a p e, denying abortion lacks compassion.
Stopping abortions would lead to 'back street' abortions - legal abortion is the lesser of two evils.
It could save a baby much suffering.

  • Against abortion:

Every human being, including the unborn, has the right to live and reach their potential. 
There are alternatives to abortion e.g. adoption.
The unborn child is denied choice.
Many people born with disabilites lead fulfilled lives.

Christian views on abortion:

  • For christians, human life is sacred and a gift from God which is to be respected and protected - this is known as the 'sanctity of life'.
  • The Bible teaches that human beings are created in the image of God and murder is forbidden.
  • Jesus reminded his followers that each person is precious to God.
  • Jesus taught the importance of loving your neighbour - in the case of abortion, the foetus and mother could each be thought of as 'the neighbour'.

Differing Christian Views:

  • Pro-life - abortion is morally wrong as human life begins at conception, although abortion is allowed to save the mother's life, if all efforts have been made to save the foetus.
  • Pro-choice - it is up to the woman - Christians believe that a woman has a right to a safe abortion.
  • Absolute moral - abortion is wrong in every circumstance.
  • Relative moral - abortion is permitted in certain circumstances.

Crime and Punishment:

What are the aims of punishment?:

  • Deterrence - punishment


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