THE ABORTION CONTROVERSY
AND THE IMAGE TO THE BEAST
(Revised January, 2014)

Events related to the fulfillment of end-time prophecies are now so numerous that it is difficult to keep up with reports. The abortion controversy and its connection to the form of the Image to the Beast is one topic that was in the past neglected on this website; but it is of critical significance. The United States government is vigorously advancing Roman Catholic teachings on abortion and family planning. Abortion is the single MOST VISIBLE manifestation of the power of the Papacy in America (from the evidence of recent history there is probably much, much more going on behind the scenes.)

Rev. 13:
11
And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. 12And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. . . . 14 . . . saying to them that dwell on the earth [ref. verse 11,] that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.

UPDATES FROM FINAL WORLD EVENTS IN PROPHECY FORESHADOWED

Pro-Life vs. Pro-Choice

In July, 1989, Elder Wm. H. Grotheer wrote:

ROE vs. WADE

The issue of abortion "has become the single most controversial and volatile issue in America since the Civil War." Thus reads the first sentence of a research paper recently received by this editor. Written by Elder John V. Stevens, Jr., Director of Public Affairs & Religious Liberty of the Pacific Union Conference, it is the best yet summary of the issues underlying the present challenge to the Roe vs. Wade Decision which is now before the Supreme Court as a result of legislation passed by the Assembly of the State of Missouri. This research paper presents the last day implications of this whole litigation and its meaning to and for Seventh-day Adventists.

It is "must" reading for everyone who wishes to be truly informed about the behind-the-scenes working in this abortion controversy.

While many have tried to project the Sunday Closing Laws issue for personal gain, the enemy has subtly introduced the first of the two great errors - "the immortality of the soul" - which he is using to bring the world under his deceptions for the battle of the great day of God Almighty. (See GC, p. 588)

You can write for your copy to Elder Stevens at 2686 Townsgate Rd., Westlake, CA 91361. Do it today, and I would suggest that you include a dollar to help cover postage - US, Canadian, or Australian. It will be the best dollar you ever invested to inform yourself as to the basic issue in this abortion controversy.  (WWN7(89; (Underscored emphasis added.))

[N.B. The current address for contacting Elder Stevens is P.O. Box 1716, Sun City, AZ   85372-1716; E-mail theabortioncontroversy@gmail.com, also at http://TheAbortionControversy.com.  It is not known whether the research paper is still available; but Elder Stevens has written a book titled The Abortion Controversy, which is.]

THE OFFICIAL SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST POSITION

THE RELIGIO-POLITICAL PERSPECTIVE

From THE ABORTION CONTROVERSY - EFFORTS TO IMPOSE DOGMA,  By JOHN V. STEVENS, Sr., Pp. 2-4:

"The Roe decision was a direct blow to the religious doctrine and the power of the Roman Catholic Church. That religious institution has exercised almost unbelievable power in the political world since before A.D. 300—more than seventeen centuries. The role of the Church in the international community of states was expressed at the United Nations by Archbishop Agostino Caseroli, Secretary of the Council for Public Affairs of the Church. In part, he declared:

It's right to belong to the international Community' even though it is `only the Holy See'—and no other Church or religious body who is 'recognized as a full member of the Community ... admitted to take its place and act in it like the States'.... That 'right' rests upon the fact that the Church is posed with outstretched wings covering the whole globe, an independent and sovereign power ... which imposes itself because of its stature, its history, its influence.

The sovereign power, thus imposed upon the States, is ... spiritual in nature' and 'its real kingdom is the kingdom of conscience' Therefore ... when one accepts the Catholic Church in this way, almost as the conscience of humanity' it follows that all mankind is asked to accept the Catholic Church as 'everybody's friend: its voice of conscience in international affairs.'

[Underscored emphasis added.]

On his first trip to the United States, Americans got their first look at Pope Benedict XVI, who clearly told us how we ought to live, speaking as our conscience. On the third anniversary of the death of Pope John Paul II, speaking of his pending sainthood, Varkey Cardinal Vithayathil, one of the first to request his beatification process, proclaimed, "He was the conscience of the world:' 2 Is it appropriate for any person to proclaim himself—or for any organization to assume itself—to be the conscience of the world?

The most sacred attribute any human being possesses is his or her conscience. And it is not subject to anyone—not even to God, unless one willingly submits it to Him. No religious institution, no political institution, no social in- stitution, including the family, is to force anyone's conscience in religious mat- ters, for to do so is a direct violation of God's law, which is, "love your neighbor as yourself!' Since people do not want their conscience forced, it goes without saying that they have no right to force anyone else's conscience. For a religious institution to claim it has the right to be the conscience of the entire world and everyone in it is blatant blasphemy, which is taking the place of God. For it is the Holy Spirit who directs but does not force our conscience—not that of any man, any woman, anyone, high or low.

Those opposing abortion picked up on the choice language of the decision  and agreed that women had a choice—a choice of whether to get pregnant or not. Once pregnancy occurred, choice ended. They also proclaimed loudly and clearly that while the members of the Court may not have known when life began, they did, and it was at conception.

Language became a tool in the controversy in a most masterful manner. Scientific terms such as zygote, embryo, and fetus were readily replaced with the finished product—baby—and used at every stage of the pregnancy. Revisionism blurred distinctions and confused the public. And we can understand from personal experience that our conceived children were "babies"—at least to us. While not scientific, it satisfied our emotional needs, and it seemed natural. But to use such language when the debate on abortion raged only served to blur the white with the black and produce gray areas.

The Catholic bishops were aware of their theological and political affinity with Evangelicals on the subjects of abortion, prayer, and the teaching of the Bible in the public schools. They also were pushing to secure tax funding for their religious schools. They expected they had a strong ally in their quest to reshape America into their mold, socially and religiously. And this was to come about through a strong religio-political alliance. They were not to be disappointed.

Consequently, the movement advanced by the Catholic bishops got a powerful ally when the Evangelicals joined. It is well known that Evangelicals may well be the most powerful public-shaping communications network on television, as well as radio. At any given time, as one surfs television satellite offerings or turns on the radio, one finds conservative channels and stations promoting religious presentations, while mixing in their political agenda. Before their transformation, they waved the Bible. Now it's the flag and the Bible.

Their early Evangelical allies made and continue to make the movement most formidable. Dr. James Dobson of Focus on the Family, the late Dr. Jerry Falwell of the Moral Majority, Pat Robertson of the 700 Club, Dr. Robert A. Schuller of the Crystal Cathedral and Hour of Power, along with numerous others, have commanded audiences that number in the millions, while their fund-raising ability is staggering. The transformation of the Evangelicals—who most as- tutely avoided political involvement, because they preached that Christ's king- dom was not of this world—took place almost suddenly. Traditionally, they opposed tax funding for religious schools, as well as religious exercises in the public school system. The dramatic changes came virtually overnight, because of the abortion issue. It is unlikely that they will ever surrender their newly acquired political power. Historically, religious powers have never voluntarily surrendered their political power—they have only sought to increase it. But then, that is human nature, isn't it?

The creation of the abortion issue gave the National Conference of Catholic Bishops the opportunity to politically mobilize in America, by seeking to impose their dogma on society. The abortion issue enabled "regular" physicians to gain credibility, eliminating competition through licensing laws, which a century earlier gave them a monopoly control in medical issues. This they did through lobbying to outlaw abortion. The Pastoral Plan for Pro-Life Activities, issued by Catholic Bishops in 1975, called for the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Ultimately, such mobilization would serve as a catalyst to unite church and state and implement papal/Evangelical dogma into public policy, with which the majority of Roman Catholics disagree.' Those steps will effectively give to the Catholic Church and its Evangelical allies the monopoly control in the area of morality, both in social and religious issues, in public and in private."

From Political Power of Roman Catholic Bishops, By JOHN M. SWOMLEY

"THE VATICAN has had a tremendous influence on White House policy with respect to foreign affairs and such issues as abortion and birth control, according to Time magazine, Feb. 24, 1992. In “The Holy Alliance,” Time described the way in which a group of Roman Catholic members of the Reagan administration collaborated with the Polish pope to overthrow the existing government of Poland.

However, in a subsidiary story in the same issue, “The U.S. and the Vatican on Birth Control,” Time described the Vatican’s success in changing U.S. policy on birth control, quoting Reagan’s first ambassador to the Vatican, William Wilson: “American policy was changed as a result of the Vatican’s not agreeing with our policy.. . . American aid programs around the world did not meet the criteria the Vatican had for family planning. AID [U.S. Agency for International Development] sent various people from [the Department of] State to Rome, and I’d accompany them to meet the president of the Pontifical Council for the Family and in long discussion they finally got the message.” “They” means personnel from AID. This is the first major disclosure in a widely-read magazine of what the Vatican has been doing for years. The Vatican has intervened in American politics to determine U.S. policy with respect to sex, reproduction and other matters. In addition to “behind-the-scenes” work with the CIA and top administration officials, the Vatican has lobbied Congress through Mother Theresa and the Vatican-appointed bishops in this country."

(Cf.  Bishops to Congress: At a Time of Painful Budget Cuts, Defunding Planned Parenthood ‘Not One of Those Hard Choices’, an attack on family planning services in general.  Cf.  A Catholic Perspective – Abortion & Contraception’:"The Catholic Church has always opposed contraception. Never has the Church wavered on its stance on Contraception unlike the other Christian denominations. Artificial contraception is considered a mortal sin. This has been explained and expressed by Pope Paul VI’s Humanae Vitae in 1968. Some methods of natural family planning are morally permissible, as they do not oppose the natural way of conception.")

THE THEOLOGICAL DIMENSION

Elder John V. Stevens, Sr. points out in The Abortion Controversy, that the Roman Catholic position on abortion is rooted in the dogma of the immortality of the soul.  Growing out of that dogma are the metaphysical (and unscriptural} concepts of "Eternal Beatitude" and "Limbo":

'Has Limbo really disappeared? Has the Catholic Church now definitively rejected the theological opinion held for centuries by an imposing array of eminent theologians (including St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Bonaventure, and St. Alphonsus Liguori) that there is a "Limbus puerorum"? They held that the "Limbo of infants" is the state or "place" where unbaptized babies and those who die in original sin are deprived of the Beatific Vision of God but share a perfect state of natural happiness. It is true that the existence of Limbo has never been a definitively defined doctrine of the Church and taught by the Magisterium of the Church as certain doctrine. Nevertheless, in recent centuries the teaching on Limbo was included in local catechisms (e.g., the 1949 Revised Edition of the Baltimore Catechism, n. 3). . . .

The most recent official treatment of the issue of unbaptized infant, The Catechism of the Catholic Church, leaves the question unresolved. On the one hand, CCC n. 1261 and n. 1283 allow the faithful to hope that in the mercy of God such infants may be admitted to the Beatific Vision, while n. 1257 recalls that we do not know that they are so saved, stating that "the Church does not know of any means other than Baptism that assures entry into eternal beatitude." CCC n. 1261 adds: "All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism."'  Abortion and Limbo. 

We now live in a country where public policy is dictated by these strange Roman Catholic doctrines and imposed on the whole nation, including Seventh-day Adventists who reject the dogma of the immortality of the soul.

A BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE

From The Abortion Controversy - Abortion Law in the Scriptures_Accidental and Induced By JOHN V. STEVENS, Sr., Pp. 157-162:

Both sides of the religious controversy over abortion generally recognize the Bible teaching that God is the Author of life and forms humanity in the womb, both fearfully (with great respect) and wonderfully. Without Him there is no life, not even for birds, fish, and animals—or for the vegetation on the face of the earth. Both sides also believe that the Scriptures are inspired, come from God, and should be followed.

Many who oppose abortion believe that the sixth commandment, "You shall not murder" and Psalm 139 clearly prohibit abortions of any kind following conception. Inasmuch as most religious denominations take stands against abortion based on their understanding of the Holy Scriptures, it may come as a surprise that only two passages in the entire Bible deal with an induced miscarriage — one accidental, and the other planned. No other references deal with abortion, either in the Old Testament or the New Testament. We shall do a detailed examination of those two passages.

Religious adherents who favor choice cite these two passages that deal explicitly with abortion—one accidental, and one induced. They point out that biblical law mandated only a misdemeanor fine against one who accidentally caused a woman to have a miscarriage. The induced abortion performed by the priest was the result of a pregnancy that arose from infidelity, and no punishment was imposed for inducing the abortion. Rather, a command came from God to cause it to take place.

Of special significance is that both references are part of the law given at Mt. Sinai by God, or Jehovah, as He is referred to oftentimes in the Old Testament Both references are not only laws, but God spoke them directly, so it was not someone simply recording a law.

JEWISH PERSPECTIVES
(In part based on Scripture)

"How can a single legal system [Jewish] engender such disparate perspectives? To understand that, you have to grasp a central fact about the Jewish legal code, which is that it's not a set of policies. It's a compendium of debates about possible policies. It is commonly believed in the non-Jewish world that the Talmud is the Jewish book of laws, but that's not quite right. The Pentateuch, or Five Books of Moses--that is, the first five books of the Old Testament--contain the 613 mitzvahs, or commandments, by which Jews live. The Talmud is an anthology of abstruse and (to Culturebox, anyway) weirdly fascinating conversations about those commandments, as well as a slew of other biblical and extrabiblical passages that appear to the uninitiated to have nothing to do with the principles of conduct extracted from them. You cannot compare the Talmud to, say, the United States civil code, a series of prescriptions issuing from Congress, or to Catholic doctrine, which comes directly from the pope. The Talmud is more like the minutes of religious study sessions, except that the hundreds of scholars involved in these sessions were enrolled in a seminar that went on for more than a millennium and touched on every conceivable aspect of life and ritual. It would be hard to overstate the Talmud's amorphousness. The more closely you look at it, the harder it is to pin down. How did the rabbis choose which verses to analyze? What's their system of logic? The rabbis derived their rules from the sacred narratives by means of induction and deduction and syllogism and whimsical etymologies and literary hermeneutics, but those weren't their only methods. They also incorporated folkloric glosses that had been passed down orally over hundreds of years, in part to ensure that these stray ideas got written down. And then they argued ceaselessly among themselves about which interpretation was right. . . .

Here are the outer limits of the Jewish positions on abortion: 1) Unlike in Catholicism, in Judaism the fetus isn't a legal person until it's born, so abortion can't be murder. (This isn't even as different from Catholicism as it seems. The Catholic Church itself didn't insist that life began at conception until 1869. Before that, the Church tolerated abortions through the 40th day of pregnancy.) 2) The fetus, although perhaps not a legal person, is a potential one with a limited number of legal rights (such as the ability to inherit property in certain cases), so abortion is like murder, even if it isn't exactly the same thing.

Naturally, depending on where you're disposed to end up on the abortion question, you'll start with a different biblical text. If you're basically willing to tolerate the practice, you'll cite a passage in Exodus (Ex. 21:22) in which two men fight and one of them accidentally hits a pregnant woman in the belly, causing her to miscarry. If she is not harmed in any other way, the Bible says, then the man who struck her has to pay her husband damages. From this one can deduce that feticide isn't murder, because the penalty for murder is death. Rather, removing a fetus is said to be like amputating a limb--which a woman is still not allowed to do for mere economic or cosmetic reasons, since that would be self-mutilation, which is forbidden.

If you sternly oppose abortion, you'll point to Genesis 9:6. This verse is more of a stretch, but by Talmudic standards, it works. It reads: "He who sheds the blood of man through man [that is, through a human court of law], shall his blood be shed." In Biblical Hebrew, "through" can also be "in," so one Roman-era rabbi who was probably disgusted by his country's occupiers' practice of experimenting on fetuses re-interpreted the phrase as saying, "He who sheds the blood of man in man [that is, kills a fetus], shall his blood be shed." That made abortion a capital crime, but for reasons too complicated to get into here, one whose penalty can only be imposed by God, not man. (Since the rabbis all but abolished the death penalty by making it impossible to enact, saying a crime was capital didn't have much effect anyway.)

The one thing everybody agrees about, whether abortion resembles murder or not, is that in the case of a threat to the mother's life, Jewish law requires you to save her rather than the fetus. (Catholics save the fetus, on the grounds that the mother has been baptized and will go to heaven, whereas the fetus has not and is condemned to limbo, if not to hell. Jews don't worry as much about the afterlife.) Opinions diverge again, however, over how elastic to make this notion of threat. Rabbis who think abortion is like murder believe that only imminent physical or psychological danger--such as a suicide threat accompanied by clear signs of psychosis and a psychiatrist's evaluation--constitute sufficient grounds for an abortion, because then you can argue that the woman does it in self-defense. Rabbis who think abortion is like cutting off a leg will permit abortion in cases of less physical threat to the woman. When the justification is psychological, they'll accept that mere anguish might be reason enough to warrant the procedure, rather than require her to show that she is insane. (Having been raped might be one such cause for distress; the prospect of raising a seriously deformed child might be another.)

Rabbis also offer a dizzying menu of views about how early or late into a pregnancy the procedure can be performed, ranging from only up to 40 days after conception to up to the beginning of the third term. (If the birthing process seems likely to be fatal for the mother, you can remove the fetus at the very last moment--until the head crowns, at which point the fetus becomes a person with a soul and a full legal identity.) These debates derive from different verses than the ones cited above. . . ."  What Do Orthodox Jews Think About Abortion and Why?

Wherever we fall within the spectrum of views on abortion, it is every individual's right before God and under the Constitution of the United States to freedom of conscience in what is believed and practiced.  The Church of Rome has no right to impose its doctrines and practices on non-Catholics.  No man is entitled to rule over the conscience of another; even Catholics have the right before God to choose.  God endowed man with the capacity and freedom to choose: in defiance of God's principles of governance Rome seeks to control minds and deny the God-endowed freedom of choice. The US Constitution guarantees an individual's freedom of conscience, and also choice of conduct within legitimate boundaries: the Roman Catholic hierarchy is destroying the individual's freedom of choice and conduct with accelerating urgency.  In the enforcement of Rome's dogmas by legislation and judicial action in the United States, the form of the Image to the Beast is clearly seen.

THE OFFICIAL SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST POSITION

It is refreshing to find that on the issue of abortion the Seventh-day Adventist Church is in conflict with its own "back to Rome" policy, and is prepared to incur the wrath of the anti-abortion forces in the USA - Seventh-Day Adventists and abortion.  The reason is obscure.  The official Guidelines on Abortion neither addresses the crucial question of when life begins, nor the biblical definition of a "living soul."  This avoids a direct confrontation with the Roman Catholic Church; but it may well be that repudiation of the "immortality of the soul" is a root cause of the SDA Church's position, or at least strongly influences it.

There is more than adequate compensation for what is lacking in the Seventh-day Adventist Church's defence of its position on abortion in the strong advocacy of ministers such as Kevin Paulson - SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTS AND THE ABORTION QUESTION: WHERE SHOULD WE STAND?  (Cf.  Coercion or Conversion.)

Some 2011 reports on governmental activity:

A Senate Showdown Over GOP's New Abortion Agenda?

Abortion Foes Push To Redefine Personhood

Wave of anti-abortion bills advance in the states

State Battles Over Abortion And Family Planning Heat Up

Bishops to Congress: At a Time of Painful Budget Cuts, Defunding Planned Parenthood ‘Not One of Those Hard Choices’

December, 2009:

Roman Catholic Bishops Flex Their Political Muscle

Archbishop Chaput Denounces False 'Catholic witness' in Health Care Support

NPR's All Things Considered on Thursday, December 3, 2009, headlined one of the segments "On Social Issues, Bishops Flex Political Muscle."  Host Melissa Block opened with the following statement:

The legacy of Pope John Paul II is playing out in America politics: A generation of American Catholic bishops, selected by Pope John Paul, are very conservative on social issues and vocal about their views.

And they've been increasingly vocal recently, as NPR's Barbara Bradley Hagerty reports.

Barbara Bradley Hagerty then stated as follows:

The night before the House of Representatives voted on health care reform last month, Speaker Nancy Pelosi received some visitors. One was Congressman Bart Stupak, a pro-life Democrat, who wanted to amend the House bill to permanently strip federal funding for abortion. He brought with him two representatives of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, who said they would not support any bill without that amendment. . . .

The meeting was a turning point. Pelosi allowed a vote on the amendment the next day and it passed.

Democrat Rosa DeLauro, a pro-choice Catholic, says the bishops are elevating abortion over every other issue, and they're rejecting the tradition established by John F. Kennedy that Catholic politicians vote according to their conscience, not the dictates of Rome.  (Emphasis added)

The voice of Representative Rosa Delauro (Democrat, Connecticut) followed:

The activity that the Catholic bishops have engaged in implies that the church will determine and dictate public policy.  (Emphasis added)

Hagerty then interjected:

But John Myers, the archbishop of New Jersey, says bishops have every right to lobby Congress and influence laws.

Next came the voice of Archbishop John Myers (Newark, New Jersey) stating:

I don't think it was improper because what we talked about were moral issues. And if anyone has the responsibility and the right to speak out on moral issues, it's religious leaders.  (Emphasis added)

There was in fact not only intervention on Capitol Hill.  In a report on November 11, 2009, titled THE INFLUENCE GAME: Bishops shape health care bill, Julie Hirschfeld Davis wrote:

Catholic bishops have emerged as a formidable force in the health care overhaul fight, using their clout with millions of Catholics and working behind the scenes in Congress to get strong abortion restrictions into the House bill.

They don't spend a dime on what is legally defined as lobbying, but lawmakers and insiders recognize that the bishops' voices matter — and they move votes. Representatives for the bishops were in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's Capitol suite negotiating with top officials last Friday evening as they reached final terms of the agreement. Earlier in the day, Pelosi, a Catholic and an abortion rights supporter, had been on the phone to Rome with Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick, Washington's former archbishop, on the subject.  (Emphasis added)

One further point needs to be noted in this preliminary presentation of this subject.  Rep. Bart Stupak, D-Mich., a leading abortion foe was the front architect of the health measure's restrictions; however, behind him was the power of the Protestant Religious Right.  On November 10, 2009, an article in Salon.com by Jeff Sharlet titled The Democrats' new "Family" Values described the involvement of Representative Joe Pitts (Republican, Pennsylvania) as follows:

But if Stupak, a former state trooper from Michigan, provided the muscle, his partner, Joe Pitts -- a Pennsylvania Republican with decades in the trenches of the antiabortion battle -- may have brought the brains, and more, a new Christian right coalition custom tailored for the Democratic Party's growing religious conservatism. Stupak is Roman Catholic; Pitts is evangelical. Both are members of the predominantly evangelical organization called the Family; Stupak lives in its C Street house. Together, they're poster boys for the evangelical/conservative Catholic alliance known as "co-belligerency," a culture war strategy designed to take territory within the Democratic Party as well the GOP.  (Emphasis added)

TWISTED PRIORITIES ON LIFE:
Nun Excommunicated For Allowing Abortion 

UPDATES FROM FINAL WORLD EVENTS IN PROPHECY FORESHADOWED

January, 2014

An extreme anti-abortion law brings about an extreme result! Can the fetus be developed to a viable stage and a normal baby? Will the State assist the family with the huge medical expenses?:

Texas hospital to keep pregnant, brain-dead woman on life support ("He told WFAA that his wife's collapse may have been caused by a pulmonary embolism and that tests on the fetus are too limited to determine its health and whether it can ultimately survive. Doctors may have to decide in about a month whether to attempt a caesarian delivery, since 24 weeks is generally considered the age of 'viability' in the US.

'That poor fetus had the same lack of oxygen, the same electric shocks, the same chemicals that got her heart going again,' Marlise Munoz's father, Ernest Machado, told the Dallas Morning News. 'For all we know, it’s in the same condition that Marlise is in.' Local firefighters have set up a benefit fund to help the family pay medical bills.")

Brain-dead pregnant woman kept alive against family wishes to deliver child ("About half of all 50 American states impose laws of varying stringency that ban medics from cutting off life support to pregnant women regardless of their will or their family's requests.

Critics have said the laws clash with American women's right under the landmark 1973 Roe vs Wade supreme court decision to an abortion before the foetus is viable outside the womb.")

The more one researches the abortion issue, the more incredibly complex it appears to be. It is a serious mistake to allow emotion to control one's thinking. Religious doctrine should have nothing to do with legislation on this complicated and controversial matter, particularly in a nation subject to a constitutional separation of church and state. Even outside of the constitutional factor which involves the rights of different religious faiths, what is known from the Bible leaves room for wide- ranging views and debate about what constitutes personhood, which is the essential core of the question of when life begins in the process of procreation. The Bible passage Exodus 21:22-25 is definitive and more clear-cut than any other quoted texts concerning the Divine viewpoint on the personhood of a fetus at any stage of its development. Numbers 5:11-31 could be definitive on the question of abortion for good reasons such as the life of the mother etc.; but this depends on the proper interpretation of the phrases "belly to swell" and "thigh to rot." The silence of the Bible in identifying a particular stage at which personhood is attained should be a warning against dogmatism; and in any event no single Christian denomination or alliance of Christian denominations has the constitutional right to impose its view on those who differ, whether other Christians, other religious faiths, or unbelievers. The claim of such a right is the stuff of theocratic dictatorship. Here are articles expounding some of the diversity of views:

When does human personhood begin? ("What does contemporary science say about when an embryo becomes a person? There is no consensus among biologists as to this question. Below are four points in development at which different groups of scientists maintain that personhood may begin. Other scientists, however, say that the question itself is unscientific and cannot be answered.")

Jewish Attitudes Towards Abortion ("Even given the designation of the embryo / fetus as intrinsic to the mother's body and thereby lacking, we might say, personhood - is feticide, the killing of at least a potential human being the same as homicide? The biblical books of Exodus and Leviticus (part of the Torah - teaching, path, law - in Judaism, and canonical "Old Testament" books for Christians), as understood through the Talmud and Rashi (one of the most important Rabbinic authorities), argue that the answer to this question is, 'No'  . . .

In the effort to resolve the abortion debate, a common Christian move is to argue that human life
(as equivalent to moral personhood) begins with 'ensoulment,' with God's placing an immortal soul in the material body of the fetus. Diverse Christian views claim that ensoulment occurs at conception, at the end of the first trimester, or at birth: the latter two views, of course, would allow for abortion, while the first view (ensoulment occurring at conception) would (largely) forbid abortion as the moral equivalent of murder. But the debate over when ensoulment occurs, Feldman points out, is essentially a Christian debate. . .")

A Rabbi and a Minister Respond to 'Personhood' ("The Personhood movement, as well as the anti-choice movement, in general, says that they are trying to comply with divine law, as opposed
to civil law, and rely upon portions of the Christian and Hebrew Bibles to make that claim. But when I decided to take a look at the texts they say inspire these 'divine' laws, I couldn’t find one
place that unequivocally said that life begins at conception. Befuddling! . . .")

With the exception of a somewhat ambiguous reference to predestination, which is contrary to this website's theology, the following is an interesting analysis of abortion laws being promulgated by religious right legislators:

When does personhood begin? ("So whose doctrine is correct? And whose doctrine should reign supreme in a democracy that claims freedom of religion? . . .

To add to the confusion, science has its own varied theories of when human life begins. . .

The answer is not one that will be found easily. And if we are going to pass laws based on a doctrinal belief rather than based on the unfolding science then the debate becomes whose religious doctrine is supreme. That is a road towards theocracy. A road that this democracy needs to ensure that humanity never travels down again as it thwarts the fullness of humanity in all of its creativity and expression.") (Underscored emphasis added.) 

ROMAN CATHOLIC NUNS ASSERT "RELIGIOUS FREEDOM" TO DENY IT TO OTHERS:

Catholic Employers Claim That Filling Out an Obamacare Form Violates Their Religious Freedom "That's right: These groups are arguing that filling out a form is a violation of their religious freedom and that 'religious freedom' means that you should have control over your employee's health care decisions even when they happen outside of the insurance coverage you directly provide for them. Even the lawyer for one of the groups, the Little Sisters of the Poor Home for the Aged, admits that this lawsuit is about trying to weasel out of nothing more onerous than signing a piece of paper. 'Without an emergency injunction,' Mark Rienzi told the Associated Press, 'Mother Provincial Loraine Marie Maguire has to decide between two courses of action: (a) sign and submit a self-certification form, thereby violating her religious beliefs; or (b) refuse to sign the form and pay ruinous fines.' And a spokeswoman for the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, lead counsel for the Little Sisters, said, 'The government has lots of ways to deliver contraceptives to people. It doesn't need to force the nuns to participate.' The problem is that the government agrees and has set up a system so that the nuns can opt out. The nuns refuse to opt out, however, because opting out on paper will allow their employees to get that contraception coverage."

The nuns' Obamacare contraception lawsuit isn't about religious freedom "The Little Sisters aren't paying for contraception even through a third-party-secured insurance plan; they certainly aren't being asked to distribute it, and Catholic nuns aren't being force-fed birth control pills. They simply have to sign a piece of paper saying they're a religious group, and then turn to a third party to negotiate all the details.

Their claim that even this accommodation violates their religious liberty is telling. These ACA-related "religious liberty" arguments aren't actually about the freedom to exercise your own religion, or the right to be free of doing something that violates your conscience. These assertions are about an overwhelming sense of entitlement on behalf of religious organizations to force anyone within their reach to adhere to their beliefs."

Adminstration says Colo. nuns do not need injunction against health law provision "Religiously oriented nonprofit organizations around the country have objected to the requirement and said it violates protections granted by the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

They contend that if they sign the self-certification letters, that makes them complicit in the government’s plan to provide contraceptive services, because the law provides that third-party insurers still provide the coverage."

Cf. On Contraception

Does this give us a hint that the Roman Catholic "liberals" on the US Supreme Court might be an unanticipated trojan horse for the Church of Rome?

Justice Blocks Contraception Mandate on Insurance in Suit by Nuns

The timing looks rather suspicious. Why did they wait until the day before the mandate went into effect?:

From [D]@gmail.com -

Catholic groups ask Supreme Court to delay Obamacare mandate

An ex-Catholic's 2005 analysis of Rome's rigid stance on contraception:

You gotta have soul ("The Vatican, under the present pope [John-Paul II,] has continued to equate contraception with abortion - both being seen as a "culture of death". At John Paul II's first synod of his reign, convened in 1980 on the family and sexuality, some bishops attempted to raise the issue of contraception. Despite a special commission reporting to Pope Paul VI that contraception was not "intrinsically evil", the new pontiff swiftly reaffirmed the absolute ban laid down in Paul VI's harsh 1960 encyclical, Humanae Vitae. . .

More important, perhaps, is the recognition that, as late as 14 days after fertilisation, the embryo may divide into twins or triplets or more. This so-called "twinning argument" is the strongest yet against the view that life begins at fertilisation. Because, theologically speaking, the soul cannot split, it can be said that the soul does not enter the pre-embryo (called a zygote) until the point at which it can no longer divide into several individuals. . .

Definitions of when the soul enters the body have certainly changed over the centuries. St Thomas Aquinas, following Aristotle, held that male foetuses only became "animated" - in other words, acquired a soul - around the 40th day after conception. Females were believed to develop more slowly and to need 90 days for 'ensoulment'.")

Different Christian churches hold different views about the rightness and wrongness of using birth control:

Contraception

But Rome claims the right to impose her arbitrary teachings on the whole world - Christians and non-Christians, believers and non-believers alike!:

The role of the Church in the international community of states . . .


 

June - December 2013

Finally, a counter-attack against the Roman Catholic Bishops' encroachment on individual religious freedom by exploiting the tension between the Establishment of religion and Free Exercise of religion parts of the First Amendment! (Exemplified in the Hobby Lobby case - Does Hobby Lobby Have a First Amendment Case? Yes and No) However, the hour is late - very late! The Church of Rome's modus operandi in exploiting the conflict within the First Amendment was perceived over one hundred years ago. The Bishops' Pastoral Plan for "Pro-life Activities" in furtherance of that modus operandi was prepared and put into action nearly forty years ago, and is now being implemented by at least two branches of the Federal government, Congress and the courts, and by State and local governments. The Evangelicals are totally on board, and have long formed the spearhead of the Pastoral Plan. The authors of the Plan are fairly targeted by this lawsuit:

Catholic bishops under fire for denying reproductive healthcare ("At issue are the same Catholic
directives for healthcare that have repeatedly pitted the bishops against the Obama administration, including most recently in requiring insurance coverage for contraception under the Affordable Care Act. In an interview with NBC’s Meet the Press that aired last weekend, Cardinal Timothy Dolan said of the Affordable Care Act, 'We Catholics, who are kind of among the pros when it comes to providing healthcare, do it because of our religious conviction, and because of the dictates of our conscience. And now we’re being asked to violate some of those.'”

Rome's tentacles are spread far and wide: the Churches, the Educational System, the News Media (both by suppression of the truth and by active propaganda,) the Legislative and Judicial branches of the Federal and State Governments, the Executive branch under Republican Presidents and to some degree under Democratic Presidents, Giant Corporations in the commercial realm and, significantly for her signature opposition to abortion and contraception, the hospital industry:

Catholic hospitals are growing. What will that mean for reproductive health? ("The lawsuit comes in the midst of a wave of high-profile mergers between Catholic hospitals and secular systems. The partnerships have raised questions about how care will be delivered at institutions guided by religious directives, particularly in rural areas like Muskegon where patients have little choice of where to be seen.

'As the number of Catholic hospitals increases, we’re highlighting the way they can constrain care,' Louise Melling, ACLU deputy legal director, said. 'The suit is significant in that it's calling attention to what is happening at these hospitals. In some instances, the directives are governing care rather than medical guidelines.'")

Cf. Legislation at State government level - Controversial abortion insurance proposal moves to Michigan Legislature

The statement above, "Rome's tentacles are spread far and wide . . ." is not intended to be sensational, but to emphasize that the prophecy is sure, and the foundations are being laid to facilitate the ultimate fulfillment of Rev. 13.

The Roman Catholic perversion of religious freedom was foreseen by A. T. Jones - "Thus the papacy in plain violation of the Constitution will crowd herself upon the government and then hold up that clause as a barrier against anything that any would do to stop it. And every one that speaks against this working of the papacy, behold! He "is violating the Constitution of the United States" in spirit, because the constitution says that nothing shall ever be done in respect to any religion or the establishment of it." (Sermon "The Papacy") Contraception cases have been taken up by the Supreme Court. Supporters of the Hobby Lobby Corporation are blissfully unaware that they are advancing the Roman Catholic religio-political agenda at the expense of the true guarantee by the U.S. Constitution of individual religious freedom:

U.S. Supreme Court takes Hobby Lobby case ("'Everyone has a right to their religious beliefs, but religious freedom does not include the right to impose your beliefs on others,' said Louise Melling, deputy legal director of the ACLU. 'It does not mean that businesses can refuse to comply with the law based on their religious beliefs, particularly where that means discriminating against their employees.'”

Supreme Court Takes Challenge To Obamacare Contraceptive Rule ("The lead plaintiff before the court is Hobby Lobby, a chain of more than 500 arts and crafts stores with more than 13,000 employees. The owners are conservative Christians who object to some forms of birth control and contend that the mandate thus abridges their religious rights in violation of both the Constitution and federal law.

David Green, founder and CEO of Hobby Lobby, appeared in an online video to explain his company's position. 'We do everything we possibly can to be a help to our employees of how that they can structure their life based on biblical principles,' he says."

Cf. Evangelicals & Catholics Together: The Christian Mission in the Third Millennium; (The pattern of convergence and cooperation between Evangelicals and Catholics . . .)

Legislation against abortion and birth control are proceeding at all levels of government in America, and particularly below the federal level where less attention is drawn to the activity. Stealth and deviousness are often a part of the legislative process:

Wisconsin proposed abortion and contraception legislation detrimental to women's rights ("On Wednesday, May 22, pro-choice and pro-life groups gathered in Wisconsin's State Capitol to debate a bill that made it into the legislature in just one short week. The bill, sponsored by Representative Andre Jacque (R-2), would make it much more difficult and expensive for a woman to get an abortion and would ban the use of public tax-payer dollars to fund abortions that fall under public employee's health insurance plans. It would also keep employers such as hospitals, schools and organizations with a religious affiliation from having to provide contraceptive coverage in their health insurance plans.

. . . Similarly, it is not the role of the state legislature to legalize morality. Regardless of creed, race or any other identification trait, the government does not have the right to prohibit an individual’s access to medical supplies simply because it is not the will of a religious organization that operates entirely apart from our government. The right to practice one’s own religion is undeniably protected, yet the right to separate oneself from religious practices is oftentimes ignored. To sacrifice the right to contraception, which reduces the probability for domestic abuse, neglect and poverty, because of an unwillingly accepted moral code implemented by an employer is just as equal of an injustice as religious intolerance.")

Cf. Religious Groups Are Fighting To Defeat Albuquerque’s Proposed 20-Week Abortion Ban

On contraception:

The Roman Catholic Perspective - Birth Control "Contraception is wrong because it’s a deliberate violation of the design God built into the human race, often referred to as "natural law." The natural law purpose of sex is procreation. The pleasure that sexual intercourse provides is an additional blessing from God, intended to offer the possibility of new life while strengthening the bond of intimacy, respect, and love between husband and wife. The loving environment this bond creates is the perfect setting for nurturing children.

But sexual pleasure within marriage becomes unnatural, and even harmful to the spouses, when it is used in a way that deliberately excludes the basic purpose of sex, which is procreation. God’s gift of the sex act, along with its pleasure and intimacy, must not be abused by deliberately frustrating its natural end—procreation."

The Seventh-day Adventist Perspective - Birth Control "3. Unifying purpose. Sexuality serves a unifying purpose in marriage that is God-ordained and distinguishable from the procreative purpose (Gen 2:24). Sexuality in marriage is intended to include joy, pleasure, and delight (Eccl 9:9; Prov 5:18, 19; Song of Sol 4:16-5:1). God intends that couples may have ongoing sexual communion apart from procreation (1 Cor 7:3-5), a communion that forges strong bonds and protects a marriage partner from an inappropriate relationship with someone other than his or her spouse (Prov 5:15-20; Song of Sol 8:6, 7). In God's design, sexual intimacy is not only for the purpose of conception. Scripture does not prohibit married couples from enjoying the delights of conjugal relations while taking measures to prevent pregnancy."

Sadly, many, many Seventh-day Adventists are captivated by the misapplication of Bible texts to the abortion issue by brilliant Roman Catholic minds.

The following is an article with an anti-abortion bias; but very revealing of how the Roman Catholic Church has brainwashed Evangelicals.:

Roe v. Wade anniversary: How abortion became an evangelical issue ("There is more to the story of course. One often overlooked dimension of the story is the intersection of evangelical and Roman Catholic concerns in the emergence of a pro-life coalition. While most evangelicals were either on the wrong side of the issue or politically disengaged, Roman Catholic leaders were on the front lines opposing abortion as a fundamental assault on human dignity. By the late 1960s, the Roman Catholic Church was fighting demands for the legalization of abortion nationally and state by state - opposition that preceded the 1968 papal encyclical Humanae Vitae.

By the time Roe was handed down, Catholic leaders had developed sophisticated arguments and growing organizations to fight for the pro-life cause. In 1967, six years before Roe, Catholics had led in the creation of the National Right to Life Committee. The Catholic tradition, drawn largely from the natural law, became the foundational intellectual contribution to the development of a united front against abortion. Nevertheless, for evangelicals to join the movement in a decisive way, arguments drawn directly from Scripture had to be formed and then preached from the pulpits of evangelical churches.") (Underscored emphasis added.) 

All talk and no action on jobs, all action on abortion - legislatures dance to the Roman Catholic puppetmaster tune. The conventional wisdom appears to be that The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act passed in the US House of Representatives on June 18, 2013, was simply pandering to the Repubican Party's conservative base; but this is a grave misreading of the times. Of course, with the prevailing unbelief in the prophetic Word which predicts the world ascendancy of the Papacy, it is understandably difficult to comprehend that a religious institution could gain a stranglehold on the governance of the greatest democracy the world has ever known:

Trent Franks Sidelined as Abortion Ban Passes House

A poignant account of one mother's tragic experience -

Abortion Law: Mother Denied Abortion, Then Had To Watch Baby Die

It's time they heard the truth (Linked only for full facts, and not to recommend involvement in political activism.)

A tangled web of tortured rationalization created by Roman Catholic theology -

Is Nebraska’s Fetal Pain Bill Cruel? ("After teaching the principle of double effect . . .")

The dilemma of a Roman Catholic Democratic Party leader -

Pelosi Lashes Out at Reporter's Question on Morality of Late-Term Abortions

Activity in the States -

Several States Forbid Abortion After 20 Weeks

Federal Appeals Court Permanently Blocks Arizona 20-Week Abortion Ban

2013 State Level Abortion Restrictions at Mid-Year: An Extreme Overreach into Women’s Reproductive Health Care

The birth control by use of contraceptives aspect -

Doug Cox, Republican Lawmaker, Lambasts Oklahoma GOP For Anti-Birth Control Crusade

Restricted Access to Birth Control is Counter-Productive to Women's Health

The continuing campaign demonstrates the critical importance of the issue to the Church of Rome, and requires attention to the underlying dogmas of the Immortality of the Soul and the Immaculate Conception - IMMORTALITY OF THE SOUL RANKS WITH SUNDAY SACREDNESS.

January - May, 2013

Fetal Homicide - legislating the Roman Catholic "life begins at conception" teaching under the radar:

Should Ariel Castro Be Prosecuted for Fetal Homicide?

Abortion Is Murder, According to Fetal Homicide Laws

Fetal Homicide Laws

THE ROOT OF THE ABORTION CONTROVERSY - THE DOGMAS OF THE IMMORTALITY OF THE SOUL AND THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION PLUS THE CONCEPT OF "ENSOULMENT" 

No longer just activism - now many Statehouses are in the clutches of the Republican Party and the Church of Rome; and now it is relentless legislative action. Why? Because Roman Catholicism's opposition to abortion and birth control is based on two deadly dogmas - the Immortality of the Soul ("ensoulment") and the Immaculate Conception (Cf. Natural Law and Abortion):

Kansas state legislature passes sweeping anti-abortion measures

Kansas set to enact life-starts-"at fertilization" abortion law ("The Kansas bill comes on the heels of anti-abortion measures passing in states across the country, including one in Arkansas banning abortions in the 12th week of pregnancy and a law in North Dakota that sets the limit at six weeks."

The central birth control struggle continues -

New Round, Old Fight - Why The Religious Right Rejects The Obama Compromise Over Birth Control ("An issue that had been dormant for many years suddenly sprang to life. It’s now being seriously argued that an individual’s private decision to use birth control somehow offends the alleged religious liberty rights – and the “conscience” – of giant corporations. The most amazing thing about this argument is that some courts are taking it seriously.")

'Conscience', Contraception And The Court

The Birth Control Battle - Courts Must Safeguard Religious Liberty For All ("The Roman Catholic hierarchy and its Religious Right allies are trying to deny millions of Americans access to safe and affordable birth control. Disturbingly, they’re using a distorted definition of religious liberty to do it.") Cf. A. T. Jones on the Papacy and America 

The catch is that these religious institutions receive government funding in violation of the Constitution, and should not expect exemption from government policy:

From [D]@gmail.com -

Obama administration offers new 'compromise' on HHS mandate (Cf. The Right Way to Accommodate Religious Objections to the Contraception Coverage Mandate) 

Mention of the campaign against abortion cannot be avoided at the beginning of another year. It continues aggressively as a manifestation of the influence, if not outright control, of the Roman Catholic Church over a Republican Party dominated by an unholy alliance of apostate Protestantism and Roman Catholicism (" . . . and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed," Rev. 13:12b.) Make no mistake about it; this involves worship ("Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey . . . ," Rom. 6:16a;) and the Mark of the Beast involves worship. Rome's current position (it has not been consistent) ignores both what is omitted and what is expressly countenanced in the Bible. Moreover, in the doctrinal positions of "ensoulment" and "limbo" are hidden the major dogmas of the "immortality of the soul," (the first and great lie of Satan,) and the Immaculate Conception. It is too easy to allow emotion to govern our thinking, rather than the facts of the Bible and history (Cf. Natural Law and Abortion; Overview: Evolution of Roman Catholic positions on abortion) -

Early reports on legislation and statistics:

Virginia Abortion, Contraception Bills Proposed In New Legislative Session

About 40 abortion restrictions OKd in '12

October - December, 2012

Harboring doubt that the Roman Catholic Church has a stranglehold on the Republican Party?:

U.S. Senate kills UN treaty that could have expanded abortion ("The U.S. Senate has voted down a treaty that opponents warned could widen acceptance of abortion, deny the parents of special needs children their rights, and compromise U.S. sovereignty. . . ."Today’s vote was a victory for human rights and for American sovereignty,” said Austin Ruse, president of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, an organization that testified against the treaty."

"Article 25 of the CRPD called on nations to furnish the disabled “free or affordable health care…including in the area of sexual and reproductive health and population-based public health programmes.” Pro-life leaders warned that language could be interpreted to include abortion, as it has in the case of other UN treaties.")

Note how abortion is invariably invoked by the Religious Right as the reason for opposing public policy or legislation with which they disagree. Cf. The Abortion Controversy - Abortion Law in the Scriptures—Accidental and Induced "Inasmuch as most religious denominations take stands against abortion based on their understanding of the Holy Scriptures, it may come as a surprise that only two passages in the entire Bible deal with an induced miscarriage—one accidental, and the other planned. No other references deal with abortion, either in the Old Testament or the New Testament."

Cf.  The satanic dogma hidden in the "pro-life" movement

The menacing shadow of the Beast and his Image:

Mike Huckabee ad: Vote for ‘eternity’

BGEA: Vote Biblical Values (On abortion and contraception, "Biblical Values" are pure Roman Catholic dogma, and a snare for the unwary who are moved by their emotions to embrace "the immortality of the soul" falsehood; cf. The satanic dogma hidden in the "pro-life" movement)

October 25, 2012

Archbishop Chaput: Catholic teaching trumps party loyalty on abortion ("We're Catholics before we're Democrats. We're Catholics before we're Republicans," he said. "We're even Catholics before we're Americans, because we know that God has a demand on us prior to any government demand on us. And this has been the story of the martyrs through the centuries.")

Intense battle lines are drawn between those who are determined to impose a theocracy of extremely distorted Christianity on the nation against those who want to preserve separation of church and state and the religious neutrality of the State. This could not be clearer, and the Theocrats are inspired by Roman Catholic dogma (Cf. Rev. 13):

Mourdock: Pregnancy from rape can be 'something God intended to happen'

Pregnancy from rape is not ‘God’s will’

Is there a place for religion in public life or in the political arena?  (Cf.  The insight of A. T. Jones that needs to be kept in mind as Roman Catholic legislation proliferates throughout America - "The papacy is very impatient of any restraining bonds"  more . . .

The progressive fight against the encroachment of religion on our secular government (Roman Catholic Liberals have a problem of conflicting loyalties)

Alternet Exposes Mitt Romney’s Role as Mormon Bishop. Shows his Extremist Religious Beliefs (The United States is close to the edge of the precipice in the current presidential election)

October 20, 2012

The extremes to which Roman Catholic and Evangelical control has led the Republican party:

House Republican Says Abortion Never Necessary to Save Lives (Rev. 13:12-18 in process of fulfillment)

The satanic dogma hidden in the "pro-life" movement - the immortality of the soul (Gen. 3:4.) Roman Catholic vice-presidential candidates' views on abortion diverge widely with one exception - "life begins at conception":

VP Debate: Biden, Ryan Talk Catholic Faith, Abortion, Religious Liberties

(Cf. Ensoulment Occurs at Conception; Catholic Treasury; When Does Human Life Begin? Conception And Ensoulment; Where did the idea of an Immortal soul originate?)

(Note that the concept of "ensoulment" corrupts Judaism and Christianity alike.  The biblical Seventh-day Adventist concept of "conditional immortality" is unique in contemporary Christianity; cf. Jewish Attitudes Towards Abortion Death and Resurrection)

July, 2012

Seemingly intended for Catholics, in reality Rome seeks to impose her teaching on the nation:

Amid political battle, Catholic bishops promote ‘natural’ family planning (Cf. The crusade rages on.)

The Republican Party's legislative actions against abortion and birth control are relentless and pervasive:

The Fight over Contraceptive Coverage Resumes  (Cf. Meeting the Need for Family Planning: Still a Long Way to Go)

Michigan Anti-Abortion Bill, 'Most Extreme' In The Country, Barrels Through State House

It bears repeating again and again that the Republican Party has become the Roman Catholic Party:

Catholic Doctrine and Reproductive Health - WHY THE CHURCH CAN’T CHANGE ("The National Catholic Reporter predicted that the Bishops’ Pastoral Plan would lead to the creation of a new political party, an American Catholic Party. But instead, the Vatican simply chose to seize control of the Republican Party.")

In the all-encompassing teachings of the Roman Catholic Social Doctrine, opposition to abortion (and by association, birth control,) is a central tenet:

American nuns say questions not defiance ("After an investigation starting around 2008, the Vatican office concluded that the nuns’ group had failed to emphasize core teaching on abortion, while promoting “certain radical feminist themes’’ that undermine Catholic teaching on the all-male priesthood, marriage, and homosexuality.")  The nuns are currently campaigning for social justice.

What is this core teaching on abortion?  Ensoulment Occurs at Conception - the "immortality of the soul."

May 26, 2012

BATTLE LINES DRAWN AGAINST SECULAR GOVERNANCE IN THE UNITED STATES - Blitzkrieg Against Contraception:

Catholic Groups Sue To Stop Birth Control Coverage Rule

Catholic institutions sue over contraceptive rule

Notre Dame, other groups file new lawsuits against contraception rule

Planned Parenthood: Contraception suit 'unbelievable'

A balanced solution that the Evangelical-Roman Catholic alliance and the Republican Party would never accept:

The Right Way to Accommodate Religious Objections to the Contraception Coverage Mandate (N.B.  "Religious organizations have a religious liberty right to challenge government regulations that require them to use their own resources in violation of their religious commitments in order to further the state’s secular objectives. Religious organizations do not, however, have a religious liberty right to use the government’s resources in order to further the organizations’ religious commitments when doing so would undermines the state’s public policy goals."  (Emphasis added.)  The tension within the First Amendment Establishment of Religion Clause is real, and requires a restraint that the Church of Rome will never concede.  (Cf. A. T. JONES ON THE PAPACY AND AMERICA.)

"The meaning of separation of church and state in the First Amendment" (by J. Brent Walker,) introduces The meaning of separation of church and state in the First Amendment by Joseph M. Dawson; (Cf. Baptist Joint Committee: What ‘Secular’ Really Means.)March 17, 2012

The crusade rages on. The "talking heads" on radio and TV express bewilderment at the apparent recklessness of Republicans' unpopular "culture wars," clearly not eager to recognize that Republicans are enacting Roman Catholic religious dogma. Is the Church of Rome over-reaching at this stage of the crusade, or has her time of ascendancy in America fully arrived?:

Campaign against birth control is religious fanaticism: "But by claiming that Catholic conscience supersedes the rule of law, Dolan and others are in effect imposing their beliefs on the non-Catholic workers, patients and students at hospitals and colleges affiliated with the Church, an outcome that church-state separation sought to prevent."

The GOP war on women: "The health care of millions of women is needlessly at stake. Yet the Republicans' presidential nominee front-runners, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum, have both pledged to deny funding for Title X and organization's like Planned Parenthood -- along with their promises to dismantle health care reform and the broad care it would provide to all."

Romney, Santorum and archaic ideas on fertility. (Exception taken to 'as a point-by-point guidebook to modern domestic life it [the Bible is] nearly worthless.' Examples bearing on family planning: I Timothy 5:8 - implication, no more children than the breadwinner(s) can support; 1 Cor. 7:3-5 - not a prescription for procreation only): "And now, with their crusade against birth control, the Catholic bishops are helping to articulate and elevate that unspoken and archaic value in public. Fertility is a gift from God, they say."

Out Of Favor In Washington, Blunt-Style Bills Catch Fire In The States

March 2, 2012

At the heart of the controversy - the immortality of the soul (SDAs beware!!):

Ensoulment Occurs at Conception. (Cf. The Roman Catholic Church Continues Its Political Battles in its Fight Against Birth Control - "And what has the latest dust up told us about the Roman Catholic Church? That it accepts huge amounts of federal money without which their operations could not exist. That it maintains that it is above the law and does not need to follow the requirements of other institutions if its philosophies differ from that of the United States government.")

"This isn't about religious liberty. This is about imposing one's faith on others":

Greenier: Federal fight isn't about religious liberty

The Republican Party is the Catholic Party:

The Republican Primary Trifecta of Abortion, Contraception and Gay Marriage

“'The Vatican wants to extend its authority over civil law, not only in countries with Catholic majorities but in others with religiously diverse populations. The Catholic bishops have decided to try to impose papal authority in the United States through the abortion issue.' From: CHISTIAN ETHICS TODAY, APRIL 1997" - The Vatican Connection: How the Roman Catholic Church Influences the Republican Party

(Cf. Revealing Documentation of the Papacy's Role in America.)

March 1, 2012

Rev. 13:14(b) - : "saying to them that dwell on the earth [Rev. 13:11-12], that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live":

The Roman Catholic Bishops' Agenda - Roy Blunt’s Push to Overturn Obama’s Contraception Compromise

Olympia Snowe Quit Senate to Protest GOP Agenda

Blunt Amendment Debate Recalls Memories Of Walmart Contraception Case

Fear!! - Romney clarifies his position on Blunt amendment

February 18, 2012

New “'The separation of church and state means that the government will not force one religious view or doctrine upon the people,' Lynn’s testimony observes. 'Expansion of the Obama compromise, however, would allow one particular religious doctrine to govern our public health policies at the expense of the health, safety, and religious conscience rights of the women they employ.'"

Religious Liberty Does Not Grant A License To Deny The Rights Of Others, Americans United Tells Congressional Panel

". . . they’ve settled upon a partisan power play to subvert the First Amendment rights they claim. Look, nobody’s forced to use contraceptives; it’s an individual’s choice, nobody else’s. Religious organizations have the right to believe anything they like, but not to impose those beliefs upon others. By essentially demanding a Catholic veto, the bishops and their GOP allies would impose their theological views upon millions of American women as a condition of employment.

That’s not 'liberty,' it’s liberty’s opposite; and precisely what the First Amendment was written to prevent."

Catholic hypocrisy at its worst (Cf. The deep roots of the war on contraceptionThe Bishops Exposed: Wolves in Sheep's Clothing Catholic Doctrine and Reproductive Health - WHY THE CHURCH CAN’T CHANGE)

February 14, 2012

Under the direction of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops and as predicted by A. T. Jones, under the Free Exercise Clause of the Constitution, "the papacy [is being] pushed upon this country in every possible way and by every possible means and . . . congress is prohibited from ever legislating in any way to stop it." Indeed, congress is now enabling the papacy's push upon the United States in fulfillment of Rev. 13:14:

Obama's revised HHS mandate won't solve problems, USCCB president says

AP Interview: US bishop pledges court fight against Obama contraception compromise

Blunt leading opponents of White House contraception 'compromise'

NewA very good analysis by a Roman Catholic - Catholic Bishops Join the Culture War on Obama: Margaret Carlson

Catholics and Protestants united - “If the insurance plan of a Catholic institution must cover services it deems immoral, then such a healthcare plan is offensive, plain and simple,” he [Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights] said.

Tony Perkins, president of Family Research Council, agreed, saying that the new policy “does nothing to change the fundamentally anti-religious, anti-conscience and anti-life contraceptive mandate.”:

Critics denounce Obama's 'false' compromise on contraception mandate

February 11, 2012

THE ISSUE IS THE RELIGIOUS LIBERTY OF THOSE WHO DISSENT FROM ROMAN CATHOLIC DOGMA:

AN INSPIRED WRITER FAR AHEAD OF HER TIME►

Adventists and Birth Control

1999 Seventh-day Adventist Statement►

Birth Control: A Seventh-day Adventist Statement of Consensus

WHY THE CONTROVERSY MAY SUBSIDE FOR AWHILE, BUT WILL DEFY RESOLUTION UNDER THE CONSTITUTION - "Leo has made the discovery that the papacy can be pushed upon this country in every possible way and by every possible means and that congress is prohibited from ever legislating in any way to stop it" (A. T. Jones' sermon "The Papacy," Third Angel's Message No. 2, 1895 GC Session.)►

Obama changes contraception rules in face of religious backlash

Boehner: Obama birth-control decision an 'attack on religious freedom'  (Boehner is a devout Roman Catholic.)

Abortion, birth control grab political spotlight

Contraception (Roman Catholic Dogma)

The Pope and the Pill (Papal Infallibility)

(Cf. Dissent Within Romanism, and consider all of the implications for so-called "unity in diversity" in the ecumenical world as pointed out in the article; Also Americanism Laid to Rest Within the Roman Catholic Church►

NOTES - POPE LEO XIII AND "AMERICANISM"  {Rome has not changed.})

February 4, 2012:

"The papacy is very impatient of any restraining bonds; in fact, it wants none at all. And the one grand discovery Leo XIII has made, which no pope before him ever made, is that turn which is taken now all the time by Leo and from him by those who are managing affairs in this country--the turn that is taken upon the clause of the Constitution of the United States: 'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.' Leo has made the discovery that the papacy can be pushed upon this country in every possible way and by every possible means and that congress is prohibited from ever legislating in any way to stop it" (The Image to the Beast, A Sermon by A. T. Jones .):

Pope Benedict, President Obama and religious freedom

"We can't force Inspiration to speak to issues which happen to be emotionally dear to us. What men and women consider to be a 'great issue' is not necessarily considered so by God. The Lord says, 'My thoughts are not your thoughts' (Isaiah 55:8). God is the One to set the church's moral agenda, not us." (Per SDA Pastor Kevin D. Paulson; cf. SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTS AND THE ABORTION QUESTION: WHERE SHOULD WE STAND?)

Let's clear the air on the central reason for Rome's anti-abortion program:-

The Truth About the Papacy's War Against Abortion and Family Planning - A Revealing and Heavily Documented History:

WHY THE POPE CAN'T CHANGE THE CHURCH'S POSITION ON BIRTH CONTROL: IMPLICATIONS FOR AMERICANS. (The author thinks that Rome is self-destructing; Bible prophecy predicts the opposite - until Almighty God intervenes.)

Framing the Debate:

Pro-Life vs. Pro-Choice  ("What politicians on both sides of the debate generally fail to acknowledge is the religious nature of the conflict.")

Rome's broad-based attack on Family Planning:

Komen pulls funds from Planned Parenthood for breast screening

Komen’s Planned Parenthood decision all about politics  (more appropriately religio-politics.)

The Destruction of Texas Health Care

Rome's Antagonism Against Family Planning:

Planned Parenthood at a Glance ("Planned Parenthood health centers focus on prevention: 76 percent of our clients receive services to prevent unintended pregnancy. . . Three percent of all Planned Parenthood health services are abortion services.")

A defeat for Rome this time:

Planned Parenthood gets image boost on Komen win

Pro-Life vs. Pro-Choice

Excerpt from Pro-Life vs. Pro-Choice (About.com)

Point of Conflict

The pro-life and pro-choice movements primarily come into conflict on the issue of abortion. The pro-life movement argues that even non-viable, undeveloped human life is sacred and must be protected by the government. Abortion, according to this model, must not be legal, nor should it be widely practiced on an illegal basis.

The pro-choice movement argues that in cases where human personhood cannot be proven, e.g. in pregnancies prior to the point of viability, the government does not have the right to impede a woman's right to decide whether or not to continue a pregnancy.

Religion and the Sanctity of Life

What politicians on both sides of the debate generally fail to acknowledge is the religious nature of the conflict.

If one believes in an immortal soul that is implanted at the moment of conception, and if personhood is determined by the presence of that immortal soul, then there is little difference, in effect, between terminating a week-old pregnancy or killing a living, breathing person. Rational members of the pro-life movement do acknowledge that there is a difference in intent--abortion would be, at worst, involuntary manslaughter rather than murder--but the consequences, i.e. the death of a human person, are regarded by pro-lifers in much the same way.

Religious Pluralism and the Obligation of a Secular Government

The trouble is that the United States government cannot acknowledge the existence of an immortal soul implanted at conception without taking on a specific, theological definition of personhood.

Some theological traditions teach that the soul is implanted at quickening--when the fetus begins to move--and not at conception. Other theological traditions teach that the soul is implanted at birth. Some traditions teach that the soul is implanted well after birth. And still other theological traditions teach that there is no immortal soul at all.

Can Science Tell Us Anything?

There is no scientific basis for the existence of a soul, but there is no scientific basis for the existence of subjectivity, either, which makes it difficult to ascertain concepts such as "sanctity." Physics alone can't tell us whether a human life is worth more or less than a rock. We value each other for social, emotional reasons; science does not tell us to do it.

But to the extent that we do have anything approaching a scientific definition of personhood, it would most likely rest in our understanding of the brain. That being the case, it's worth noting that neocortical development, which scientists believe makes emotion and cognition possible, does not begin until the late second or early third trimester of pregnancy.

Two Other Standards of Personhood

Some pro-life advocates argue that it is the presence of life alone, or of unique DNA, that defines personhood.

The problem with the life-alone argument is that many things that we do not consider living persons meet that criteria. Our tonsils and appendices are certainly both human and alive, but we do not consider their removal as constituting anything close to the killing of a person.

The unique DNA argument is more compelling, but also poses problems. Sperm and egg cells, for example, contain the genetic material that will later form the zygote. The question of whether certain forms of gene therapy also creates new persons would also be raised by this definition of personhood.

The Burden of Proof

Before the government can prove that a homicide has taken place, it must first produce evidence--a person's body, or sufficient body tissue as to constitute a body for legal purposes. It would not do for homicide prosecutions to proceed based solely on a philosophical or religious conviction that a murder has taken place.

Ronald Reagan famously said in the 1980s that if the government is to err, it must err on the side of protecting life. In practice, to err on the side of life in criminal prosecutions is to convict without adequate evidence. Our system of jurisprudence is not consistent with this goal.