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Made in His Image

Antionette Duck

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Do you believe you are fearfully and wonderfully made? A call to embrace our value as established by the LORD, as we explore the concepts of our intrinsic worth and the humanity of the unborn. 

Presenter

Antionette Duck is the founder of Mafgia and a living testament to the redemptive grace of the Lord. She has come to understand that her faults and failures are not the end of the story—that the story of the cross is the story of redemption. As one rescued from abortion, Ms. Duck is now an attorney and speaker dedicated to rescuing others. She invites you to walk in the redemptive grace that is yours.

Recorded

  • April 1, 2018
    2:00 PM
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And Jeremiah There's a verse I'm sure you're all very familiar with it where the Lord says you shall seek me and find me when you search for Me with all of your heart I will be found by you says the Lord and I will bring you back from your captivity for us a focus of our ministry. Is this idea of taking captive those thoughts and ideas that have exalted themselves above and against the knowledge of God according to 2nd Corinthians $104.00 and $5.00 there are ideas there are mindsets there are thought processes that we are held captive by. That are desperate to be brought into obedience to the knowledge into a BT and and to captivity to the Lord we don't begin by choosing abortion a person isn't born thinking I'm going to have an abortion there are there are thoughts there are ideas that are compromises that happen in our thinking just like with anything else that grieves the Lord's heart there's a breakdown in what was intended and what we do and so it's those deceptions those compromises in our thinking that they have taken us captive and the Lord is saying I have come to set you free that's the focus 1 of them of this ministry to take captive those ideas that have exalted themselves against the knowledge of God so that people can walk in the freedom that he has intended us to walk in so I'm going to begin with this question When was the last time that you praise the Lord because you are fearfully and wonderfully made. When we talk about abortion and the value of human life some tend to focus on the unborn and the rightness or wrongness of abortion and some tend to focus on the woman in crisis and her circumstances this issue it's not just about the unborn and it's not just about the woman in crisis this issue is about both not just about circumstance and not just about the rightness and wrongness of this issue this issue is about reawakening us to the value that we possess because we were made in the image of the Lord we have forgotten what it means to be made in the image of the Lord I challenge you as we go through the seminar surveys you go out into the rest of your week the rest of your month the rest of your year read the Bible read this book through the lens of a God who is declaring your value because from cover to cover that is what he's doing he's declaring your value our value was established undeniably established at creation and our value was entrenched forevermore if you imagine a wall of granite and the Lord taking a chisel and literally in trenching it that's what happened to your value at the cross for evermore written into the canvas of eternity in Isaiah 491 it says the Lord called me from the womb from the body of my mother he named me. Diane actually came across a couple of these well the ones that I'm using. Phenomenal pictures of development that was you at your very 1st moments those cells that was year and right then at that moment you possessed everything genetically speaking that you possess right now sitting here today everything the Lord called you from the womb in a fusions to 10 we're told that we are God's workmanship created in Christ Jesus Jesus Christ to do good works which God prepared in advance for us to do there is a work a purpose a destiny to your life that he prepared specifically for you to do in Genesis 127 it says God created man in his own image in the image of God He created him male and female he created them and in John 1621 for joy that a human being has been born into the world the 1st part of that verse says a woman when she's going through childbirth she's experiencing all of this anguish and then her child is born and there's all of this joy because a human being has been born into the world isn't it significant that the Scripture specifically says a human being has been born into the world not a potential life not some other kind of organism a human being is in the womb and it's a human being that is born into the world. There's a very powerful quote by. E.G. White from patriarchs and prophets and it says that men are so intent on excluding God from the sovereignty of the universe that they degrade man and defraud him of the dignity of his origin when the Lord came to crown his glorious work he did not fail to create a being worthy of the hand that gave him life she's talking about you when the Lord came to crown his glorious work he created a being that was worthy of the hand that gave him life there is a glory of reflected glory but a glory to your existence there's a value that you possess that is absolutely magnificent our value was established unchangeably at creation and we see then that it was fortified entrenched at the cross for evermore God literally gave his own life to buy you back literally gave his own life to buy you back have you ever read John 316 through the lens of value for God so loved the world that He gave His only Son that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have ever lasting life there's a tendency I think for believers to read the scriptures for salvation but somehow to miss the declaration of love that's contained there the declaration of value your value that's contained there. And Isaiah 56 through 7 it says I gave my back to those who struck me and my cheeks to those who plucked out the beard I did not hide my face from shame and spitting for the Lord God will help me therefore I will not be disgraced therefore I have set my face like a flint he stretched out his arms and he refused to come down just for you and were told if you had been the only 1 he still would have done the same the infinite became finite the boundless became bound just for you how we heard it so often how we grown up in church too much that we have missed the glory of what he's done of the value that he declared when he did it the Lord didn't come to die for flora and fauna he didn't come to die for plants and animals he came to die for you and Hebrews $122.00 it tells us for the joy that was set before Him the Lord endured the cross despising the shame now we know he came to earth out of love for his father out of zeal for his glory and out of love for broken humanity and you know what the Lord's joy was when he was on the cross it was you he literally could see down through the endless ages and he saw you he saw you right here he saw you right now he foresaw your brokenness he foresaw your shame your pain and your need he saw all of it. And he said I'm stretching out my arms and I'm not coming down just for you but then he anticipated not just your brokenness and your need he anticipated your reconciliation and your redemption to him he end test of painted it he said I want her with me forever I want him with me for ever and so he died you were his joy you were and no matter what brought you here today no matter what has preceded your life no matter what what messages the world has fed you the enemy is fed you your family your friends your your significant others no matter what you've heard this is the truth about you you are loved beyond your wildest imagination your value your value its intrinsic no 1 and nothing can take it away you were his joy we were his joy the cross underscored our value for all of eternity no matter what you do no matter what you've done the value the Lord places on you will never change and no matter what you do and no matter what you've done the Lord will never not ever love you less there will be people who are eternally lost forever but the Lord's love for us it doesn't change he doesn't stop loving you he will never change his mind about the value he's placed on your life. The creation it's not just a nice story and the cross is not just an abstract idea the Lord knew at creation that the cross would be required of him he knew it. Think of this considerate except it dirigible he had it's true when he spoke the world into existence when he flung out the heavens the Lord knew that we would betray Him He knew he knew that we would sin he knew that we would run from him he knew that we would break his heart he knew that we would deny his name he knew it and yet he said yes to our lives anyway think of that he knew exactly how much you would grieve his heart and he said yes to your life anyway when his hand brought you into existence he literally said yes to your story now is there a standard Yes Have we broken the standard Yes Are we in desperate need of forgiveness and redemption yes and yet the Lord's heart toward us is not 1 of disappointment he doesn't look at us and say You're such a disappointment to me he doesn't look at us and say I can't stand you his heart is 1 of the most incredible love the cross in creation are critical because they shout and proclaim the love of the Lord that's what gives us our value his love established our value his love defines our worth his love for us not what we do not what we bring his love for us defines our worth he bases it on himself entirely on his merits on himself his love for you isn't based on you. Your value isn't based on you it's based entirely on him and I want you to think about this which is awesome because today is the Sabbath What is the Sabbath it is a memorial to creation it's a memorial to redemption the Sabbath we memorialize our beginning how we believe the world was created in the fact that the Lord is our Creator every Sabbath day and it's a memorial point pointing to his redemption what he did for us at the cross so we've spoken about the way that that our value is established through creation and through the cross if the Sabbath is a memorial to creation and it's a memorial to the cross and if your value was established through creation and through the cross then what does that mean every single Sabbath day is a memorial to your value the Lord declares I made you I redeemed you I declare your value he is he is the unshakable standard that defines your worth on shakable cannot be destroyed not ever you were born with purpose I don't care how old you are or how young you are sitting here today you were born with purpose and if you are still breathing his greatest plans for you are yet to be you were created with destiny and it's a purpose and a destiny that you alone can fill. You possess intrinsic value eternal significance these characteristics are so fundamental they are so critical that they cannot be destroyed and they will never be diminished your life matters not because of what you do not because of what you achieve not because of what you possess your life matters our lives matter because we were made in the image of the Lord that's not the message of the world you're valuable because of what you do of what you achieve of the wealth that you have how intelligent you are of your social circle and influence that's not what matters to the Lord your valuables soley because you were made in His image he is the unshakable standard that defines our worth and today and tomorrow and every day after he invites us to build our lives on the foundation of who he has declared us to be look at this light again it's 1 of my favorite pictures that we've come across of the unborn and listen to this verse. For I formed your inward parts for you formed my inward parts you covered me in my mother's womb I will praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made marvelous are your works and that my soul knows very well my frame was not hidden from you when I was made in secret and skillfully rot in the lowest parts of the earth your eyes saw my substance being yet unformed and in your book they all were written the days fashioned for me when as yet there were none of them do you really believe that you are fearfully and wonderfully made. Do you really believe it do you believe it sitting here today do you believe have you taken hold of your God given right to the value that you possess when is the last time you praise the Lord for the significance he's written into and onto your life have you ever and if you haven't will you start will you commit I will praise the Lord I will take hold of the value that he has given me I will believe the truth that he declares about my worth and it's a truth that he has declared from your very beginning from your very 1st moments long before you got to this stage when you were cells microscopic and no 1 could see you at all this value was declared of you and it will be declared of you through all of eternity when we claim when we assert that we are not intrinsically valuable from our very beginning we have to then contend with the consequences of that claim there are 2 very important questions that have to be answered when we're talking about value if we reject the Lord's standard which has happened over and over and over particularly on this issue the 2 questions we have to answer is when do we get our value if it doesn't begin at our very beginning and who is it that is making us valuable because your value must begin at some point and it must come from somewhere it must it has to. The Lord has established the standard the Lord has done it in Isaiah $5919.00 it says when the enemy comes in like a flood the Lord the spirit of the Lord will lift up a standard against him what happens when we reject the standard that the Lord has established when the enemy comes in like a flood there is nothing to protect us and we see that over and over and over again not just on the issue of abortion but frankly on any sin that we commit any time we turn from the Lord's standard and we see ourselves chasing idols and lovers and all sorts of other things looking to be made whole because rejected the standard of the Lord when the enemy comes in like a flood it's the Lord's standard that provides the protection for us especially on an issue like this when we're talking about life and death his creation that is our foundation in the cross that is our refuge our hiding place he established our value in the beginning and he fortified it forevermore when we strike down when we cast aside that value that standard we are literally striking down the very thing that defines who we are so what is left to define us when we strike down the very thing that makes us who we are. We're not valuable based on the world standard or not valuable based on what we do and achieve I'm an attorney I firmly believe in higher education but 1 day every single 1 of the degrees that hang on the wall they will be an ash heap beneath your feet the only thing that is going through into eternity is people that is it none of our accolades none of our achievements none of us will be standing in heaven boasting about what we did here on Earth it's not going to happen the only thing going through is people and if we're not seeking people especially on an issue like this then what are we doing there is nothing that we bring to him to make us worthy nothing were valuable soley because we are made in the image of the Lord so what does it take to believe this truth what does it take to embrace it it takes humility it takes vulnerability it takes a raw transparency before the Lord where we say you and you alone you and you alone give me my value now is someone who chooses to live for the Lord more effective than someone who doesn't Yeah when we're talking about kingdom work but the thief on the cross just as valuable as every other person who's ever existed because the Lord defined his value the Lord defines your value the Lord doesn't care as 1 author said for our tricks in train gets and that's what these things are that we bring here my accomplishments Here's my wealth Here's my honor here's my skill those are tricks and trinkets and they don't impress him. He's after a people who will define themselves by him in Him and through him through whom he can tell a story of redemption of significance that the world is desperate and dying to hear that's why we've been put here to glorify the lard to speak of his existence to speak of His grace to speak of the value that existed at our very beginning the question is will we do it will we humble ourselves under this standard and find that it's in humility that true glory exists it's in humbling ourselves in this way that we will stand in true glory folks it is critical it is critical to be spent to be standing on truth on this issue why is it critical Well number 1 it's critical for us individually because if we don't actually believe that we are valuable like this we're not going to believe that anyone else is valuable like this and it permeates every aspect of our lives but beyond that when it comes to this issue of abortion we're dealing with women in crisis men in crisis and we're dealing with men and women who are post abortive if we're not standing on a standard a foundation of truth what will that do it will completely guts our ability to point people back to the cross if we're waffling if we're wavering if we're not actually convinced how are we going to point them to the lights. We're not we're not going to be able to. What's critical to understand is when we're talking about in particular a man and woman who is post abortive they're not mourning the loss of a clump of cells there are skin cells that are on my hand that are falling off of my hand I'm not mourning the loss of cells the posterboard of man and woman they're mourning the loss of a human being that's significant it's profoundly different and if we aren't standing as Diane I believe will speak about later phenomenal comeback guys come back to hear the rest of the story if we're not standing on a foundation of truth we're not going to point people to the light people desperate to be set free We're going to point people away from it we have a calling a calling to point people to the light and the question is will we do it I wanted to explore in the same vein explore some of the difficult passages there are 3 primarily difficult passages in scripture that will be used to promote to advocate for abortion and. We have to know this book we have to know this book Why because that's our salvation that's our hiding place that's our refuge standing on the truth that the Lord has established in His Word 2 things 2 things I wanted to cover as we get into that 1 of the objections that's made when you're talking about the issue of abortion is. The word abortion I don't see it in my Bible and I don't see it anywhere in inspiration so why are why are we talking about this and 2 responses to that. The 1st would be this quote by E.G. white it comes from steps to Christ it says if you have given offense to your friend or neighbor you are to acknowledge your wrong and it is his duty freely to forgive you then you are to seek the forgiveness of God because the brother you have wounded is the property of God and in injuring him you sinned against his creator and Redeemer is she making a value judgment about people she says is the property of God and in injuring him you are sinning against your Creator and redeemer that's phenomenal The 2nd response to this idea that well the word abortion is not in my Bible and it's not in inspiration and just a moment because. It's this thought by someone named Scott clues and or with the Life Training Institute. The Bible talks about many things there are other things the Bible doesn't discuss So when we come up to an issue that perhaps isn't mentioned word for word in the Bible is it our position that the Bible condones everything it does not explicitly condemn. Think about that for a minute is it our position that the Bible condones everything it does not explicitly condemn no that's not our position Mr Cruz and of his use the examples of lynchings based on race or gender those aren't specifically mentioned in Scripture but we can all agree that those break the Lord's heart they grieve his heart they also break his law and so just because something is not specifically delineated in Scripture it cannot be our position that therefore it's OK it's permissible it's condoned by the Lord OK so getting into these difficult passages there are 3 The 1st is Genesis 27 and in Genesis 27 it says and the Lord formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living being Now the argument. The argument correlation to this verse is that you are not actually a human being until you are breathing through your nostrils that's the argument that's made when using this passage so what's the problem with that. There's a profound difference between Adam in animate object and the unborn when Adam was created he was literally like this pew or this podium or this computer he was an in animate object there was no life in Adam whatsoever he needed it was necessary that the Lord breathed his life into him so that Adam could begin to live so that Adam could come to life the unborn doesn't operate in that way the unborn is breathing it's living and growing throughout the entirety of the gestational period it's breathing through the umbilical cord was so the mode of breathing is different but the unborn is in fact breathing Adam wasn't breathing at all and if the Lord had not breathed his life into Adam Adam would have stayed an inanimate object he never would have come to life and none of us would have ever existed and so it was critical it was it was absolutely necessary that the Lord would breathe his life into Adam so that the human race could begin. To there are a certain this idea that you're not human until you're actually breathing with your nostrils some newborns don't breathe right away through their nostrils after they're born so can we say that for that brief period of time it would be OK to end the life of that newborn because they're not actually breathing through their nostrils Well no that's ludicrous no 1 would agree with that we should be able to take the newborns live simply because they're not breathing through their nostrils so we see then that breathing through the nostrils that's not the standard for who matters and who doesn't that's not the standard of value the Lord's standard is the standard of value. The 2nd passage is it's in Exodus 2122 through 25 and the verse that the verses say if men fight and hurt a woman with child so that she gives birth prematurely yet no harm follows he shall surely be punished according accordingly as the woman husband imposes on him and he shall pay as the judge determines but if any harm follows then you shall give life for life I for I tooth for tooth hand for hand foot for foot burn for burn wound for wound and strike for strike so the scenario here do we understand there are 2 men and there fighting there is a pregnant woman she is nearby 1 of the men strikes the pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely that is the scenario OK. Proponents of abortion use this verse and. I would say project onto it death they say well they were the 2 men were fighting they struck the woman when she gave birth her child was dead there's an assumption of death that's read into this passage that is not there and Hebrew there are 2 words that are used here yelling that means child and yet to come forth JASA is used in the context of emergence of a living thing there were ancient Hebrew words for abortion they're not used in this passage JASA is used over and over and over again talking about the emergence of a living thing a child is born an animal was born it's a living thing that emerges there's no reason to read Death to believe that a dead child was born when the woman was struck. And so if we go back and we read this verse on its face what's happened. The woman is struck and she gives birth to her child if there is no harm to the woman into the child then the man who hit her only has to pay a fine if there is any harm the Scripture says and the scripture could have drawn a distinction here it's doesn't it's kind of a critical distinction it doesn't draw it it's if any harm follows any harm to woman or child then it's I for I choose for tooth burn for Burn are we are we tracking together yes. The scripture doesn't draw distinction in value it treats the unborn and the woman the same the 3rd passage comes from Numbers 5 it's it's a longer passage 11 through 28 and I wanted to just read a couple of the key verses for you. In this particular passage it's about a man who would've suspected that his wife was being unfaithful and there was a ceremony that the priest would perform if you believe that the woman was being unfaithful his wife was being unfaithful and he she would drink there was a grand offering and she would drink this bitter water and. It would have an effect on her determining whether or not she had been faithful to her husband $921.00 it says and the pre-show put her under oath and say to the woman if no man has lain with you and if you have not gone astray to uncleanness while under your husband's authority be free from this bitter water that brings a curse but if you have gone astray while under your husband's authority and if you have defiled yourself and some man other than your husband has lain with you then the pre-show put the woman under the oath of the curse and he shall say to the woman the Lord make you a curse and an oath among your people when the Lord makes your thyroid and your belly swell. OK so that's what would happen that's the scenario right there and then in verse is $27.00 through $28.00 it says when he had made her drink the water then it shall be if she has defiled herself and behaved and faithfully toward her husband the water that brings a curse will enter her and will become bitter and her belly will swell her thought I will rot and the woman will become a curse among her people but if the woman has not defiled herself and is clean then she shall be free and may conceive children so. This verse has been these verses have been used to say. Well the fire rotting in belly swelling that's considered a euphemism for the reproductive system so you understand she would drink this water if her thigh is rotting in belly swelling that was seen as the destruction of her reproductive system her uterus and all of that. A People of red in this to have projected into the passage read into it to say well if she had been pregnant and her reproductive system is destroyed the Lord is in essence aborting that baby because she was unfaithful OK So err go abortion is permissible. What we see what do we see it's in verse 28 What happens if she drinks the water and she has not been unfaithful she can still continue to conceive and bear children what's the opposite of being able to bear a child its barrenness its infertility That's the opposite of being able to conceive it's being barren it's not abortion abortion is nowhere in the passage if she's been unfaithful to her husband her thigh rotting belly swelling she would in essence be rendered infertile and no longer able to conceive a child if she has been faithful to her husband then she doesn't experience anything with the thigh or the belly and she's able to continue to bear children does that make sense so there's no reason to read anything into the passage number 1 that has to do with the death of a child or 2 that this is really talking about abortion in any way. We see that she's able to either continue to bear children or not bear children but there's no reason to read abortion into the context of this verse or tracking that making sense. So. Again I know it's it's a lot of material but it's critical it's critical and we really hope that this will be something that you will wrestle with for yourselves that you will dig into for yourselves because in a situation like this in the situation of abortion we're talking about someone's life that will either be preserved or will be lost we've encountered story after story after story of men who have been in crisis women who have been in crisis who have had an abortion and they aren't dealing with it until decades later 10 and 203040 years 1 of the stories that someone e-mailed us about told us her story she became pregnant she was in her thirty's what did her father use to convince her to end the life of her child literally to end the life of his own grandchild the father you scripture that's what he used Think of that as the Bible is it's the Word made flesh it's Jesus who came into well to mung us it literally was given to us to help set us free to lead us back to the light and this man used the word of God to convince his daughter to end the life of his own grandchild we have to know what the Scripture says and what the Scripture doesn't say because when we're talking when we say this is a life and death issue it literally is literally is so 1 of the. 1 of the concerns that we've encountered is this idea of freedom of choice because we firmly believe in freedom of choice we believe in that as a ministry we believe in that as a church and individually that freedom of choice is paramount because the Lord doesn't force us to do anything he stands arms wide open and says come but he doesn't force he doesn't compel And what's really. What we can't lose sight of in freedom of choice is our role as believers to intercede to. To plead with another just like people in my own story in my mom's life they were willing to intercede for my value for her value and it literally was the theme that helped to save the both of us so too on every other issue we have a calling to use the the wisdom the understanding the word to help point people to the light and here's a very good example of that when we're talking about freedom of choice there are 2 statements the 1st says abortion is wrong and I will speak every truth I can to persuade you that abortion is wrong versus abortion is a tragic dilemma of human fallenness and whether you choose to have an abortion thus ending the life of your child or whether you choose against abortion thus protecting the life of your child both decisions are morally acceptable now. Both statements preserve freedom of choice neither statement says you must choose this way or I will hate you I won't love you I'll turn you in right both statements they preserve freedom of choice what's the difference the difference is the direction in which the person is led with the 1st statement your saying I will speak every truth I can I will plead I will intercede with you I will wrestle this together with you but please choose the light you're pointing them to the light with the 2nd example here you're saying whether you choose to or whether you don't choose to it's up to you we're treating it more like a preference you like asparagus and I like broccoli so whatever you choose to do both decisions are morally acceptable that simply on true abortion is not an abstract idea and when we're talking about whether someone chooses life or doesn't choose life we're not talking about a preference we're talking about life or death truth yes we preserve an individual's freedom of choice however just like we speak the truth on everything else as believers the Sabbath day for Sabbath keepers we speak it on adultery we would speak on line on stealing on cheating we would persuade people with what is true so too with an issue as critical as this 1. Now as we step into a scientific defense we wanted to. Break the issue down somewhat because as you get into these conversations there are important my mother she was in a domestic violence situation Diane Diane story she had genuine concerns that were surrounding her crisis pregnancy we should simply disregard those and say well that's not important you need to save your baby yes that baby is intrinsically valuable just like that mother is intrinsically valuable they're both equally valuable so we can't simply dismiss the concerns and act like they don't matter what we have to learn to do is to dialogue on this issue in grace but in truth in love but in boldness we can't be afraid to speak however there is a way there's a methodology I love the book desire of ages specifically for that reason because Jesus he I love the way that it's described that he spoke hard truth to people he spoke scathing rebuke but there were tears in his voice as he said it his desire was to reconcile people to the light to the cross that too should be our desire especially when we're talking about an issue like this now as we run through some of the scientific defense. I wanted to there are a couple 1 organization in particular that I've been able to work with it's called Justice for all absolutely phenomenal organisation in terms of the wisdom the understanding that they have on this issue the way they teach you how to dialogue about it to others 1 is called The Life Training Institute and the other is stand to reason I haven't worked with those the last 2 but again phenomenal resources in knowing how to effectively and lovingly dialogue on an issue like this because that's what we're seeking to do we're not seeking to argue we're not seeking to condemn this is a dialogue because transformation takes place in the Mind you do not wake up 1 day or wake up you aren't born saying I want to have an abortion 1 day again you're taking thoughts captive that exulted themselves against the knowledge of God That's what we're doing here I really appreciate this quotation it says that science teaches that human life begins at conception if it is also true that it is affirmed by religion it does not for that reason cease to be a strictly scientific truth. Science was created by the Lord it was the only reason we have science is because the Lord brought it into existence so when people want to make an argument that says well I don't believe that because science doesn't prove it yes it does science does prove the humanity of the unborn science shouts and proclaims the humanity of the unborn from your very beginning the only reason the only reason to oppose abortion is if it ends the life of an innocent human being that's the only reason if the unborn isn't human there's no reason to be against abortion it's a fact that the unborn is human was made in the image of the Lord that. We must advocate for the life of the unborn. As great cocoa will stand to reason he said before we can kill any living thing we have to 1st determine what it is. Imagine that you are standing at your sink and your washing dishes like this and your grandchild your son your daughter maybe comes up behind you and says hey mom had a grandma a grandpa can I kill this what is your 1st question What is it right why is that your 1st question because before you can kill anything you have to 1st determine what it is I'm from Georgia if my brother has a cockroach absolutely kill it get it out of the house right if he has I don't know our dog because the dog did something we're going to say wait a minute no you're not allowed to kill the dog I'm sorry what if he has 1 of his younger brothers we're going to stage a little intervention OK his brothers fight but we're not allowed to kill each other so it's very critical that we 1st determine what it is before we take it's life absolutely critical. And especially when we're talking about the unborn we have to 1st determine what the unborn is before we would never encourage someone to have an abortion I really appreciate this 10 2nd defense that was created by my friend Steve Wagner who works with justice for all and it says if the unborn is growing it must be alive if she has human parents she must be human and living humans or human beings like you and I are valuable aren't they yes yes they are there is a definition for life scientific definition for what is alive scientists they generally agree that things that are alive they have 3 characteristics The 1st is irritability reaction to stimuli The 2nd is metabolism converting food to energy the 3rd is cellular reproduction which is a growth the unborn exhibits all 3 characteristics there's another something else called the Law of Biogenesis it says that like begets like so what does that mean dogs give birth to dogs cats give birth to cats humans give birth to humans we don't look at a dog that still in its mother's uterus and say well that's a potential dog we don't have potential cows we don't have potential whales we have whales we have dogs we have cows so too with people we don't have potential people we don't have potential life we have life from our very 1st moments a human being is alive. And we see that from your very beginning a new a unique a genetically distinct human organism came into existence there has been I've seen something recently on social media. As people have been debate debating the refugee problem in the world and how it affects the United States and there was this memo that came out and it said if you're going to say that a fertilized egg is a person and not a refugee you need to rethink your Christianity something like that now are refugees made in the image of the Lord Amen yes they are there are people with value just like us what was the problem with the statement the 1st part of it why because the person who wrote it said if you're going to claim a fertilized egg is a human being there are no fertilized eggs they're not there there's a sperm there's an egg when they come together they cease to exist individually they become a new unique genetically distinct human organism there is no fertilized egg in the womb there is a new unique human being that has come into existence I mentioned earlier from your very 1st moments every scrap of genetic material that you have right now you had then it was literally written into your D.N.A. The Lord gave you your smile he gave you your eyes he gave you your voice he gave you you from your very beginning it. We have to rethink or I have a paradigm shift in the way that we think about development in the way that we think about the unborn there's a. A man named Richard stiff he came up with this idea of or explaining it the unborn development. With a Polaroid picture are you familiar with Polaroid pictures you guys remember those yes we spoke to a younger audience last week and they had no idea what we were talking about. Polaroid pictures what happens when you snap the photo what comes out a picture that sort of gray and smudgy right you can actually see the picture that's there on the paper but is the picture there. Yeah the picture is there so what happens it develops so that your eyes and my eyes can see what's on the paper or have we added anything to the paper to make it more of a picture No we haven't added anything to the paper we simply need time so that your eyes and my eyes can see it but the picture was always there you think of development also in terms of actual development as opposed to construction. He used Richard Smith use this idea of you think of a car and the way that a car is assembled so it comes down an assembly line and you add a body to the car you add wheels to the car you add a horn I like a good horn to the car and people might differ on when they think you actually have a car someone might say well you don't have a car till you have a good body so you have a good paint job till you have a good engine then you really have a car that's not the way that the unborn develops we don't add eyes at a certain point and then add legs and then add a brain and then add a muscular system and then say oh we finally have a human being the unborn develops from within itself where these cells split off and they form the nervous system and these cells split off and they form the muscular system but the unborn develops from within you had a heart beat out about 3 weeks 3 weeks when you were about the size of a grain of rice your heart began to be and you had brain waves at 6 weeks you developed from within nothing was added to you and nothing is added to the unborn to make it any more human you were what you are from your very beginning. So as we've after you've discussed say you're in a conversation with someone discussing the humanity of the unborn and someone might say OK I agree with you the unborn is biologically human but I don't really believe the unborn is a person and so they're not entitled to the same rights that you and I enjoy there is a philosopher whose name is Stephen Schwartz and he's come up with this wonderful tool an acronym sled and it stands for size level of development environment and degree of dependency these really are the 4 primary differences between us and the unborn and there are really only 4 what is important to remember in these conversations is we don't have to hide from what's true because there are differences between us and the unborn we're not mirror image copies of each other there is a difference in size the level of development the environment and the degree of dependency but are those things morally significant in determining value No they're not how do we know that let's think OK so the unborn is smaller than we are OK can we think of 2 born creatures human creatures who 1 where 1 is smaller and the other is larger and yet they are equally valuable. Well what about a newborn and a teenager 1 is smaller 1 is bigger but both are equally valuable What about men and women women are generally smaller than men but they are equally as valuable. We all agree what about level of development OK the unborn is less developed that's absolutely true than you and I are again we think of 2 examples of of people who are less developed than each other but they are equally as valuable as the other a newborn a toddler. We continue to grow and develop as we go throughout our lives my brothers are less developed than I am but it doesn't mean they're not as valuable the fact that they're less developed is not morally significant in determining their value what about environment the unborn is in the womb it's in the uterus that's also its proper environment the unborn isn't meant to be any where else the Lord designed it that way so when the unborn is in the uterus that's where it's supposed to be if you took us out of our proper environment and put us on the moon that's not where we're supposed to be and we would click quickly die off unless we had our protective gear because it's not a proper environment the womb is the proper environment for the unborn however does our value change based on our environment where we are when we came from outside to inside this room does our value change when we go from the United States to another country should our value change not at all because we are that in value that value is intrinsic it's absolute So too with the unborn the fact that it's in the uterus and not out here in the world does not and should not change its value environment is not morally significant in determining who is valuable What about degree of dependency last 1. We know yes the unborn is extremely dependent on its mother to extremely dependent for the food the nourishment that proper environment to keep it safe and secure but does the fact that it is dependent mean that it's less valuable newborns extremely dependent but we wouldn't look at a newborn and say not as valuable as your 5 year old brother your teenage sister simply because you're very dependent What about someone who. Has Down syndrome what about someone who has another sort of deformity very dependent but does that mean they are less valuable than someone who doesn't suffer in that way Well absolutely not because degree of dependency is not again morally significant in determining value the way that we think about these things it is so important and we have to be willing to think through it we have to be willing to wrestle with it we have to come to an understanding an absolute understanding of what we really believe because the stories are there the need is there I don't mean 1 or 2 thousands upon thousands upon thousands in our church is the stories we've heard of women 1 abortion to abortion 3 abortions for abortions I may or may not have shared this last night 1 woman wrote if she had had 12 abortions suffering under that pain that guilt that condemnation but nobody's talking about it I cannot even conceive of the struggle that she's living under desperate to be set free the stories are there Moreover the men and women in crisis who they're having sex and they shouldn't be they're stepping outside the bounds the Lord has established when it comes to intimacy. They need to hear this truth about their value and about the value of the life that may come into existence if they continue doing what they're doing they need to hear it what are we doing we're taking ideas captive as you Rabbit the session I wanted to show you a couple different paragraphs that really emphasize this point when we talk about taking ideas captive because that's what this is about taking ideas captive that have exalted themselves against the knowledge of got the 1st paragraph says this and I do a subject switch that you'll see in the next paragraph prenatal life is a magnificent gift of God God's ideal for human beings affirms the sanctity of human life in God's image and requires respect for prenatal life however decisions about life must be made in the context of a fallen world abortion is never an action of little moral consequence thus prenatal life must not be thoughtlessly destroyed abortion should be performed only for the most serious reasons. Now when you 1st read that paragraph you think OK ya we believe we believe in the value of life this the sounds good OK sounds good on the surface a let's do a subjects which with this same paragraph OK we're just going to switch out the words that have been highlighted there create a life in abortion human life is a magnificent gift of God God's ideal for human beings affirms the sanctity of human life in God's image and requires respect for human life however decisions about life must be made in the context of a fallen world killing your toddler is never an action of little moral consequence thus human life must not be thoughtlessly destroyed killing your toddler should be performed only for the most serious reasons. Do you have a different reaction to the 2nd paragraph than you do to the 1st 1 because the same paragraph but 1 is talking about abortion and the other is talking about taking the life of your toddler 2nd paragraph abortion is 1 of the tragic dilemmas of human fallenness we should offer gracious support to those who personally face the decision concerning an abortion attitudes of condemnation are inappropriate in those who have accepted the gospel Christians are commissions to become a loving caring community of faith that assists those in crisis as alternatives are considered subjects which killing a toddler is 1 of the tragic dilemmas of human fallenness we should offer gracious support to those who personally face the decision concerning killing their toddler attitudes of condemnation are inappropriate in those who have accepted the gospel Christians are commissioned to become a loving caring community of faith that assist those in crisis as alternatives to killing the toddler are considered again it makes a difference when you substitute killing your toddler for abortion what are these paragraphs what do they show us their ideas that have exalted themselves against the knowledge of God that need to be brought captive to him we shouldn't treat killing our toddler and abortion any differently if they're both taking the life of a human being we're either made in the image of the Lord from our very beginning or we are not we either bear his stamp on our life from the very beginning or we don't bear his stamp at all. It's either the Lord who defines our value from our very 1st moments or we are the ones who are defining our value and isn't that man defining his own value isn't that the very end to the success of Scripture isn't that the very opposite of the truth he's given us in His Word our ideas matter they have consequences our desire is that you are to wrap your arms around this issue as someone who will stand on the word of truth in boldness in courage and in the most incredible love because of your voice you did not come here by accident you didn't I don't care what brought you here it doesn't even matter you're not in here by accident the Lord will bring people into your path and your voice can be absolutely critical in helping to set the captive free no matter how young you matter how old the Lord wants to use you will you say yes we pray that you will. OK We're going to take a 10 minute break and then we'll come back for some question and answers. Please come back we'll be waiting to hear from you oh and I'll close in prayer for a quick. Vora I praise you for these people I praise you father for. The people who have helped to set this up the sound guy the people keeping the lights on the people keeping the air on thank you for that Lord thank you for the people who are here thank you that this message is true actually whether we believe it or not but if we will believe it heard what a magnificent thing you will do in us through us bring us back together again and just thank you and praise him in. This media was brought to you by audio verse a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse if you would like to listen to more servant leader Visit W W W audio verse or.

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