The Sanctity of Life

Text: Genesis 9:6

The Scriptures teach that we are to respect life. Sadly, many do not. They disregard the lives of others – even their own lives. In this lesson, we will consider what the Bible says about the sanctity of life.

We Are to Value Life

  • Our physical lives are temporary (Psalm 90:10; James 4:14) – life after this will be eternal (Matthew 25:46); so we need to have the right perspective (Colossians 3:2)
  • However, even with our hope beyond this life, we are to value life here (Philippians 1:21-24; 1 Corinthians 15:32)
  • This life is valuable, but we must live with a purpose (not of “human motives” – 1 Corinthians 15:32) – obey God (Ecclesiastes 12:13); be an example to others (Galatians 2:20); help others get to heaven (1 Peter 4:11; Hebrews 3:12-13)

Why Life is to be Valued

  • We are made in God’s image (Genesis 9:6; 1:26-27) – unlike animals, humans have an eternal spirit (Ecclesiastes 3:21; 12:7); all men are equal as we have a common ancestry (Acts 17:26)
  • Life was given by God (Acts 17:25) – He is the Creator and Sustainer (Colossians 1:16-17); every good blessing is from above (James 1:17); even during times of suffering, God is to be praised (Job 1:20-21; 2:9-10)
  • Life allows us to prepare for eternal life – remember our purpose (Ecclesiastes 12:13); every day is a chance to prepare for judgment (2 Peter 3:9); do not take this for granted (Romans 2:4-6)

How the Sanctity of Life is Disregarded by Many

  • Murder – this is the most obvious; condemned throughout the Bible (Genesis 9:6; Exodus 20:13; Romans 1:29,32)
  • Abortion – life in the womb is to be valued as highly as life outside of the womb (Exodus 21:22-25); NT uses the same term (brephos) for a baby in the womb and a baby outside of the womb (Luke 1:41; 2:12); abortion advocates are not championing women’s “rights,” they’re condoning murder (Romans 1:32)
  • Suicide – suicide is “self murder,” but is still condemned in Scripture; Paul stopped the Philippian jailer from killing himself (Acts 16:28), and after obeying the gospel he had reason to life (Acts 16:31-34); Judas was overcome with grief and killed himself (Matthew 27:5), which was not the appropriate response (Acts 1:25)
  • Assisted suicide – gaining acceptance in society (“death with dignity”); when Saul was mortally wounded and an Amalekite allegedly killed him to end his suffering, David executed him as a murderer (2 Samuel 1:9-10,14-16); suffering has a purpose (Romans 5:3-5) and we should endure it, rather than end it; when Jesus suffered, He entrusted His life to the Father (Mark 14:34-36)


  • The Bible is clear – we are to value the life that God has given us here
  • However, we are also not to lose sight of the life that is offered eternally in heaven – we must use our time now to prepare for eternity

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