What does the Bible say about abortion?
Did you know that over 42.6 million babies were aborted worldwide last year? Since Roe-vs. Wade passed in 1973, an estimated 63 million babies have died by abortion in the U.S.
What does God say about human value? How does God feel about life in the womb? Are there any situations where God might permit abortion?
Christian quotes about abortion
“Psalm 139:13-16 paints a vivid picture of God’s intimate involvement with a preborn person. God created David’s “inward parts” not at birth, but before birth. David says to his Creator, “You knitted me together in my mother’s womb” (v. 13). Each person, regardless of his parentage or handicap, has not been manufactured on a cosmic assembly line, but personally formed by God. All the days of his life are planned out by God before any come to be (v. 16).” Randy Alcorn
“It has its own DNA. It has its own genetic code. It has its own blood type. It has its own functioning brain, it’s own functioning kidneys, its own functioning lungs, its own dreams. It’s not the woman’s body. It’s in the woman’s body. That’s not the same.” Matt Chandler
“It is evil to justify killing (unborn babies) by the happy outcome of eternity for the one killed. This same justification could be used to justify killing one-year olds, or any heaven-bound believer for that matter. The Bible asks the question: “Shall we sin that grace may abound?” (Romans 6:1) And: “Shall we do evil that good may come?” (Romans 3:8). In both cases the answer is a resounding NO. It is presumption to step into God’s place and try to make the assignments to heaven or to hell. Our duty is to obey God, not to play God.” John Piper
“I am against abortion; I think that life is sacred and we should take a position of being against abortion. I think it is wrong to take human life. I think that human life starts at conception.” Billy Graham
“Pro-life advocates don’t oppose abortion because they find it distasteful; they oppose it because it violates rational moral principles. The negative emotional response follows from the moral wrongness of the act.” Scott Klusendorf
“The Bible says that all people, not just believers, possess part of the image of God; that is why murder and abortion are wrong.” Rick Warren
“Legalized abortion is a national holocaust; an affront to our national character; a contradiction of established principles subscribed to from the beginning of Western Civilization; an insult to the principles of our Declaration of Independence; a bane of our national spirit; and a stench in the nostrils of Almighty God.” Chuck Baldwin
“On popular issues like poverty and slavery, where Christians are likely to be applauded for our social action, we are quick to stand up and speak out. Yet on controversial issues like homosexuality and abortion, where Christians are likely to be criticized for our involvement, we are content to sit down and stay quiet.” David Platt
“The fetus, though enclosed in the womb of its mother, is already a human being and it is a monstrous crime to rob it of the life which it has not yet begun to enjoy. If it seems more horrible to kill a man in his own house than in a field, because a man’s house is his place of most secure refuge, it ought surely to be deemed more atrocious to destroy a fetus in the womb before it has come to light.” John Calvin
“No human being…is ever conceived outside God’s will or ever conceived apart from God’s image. Life is a gift from God created in His own image.” John F. MacArthur
“Abortion kills twice. It kills the body of the baby and it kills the conscience of the mother. Abortion is profoundly anti-women. Three quarters of its victims are women: Half the babies and all the mothers.”
“It is no more reasonable to destroy a child by abortion because it could not live if suddenly delivered than to drown a non-swimmer in a bathtub because he could not live if thrown into the middle of the ocean.” Harold Brown
“Christ died that we might live. This is the opposite of abortion. Abortion kills that someone might live differently.” John Piper
“Abortion is a sin and is clearly murder in God’s eyes. The people who perform it have no conscience, so I’m not at all surprised that they would be selling organs, tissue, and body parts from babies. Planned Parenthood should be put out of business—they’ve done enough damage. Sin has an enormous price. Our nation will one day have to answer to God for the millions of innocent lives taken by abortion, and that applies to every politician who voted for and defended abortion. Thankfully though, no sin is too great for God’s forgiveness—even murder.” Franklin Graham
Does the Bible talk about abortion?
The Bible doesn’t specifically address abortion – the act of intentionally ending the life of an unborn child. However, the Bible says a lot about life in the womb, about child sacrifice, about the sin of murder, and about the value of life in general.
Abortion is a kind of child sacrifice because the unborn child is usually killed for the benefit of the mother or father – and for the benefit of abortion clinics that accumulate wealth by killing unborn children. God says child sacrifice is an abomination (Jeremiah 32:35). The Bible repeatedly links child sacrifice to witchcraft and sorcery (Deuteronomy 18:10, 2 Kings 17:17, 2 Kings 21:6, 2 Chronicles 33:6). The Bible says that killing one’s child is sacrificing him or her to the demons (Psalm 106:35-38).
1. Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
2. Jeremiah 32:35 “They built high places for Baal in the Valley of Ben Hinnom to sacrifice their sons and daughters to Molek, though I never commanded—nor did it enter my mind—that they should do such a detestable thing and so make Judah sin.”
3. Psalm 106:35-38 “but they mingled with the nations and adopted their customs. 36 They worshiped their idols, which became a snare to them. 37 They sacrificed their sons and their daughters to false gods. 38 They shed innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan, and the land was desecrated by their blood.”
4. Psalm 139:13 “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.”
5. Isaiah 49:1 “Listen to me, O coastlands, and give attention, you peoples from afar. The Lord called me from the womb, from the body of my mother he named my name.”
6. 2 Chronicles 33:6 “He sacrificed his children in the fire in the Valley of Ben Hinnom, practiced divination and witchcraft, sought omens, and consulted mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the eyes of the Lord, arousing his anger.”
7. Luke 1:41 “When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.”
Is abortion murder?
The Bible clearly says, “You shall not murder” (Exodus 20:13) But does abortion count as murder? Is the embryo or fetus a person? Is it alive?
When the ova (egg) inside a woman is fertilized by the man’s sperm, that immediately forms a unique DNA – all the genetic information for a developing life. Even at conception, the zygote (fertilized egg) is a distinct person from the mother – with different DNA – and half the time a different gender. She or he is in the mother’s body, but not the mother’s body. The mother’s body protects and nourishes the tiny life, but she or he is a separate life from the mother.
At three weeks after conception, the embryo implants in the mother’s womb, already looking distinctly human with a head and eyes forming and small projections that will be arms and legs. At three weeks and one day, the heart begins beating. The neural tube has already formed, which will become the central nervous system – the brain and spinal cord. The nose, ears, and mouth are developing by five weeks. The embryo has almost all the essential organs and parts by eight weeks.
So, yes! The zygote, the embryo, and the fetus are human, and they are alive!
Passing through the birth canal doesn’t suddenly turn someone into a human. An unborn child is a living person inside the mother’s womb, with a beating heart by the time the mother realizes she’s pregnant.
So yes! Killing an unborn child through abortion is murder. It is ending the life of an innocent, living, human child through horrific means.
8. Leviticus 24:17 (KJV) “And he that killeth any man shall surely be put to death.”
9. Exodus 20:13 “You shall not murder.”
10. Genesis 9:6 (NKJV) “Whoever sheds man’s blood, By man his blood shall be shed; For in the image of God He made man.”
11. Deuteronomy 5:17 “Thou shalt not kill.”
12. Isaiah 1:21 “See how the faithful city has become a prostitute! She once was full of justice; righteousness used to dwell in her— but now murderers!”
13. Matthew 5:21 “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.”
What does the Bible say about the value of human life?
In God’s eyes, all human beings – even the smallest ones – have intrinsic value because they are created in God’s image.
“God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God, he created them; male and female he created them.” (Genesis 1:27)
God watched you develop in your mother’s womb and made plans for your life. All human life – even preborn humans – have worth. God says they do!
“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.” (Psalm 139:3-6)
When individuals and society promote the legal destruction of human beings by abortion, this flies in the face of God’s value of human life. If the lives of innocent children are worthless to society, this inevitably undermines the respect of all life.
14. Ephesians 1:3-4 (ESV) “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love”
15. Genesis 1:27 (NLT) “So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”
16. Psalms 8:4-5 “What is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.”
17. Mark 10:6 “However, from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.”
18. Psalm 139:3-6 “You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. 4 Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely. 5 You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.”
19. Psalm 127:3 “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward.”
20. Jeremiah 1:4-5 “Now the word of the LORD came to me, saying, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
21. Ephesians 2:10 “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works,which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
22. Luke 12:7 “Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”
Is abortion acceptable in cases of rape and incest?
First, let’s look at the statistics. Surveys of over 1000 women at 11 large abortion clinics revealed that only 1% of abortions are because of rape and less than 0.5% because of incest. Although more than 98.5% of abortions are unrelated to rape and incest, abortion advocates continually push the emotional argument that victims should not have to carry a child conceived by rape or incest to term.
Let’s face it. Abortion is a violent act of ripping a living human from the womb. Most women experience some mixture of sadness, regret, guilt, anger, and depression; over one-third experience post-traumatic stress after abortion. Abortion is consistently associated with elevated rates of mental illness. While we feel great sadness and compassion for victims of sexual violence, we must understand that abortion will not help them recover from their trauma – it more likely will exacerbate their misery.
After all, the baby did not commit any crime. Why should she or he be killed for the crime of the father? Even though the baby was conceived in an appalling situation, killing any innocent child is murder.
Many victims who aborted their children conceived by rape or incest later regretted their decision. Some victims felt that they were forced into the abortion – sometimes by the man who violated them – to cover up the crime! Others say they were coerced by their family or medical practitioners to “get it all behind them.”
It’s a sad fact that most abortion clinics will perform an abortion on an underage girl without even asking if she is the victim of rape or incest – and keep it a secret from her parents. Abortion clinics are essentially enabling sexual predators.
You may be surprised to know that most victims who become pregnant from sexual assault choose to give birth to the child, and most decide to keep their baby rather than give it up for adoption. The majority of these victims reported feeling more optimistic about their baby as their pregnancy progressed. Anxiety, anger, depression, and fear decreased, and their self-esteem increased during the pregnancy. They felt like something good could come out of a horrific incident. “I have absolutely loved him since the moment he was born,” said one single mother – even though her son’s eyes and mannerisms remind her of her rapist.
23. Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
24. Romans 8:28 “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
What is the Biblical perspective on unborn children?
If a 6-month fetus (John the Baptist) can be filled with the Holy Spirit and leap for joy when the embryo of the Messiah enters the room, how precious are the unborn in the eyes of God! How worthy of protecting!
“He will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from his mother’s womb.”(Luke 1:15, Angel Gabriel to Zechariah regarding John the Baptist)
“When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed, ‘Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why am I so honored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For as soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy.'” (Luke 1:41-44, when Mary the pregnant mother of Jesus greeted her pregnant relative Elizabeth – the mother of John the Baptist)
God planned for Jeremiah to be a prophet while he was still in his mother’s womb.
“I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born, I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.” (Jeremiah 1:5)
God called Isaiah when he was still in his mother’s womb and gave him a name.
“The Lord called me from the womb, from the body of my mother he named my name.” (Isaiah 49:1)
God planned for Paul to preach Jesus among the Gentiles – when he was in his mother’s womb.
“But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me so that I might preach him among the Gentiles . . .” (Galatians 1:15)
25. Luke 1:15 “for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born.”
26. Luke 1:41-44 “When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 In a loud voice she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! 43 But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy.”
27. Isaiah 49:1 “Listen to me, you islands; hear this, you distant nations: Before I was born the Lord called me; from my mother’s womb he has spoken my name.”
28. Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.”
29. Galatians 1:15 “But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased.”
30. James 3:9 “With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness.”
Why should I not have an abortion?
- Abortion is murder, and God forbids murder. The baby is your innocent child with a God-given destiny.
2. Abortions are not safe for the mother. You can suffer physical harm from an abortion – about 20,000 women in the U.S suffer abortion-related complications each year.  These can include an “incomplete abortion” – where the doctor misses some of the body parts, which can cause massive infection. Other harm caused by abortion to thousands of women is excessive bleeding, a torn cervix, uterus or fallopian tube infection, a punctured uterus, bowels, or bladder, blood clots in the uterus, a bad reaction to anesthesia, sepsis, infertility, and death.
3. You can also suffer emotional and mental harm – 39% of women who had abortions reported Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. “Seeing small children makes me feel guilty that I did something wrong. Being around an infant makes me feel like I did something bad.” The American Psychological Association (APA) reported: “It is clear that some women do experience sadness, grief, and feelings of loss following termination of a pregnancy, and some experience clinically significant disorders, including depression and anxiety.”
Many women feel initial relief after the abortion – their “problem” is solved, and their boyfriend or husband has stopped harassing them to “do something about it.” However, it may be days or weeks later – or years later – when reality strikes. They realize they killed their own child. They may feel great sorrow and guilt – which they might try to sublimate with alcohol, recreational drugs, or risky lifestyle. They begin to wonder if there is any hope for them.
- Some women get abortions because a blood test suggests the baby might have a defect. However, a January 1, 2022, New York Times article reported a 90% rate of false positives in prenatal screening for birth defects. Do you really want to kill your baby based on a report that’s only 10% accurate?
Well, what if the test is correct? Is it the end of the world? Your future may look different than what you expected, and you will definitely have challenges, but studies show no difference in marital and family functioning when comparing families with a Down Syndrome child with families with “normal” children. In fact, the siblings are better off! The brothers and sisters of a child with Down Syndrome have excellent self-esteem, feel like they have additional strengths, and get along better with each other.
- You may not be in a position to be a parent right now. Maybe you’re too young, or you’re in school, have no husband or support system, or have other issues that make you incapable of parenting. But you can bring good out of your difficult situation. An estimated one million couples (perhaps twice that many) are waiting to adopt a baby, usually because they cannot have a child naturally. You can bring joy to another family and provide a secure future for your baby. You even have the option of staying in touch with your child through the increasingly-popular open adoptions. The Adoption Network website answers many questions about adoption: (https://adoptionnetwork.com/birth-mothers/)
31. Genesis 9:5–6 (ESV) “And for your lifeblood I will require a reckoning: from every beast I will require it and from man. From his fellow man I will require a reckoning for the life of man. 6 “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.”
32. Matthew 15:19 “For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.”
33. 1 peter 5:7 “Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.”
34. Romans 6:1-2 “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?”
What does God say about protecting the weak and defenseless?
An unborn child has no voice; he or she is vulnerable, powerless, and defenseless. But God is “a father to the fatherless” (Psalm 68:5). He is on the side of the weak, helpless child. And God wants us to follow him in defending the rights of the most vulnerable – the unborn children.
35. “Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked” (Psalm 82:3-4).”
36. “Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter” (Proverbs 24:11).
37. Isaiah 1:17 “Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.”
38. Psalm 68:5 “Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation.”
39. Proverbs 31:8-9 “Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute. 9 Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.”
40. Jeremiah 22:3 “This is what the Lord says: Do what is just and right. Rescue from the hand of the oppressor the one who has been robbed. Do no wrong or violence to the foreigner, the fatherless or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place.”
41. Psalm 140:12 “I know that the Lord will maintain the cause of the afflicted, and will execute justice for the needy.”
42. 1 Thessalonians 5:14 “We urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with everyone.”
43. Psalm 41:1 “A Psalm of David. How blessed is he who considers the helpless; The Lord will deliver him in a day of trouble.”
Does God forgive abortion?
Yes! Even though abortion is murder, God will forgive this sin. The apostle Paul said he was the worst sinner – he was responsible for killing Christians before his conversion – but “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.” (1 Timothy 1:15) Moses and King David were also murderers, but God forgave them.
Jesus shed His blood for all sin – including abortion – and you can have complete forgiveness if you recognize that you have done wrong, repent of your sin – which means turning away from it and not doing it again, and ask God to forgive you.
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
And you know what? God and the angels are eagerly waiting for you to repent and receive His forgiveness! “There is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” (Luke 15:10)
44. Acts 3:19 “Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.”
45. John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
46. Ephesians 1:7 “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace.”
47. Romans 6:1-2 “What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?”
How should Christians treat someone who has had an abortion?
Above all, don’t be judgmental. We are all sinners, saved by grace, and we need to extend the grace and love of Jesus to women who have had abortions.
As already mentioned, many women who have had an abortion feel colossal regret. Perhaps they were forced into it by a boyfriend or by their family. Maybe they didn’t realize they had other options. Or maybe they didn’t consider the fetus to be a real person. Many women who have had abortions carry enormous guilt and sorrow. This is where Christians can meet them in love and compassion – show them how to receive forgiveness from God – and walk them through their season of healing.
Women who have repented of the sin of abortion will benefit from having another Christian woman mentor them. They should be encouraged to walk in step with God’s Holy Spirit, to be faithful in church where they can hear God’s Word taught, fellowship with other believers, and receive communion as a reminder of Jesus’ body – broken for them. They should be encouraged to have a regular “quiet time” – spending time alone with God in Bible reading and prayer daily.
Most post-abortion women will need counseling with their pastor, and some women will need Christian therapy with a licensed professional to process their feelings of grief, anger, and despair. They will probably benefit from Bible studies or Christian support groups for post-abortion healing. AfterAbortion.org (http://afterabortion.org/help-healing/) provides insight and resources for the healing journey.
48. Ephesians 4:15 “but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ.”
49. Ephesians 4:32 “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”
50. James 5:16 “Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.
Conclusion – what can we do?
How can we promote a culture of life rather than the culture of death that comes with abortion? We all need to be proactive in protecting the sanctity of human life. Each of us can engage in defending the rights of the most vulnerable members of our society. Each of us will play a different role in protecting unborn children based on the gifts God has given us and our individual experiences and abilities.
The most important thing we can do is pray – personal prayer and joint prayer times with other believers – crying out to God to end the gruesome murder of the innocents. We should also ask God to direct us to specific work we can do to protect the smallest members of society. What steps does God want you to take to make a difference in saving the lives of the unborn and ministering to women in crisis?
You might volunteer at a crisis pregnancy clinic, donate toward pro-life groups, or help distribute information about the humanity of unborn children and options and aid available for women in crisis pregnancies. You may have unique gifting in public policy work, writing your legislators, getting the news out about upcoming legal challenges to pray about, or you may be someone who can talk to others about the value God places on all life. You may get involved in ministering to and mentoring mothers through unexpected pregnancies and into motherhood. You may want to lead a class for young women or men on sexual purity or a class/support group for expectant mothers on nutrition, prenatal care, childbirth, and postnatal care.
The realm of opportunities to actively promote the sanctity of life is endless. Let God lead you to what you can do and do it with all your might.