Francis Schaeffer was prophetic about culture of death that Jack Kevorkian thrive in (Series on Jack Kevorkian’s legacy of death Part 3)

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What Ever Happened to the Human Race?

Philosopher and Theologian, Francis A. Schaeffer has argued, “If there are no absolutes by which to judge society, then society is absolute.” Francis Schaeffer, How Shall We Then Live? (Old Tappan NJ: Fleming H Revell Company, 1976), p. 224.

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 In 1979 I saw the film series “Whatever happened to the human race?” by Francis Schaeffer and Dr. C. Everett Koop. I was so impacted by that film series that I asked my high school teacher Mr. Mark Brink to allow me to return to see that series again while I was in college. He did allow me to do that and Mr. Brink would inform his high school students, “Here is Everette Hatcher who is in college now, but he has returned to see this film series again because he knows how important it is!!!”

Mr. Brink was right about Francis Schaeffer. His predictions about the direction of the culture and the use of socialogical law were correct. Below is just more evidence of that. This article by Dr. Herb Ireland demonstrates that I am not the only one that has recognized the truth of Schaeffer’s predictions.

Abortion to Euthanasia: A Slippery Slope

 Dr. Herb Ireland

 Pastor

 Sparks Nazarene Church

 January 17, 1999 at Sparks Nazarene

 A true prophet is one who has the capacity to look into the future and accurately predict what will occur. Twenty years ago I was introduced to a number of true prophets such as essayist Malcolm Muggeridge, theologian Francis Schaeffer and physician C. Everett Koop. I became acquainted with these prophets at a seminar entitled “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” conducted in Seattle Washington.

At that time the United States Supreme Court decision to legalize abortion in all 50 states was only six years old. However, these prophets were already warning the public about the slippery slope from abortion to euthanasia. Personally, I had never really made the connection between abortion and putting to death a person suffering from an incurable and painful disease.

Today because of the actions of Jack Kevorkian we see the accuracy of these prophets’ predictions. This morning I want us to trace what happens to a society that embraces abortion and thereby devalues human life.

I. The Slippery Slope From Abortion To Euthanasia.

On January 23, 1973 the United States Supreme Court decided in Roe v. Wade to legalize abortion in all 50 states during all nine months of pregnancy, for any reason-medical, social, or otherwise.  This fateful decision pronounced that the fetus forming in the mother’s womb was not viable – capable of living, under normal conditions, outside the womb. This man-made ruling has had a devastating impact upon unborn children forming in the womb. Here are some of the consequences we face in 1999:

1. There is an abortion for every two live births.

2. This year thousands will hear boyfriends, school counselors, physicians, friends and even parents give advice that will lead to over 1,300,000 unborn children losing their lives.

3. Since 1973 Americans have aborted 36.5 million babies. This figure equals the population of Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Nevada, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming – 13 states in all.

Infanticide

Along with the terrible loss of life, there has been a devaluation of the sanctity of human life in American society. This devaluation of human life has given birth to increased infanticide-the killing of an infant.  For example, in the November 12th, 1973 issue of Newsweek Magazine, in the medicine section, there appeared an article titled “Shall this child die?” It was about the work of doctors Raymond Duff and A.G.M. Campbell at the Yale-New Haven Hospital of Yale University. The article reported that these doctors were permitting babies born with birth defects to die by deliberately withholding vital medical treatments: the doctors were convincing the parents of these children that they would be a financial burden; that they had “little or no hope of achieving meaningful “humanhood.” “The doctors recognized that they were breaking the law by doing away with these ‘vegetables’ as they chose to call these children, but they felt that the law should be changed to make it legal to let these children die.

Dr. C. Everett Koop, former Surgeon General of the United States documented the case of Baby Doe and Baby Jane Doe who had complex physical handicaps and were allowed to die even though he felt their lives could have been saved.  In his book, Koop-the Memoirs of America’s Family Doctor, he declares, “From the Baby Doe saga… I hope Americans learned about the pernicious practice of infanticide, which has been growing unnoticed in hospital nurseries across the country.”

Euthanasia

The next step in the slippery slope leads us to euthanasia. Listen to the prophetic words of Malcolm Muggeridge written in 1979.  ” Of course, it would be quite wrong to think that the offensive which is being mounted on our Christian way of life will stop at abortion, and already there are the rumblings of a new, strong push in the direction of euthanasia. I have absolutely no doubt that this will be the next great controversy that will arise. The fact is that because it’s so costly in money and personnel to keep alive people about whom the medical opinion is that their lives are worthless, the temptation to get rid of the burden by killing them off will be even greater, and this disposing of them will of course be dressed up in humanitarian terms as an act of humanity and compassion. Almost all of the things that have been done in the world in the last decades have been done in the name of justice, equality, compassion, etc.”

Physician Assisted Suicide. Do you know what PAS stands for? PAS is the title for physician-assisted suicide. Advocates of PAS have succeeded in only one state: Oregon. Already at least two assisted suicides have been performed there, but the explicit goal of PAS advocates is to go national, making the Oregon experiment the American way of Life.

Progressive euthanasia is on the horizon. It looks like this:

1. Dr. Jack Kevorkian has assisted 130 people who were suffering from incurable and painful diseases to commit suicide.

2. Dr. Jack Kevorkian killed a person suffering from a painful and incurable disease and recorded it on video to spark a national debate about the merits of “mercy killing.”

3. Those languishing in long tem commas are put to death.

4. Because the drastically handicapped have little or no hope of achieving meaningful ‘humanhood’ they are put to death.

5. The mentally ill are euthanized so the families don’t have to suffer any longer.

6. The old and senile are put to death in a humane way so limited money and resources can be used for others.

If you think this analysis is overblown, then you have not been reading the signs of the times! And it all started when we devaluated life before birth and now that devaluation of the sanctity of human life is seen from the preborn to the people suffering incurable diseases.

Is there an answer to this moral insanity? Yes there is and it is found in the Bible.

II Life Is Sacred Because God Created It.

Here are some of the passages that speak of the sanctity of human life.

Genesis 1:27 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.”

Psalms 139:13-18 “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, our eyes saw my unformed body.  All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you.”

Isaiah 46:3 “Listen to me, O house of Jacob, all you who remain of the house of Israel, you whom I have upheld since you were conceived, and have carried since your birth. Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.”

Jeremiah 1:4 “The word of the LORD came to me, saying, ‘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.’”

Because God created human life, it is sacred and we must do everything we can to safeguard life.

Conclusion. The Irish statesman Edmund Burke once said, “all it takes for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing.” I am afraid that many disciple of Jesus Christ are guilty of this indictment. But now that you know that the acceptance of abortion leads to active euthanasia, I pray you will stand to your feet and fight for the sanctity of human life from the unborn to the physically and mentally handicapped to the aged and infirm.

Let me illustrate how one “vegetable” fought back. Do you remember the Newsweek Magazine article that highlighted the two doctors who were permitting babies born with birth defects to die because they had no hope of achieving “meaningful humanhood?”

Here is a letter to the editor of Newsweek magazine by Sandra Diamond who suffers from cerebral palsy.

“I’ll wager my entire root system and as much fertilizer as it would take to fill Yale University that you have never received a letter from a vegetable before this one, but, much as I resent the term, I must confess that I fit the description of a ‘vegetable’ as defined in the article “Shall This Child Die?” (Medicine, Nov. 12)

“Due to severe brain damage incurred at birth, I am unable to dress myself, toilet myself, or write; my secretary is typing this letter. Many thousands of dollars had to be spent on my rehabilitation and education in order for me to reach my present professional status as a Counseling Psychologist. My parents were also told, 35 years ago, that there was “little or no hope of achieving meaningful ‘humanhood’” for their daughter. Have I reached ‘humanhood’? Compared with Doctors Duff and Campbell I believe I have surpassed it!

 “Instead of changing the law to make it legal to week out us ‘vegetables,’ let us change the laws so that we may receive quality medical care, education, and freedom to live as full and productive lives as our potentials allow.”

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