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Alan Billing on ‘playing God’

Thursday, 3 April, 2008

Rev. Dr Alan Billings did a short piece on the BBC a couple of days ago (31st of March) about the currently contentious issues in bioethics in Britain. Here is a short clipping:

As far as playing God is concerned, that, it seems to me, is precisely what the human vocation under God is. The parable of Adam and Eve sums it up. When they eat the forbidden fruit, their eyes are opened and they become like God, able to discern good and evil. They are then tipped out of the Garden to make their way in the world without God’s visible presence, making ethical decisions on the basis of this faculty for moral discernment – their reason. Living east of Eden necessitates our playing God in that sense all the time – and that includes making difficult decisions about medical research.

Brilliantly worded. Although I find all theological objections carry little weight, it is at least very refreshing to see that some theologians can think rationally.

This is the conclusion:

If Christians have been unsettled by this debate they might care to reflect on this. There was once an occasion when Jesus was told by religious authority that if he healed on the Sabbath he would break the law of God. He ignored the advice, because coming to the rescue of the sick is both a moral imperative and the fulfilling of the law.

Now, just email this program or this blog entry or something to every Christian person you know that is anti-life (rejects certain medical treatments like stem cells or therapeutic cloning). We need to change the minds of lots of people!

One comment

  1. Hmmm, you might be whistling in the dark here, especially in fundie-land. They’ve been memed pretty good.

    Personally I agree with the good doctor, but I know some religious leaders who say Man’s only function was to tend the Garden and worship God, no more no less.

    We need to change the minds of lots of people!

    You are quite the optimist, aren’t you?



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