Examine and comment on the view that the principle of the sanctity of life should be considered of first importance in medical ethics with regard to the topic you have studied? (50) The sanctity of life principle is based on the belief that life is sacred from the moment of conception. In Psalm 139:13 it says “You created every part of me; you put me together in my mother’s womb.” This proves that God is the only one who gives life to us and only he should have the right to take it away from us as well. Because in Job 1:21 it says “The Lord gave, and now he has taken away” and in Exodus 20:13 it quotes “Do not commit murder!” This is also one of the commandments from the Decalogue, which was given to Moses by God. It shows that only God has the right to end life, and if we try to end life, whether as a foetus or a fully grown man, we are committing murder, and to a bigger extent, putting ourselves on a par with God, which is highly sinful. The sanctity of life principle can be viewed through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. God had sent many prophets before him, but the people (at the time and after) were stubborn and would not listen to the word of God. So God sent down his son, Jesus as a final offering unto the world so people would change and receive eternal life. There are many signs/verses in the bible (Old Testament) that indicate to Jesus’ arrival, such as in Jeremiah 1:4-5 “I chose you before I gave you life.” This could be indicating towards the birth of Jesus, as choosing him to be the saviour of mankind, before he was even born. When the time comes and Jesus is crucified on the cross, he cries out “Eloi, Eloi, Sebachthanii.” Translated it means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” He was in physical and mental anguish at being separated from his Father and from bearing the sins of the world. Right before he died, he said “It is finished!” This shows how much it pained Jesus and yet he did this all for us to reach eternal salvation. It also shows that Jesus can change us not only physically, but spiritually as well. He came down in the form of a man and taught us what we need to know, but he also supports and guides us through the power of the Holy Spirit. However, the sanctity of life principle does cause some limitations for people. This theory is based on saving lives and helping to preserve them, but some actions ignore this theory and create havoc for other people. For example abortion, suicide, euthanasia etc is seen is seen as wrong in a Christians point of view (save for a few exceptions). These are all methods which prohibit life and end it. In Corinthians 6:19-20 it says “Don’t you know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit.” This implies that we should keep our mind and body clean and not to abuse it, either by scarring it with tattoos or taking drugs which have the intended effect of shortening our lives, due to a little pain we may be in, for whatever reason. Ending life is not seen as an option and people should stay away from this option as far as possible, to avoid committing further sin. In this essay, I will explain the sanctity of life principle whilst viewing and evaluating Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) in medical ethics. PGD is the method of inserting a fertilised egg back into a woman’s womb. This is done by taking eggs from the woman, and sperm from the man, fertilising it in a tube/Petri dish then analysing them before inserting it back into the womb. It is a medical procedure devised to test early embryos for serious inherited genetic conditions such as: Cystic Fibrosis, Haemophilia, Downs Syndrome etc. Only embryos that are free from the condition are transferred to the woman’s womb, in the expectation that normal pregnancy will then develop. PGD involves selecting
embryos: selecting those that are not genetic carriers of a disease trait and discarding those that have the gene responsible for the disease. PGD was the first developed in 1990. PGD...
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