I am interested to know your view on termination because the foetus has been found to have severe health problems and if carried to term would then be severely disabled (either mentally or physically)?
Thanks for asking me about this! I have researched this topic a lot, and even ran a seminar on it in 2005. I am happy to be able to share what I have learnt. I am also interested in reading about others’ experiences.
What does God say about disability?
As a Christian who desires to see everything in the light of God’s revelation to us in the Bible, I want to place God’s word at the forefront of this discussion. The Bible is not silent on the issue of disability.
“Who gave man his mouth? Who makes him deaf or mute? Who gives him sight or makes him blind? Is it not I, the Lord?” Exodus 4:11
“But who are you, O man, to talk back to God? Shall what is formed say to him who formed it, ‘why did you make me like this?’ Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for noble purposes and some for common use?” Romans 9:20 – 21
These are hard verses. God has answered human questions about the reality of disability in our world, but he has not chosen to answer in a way that satisfies every question. In fact, he has almost dismissed the “right” to ask questions. He is the creator.
When people advocate the abortion of babies with disabilities, they are doing so because they do not understand that God created each of these lives with a purpose. Each life, if allowed to continue, has the capacity to bring glory to God in some way.
The limitations of pre-natal testing
There are also practical matters that are worth considering in any discussion of the abortion of disabled babies. Pre-natal tests, while they can indicate that a chromosomal or anatomical abnormality is present, often cannot determine the extent to which this disability will impinge upon the life of the child. This is noted in the pro-abortion book Prenatal Testing: Making Decisions in Pregnancy. For example, Down syndrome can be mild or severe. This level of disability cannot be diagnosed prenatally. Some other chromosomal conditions do not necessarily cause any impairment. One of the authors of the book had such a chromosomal abnormality. This lack of certainty means that parents are faced with making life and death decisions on the basis of incomplete information and “worst case scenarios”.
I am planning a follow up post, which will tackle the topis of:
Should an unborn child be treated differently to a newborn or an adult?
What is loving?
Is the abortion of disabled babies a big issue?
If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to ask!