Monday, November 20, 2006
THE BEGINNING OF LIFE . . . FROM THE HAND OF GOD
SOME THOUGHTS CONCERNING THE BEGINNING OF LIFE
AND THE GOD-GIVEN RIGHTS OF THE UNBORN CHILD
When does human life begin? When does the tiny child developing inside the mother actually become a human being? When is it a real person, an individual with all the basic rights that all human beings have -- particularly the right to life?
At the moment of conception, all the necessary elements that create a new human being are present. When the chromosomes of the father and the mother unite, they form an absolutely unique, never-to-be-duplicated human person. At that moment, life begins. From that moment on, any further formation of the person is purely a matter of development, growth and maturation.
From the moment of conception, the child grows, and keeps growing until life ends.
At three weeks, the tiny human being, only one-tenth of an inch long, already has the beginnings of eyes, spinal cord, nervous system, lungs, stomach, intestines. The primitive heart, which began beating in the 18th day, now pumps more confidently. All this before the mother may even be aware of this new life within her.
By six and one-half weeks, the child is making body movements, a full 12 weeks before the mother may notice such stirrings.
At eight weeks, the developing child can make a tiny fist, get hiccups, suck a thumb, wake and sleep.
At 11 weeks, although the placenta sac may appear to be only a mass of lifeless tissue, inside of it is a human being with all the body systems formed and at work.
At 16 weeks, the child is only 5 inches long, but has already formed toes, fingers and facial features.
The 18-week-old child is active and enegetic, flexes muscles, punches and kicks. Now the mother feels the child's movements. Some would say that at this time--the time of "quickening"--life begins: but the development actually began at conception, 18 weeks earlier.
While growing within the mother, the child develops separately from her with a separate, individual blood supply. The child's life is not the mother's life, but a separate, individual life.
And the child has as much right to this life as the mother has to hers, or as any other human beings of any age have to theirs.
The right to life is the most fundamental right of every human person. To violate this right, to destroy a life, to kill a human being at any age or stage of development--whether in the womb or out of the womb--is a crime against society, against man and against God.
[From: The Boca Raton Christian Action Council, Boca Raton, Florida]