Abortion Fiction: Part 2 – The Pro-Life Bible and Early Church

In this episode we continue our response to John Irving’s article for the New York Times that attempts to bash pro-life advocates over the head with a history lesson. Irving claims that colonial America was actually friendly to abortion practices.

Before we examine the colonial period we look at Scriptures against abortion. Then, we observe a consensus among Christians of the first five centuries that abortion at any stage of pregnancy is wrong–even if the science of the day could not tell when life begins in the womb!

Articles Cited:

“The Long, Cruel History of the Anti-Abortion Crusade”https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/23/opinion/anti-abortion-history.html


Didache, http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/didache-lake.html

Epistle of Barnabas, http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/barnabas-lightfoot.html

Letter to Diognetus, http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/diognetus-lightfoot.html

Athenagorus of Athens, “The Christians Condemn And Detest All Cruelty” from A Plea for the Christians


Tertullian, “Apology” (chapter 9), http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/tertullian01.html

“On the Soul” (chapter 27), http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0310.htm

“On the Soul” (chapter 25), http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/050109.htm

Hippolytus of Rome, Refutation of All Heresies (book 9, chapter 7), http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/050109.htm

Basil of Caesarea, Letter 188 (chapter 2), http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/3202188.htm

Gregory of Nyssa, “On the Soul and the Resurrection,” http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/2915.htm

John Chrysostom, Homily 24 on Romans, http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/210224.htm

Augustine of Hippo, “On Marriage and Concupiscence” (book 1, chapter 17), http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/15071.htm

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