January 2023


Many Christians believe abortion is morally justified in cases of rape and incest – what I call “pro-life with a footnote.” I spoke extensively on this in part 16 (episode 23) of my podcast series on abortion, but wanted to say a bit more about this here.

This position fails to understand the logic of the pro-life position. We are opposed to abortion because the act of abortion (1) unjustly (2) takes the life of an (3) innocent, (4) valuable (5) human being. All five of these points are still true when a baby is conceived via rape or incest. The circumstances under which a human being is conceived does not change what is conceived, so the unborn is still human, still valuable, and still innocent even if he was conceived by an act of moral violence. Abortion would still take the life of the human conceived under such circumstances in the same manner it takes the life of humans conceived under other circumstances. As such, it would still be unjust to kill the baby conceived by rape or incest. Pro-lifers are opposed to murdering all innocent, valuable, human beings no matter how they came into being, and thus pro-lifers ought to be opposed to abortion under all circumstances.

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I’ve often heard people claim that Saul of Tarsus confessed the deity of Christ during his encounter with Jesus on the Damascus Road by calling him “lord.” We read: “As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, ‘Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?’ 5 ‘Who are you, Lord? Saul asked. ‘I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,’ he replied.”  (Acts 9:3-5)

Those who see a confession of Jesus’ deity in this passage assert that as a monotheistic Jew, Saul’s acknowledgement of Jesus as “Lord” would be an explicit affirmation of His deity since Jews used “Lord” as a substitute for God’s name, YHWH. I find this interpretation unlikely for a number of reasons.

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I told you about my relativism series in the last post. It is divided up into three sub-series: epistemological relativism (there is no truth at all), moral relativism (there is no moral truth), and religious relativism (there is no religious truth. I finished up the sub-series on epistemological relativism in December, and I’ve posted the first two episodes in the moral relativism sub-series in the last week.
In the first episode I provide an outline for the sub-series, explain the differences between moral objectivism and moral relativism, distinguish moral relativism from moral skepticism, explore how pervasive moral relativism is in our culture, and explain why we should be concerned.
In the second episode, I explain why people reject moral objectivity in favor of moral relativity: (1) It seems to follow from atheism; (2) It gives intellectual justification for one’s sin; (3) They desire moral neutrality and non-judgmentalism; (4) They think moral disagreements means there is no moral truth. After critiquing each of these reasons, I go on to discuss why it is that humans disagree on moral matters.
Give it a listen at https://thinkingtobelieve.buzzsprout.com or wherever you get your podcasts from.