Babies go to heaven, so why is abortion sin?

Question
Since aborted babies go directly to heaven, why is abortion sin?
Answer
First of all, your question indicates you believe in heaven, so you must therefore believe there is a God. And since it is God’s heaven, let's briefly look at his perspective on human life and abortion.

Human life is important to God. It is the crown of his creation. Unlike the remainder of his creation (Gen. 1:1-25), God intimately formed Adam and breathed life into him (Gen. 2:6-7). While we don't know all the facts about the creation of humans, we do know that we are fearfully and wonderfully made by God himself (Psa. 139:14; cf. Gen. 1:26-27).

But your question does raise some other interesting ethical inquiries: Since God knew that Adam would sin, why didn't he just murder him and send him directly to heaven beforehand? Since God knew Cain would murder Abel, why didn't he just murder Cain first? The answer is because it would have been wrong! All murder is sin (Exod. 20:13).

Abortion is an act of shedding the innocent blood of a human (Prov. 6:16-17), and it is murder (cf. Lev. 18:21; 20:2-5; 2 Kings 24:2-4; Jer. 32:35). So-called “mercy” abortions are sin not only against the child but against God himself, and we must reject them as being absolutely unbiblical. (Please see "Is Abortion Murder?" below).

Second, “mercy” murders are still murders. What’s more, they are premeditated murders. Scripture differentiates these from accidental deaths. Exodus 21:12-14 states:

Whoever strikes a man so that he dies shall be put to death. But if he did not lie in wait for him, but God let him fall into his hand, then I will appoint for you a place to which he may flee. But if a man willfully attacks another to kill him by cunning, you shall take him from my altar, that he may die.

There was no place to go for those that committed premediated murder – not even the altar of God. There is an everlasting abode for unforgiven murderers (Rev. 21:8). So, even if one thinks an aborted baby will go to heaven, why would they risk hell for themselves? It’s not logical.

Third, where in the Bible do we read that aborted children will even be in heaven? We can’t read it because it's not there. While covenant children who die in normal childbirth will most likely be in heaven (cf. 2 Sam. 12:21-23), the eternal destiny of non-covenant children is questionable at best.

In the Ancient Near East, in order to enhance prosperity, parents were told to sacrifice their firstborn by throwing them into the fires surrounding the metal (bronze) idol Molech (cf. Lev. 18:21; 20:2-5; 2 Kings 24:2-4; Jer. 32:35). In today's world, there is a metal table of the god of self and financial greed where babies are sacrificed.

So I would say your question is based on an assertion that can't be proven and one that promotes idolatry against God.

Though more could be said, seeing that God commands we should have children (Gen. 1:28; 9:1), that we are supposed to protect the weak (Prov. 31:8-9; cf. Psa. 82:4; Prov. 29:7), and that he sees children as a blessing (Psa. 127:4-5; Mark 10:13-14), abortion can't be justified on any biblical or moral ground whatsoever.

If you have had an abortion, ask God to forgive you and seek Christ as your Savior. If you're considering an abortion, don't do it. Don't become a murderer in God's eyes. Receive Christ and raise your child unto the Lord (Eph. 6:1-4).

Related Topics

Is Abortion Murder?
When an infant (baby) dies?

Answer by Dr. Joseph R. Nally, Jr.

Dr. Joseph R. Nally, Jr., D.D., M.Div. is the Theological Editor at Third Millennium Ministries (IIIM).