Deeper Waters Podcast 1/20/2018: Scott Henderson

What’s coming up? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Usually we will all visit a government office sometime and get asked if we want to be an organ donor. For most of us, it seems like a simple decision. When I’m dead, what do I need my organs for? They might as well go to someone else who can use them. That’s not a bad way to think, but while we can support organ donation, could we be inconsistent with how we do it at times?

If we are pro-life does that mean that we only value the life in the womb, or does it mean we value life outside the womb? Should any life be used for some utilitarian purpose? Could it be that perhaps sometimes people could say the line of “I’m not dead yet!” and mean it? Maybe they’re not capable, but maybe they would want to. Could some people be allowed to die early and without a clear criterion of death just for the sake of their organs?

It might seem like a strange question to ask, but questions are worth exploring. To discuss this question, I have decided to bring on someone who did his dissertation on the topic of organ donation. While he does support organ donation, he does have some concerns about the methods that we use to get the organs and maybe by our practices, we are not being consistently pro-life. His name is Scott Henderson.

So who is he?

Apologetics Program Coordinator, Associate Professor of Philosophy and Apologetics, Luther Rice College & Seminar

B.A., Florida Bible College; M.A.A., Southern Evangelical Seminary; M.A., Franciscan University of Steubenville; Ph.D., Duquesne University

Scott Henderson joined the Luther Rice faculty in the fall of 2008. He teaches courses in apologetics, philosophy and ethics. Henderson has spoken on numerous topics in apologetics and bioethics at various venues and was a contributor to Norman Geisler’s Baker’s Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics and Josh McDowell’s The New Evidence that Demands a Verdict. Moreover, Henderson has served in hospitals in Ohio and Pennsylvania as an in-service lecturer and policy writer and was an adviser and research assistant for the start of Franciscan University’s Institute of Bioethics in Steubenville, OH. He has also lectured at LCC International University in Klaipeda, Lithuania and at the Ewangelikalna Wyzsza Szkola Teologiczna in Wroclaw, Poland.

Henderson holds degrees in Biblical Education, Apologetics, Philosophy, and Bioethics as well as professional memberships with the Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity and the Evangelical Philosophical Society, each at which he has presented conference papers. His research interests include issues in apologetics, ethical issues with the end-of-life, defining death, and organ transplantation.  He, his wife Kathy, and their four children currently reside in Cumming, GA.

Organ donation is something rarely talked about in pro-life circles and I hope you’ll be listening to this show. We will be discussing how it is that organ donation relates to pro-life and the criterion of death. I also hope you’ll go on iTunes and leave a positive review of the Deeper Waters Podcast. It’s always a joy to see!

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Deeper Waters Podcast 1/13/2018: Dr. George Delgado

What’s coming up? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Choice is awesome! Right? We’ve all been granted supposedly the freedom of choice. We have abortionists marching down the street talking about a woman’s right to choose. Now we have come so far that there is even an abortion pill. Who needs to go to a Planned Parenthood? Just be at home and pop the pill and boom, problem solved.

But what if you have regrets?

For instance, if you talk to people who have survived a suicide attempt, many of them have regretted the move immediately after they made the attempt. By then, it’s too late and measures must be taken to save them. What if you take the pill and down it and then think, “Oh my. What have I done?” Can there be anything done to help you?

Fortunately, Dr. George Delgado has a technique to reverse the effects of the abortion pill for those in need. That way, a child can be saved. Naturally, we know the pro-choice crowd has been thrilled with this because choice is such a wonderful thing and…

Wait.

You say they’re not?

That’s interesting.

Anyway, Dr. Delgado will be talking about his work and his organization this Saturday with me. We will have a one-hour podcast where we will discuss what we can do to further stop abortion. Of course, for that, we need to know more about who Dr. Delgado is. So who is he?

                                                                                   

According to his bio:

Dr. George Delgado is the medical director of APR and Culture of Life Services (COLFS) in San Diego County. He received his medical degree from the University of California, Davis and completed his residency at Santa Monica Hospital/UCLA. He is board certified in family medicine, hospice and palliative medicine, health care ethics, NaProTECHNOLOGY, and the Creighton Model for Natural Family Planning (NFP). He has been practicing family medicine since 1988.

Be warned since we’re talking about the abortion pill and such that this could contain some graphic information so if you have children around, you might want to hold off on this podcast until later.

We’ll be talking about what the pill is and what it does. Then we’ll be talking about Delgado’s plan to reverse the effects of the pill. What does it do and how does it work and are there any side-effects? Are we seeing healthy babies that survive the pill as a result of what Dr. Delgado is doing? What can be done to further help this project and why is it that the people on the left are upset about this? Are they not the people who are always saying that they support a woman’s right to choose? Why be upset if a woman decides to choose to reverse the effects of the abortion pill?

I hope you’ll be watching for the next episode of the Deeper Waters Podcast and please considering going on iTunes and leaving a positive review of the show. I really delight in seeing what you think of the program. Hope you enjoy it!

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Deeper Waters Podcast 1/6/2018: Clinton Wilcox

What’s coming up? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

First off, for those wondering where the show has been, we had to reschedule our interview with Rosaria Butterfield again because of an illness on her part. As for Michael Heiser, he had power outages which I’m guessing were due to the snow. Again, we are rescheduling.

Now to get back to what’s coming up. January is a month I dedicate to the topic of abortion. For many of us, we tend to think abortion and Christianity don’t mix, and I agree. I don’t see how you can support abortion and be a Christian. Years ago at the National Conference on Christian Apologetics, Chuck Colson was a speaker and said that if anyone calls themselves a Christian and supports abortion, they need to check their faith at the door. At this, he got a standing ovation to which he was quite surprised seeing as he seems to usually get the opposite.

But sometimes you do meet that person who says they are a follower of Jesus and supports abortion.

Kira Shlesinger is the author of “Pro-Choice and Christian.” My wife found the book while she was surfing on Facebook one day. I immediately got in touch with Clinton Wilcox to see if he would like to read it. He promptly ordered it and wrote a review of it. We then discussed having him come on the show again to talk about it. In the interest of fairness, let it be known that I reached out to Shlesinger’s church to see if she’d be willing to come on and talk about her position with Clinton. I never received a reply.

Therefore, my guest this Saturday will be just Clinton Wilcox. I should also let it be known that I have not got to read the book yet myself. Our resources are limited and due to it being a new book, I could not order it at the library via interlibrary loan.

But let’s get to Clinton Wilcox. Who is he?

According to his bio:

Clinton Wilcox is a staff apologist with Life Training Institute and a certified speaker and mentor with Justice for All. Clinton specializes in training pro-life people to make the pro-life case more effectively and persuasively. Clinton is also a prolific writer. He has had two articles published with Christian Research Journal, with one forrthcoming, as well as having a forthcoming article published in Bioethics, one of the top five leading bioethics journals in the world, with co-authors Daniel Rodger and Bruce Blackshaw.

Can one be a Christian and support abortion? We often know how to respond to those outside the church who support abortion, but how do you respond to those inside? If one claims to follow Christ, is there anything different that can be said that would not normally be said?

This will be an interesting kick-off to our month on abortion and I hope that you will be a part of it. Again, I apologize for all the problems we’ve had with new shows. I hope nothing happens this time. Please consider going on iTunes also and leaving a positive review of the Deeper Waters Podcast.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Book Plunge: Death and Donation

What do I think of Scott Henderson’s book published by Pickwick Publishing? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

For most of us, it’s a no-brainer. You go to get a license or register to vote or something like that and you’re asked if you want to be an organ donor. Why not? After all, once you die, you’re not really going to need them. Might as well help someone out here? Scott Henderson certainly agrees with that, but at the same time, has a caution about the matter.

This caution is relevant to those of us who are Christians because we want to be consistently pro-life. We would not want an innocent baby put to death to harvest its organs. What about someone who is possibly dying? Could it be that death is being pronounced too early just so we can get to the organs?

It’s quite interesting that once when I was reading this, I took my wife to see the sleep doctor about some tests to see if she has sleep apnea. The doctor saw the image and asked about what I was reading. I told her and gave her some of the main thesis and she immediately replied that brain death is the time that someone is said to be definitively dead.

The problem for that is that’s the very claim that Henderson goes on to question. Is brain death a settled matter? Could this be a question that needs a little bit more looking into?

Henderson looks at the history of organ transplants, focusing mainly on 1968. From there, he goes on to present what happened with the history and problems, such as how sometimes when organs have been in the process of being gathered, there is actually some resistance on the part of some patients. In this section, he mainly relies on medical scholarship.

People like myself will be much more interested in questions of dualism that he raises. This is where we get into if a person has a soul or not and what constitutes being a person. Henderson has said that he thinks that the organ donation issue is one where we are not consistently pro-life and we know the artificial category of being a human but not being a person has been used as a weapon against the pro-life community.

Many people who are involved in pro-life apologetics will especially appreciate this section and I found it timely as I have been going through an advanced copy of Nancy Pearcey’s Love Thy Body on Kindle at the same time and she is making much of the problematic dualism we have, not arguing against the body/soul idea, but a radical disjunction between the two.

Henderson is not opposed to organ donation, as I know through personal conversation, but he is saying we want to make sure the person is truly dead first. Perhaps it is time to re-open this discussion. We want to make sure life is the best for all. Killing a patient early in one area can very easily lead to doing the same in other areas. There’s no need to risk it.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Deeper Waters Podcast 1/21/2017: Christopher Kaczor

What’s coming up Saturday? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

As I have been saying, in January I try to devote the podcast to abortion. This Saturday is no exception. I’ve had some friends from the Christian Apologetics Alliance come on to talk about abortion, but I decided I needed to get one guest from outside of there. I wanted someone who is first-rate and has thought deeply about the issue of abortion.

That someone has done extensive reading on the topic and is a recognized scholar and has appeared on several programs. He is a professor of Philosophy as well meaning a skill in learning how to think on the issues. He is also the author of the book The Ethics of Abortion and his name is Christopher Kaczor.

Who is he?

Kaczor

Dr. Christopher Kaczor (rhymes with razor) is Professor of Philosophy at Loyola Marymount University.  He is a Corresponding Member of the Pontifical Academy for Life of Vatican City and the James Madison Society of Princeton University. He graduated from the Honors Program of Boston College and earned a Ph.D. four years later from the University of Notre Dame. A Fulbright Scholar,  Dr. Kaczor is a former Federal Chancellor Fellow at the University of Cologne and William E. Simon Visiting Fellow in the James Madison Program at Princeton University.  His twelve books include The Gospel of HappinessThe Seven Big Myths about MarriageA Defense of DignityThe Seven Big Myths about the Catholic Church, The Ethics of Abortion, O Rare Ralph McInerny: Stories and Reflections on a Legendary Notre Dame Professor, Thomas Aquinas on the Cardinal Virtues; Life Issues-Medical Choices; Thomas Aquinas on Faith, Hope, and Love; The Edge of Life, and Proportionalism and the Natural Law Tradition. Dr. Kaczor’s views have been in The New York Times, The Washington PostThe Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, Huffington Post, National Review, NPR, BBC, EWTN, ABC, NBC, FOX, CBS, MSNBC, TEDx, and The Today Show.

We’ll be talking about the case for abortion and noting that the case is not really a religious issue. There are Christians (I don’t know how) who say they are for abortion and there are atheists who are against it. Therefore, we need to make this an issue not dependent on any religious tradition but just what the facts are.

We’ll look at numerous arguments given for abortion and how to reason about the subject. One that I particularly want to deal with is the question of supposed you’re in a lab and there is a dish with ten embryos and there is one fully grown janitor there and there’s a fire. Are you going to get the janitor our or the embryos? We’ll also be discussing perhaps if artificial wombs could ever end the debate, or would it just create more difficulties?

I hope you’ll be joining me this Saturday for the latest episode and remember to please like and share the Deeper Waters Podcast. If you haven’t left a review, please go and leave one on ITunes. I love to see them!

In Christ,
Nick Peters

 

 

Is Abortion A Religious Issue?

Is abortion an issue that is religious? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Like a lot of you, last night I watched the Vice-Presidential debate. As we got to the end, I wished I could have jumped in and batted for Pence, especially when abortion came up. I certainly would have loved to have seen a Francis Beckwith or Scott Klusendorf up on the stage. I think Pence did great there, but he could have gone in for the jugular a number of times.

After the debate, a mutual friend of Allie and myself was surprised to see me say on Facebook that the issue should not stay with religion but should go with metaphysics and science. She was surprised because Allie and I are so religious. This is a good issue to talk about. Does my bringing up another area show that I am not religious? Am I wrong to move to a different territory?

Keep in mind that in all of this, I plan to also cite the debate from last night. The transcript I am going with is here.

So let’s start. Now there is no one specific Bible verse on abortion to be sure, but there are passages that indicate that one should not take innocent human life. It’s hard to get more innocent than a child in the womb. This is why the early church also took the response they did to abortion. They sought to end it and in fact were pro-life everywhere else. They rescued baby girls that had been abandoned that would either be eaten by animals or taken by men and raised in the sex industry of the past.

Also, I want to say that the Bible does not present statements of morality as if they were new. There is no reason to think that Moses got the Ten Commandments and everyone said “Whoa! We gotta stop this murder thing!” Murder was known to be wrong by Cain when he murdered his brother. Moses himself hid after killing an Egyptian. Judah knew about adultery as well having done it with his daughter-in-law and Joseph fled from Potiphar’s wife because of his moral stance on adultery.

The same happens with history. Why does the Bible say that Jesus was crucified. It says it not so it did happen, but because it happened. The writing of the crucifixion is not the cause of the crucifixion. The happening of the crucifixion is the cause of the writing. They wrote it down because it happened. The same with the resurrection I’d say as well. That’s a historical fact.

Now is there anything that history can’t ascertain about this? Yes. History cannot tell you that Jesus died so that man could be right with God and God’s Kingdom could come on Earth. It can tell you that that’s why Jesus and others believed He died, but the answer to the question is ultimately more theology than history. Of course, if Jesus didn’t die and rise, then all the theology won’t change that.

So do we have extra information with abortion? We do. We have the science of what goes on in the womb when the sperm and the egg unite. We can map out the whole process and for those wanting that, there are plenty of good books pro and con on abortion that can tell you that. We also have metaphysical arguments for what life is and why it’s good and sacred. These help build up the case against abortion.

It’s also important to point out that if your position is said to be religious, then that often gives it an automatic bias in the eyes of people as something they don’t need to take seriously. If science shows life begins at conception, that has implications for religion, but the position itself is not religious. It’s just a matter of fact.

Often when an idea is given and the person is said to be religious, the arguments for their position is discounted. However, arguments don’t have a religion. People do. Arguments stand or fall with the data and not the biases of the person that is held. For more on this, I recommend listening to my interview with Francis Beckwith on his book Taking Rites Seriously.

Now let’s look at some of what was said last night. Let’s start with the question itself. The moderator Elaine Quijano said the following.

All right. I’d like to turn to our next segment now. And in this, I’d like to focus on social issues. You have both been open about the role that faith has played in your lives. Can you discuss in detail a time when you struggled to balance your personal faith and a public policy position? Senator Kaine?

Of course, we have the opposition set in play right off. The idea is that faith must not be allowed in the public square at all. Unfortunately, that means that those who fear a theocracy (And if anyone can find these Christians pushing a theocracy, please tell them to stop. I’ve been told about this belief many times, but I know of very few Christians who have such plans.) in turn want to create a system where secularism is the religion of the state and no other claimants are allowed.

Now let’s start to look at Kaine’s answer.

Yeah, that’s an easy one for me, Elaine. It’s an easy one. I’m really fortunate. I grew up in a wonderful household with great Irish Catholic parents. My mom and dad are sitting right here. I was educated by Jesuits at Rockhurst High School in Kansas City. My 40th reunion is in 10 days.

And I worked with Jesuit missionaries in Honduras, now nearly 35 years ago, and they were the heroes of my life. I try to practice my religion in a very devout way and follow the teachings of my church in my own personal life. But I don’t believe in this nation, a First Amendment nation, where we don’t raise any religion over the other, and we allow people to worship as they please, that the doctrines of any one religion should be mandated for everyone.

The question is if there is any religious doctrine being pressed? Is Kaine thinking that he is advocating that people be required to uphold the perpetual virginity of Mary? Is it being debated in his state Senate what the nature of the Eucharist is? If so, then why think the doctrines of a religion are being mandated? This is just an implicit assumption that a doctrine a religion holds cannot be based on any independent facts that only the people of that religion hold.

For me, the hardest struggle in my faith life was the Catholic Church is against the death penalty and so am I. But I was governor of a state, and the state law said that there was a death penalty for crimes if the jury determined them to be heinous. And so I had to grapple with that.

When I was running for governor, I was attacked pretty strongly because of my position on the death penalty. But I looked the voters of Virginia in the eye and said, look, this is my religion. I’m not going to change my religious practice to get one vote, but I know how to take an oath and uphold the law. And if you elect me, I will uphold the law.

And I was elected, and I did. It was very, very difficult to allow executions to go forward, but in circumstances where I didn’t feel like there was a case for clemency, I told Virginia voters I would uphold the law, and I did.

That was a real struggle. But I think it is really, really important that those of us who have deep faith lives don’t feel that we could just substitute our own views for everybody else in society, regardless of their views.

What I would want to know at this point is why Kaine is against the death penalty. Now if he says it could put an innocent life to death, then I have my own questions. (One large one is why is it that it is wrong for us to determine that a criminal should die, but it’s our moral right to determine that a baby in the womb should die whose only crime is existing?) Does Kaine hold his position just because his religion says so, or does he believe his religion is telling the truth about reality. If it isn’t, why should anyone, including him, believe it? If it is, why should he be willing to go against it at all? Does he fear the judgment of men more than God?

Now Pence was given the same question.

Well, it’s a wonderful question. And my Christian faith is at the very heart of who I am. I was also raised in a wonderful family of faith. It was a church on Sunday morning and grace before dinner.

But my Christian faith became real for me when I made a personal decision for Christ when I was a freshman in college. And I’ve tried to live that out however imperfectly every day of my life since. And with my wife at my side, we’ve followed a calling into public service, where we’ve — we’ve tried to — we’ve tried to keep faith with the values that we cherish.

And with regard to when I struggle, I appreciate, and — and — and — I have a great deal of respect for Senator Kaine’s sincere faith. I truly do.

But for me, I would tell you that for me the sanctity of life proceeds out of the belief that — that ancient principle that — where God says before you were formed in the womb, I knew you, and so for my first time in public life, I sought to stand with great compassion for the sanctity of life.

I think Pence did good here, but I think he could have gone better. For us, the Bible is authoritative, but if he’s talking to Kaine about the law of the land, he will want to base that on what everyone can more easily determine. Kaine has already said he won’t let his faith dictate the law, so why not point elsewhere? Instead of the Bible, he could say “I am firmly persuaded by all the evidence we have today that life begins at conception. That is also in line with my Christian principles on the sanctity of life. Senator Kaine. When do you think life begins?”

That would have answered the question and then put Kaine on the defensive. By his own personal views, he thinks life begins at conception. By his political views, he thinks we should allow people the freedom to end that life. For now, let’s go back to Pence.

The state of Indiana has also sought to make sure that we expand alternatives in health care counseling for women, non-abortion alternatives. I’m also very pleased at the fact we’re well on our way in Indiana to becoming the most pro-adoption state in America. I think if you’re going to be pro-life, you should — you should be pro- adoption.

This is a home run for Pence. He not only provided the side that says “no abortion.” He also strongly advocated what the alternative looks like. If his state is on the way to becoming the most pro-adoption state, then this only backs his case all the more and it shows that he can hold a position of faith and live it consistently. Kaine has shown he cannot do that already.

But what I can’t understand is with Hillary Clinton and now Senator Kaine at her side is to support a practice like partial-birth abortion. I mean, to hold to the view — and I know Senator Kaine, you hold pro-life views personally — but the very idea that a child that is almost born into the world could still have their life taken from them is just anathema to me.

Another excellent reply. Pence gave a statement that really should have put Kaine on the defensive. It would have been nice to have seen him give some sort of reply to this one.

And I cannot — I can’t conscience about — about a party that supports that. Or that — I know you’ve historically opposed taxpayer funding of abortion. But Hillary Clinton wants to — wants to repeal the longstanding provision in the law where we said we wouldn’t use taxpayer dollars to fund abortion.

So for me, my faith informs my life. I try and spend a little time on my knees every day. But it all for me begins with cherishing the dignity, the worth, the value of every human life.

In fact, this is one of my biggest problems with the Democratic party. They are consistently pro-abortion. It’s amazing that this is one of the sacred cows of the party. Pence has the moral high ground here. What does Kaine say?

Elaine, this is a fundamental question, a fundamental question. Hillary and I are both people out of religious backgrounds, from Methodist church experience, which was really formative for her as a public servant.

But we really feel like you should live fully and with enthusiasm the commands of your faith. But it is not the role of the public servant to mandate that for everybody else.

Unfortuantely, as public servants, they will mandate something for everyone. Someone’s worldview will be pushed. Why not a true one? If it is true that life does not begin at conception and abortion doesn’t put to death an innocent human life, then what’s the big deal? If it is true, then it is a huge deal.

So let’s talk about abortion and choice. Let’s talk about them. We support Roe v. Wade. We support the constitutional right of American women to consult their own conscience, their own supportive partner, their own minister, but then make their own decision about pregnancy. That’s something we trust American women to do that.

And we don’t think that women should be punished, as Donald Trump said they should, for making the decision to have an abortion.

Of course, we can’t declare a new law and then make past occurrences of it a crime. That would be ridiculous, but I would want to ask this.

Senator Kaine. Do we punish a woman who kills intentionally her newborn baby?

How about her toddler?

How about her child who’s pre-teen?

How about her teenager?

If we do in all of those cases, what makes the child in the womb so different? If he says “That’s not a human life” then we ask if that can be established. If he says it is a human life but his faith can’t dictate, then we point out that it’s also a position in various religions that killing children is wrong and yet you’re willing to punish mothers who do that for children outside of the womb. Why the difference here?

Governor Pence wants to repeal Roe v. Wade. He said he wants to put it on the ash heap of history. And we have some young people in the audience who weren’t even born when Roe was decided. This is pretty important. Before Roe v. Wade, states could pass criminal laws to do just that, to punish women if they made the choice to terminate a pregnancy.

But this isn’t just a Christian position. An atheist can hold this position. Consider for instance Robert Price. He’s a mythicist, but he’s someone I entirely agree with on this end.

As for abortion, it is a crime against humanity. How can anyone claim the name “humanist” and be pro-abortion? Beats me. I’d love to see Roe v. Wade repealed. “Evidence-based policy” is the last thing Progressives really want.

Kaine treats this as if it’s automatically something we wouldn’t want. Why not make it more that something we automatically wouldn’t want is for women to terminate pregnancies and kill innocent children? And yes, I happen to think that if a woman kills a child, she should be punished for that.

I think you should live your moral values. But the last thing, the very last thing that government should do is have laws that would punish women who make reproductive choices. And that is the fundamental difference between a Clinton-Kaine ticket and a Trump- Pence ticket that wants to punish women who make that choice.

Once again, it comes down to what is the choice being made? If the choice is to kill an innocent child, then the question would be why should we oppose that? Are there cases where Kaine wants the killing of children to be legal? After this, we have a back and forth. It starts with Pence.

But here’s — there is a choice, and it is a choice on life. I couldn’t be more proud to be standing with Donald Trump, who’s standing for the right to life. It’s a principle that — Senator Kaine — and I’m very gentle about this, because I really do respect you — it’s a principle that you embrace.

And I have appreciated the fact that you’ve supported the Hyde amendment, which bans the use of taxpayer funding for abortion, in the past, but that’s not Hillary Clinton’s view. People need to understand, we can come together as a nation. We can create a culture of life. More and more young people today are embracing life because we know we are — we’re better for it. We can — like Mother Teresa said at that famous national prayer breakfast…

KAINE: This is important —

PENCE: … bring the — let’s welcome the children into our world. There are so many families around the country who can’t have children. We could improve adoption…

KAINE: But, Governor…

PENCE: … so that families that can’t have children can adopt more readily those children from crisis pregnancies.

It’s important to point out that Kaine had no trouble quoting Matthew to attack Trump, not realizing that the Bible apparently has something to say about killing innocent life. One of my own Catholic friends said it would have been great to have seen the Pope come on the stage and immediately excommunicate Kaine. Kaine seems quite selective when he wants to use the Bible.

But to get to what Pence has said, he’s made a great speech here. His viewpoint is one that is welcoming of children and doesn’t believe that they should be punished for existing. He is interested in creating a culture of life. This is quite important. Kaine then replies.

Governor, why don’t you trust women to make this choice for themselves? We can encourage people to support life. Of course we can. But why don’t you trust women? Why doesn’t Donald Trump trust women to make this choice for themselves?

That’s what we ought to be doing in public life. Living our lives of faith or motivation with enthusiasm and excitement, convincing other, dialoguing with each other about important moral issues of the day…

Okay. Let’s go this way.

Senator Kaine. Do you trust women to make the decision to kill their infants on their own?

Their toddlers?

Their pre-teens?

Their teenagers?

At what point do you think a woman should be trusted with the choice to kill her children or have that choice removed? Why is Kaine personally against the death penalty? Does he think that people shouldn’t be trusted with when to kill criminals? Why is he personally pro-life? Does he think it kills an innocent human being? If so, then he is saying he personally thinks abortion kills an innocent human being, but he thinks women should have the freedom to choose that on their own.

PENCE: Because there are…

KAINE: … but on fundamental issues of morality, we should let women make their own decisions.

Seriously? Would you do this anywhere else? All laws deal with moral issues. (Perhaps we should ask Kaine if he doesn’t think Trump should make the decision on when he should pay taxes or release his tax returns.) Should we let women make the decision to kill children outside of the womb, or their husbands, or that annoying dog of the neighbor? Seriously?

PENCE: Because there is — a society can be judged by how it deals with its most vulnerable, the aged, the infirm, the disabled, and the unborn. I believe it with all my heart. And I couldn’t be more proud to be standing with a pro-life candidate in Donald Trump.

Whether you stand with Trump or not or think he’s pro-life or not, the first part of this is excellent. Pence is absolutely right. Not only can a society be judged that way, they should be. So should individuals. We could all consider how we’re treating those who are the most vulnerable.

The issue of life does have religious implications, but it itself is not dependent on any one particular religion. It can be grounded in traditional Natural Law thinking. I don’t fault Pence for not being a trained pro-life apologist, but I would have loved to have seen a Beckwith or Klusendorf on stage dealing with Kaine last night.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

 

How pro-choice is NARAL?

Anybody want some Doritos? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

So last night my wife was wanting to watch this program that frankly did not make any sense to me. It involved a bunch of grown men just running into each other constantly, but in the middle, it had these commercials and some were quite funny. I couldn’t understand why these commercials were being interrupted by this strange performance. I was even more puzzled when I heard it had to do with some falconry event about a Superb Owl and that Herodotus had written about it long ago.

However, one commercial that stood out to me was one that was done by Doritos. Rather than tell you about it, I think I should just show you.

Cute commercial. Right? If you were anything like me, you just laughed at it. One of my friends had texted me and was saying that NARAL was upset about it. Something about humanizing fetuses. At the time, I was sure he was joking about that. (In fact, as I look over their Twitter feed, it looks like if they are choosing one thing, it is they are choosing to not have a sense of humor.)

What did they say about this?

– that ad using tactic of humanizing fetuses & sexist tropes of dads as clueless & moms as uptight.

I wish I was making it up. I’m not. NARAL is complaining about humanizing fetuses apparently. Well there’s a bit of wisdom you need to remember about this.

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You see, most of us watched it and enjoyed it. NARAL has a habit of wanting to psychoanalyze anything and look for something that can offend them. In fact, there was even a point last night where a video was made of Super Bowl babies. Who were these? They were ones who had their parents watching the game and then one thing led to another and that’s how they were born. NARAL’s reply was that sports fans should use protection.

Because, like, you know, getting pregnant is the most horrible thing ever.

When I saw that commercial, I really thought a lot of those people looked pretty happy. They were glad to be alive. They were celebrating that their parents chose life. (And last I checked, I thought the pro-choice side was supposed to be pro-choice. Why are they so upset when some people actually make the choice that they’d like to have children?)

Now for my part, I have done a number of podcasts where I have interviewed people on the topic of abortion to answer the challenge of the pro-choice side. I will simply put those here.

Megan Almon.

Gretchen Coburn.

Clinton Wilcox.

Freda Bush.

Jay Watts.

Peter D. Williams.

DeeDee Warren.

Dave Sterrett.

Lori Peters.

Daniel Rodgers.

As for me and my house, I think we’ll celebrate the life that we have and maybe do so by making the choice to go out and buy some Dorito’s because I like seeing ads like that, especially if they get the people at NARAL so riled up that they end up showing their true colors.

Happy Superb Owl Sunday NARAL.

In Christ,

Nick Peters

Deeper Waters Podcast 1/31/2015: Dave Sterrett.

What’s coming up on the Deeper Waters Podcast? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

In reality, I have actually already recorded this show. Normally, I do it on Saturday afternoons, but I had to make an exception this week. A friend of the family is getting married and while I am not officiating, I am taking a part in some matters with getting everything formalized as an ordained minister, so since that required my attention, I decided to go ahead and record the show in advance. (And it can sometimes take awhile because I am really inept with the technology and have to have a good friend help me out with that.)

Yesterday, I wrote about Dave Sterrett’s book. Really, I had read this book over Christmas, but there were other things that got my attention and I still even have a lot of Christ-myth nonsense to write about, and that’s going to be even harder because when you read one of those books, it is so filled with error that you just have to spend so much time dealing with all the constant mistakes in there.

Dave’s book is a short one you can read quickly and is packed with information. When I interviewed him, one thing we heard about briefly was the need to not be a coward. Dave talked about a time in the past where he backed down from his pro-life convictions and sadly, he did this at the recommendation of a pastor who just did not want to talk about the issue. (And shame on a pastor like that. These are human lives we’re talking about.) Now, he is silent no more.

We talked about the Aristotelian doctrine of substance and what role it plays in the debate. What does it really mean to be a human and could we in our modern age really learn something from those strange ideas of metaphysics that were in the past? We discussed that actually, philosophy is unavoidable. Everyone is going to do philosophy somehow. The question is, are we going to do it well or not. I have sadly found that those with a scientism mindset who want to speak against philosophy and put science on the top inevitably end up doing bad philosophy and often very little science.

We also spoke about why it is that our culture pays so much attention to science on every other issue, but when it comes to the science of humanity, we ignore it. It is quite odd that it is precisely at that point that we jump back to philosophy and metaphysics and try to use those to deny the humanity of what is in the womb, but it is the contention of Dave Sterrett that this will not work.

We’re working on getting these shows up soon and I hope you’ll be watching for them. The interview with Dave was only able to be an hour long, but I think it will be one that is worth your listening to. So please be watching your ITunes feed and thank you for supporting the Deeper Waters Podcast.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Book Plunge: Aborting Aristotle

Dave Sterrett has a new book coming out from St. Augustine Press called Aborting Aristotle and do you want to know my thoughts of it? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Aborting Aristotle

Abortion is always a controversial issue in this country and one aspect of it I find interesting is that the science has often been neglected. We know much more about the science of life than the ancients did back then. Oh they knew the basics fully well. They knew exactly what it took to make a baby, but what exactly was going on in the whole process and when it was that life began was not a question they could answer definitively. For this, we can be grateful to modern science showing us that life does begin at conception.

What the ancients did have an advantage in is metaphysics. The ancients knew less than we do today, but in all honesty, they thought more. Did that mean they were right about everything? Of course not. That would be ridiculous. But it meant they looked at the world around them and looked a lot deeper than just the surface level. Unfortunately, our scientific age has often become so fascinated with the science that we haven’t looked past it to deeper truths.

One such thinker that looked deep in the past was Aristotle and he was a tremendous influence on our civilization and still is. I’d agree with thinkers like Feser that where we went off the bend was when we started moving away from Aristotle. To go to Aristotle also does not mean we jettison modern science. We can still have the metaphysics of Aristotle and still keep modern science, and that metaphysics could help with the abortion debate.

In fact, that’s what Dave Sterrett argues. He argues that our aborting of the thought of Aristotle is causing us to not think properly on the abortion debate and we have to return to metaphysics. Pro-Life organizations have realized this as well, hence a question that you’d get from someone like Greg Koukl or Scott Klusendorf. That would be the question of “What is it?” That is the first question to ask in the abortion debate. What is it we are aborting?

Sterrett argues that a return to the metaphysics of Aristotle can answer that question and throughout the book, there is no doubt that he has done his homework as he profusely quotes the other side throughout. Sterrett will guide you through Aristotelian thought on this issue and help you see how it works out and also expose the fallacies that go on the other side where metaphysics is often ignored. (Indeed, too many in our society think that anything that has to do with metaphysics is automatically bunk.)

Also, this book is fairly short. I read it over Christmas break visiting my in-laws. If you want to get a good book on metaphysical issues that will help you out in the abortion debate, then Sterrett’s book is an excellent one to get, and hopefully you will be one to help us stop the abortion of Aristotle in today’s society. Who knows how much could be improved if the metaphysics of Aristotle were allowed to be reborn today?

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Deeper Waters Podcast 1/3/2015: Jay Watts

What’s coming up on this Saturday’s episode of the Deeper Waters Podcast? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out!

Before getting to this week’s show, I want to make a brief announcement to let fans of Deeper Waters know that we have new material available on Amazon. First is a book I co-wrote with an atheist where we dialogued on the problem of natural evil. The second is a book I wrote on my own on the Apostles’ Creed. For this one, my thanks go to Robert Kolb as well for writing the foreword.

That being said, let’s talk about this Saturday where we will be kicking off our month long look at the topic of abortion. We’re starting it off by going with one of my friends from the Life Training Institute. That will be Jay Watts.

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According to his bio:

Jay Watts is a speaker and writer for LTI. He served as Development Coordinator at Cobb Pregnancy Services for 3 years, experiencing first-hand the powerful impact pregnancy centers have on their communities. He started contributing to the LTI Blog in 2007 and joined as full-time staff in 2010.Jay speaks to churches, youth groups, school assemblies, and other organizations throughout the United States on topics including The Case for Life and understanding the Christian worldview. He has trained groups at University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill, Harvard University, University of Illinois, Auckland University (New Zealand), and many other universities, participated in multiple apologetics conferences, and been interviewed on radio and television on the issue of the value of human life. Jay is also a contributing researcher to Summit Ministries’ Understanding the Times curriculum. He is an associate member of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Evangelical Philosophical Society.Jay is a native of Marietta, Georgia – a suburb of Atlanta – and resides there with his wife and three children.

More on Jay Watts can be found here.

I focus on abortion in January due to it being the month of Roe V. Wade. I’m not a specialist in the area, but I am thankful for those who are and that includes Jay Watts. Last week when I interviewed Bob Stewart of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and got Jay Watts to come since he’s been a speaker at the Defend The Faith conference (Which I’ll be at this year) he described Jay Watts as someone who has forgotten more about abortion than most of us will ever know.

I often refer to abortion as a silent holocaust whereby we are killing thousands of our children. It is heartbreaking to realize that we live in a world where this is not only seen as acceptable now but even defended. In the past, man practiced child sacrifice but at least we can say he sacrificed the children on the altar in the hopes of getting a good harvest. Today, we sacrifice our children on the altar of convenience in the name of the god of “progress.”

Be watching your ITunes feed then as we kick off our week of abortion with a bang. The Life Training Institute is one of the best places to go for pro-life information if not the best place. (And that is not my call to make) It is an honor to get one of their own on the show this month to speak about this important topic. Remember, we can all do something to help stop the silent holocaust of abortion.

In Christ,
Nick Peters