When you read the story of creation, what stands out to you? The power of God. The ability to speak and worlds are created. The fact that God the Father, God the Son, & God the Holy Spirit created man and woman “in his image.” As a lover of nature and scripture, this is the part that I’m most excited by. Out of all the things that God created, man and woman were created in his image. A reflection of who God is.
If you’ve looked around the world, in person or images, you’d notice that the varieties of man and woman are vast. If we are each created in his image, what a greatly vast God must have created us. Oh yeah, He is vast. Outside of time, all-knowing, all-powerful. We can’t even begin to comprehend how big He really is.
When does the “made” begin? Are we born in his image or are we made in his image? Yes, that’s what we’re going to discuss. When does life begin?
In an article for Sciencing, Shailynn Krow writes “All living organisms — from small to big — share characteristics that separate them from the divisions in nature that do not exhibit life, like rocks or soil. Living creatures have cells, DNA, the ability to convert food into energy, grow, reproduce, respire and move. These characteristics become the criteria for scientists to separate the living elements in nature from the non-living ones.”
At conception, cells are reproducing and an embryo has a unique set of DNA. Food from the mother is used to to give energy to cells to replicate. (Hello ATP cycle!). Reproducing cells, reproduction organs, respiration, and movement all happen BEFORE BIRTH.
“In these first few weeks, a primitive face will take form with large dark circles for eyes. The mouth, lower jaw, and throat are developing. Blood cells are taking shape, and circulation will begin. The tiny “heart” tube will beat 65 times a minute by the end of the fourth week.” (Source)
“Your baby’s arms, hands, fingers, feet, and toes are fully formed. At this stage, your baby is starting to explore a bit by doing things like opening and closing its fists and mouth. Fingernails and toenails are beginning to develop and the external ears are formed. The beginnings of teeth are forming under the gums. Your baby’s reproductive organs also develop, but the baby’s gender is difficult to distinguish on ultrasound.
By the end of the third month, your baby is fully formed. All the organs and limbs (extremities) are present and will continue to develop in order to become functional. The baby’s circulatory and urinary systems are also working and the liver produces bile.” (Source)
So at what point did God create in his image? At what point in a pregnancy is a baby, enough of a living organism to be a reflection of God’s image?
As someone who has carried two children until birth and a third to almost 15 weeks, I can tell you that the creating of a human is nothing short of a miracle. Who’s in the business of miracles? Oh yeah, the God of the universe. The author, perfector, and sustainer of all life. Yes. But somehow some people think they deserve the privilege to override something that a miracle-making God decided was for our good and His glory.
That moment in the Garden of Eden when Satan asked Eve, “is that really what God said?” It’s the same twist of God’s word that the enemy continues to do today. He has zero new tricks, yet for some reason we keep falling for them. Do I think God causes bad things to happen? No. Do I think He allows bad things to happen? Yes. But for us to even argue this stance we would have to assume that we know what God considers good vs bad for us. He’s outside of time, knows everything about everyone…wouldn’t we have to submit to the fact that He is not only in control but has it all under control?
The argument for abortion among believers quickly turns into but what about rape, incest, trauma. Yes, what about them? Was God not there in that moment? Did God somehow decide he knows everything but thought that trauma wouldn’t be somehow, someway, some time be beneficial for our good and His glory?
Five years ago, I laid in a bathtub. I was in pain, violently shaking. My body was trying to birth our dead baby. Did I ask God why? Well yeah. Do I know exactly why this side of heaven? Kind of. For some reason, God knew that losing a baby at the beginning of my second trimester was for our good and His glory. That baby was His before it was mine. My earthly children…they are his first. If he takes them today, I just have to trust that it’s for His glory.
Eve wanted to be like God. The God of the world who rules over life and death. When we start taking decisions like life and death into our own hands, no matter the case, are we no better than Eve? Are we falling for the lie that says we can be like God?
I can recall an ethics class in college in which we had to argue sides. One of my best friends stood with conviction and told me abortion went against God’s design for life. I argued but what about in cases of …x,y,z. This friend, a male, the son of a pastor, understood God’s sovereignty differently than I did at the time. So believers shouldn’t be shocked when people that deny God even exists don’t comprehend how we can look to our Heavenly Father in the most difficult times and know that whatever is going on is for our good and His glory.
I cannot begin to understand what goes into the decision to have an abortion. From the friends I have that have gone through the process, it’s not one they champion. Recently a friend told me that the abortion industry promised her freedom. That she could be successful and conquer the things of life without the shackle of a child. Instead of a child holding her down, she got a different set of chains. Shame, regret, confusion. Do you know who is in the business of shame, regret, and confusion? Satan himself. Surely, not God. After we cried, she told me that the freedom she has now is because she’s free in Christ. She’s successful. She’s a mother. She’s a wife. She’s no longer weighed down by the lies of the enemy and this world.
Motherhood isn’t a prison sentence. Is it hard? You bet. It is sanctifying and selfless and tiring and joyful and hilarious and bittersweet and loving. The good far outweighs the bad. Scripture says that “Children are a gift from the LORD; they are a reward from him.” (Psalm 127:3 NLT) This world doesn’t see them as gifts. We need to change the narrative. We need the world to witness what joy children really are.