When you lose dignity and purpose, death is lurking nearby. The Scriptures are clear that God condemns the slaughter of children and will judge it. He abominated the ancient pagan practice of child sacrifice in the Old Testament (2 Kgs. 17:17), and the early Christian church repudiated the common Roman practice of child exposure, whereby an unwanted child would be left to die outside. These past traditions exposed a diminishing value of human life, and we are presently uncovered with the same nakedness.
News of New York’s abortion legislation has left many Christians heartbroken. This is yet another sign that we live in a culture of death, where society’s vulnerable are dismissed or worse, dismembered. Sadly, it’s always the vulnerable who go first. The unborn, the sojourner, the widow, the fatherless. The weak tend to be a secular society’s first victims, often considered less valuable simply because they have less power. When we reject the teaching of Sacred Scripture concerning what grounds human dignity and purpose, it only follows that we’d lose all dignity and purpose.
Just listen to what Oxford historian Yuval Noah Harari, who currently teaches at the
Hebrew University in Jerusalem, says:
When we privilege human children over piglets, we want to believe that this reflects something deeper than the ecological balance of power. We want to believe that human lives really are superior in some fundamental way. We sapiens love telling ourselves that we enjoy some magical quality that not only accounts for our immense power, but also gives moral justification for our privileged status. What is this unique human spark?
In his book Homo Deus, Harari (a self-proclaimed atheist) concludes it doesn’t exist. If mankind isn’t made in God’s image, then we really aren’t any more special than piglets or puppies. When you don’t believe humans have objective dignity, you cannot truly value human life. If you go one step further and reject the belief that humans have objective purpose, then life no longer becomes worth living.