Should Christians Be in Favor of Stem Cell Research? -- By: Charles H. McGowen
RAR 11:1 (Winter 2002) p. 95
Should Christians Be in Favor of Stem Cell Research?
This is only one of the many pivotal bio-ethical issues that the church is destined to face in the next decade, and it behooves each of us to be well informed about the sides upon which the ensuing debates will line up.
In my thirty-one years as a confessing Christian, plus thirty-four previous years of merely attending church, I have yet to hear a single message that was solely devoted to a bio-ethical issue, and that includes the years surrounding the Roe v. Wade decision.
Sadly, these serious questions have seemingly been swept under the rug in the narthex, or worse yet were never even asked by church attendees who continue to appear more concerned about their golf handicaps and stock portfolios than issues pertaining to the sanctity of life.
Abortion on demand should have been a wake-up call, a reveille. Instead it seems to have become more comparable to the bugler’s evening taps and the church has responded by falling asleep.
In case you might have missed it, the bugler’s call to reveille has sounded once again in the form of stem cell research. It’s time to awaken the people of God! It’s time to form our ranks.
Before making a decision either favoring or opposing any
RAR 11:1 (Winter 2002) p. 96
vital issue, a Christian should become informed of (1) the facts regarding the subject and, (2) any biblical revelation pertinent to the topic. The purpose of this article is to bring to light some information relative to both.
What Is A Stem Cell?
The ultimate stem cell is that first one which appears following a process involving the penetration of an egg by a sperm—a process known as fertilization or conception.
There are stem cells present in all creatures, but our discussion in this article will of necessity be limited to those that are specifically human. That first stem cell contains forty-six chromosomes (twenty-three from the mother and twenty-three from the father), each of which contains a specific number of genes, which in turn are filled with countless molecules of DNA.
DNA is an information storehouse, possessing much more memory capacity than the world’s largest computer hard drive. It contains all of the information that the developing human will ever need for any of the physical, physiological, biochemical, intellectual, or reproductive functions that one could possibly imagine. DNA is located within genes, which in turn make up the content of our forty-six chromosomes (twenty-three pairs). One pair (the sex chromosomes) determines gender; XX and you are a ...
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