Euthanasia Overview

I believe that life is sacred, both in the womb and outside the womb. God is clear that we are not to murder. Suicide is self-murder.

Euthanasia, sometimes called “mercy killing,” is murder. On one hand, we do not want to take a person’s life into our own hands and end it prematurely. On the other hand, we do not want to prolong the process of dying more than necessary — that is, we want to preserve life, but not prolong death.

  • What is assisted suicide? Essentially, a person seeking assisted suicide is seeking to euthanize himself, with the aid of another person to ensure that death is quick and painless. The person assisting the suicide facilitates death by making preparations and furnishing the needed equipment; but the person seeking death is the one who actually initiates the process.
  • By taking a “hands-off” approach to the death itself, the facilitator seeks to avoid charges of murder. Proponents of assisted suicide try for a positive spin by using terms like “death with dignity.” But “death with dignity” is still death, “assisted suicide” is still suicide, and suicide is self-murder.
  • We live in what is sometimes described as a “culture of death.” Abortion on demand has been practiced for decades. Now some are seriously proposing infanticide. And euthanasia is promoted as a viable means of solving various social and financial problems.
  • This focus on death as an answer to the world’s problems is a total reversal of the biblical model. Death is an enemy (1 Corinthians 15:26). Life is a sacred gift from God (Genesis 2:7). When given the choice between life and death, God told Israel to “choose life” (Deuteronomy 30:19). Euthanasia spurns the gift and embraces the curse.

The overriding truth that God is sovereign drives us to the conclusion that euthanasia and assisted suicide are wrong. We know that physical death is inevitable for us mortals (Psalm 89:48; Hebrews 9:27).

  • God alone is sovereign over when and how a person’s death occurs. Job testifies in Job 30:23, “I know you will bring me down to death, to the place appointed for all the living.”
  • Ecclesiastes 8:8 declares, “No man has power over the wind to contain it; so no one has power over the day of his death.” God has the final say over death (see 1 Corinthians 15:26, 54–56; Hebrews 2:9, 14–15; Revelation 21:4).
  • Euthanasia and assisted suicide are man’s attempts to usurp that authority from God.

Death is a natural occurrence. Sometimes God allows a person to suffer for a long time before death occurs; other times, a person’s suffering is cut short. No one enjoys suffering, but that does not make it right to determine that a person should die.

  • Often, God’s purposes are made known through suffering. “When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider: God has made the one as well as the other” (Ecclesiastes 7:14).
  • Romans 5:3 teaches that tribulations bring about perseverance. God cares about those who cry out for death and wish to end their suffering.
  • God gives purpose in life even to the end. Only God knows what is best, and His timing, even in the matter of one’s death, is perfect.

And we should all remember the words of former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, who warned that the practice of medicine “cannot be both our healer and our killer” (from KOOP, The Memoirs of America’s Family Doctor by C. Everett Koop, M.D., Random House, 1991).

Recent articles on assisted suicide

  • Assisted suicide can take up to 4 days, involves ‘nausea, vomiting, and gasping,’ doctors warn“Assisted suicide is not a “quick, peaceful death without serious complications,” two physicians wrote in MD Magazine, warning that it can take up to four days for a person to die after ingesting lethal drugs. In an article published earlier this month, Dr. Ronald W. Pies and Dr. Annette Hanson dismantled 12 common myths about the euphemistically-labeled practice of “medical aid in dying” – doctors prescribing deadly drugs to patients so they can kill themselves.” Read more
  • Children beginning to be killed by euthanasia in Belgium“Three children were killed by euthanasia in 2016 and 2017 in Belgium, according to a report by the country’s federal control and evaluation committee. Belgium legalized euthanasia for minors in 2014 – the only country in the world to have done so for children of all ages (although there is evidence of doctors intervening in the deaths of disabled babies in both Belgium and the Netherlands). In 2016, Professor Wim Distelmans, the head of Belgium’s Federal Control and Evaluation Committee on Euthanasia, issued a statement confirming the first physician induced death of a minor, a 17 year old boy.” Read more
  • Euthanasia cases soar under Canada’s ‘medically assisted dying’ law –  Read more … Published August 13, 2018
  • Why there’s still time to stop euthanasia –  Read more …  Published August 2, 2018