The Sanctity of Life 1-17-16
“I call upon the citizens of this blessed land to gather on that day in homes and places of worship to give thanks for the gift of life, and to reaffirm our commitment to the dignity of every human being and the sanctity of each human life.” – excerpt from the Sanctity of Human Life Sunday, 1984Ronald Reagan
We are supposed to protect the weak and vulnerable during all phases of life.
- Nearly 50% of pregnancies are unintended; of those about 40% are terminated.
- There are thousands of kids in state care, only so many foster homes to meet the demand.
- 18% of seniors live alone, while 43% report feeling lonely on regular basis. Isolated elders have a 59% greater risk of mental and physical decline than those not alone.
Life is HOLY
Why? Why is life holy? This is a question even the Psalmist pondered…
“When I look at Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have set in place, what is manthat You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You care for him?”(Psalm 8:3-4 ESV)
Why is human life holy?
- WE ARE MADE IN GOD’S IMAGE (Genesis 1:26-2:25)
If we are made in the image of a HOLY GOD, then we too should be holy.
We are image bearers of God – created in the image, shadow, likeness of God.
We are imprinted with godlike characteristics.
“To be fully human is to fully reflect God’s creative, spiritual, intelligent, communicative, relational, moral and purposeful capacities.” (Relevant Magazine)
- WE ARE SET APART – that means we are holy
We are set apart above all creation(Genesis 1:26-28)
We are handmade
Only part of Creation made with God’s hands. Remember, He took the dirt and formed Adam. He took Adam’s bone and made Eve. He gave us breath (the breath of God). Other parts of Creation were spoken into existence but humans He handmade.
We are set apart as God’s chosen people
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light. (1 Peter 2:9)
Do you not know that you are God’s templeand that God’s Spirit dwells in you? (1 Corinthians 3:16)
We are set apart for fellowship with God
For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” (2 Corinthians 6:16b)
We are set apart and crowned by God with glory and majesty
What is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? You have made them a little lower than the angels and crowned them with glory and honor.(Psalm 8:4-5).
- GOD VALUES ALL LIFE
You are valuable. “Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuableto him than they are?”(Matthew 6:26)
He values new life – He creates new life. He knit you together (Psalm 139). It’s all a part of God’s great plan.
He values young ones – He blesses them and says to let the little children come when the disciples rebuked them. (Matthew 19:13-15)
He values teens & young adults – Paul writes that youth should not be looked down on for being young. Instead, be an example to believers in speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity (1 Timothy 4:12)
He values the mature adults – You shall stand up before the gray head & honor the face of an old man, & you shall fear your God: I am the LORD. (Leviticus 19:32)
Do not rebuke an older man harshly, but exhort him as if he were your father. Treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity. (1 Timothy 5:1-2)
He values the poor, the widows, the strangers –For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality and accepts no bribes. He defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the foreigner residing among you, giving them food and clothing. (Deuteronomy 10:17-18)
If Life is Holy, how is Life Not Worth Living?
The world is filled with
This is unnatural death. God’s ways are life, not death.
- Cain murders Abel(Genesis 4:9-15) – Cain is punished, but God also says that anyone who kills Cain would face vengeance.
- Ten Commandments– Do not murder (Exodus 20:13)
- Eye for eye– murder and be put to death (Leviticus 24:21)
- Cities of Refuge– cities for those who killed unintentionally (Numbers 35)
- Abimelechwas injured when a woman from tower dropped millstone on his head and cracked his skull. He considered himself mortally injured and asked his armor bearer to kill him with his sword, which he did (Judges 9:52-54)
- Samsonpulled down the building to kill the Philistines, resulting in his own suicide (Judges 16:29-30)
- King Saulwas injured badly in war so he fell on his own sword (1 Samuel 31:4-6)
- When Ahithophel’s advice wasn’t taken, he killed himself (2 Samuel 17:1-29)
- King Zimrisaw his city was taken and burned down his house while inside (1 King 16:15-20)
What does God say about death?
See now that I myself am he! There is no god besides me. I put to death and I bring to life, I have wounded and I will heal, and no one can deliver out of my hand. (Deuteronomy 32:39)
LIFE AND DEATH IS IN HIS HANDS
The world is filled with abuse of life
Abuse steals peace. Abuse kills joy. Abuse destroys hope.
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justlyand to love mercyand to walk humblywith your God. (Micah 6:8)
Equip others. Empower others. Encourage others. Embrace others.
Speak life. Stand up for and speak for those who cannot stand up or speak for themselves.
The world is filled those who misunderstand the purpose of life
What is the purpose of life? To glorify God.
Bring all who claim me as their God, for I have made them for my glory. It was I who created them. (Isaiah 43:7)
Our greatest desire is to know God, to have a relationship with God.
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. (Psalm 16:11)
The Most Important Life – Eternal Life
“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them.”(John 3:36)
God values life so much that He sent His one and only Son to die on the Cross so we could live forever with Him.
John 3:16says “For God so loved the worldthat he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
The worth of a human soul can be estimated only by the light reflected from the cross of Calvary. … It was the joy set before Christ in accomplishing so great salvation, that led him to submit to shame, agony, and death. How do all the treasures and the glories of earth sink into insignificance when compared with the value of a human soul!– Ellen White
- Value Life– everyone is valuable to God’s Kingdom
- Celebrate Life– praise the Lord for your life and for the lives of others
- Embrace Life– seek out what God has for your life
- Speak Life– speak life to others
- Share Life – share the Good News of Eternal Life
May your life bring glory to God