Is a Fetus a Baby? | Dr. Ed Young


Theme Music Let me say something up front: regardless of how you feel about the topic we will deal
with today; I hope you will hear me out. I hope you’ll hear me out… because we are dealing with the
most polarizing and controversial subject in the
21st Century. Make no mistake about it. So therefore, regardless of your
position, please hear me out. Hear me out, and to see what I
think we need to believe. Perhaps you will not join me in
this concerning the miracle of life. Our Scripture is taken from the
Book of Psalms. The Psalmist is replying and
speaking to God. It’s almost like a prayer of
thanksgiving or acknowledgement to the Almighty. Psalm 139, Verse 13 following: “For You formed my inward parts. You wove me in my mother’s womb, and I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and
wonderfully made. And as I say, “We are…” I hope you’ll answer in
this sermon, “…fearfully and
wonderfully made.” We are… (Audience Responds)”…fearfully
and wonderfully made.” C minus! Here we go! We are… (Audience Responds)”…fearfully
and wonderfully made.” Now everybody! We are… (Audience Responds)”…fearfully
and wonderfully made.” “You wove me in my
mother’s womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and
wonderfully made. Wonderful are Your works, and my
soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from
You when I was made in secret and skillfully wrought in
the depths of the earth. Your eyes have seen my
unformed substance, and in Your Book were
all written the days that were ordained for
me, when as yet, there was not one
of them. We are… (Audience Responds)”…fearfully
and wonderfully made.” Mike Evans was a third year law
student at Harvard University, so he printed some little signs
that said, “Smile! Your mom chose life!” And he put them on bulletin
boards on the campus, you know, those bulletin boards that say, “Couch for sale…” “Looking for roommate.” “Want a ride home to Miami
in the holidays…” those kinds of bulletin
boards that… so he began to put these
signs up. “Smile! Your mom chose life.” And he put them everywhere. They began to pop up, and the
whole student body said, “Who’s doing this? Who spreading this all over
Harvard campus? Who’s doing this?” Finally, someone saw him put one
up on a bulletin board, and they turned him in. This third year law student was
taken to the dean. The dean said,
“You’re on probation.” He said, “Why?” He said, “Putting all those hate
signs on our campus!” Let me remind you as to where we
are in America today. Forty-nine percent of all
pregnancies are unwanted. Half of those forty-nine
pregnancies end in abortion. In fact, women who are 45 years
of age and under; one third of them have had one
or more abortions. There have been over fifty
million abortions in the United States since
Roe vs. Wade made abortion legal in 1973. Over fifty million abortions. This is more lives lost than
were lost in the Civil War, the First World War,
and the Second World War all added together. We need to break this down as
far as per day. There’s three thousand,
three hundred and twenty-two abortions per day in America. There are a hundred and thirty
eight every hour in America. There are two every minute
in America. So we look at these fifty
million lives that were lost in the most dangerous place a
baby can find him or herself, is in the womb of a mother. We wonder about those
fifty million. Were one of those lives-was that
someone who could have found a cure for cancer? In one of those lives, did we
squelch wonderful talent in the music world, in the art world, in the world of literature, in the world of helps, in the world of medicine, in different worlds of life? All those lost lives? What we’ve missed out on? I delivered these words last
night in a service. After the service, I was
shaking hands, and a woman came up to me
and she said, “I’m 75 years old.” She said, “I know my mother would have
aborted me if abortion had been legal when
I was born. My mom told me that.” And I said,
“Where were you born?” She said in a sorority house on
the campus of The University of Texas.” Evidently, her mother’s sorority
mates had hidden her pregnancy until she gave birth to this
daughter. “If abortion had been legal”
she said, “I would not be alive today.” I walked over to shake
another hand, and a woman came up to me
and said, “I was adopted by a family in
our church” and I knew her adopted
her parents. She said, “Had abortion been legal when I
was born, just a little bit before 1973, I am sure my mother would
aborted me because she went and lived in a home and
then gave me up for adoption.” She said, “I would not be alive if
Roe vs. Wade would have been on the statutes
of America when I was born. And this is where we are in
America today. This is the stance that we
now have. Mother Theresa said that “India is a very poor nation; but the United States is a
poorer nation than India, because the United States has
legalized the killing of the unborn, and therefore”
said Mother Theresa, “The United States is a very,
very, very poor nation.” Today, you are fortunate. I’m not going to preach. No applause! (Audience laughs). But I’m going to try to
have what Franklin Delano Roosevelt called
“a fireside chat.” And I want you just
to listen. Regardless of your position
on abortion, I want you to prayerfully,
carefully hear me out, and I want you to know that
grace and forgiveness is a part of everything
we’re about. We in this church family-we
stand with everyone in every moral dilemma, in every challenging moment of birth, of life, of death, of pain, of divorce,
of sickness. We are there. That’s who we are as a
church family! If you haven’t discovered that, you haven’t looked around or
listened very much. So let me say, I begin with grace and
forgiveness for all of us. That’s how the Lord Jesus Christ
begins with you and me. He loves us without question. So, in this fireside chat, let
me just imagine for a minute, and I have no particular
situation in mind. This is a hypothetical, but it’s a hypothetical I’ve
walked through many times through the years. Let’s say after the service, I’m
shaking some hands, and a teenage girl comes out
that I have known perhaps through beach retreat or, she just comes out
and says, “Pastor, could I speak with you
in a few moments?” I said, “Sure, Mary. Just sit down over there in
the church, and I’ll be in there with you in
a minute.” And let’s say she came in and
sat down, and I went in and sat down with
her, and I said, “How are you doing?” And she began to cry and sob and
she says, “I’m sorry.” I say,
“It’s okay, Mary. That’s okay.” And then she says,
“I’m pregnant.” Teenager,
sophomore in high school. And she says, “I don’t know what to do.” Said, “My friends tell me I
should abort the child.” She said, “I haven’t told my
parents yet. I need help.” And so I would say to Mary
something like this. I will digress, and I would not
go into the detail that I will today in this
fireside chat; but this is the general outline
I would talk to Mary about. And by the way, let me say before I begin to
speak with Mary, there are three groups of
people here today. There are those who are
convinced that the fetus in a female is a
human life. You know that. You’re convinced of that, and you will be classified as
pro-life. There are others here who are
unconvinced, and they believe that that fetus
is just a piece of tissue. They are pro-abortion. And there are others here who
are agnostics. You say,
“I just really don’t know. I know it’s legal by the law, but I don’t know whether
that’s a life or not.” The basic issue, the thesis of
all I’m saying has been spelled out by a
doctor Hernandez. Look at this statement here: “There is no morally significant
difference” see it on the screen “between the embryo you
once were, and the person you are now.” In other words, my thesis
is this, and I would explain this
to Mary. I would say, “Mary, I believe
that in you, right now, is a little life… a little life. I believe that life starts
with conception.” And incidentally, I do not know
of a single credible scientist who would debate the fact that
life begins at conception. Now they can go through some
medical gymnastics and try to wiggle around
that truth; but I really do not know
any credible people who would argue with that fact. You see, when the 23 chromosomes
of the male, the sperm, and the 23 chromosomes of the
egg, and they come together, and you have those
46 chromosomes- you have the splitting,
bang! At that moment, there is life. There is conception. Now that life is independent of
the mother. That life has its own
circulatory system of blood, and at that moment
of conception, all the DNA is there; all the identity that will grow
through that life, beginning with conception; that’s beginning with life. It goes all the way until death. What is death? Death is when all the functions
of our body or part of the function of
our body no longer are coordinated
together. See, when we die, our cells
still live for a while, but beginning with conception, when everything is there that
gives any definition of life, all the way through until death, there we have life. Now, I would try if I had a
piece of paper, I would tell Mary, and I would put a little outline
down for her, an outline you’ll see on
your screen It’s an acrostic called
“S.L.E.D.” “S.L.E.D.”
Look at it. First of all, people say, “Well, you know, this is
not a life because it’s such a small thing in
the beginning.” Let me tell you something: Size does not equal value. That argument is not valid. Then someone say, “Well, here is a 6 week old baby is not as aluable as a 9-year
old child…” Or someone who is large is
morevaluable than someone who is small… Life is life, and life is life. Size has nothing to do with it. Then you would say
level of development. Well, that would determine
whether or not this is really a baby or not. A 4-year old is not as developed
as a 14-year old. Does that mean the 14-year old
is more valid than a 4-year old? Or a 4-day old embryo in
the mother? Absolutely not! So, level of development is
not that. Environment! Where you are doesn’t determine
who you are. Who in the world believes that? And you have a baby that’s
in the mother’s womb, that’s the environment, and then that baby moves about
9 inches through the birth channel,
and now those 9 inches and that baby is outside the
mother’s womb; the fact the baby is inside or
outside- does that determine whether or
not that is a baby? Environment doesn’t
determine it. Degree of dependency! You say, “Well, when that life
can live outside the womb on its own…” When is that? You think a 6-month old
is independent? They can just live on
their own? Anybody think that? It’s not a question
of dependency. You think someone who has
Alzheimer’s that’s under hospice care,
and has no mind, and they’re totally dependent on
other people? You see, there is a slippery
slope from abortion, to euthanasia, to infanticide. They all work together, and it is a culture of death we are building in our world in
America today. And it is the most divisive
issue we have before us, and I would talk in terms of
S.L.E.D. to Mary. I would say, “I believe
science has proven conclusively that life begins at conception. Then I would say to Mary, “You have some legal
considerations about this life that is within you. For example, the doctors,
upon graduation, for many, many years would
quote, or be charged with a Hippocratic Oath,
and in this Hippocratic Oath, there’s a little phrase in there
that I want you to look at, a very clear phrase.
It says, “I will maintain the utmost
respect for human life from the time of its
conception.” Now, they’ve taken off “from the time of its
conception” See? “I’ll will maintain respect for
the human life from the time it’s…” Now the new Oath in recent
years-they’ve said, “Oh no, not from the time
of conception.” See what’s happened? Now, has there been a medical
breakthrough that’s proven that life doesn’t
start with the conception? Absolutely not. It’s just a part of the
correctness of our society. We use to talk about, about the
baby you are carrying… They no longer use
that terminology. Let me say this: If that child,
that life within a mother; that embryo, that fetus,
that zygote-if that is not a human being, totally and
completely a human life, then it’s just tissue-I have
no problem with abortion. But if it is a life- that’s a whole different issue
altogether, and I would say to Mary, there’s
some legal considerations. I would say, “Mary, it’s wonderful you live in the
state of Texas. In Texas, we have the finest
laws of any state in the union that will protect that unborn. You see, that little life inside
of that mom doesn’t have a voice of his or
her own. It is a silent life, and only those of us who are
outside the womb can defend that life that is
there… Now in Texas, we have a law that deals with
all the aspects of what a expectant mother must go through
if she considers abortion. The doctor has to offer her
a sonogram where she can see what is
going on, the stage with that life. The doctor also has to say, “You have to get the permission
of your parents.” There are a few exceptions, but generally, the parents have
to be brought in. Also, there has to be a 24-hour
waiting period. Also, the doctor has to remind
all that’s involved here. Look what you would see on
a sonogram as to how this develops. Look at 21 days! See it on the screen? Genetic blueprint is complete. Eye color, hair color,
all of this is there. First irregular heartbeat,
21 days. Look at the next sequence,
4 weeks. Heart, digestive system, backbone and spinal cord begin
to come. At 1/4th an inch, the single
fertilized egg is now ten thousand times –
look at that! Larger than the day
of conception. Usually, this is the period
beginning here where the girl understands she’s
pregnant, and things happen. Look at 9 weeks. Most joints are formed now. Fetus will curve the fingers
around an object placed in the palm of his or
her hand. Fingerprints are already evident
in the skin. Average size, length, you see it there, 9 weeks. Look at the next stage,
20 weeks. The weight is about 1 pound. Internal organs are maturing. Eyebrows, eyelids,
eyelashes appear. Fetus is about
8 to 10 inches long. Weight is about 1 pound. There have been those who have
lived who weighed 1 pound and a little more. That’s how advanced we are in our hospital and our
science today. So that is a little life. About 50% of those who weigh
2 pounds in premature delivery, they also survive,
and that is wonderful. We’re pushing it back further, and further,
and further all the time. So I would try to explain to
Mary, say, “Mary, look-there are scientific
reasons that there is a life within you. Good science. Positive science. Almost irrefutable science. Also, there are
moral considerations. You hear someone say, uh, these politicians on T.V.-I love
how they try to divide this up. They say, “Look, I believe
what my church teaches, that abortion is wrong. It’s illegal, and I’m
against abortion. I don’t like abortion; but, I believe in a woman’s
right to choose.” You hear that all the time. “Now, I don’t like abortion…” Let me tell you something: Why does someone not
like abortion? If that is not a life,
it’s just a piece of tissue, what’s wrong with abortion? But if it is a life, that’s a
whole different arena entirely. You see, let me talk about
objective fact. This is my wife, Jo Beth Young. Stand up, Jo Beth. There she is, right there! (Audience applauds). Jo Beth Young is present in
church today. That is an objective fact. Does anybody want to debate
about that? I see none. That’s an objective fact,
Jo Beth is here. If I did not see her, would that
mean that she was not here, if she were really here? No, no, no. She’s here, whether I
see her or not, right? Whether you see her or not,
she’s here. Thank you, Jo Beth. That’s an objective fact. Now, I like vanilla better than
I do chocolate. That’s a subjective fact. That’s my opinion. That’s what I like. You may like chocolate better
than you do vanilla. That’s true to you,
but it’s not true to me. That is a subjective fact. That’s the reason when you see
someone say, “I don’t like abortion…” It’s not a matter of a
subjective understanding; it’s a matter of what is true
and what is not true. It’s not like,
“I don’t like abortion.” You see a bumper sticker
says, “I don’t like abortion-
then don’t have one.” It’s not a matter of like
or dislike; it’s a matter of right or wrong. It’s like somebody saying, “Well, I don’t like
abusing women.” It’s not a question of
abusing women, whether you like it or not. Abusing women is wrong! It’s not right. Taking the life of an unborn
is wrong. It’s not a matter of likes,
or choice, or anything else. That’s the reason we have to
look at this in a sense of what is true. The whole issue uh, is, for
example: Someone says, “Well, this life-we ought to
abort this baby because it’ll totally upset the
life of this teenage girl.” Let me ask you something: If that is a life-
if that is a life and you come to that very
obvious, scientific conclusion, then is it worth aborting a
toddler because it will inconvenience the mother? You want to take the life of
a toddler? Absolutely not! You want to take the life a
toddler because we can’t afford to have this child now? Absolutely not! See, the issue is always a
matter of life. If that is a piece of tissue,
no big deal! But if it is a life-if it is a
life, there’s a moral question. The Bible says
“Thou shalt not kill.” It does not say, you know,
“I don’t like killing…” That’s not how that operates. That’s not the arena this
operates in, folks. That is where the fallacy
comes in. How can someone say, “Well, I wish there’d be fewer
abortions…” Why? If it’s just tissue? The issue revolves is that a
life in the womb of its mother. There is the issue. There is the issue. There is the issue… And then, I wouldn’t be this preachy
with Mary, I assure you of that. I would talk about, I’d say, “There are scientific reasons
that that is a life. There are some legal
considerations. There are some moral
considerations here, what is right and what is wrong. But also, there is a Biblical,
Biblical word here. The Bible says that human life
is sacred. I would say to Mary, “You never do right doing wrong. Two wrongs do not make a right. It’s wrong. You made a poor choice. You’re pregnant. Don’t make a second mistake by
giving up this life.” The third thing I would say, “It will be painful to do the
right thing for the immediate future, but I can tell you, in the long
thrust of your life, Mary, it will be a
beautiful thing, and God will honor you in a way
you can’t even imagine as we are obedient to Him. Over 2,000 years ago, a teenage girl discovered she
was pregnant. Perhaps had she lived today,
I don’t know… but this teenage girl was
supernaturally pregnant, and she carried that child to a
full term, and we call His Name Jesus. For too long America has turned it’s back
on the biblical principles that have made this
country great. Now we find ourselves
in a world that has lost its moral compass. In the series Truth, Lies and
America Today, Dr. Ed Young takes an in-depth
look at abortion, the separation of
Church and state, and morality in our society. We would like to send you this
series as a gift for your support of
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