IVF and an Absolutely Sovereign God
I read with interest Mr. Lanning’s article (Nov. 1 and 15, 2002) and must admit subjects like these prompt questions. The answers in some cases will not be available. We are not God, and when the vessels of dishonor point a bony finger at the vessels of honor to explain why in vitro fertilization is wrong, it once again comes down to faith and unbelief. Can IVF be classified as unbelieving science? I would say without a shadow of a doubt that it is! Man’s depraved moral decisions and dilemmas impatiently try to sidestep a sovereign God! God lays the foundation of being fruitful and multiplying. God also lays out how this is done. What happens when man takes a different direction from that which God has implemented? Sin and the fruits of sin, death. Sarahcould not wait for God, and Ishmael was the fruit. Hannah did wait on the Lord, and the fruit was Samuel. Lot’s two daughters tried to sidestep God through incest, and the fruits were Moab and Ben-ammi. What was Jacob’s response to Rachel’s “Give me children, or else I die”? It was, “Am I in God’s stead, who hath withheld from thee the fruit of the womb?” This was not good enough, enter Bilhah, the maid, and the fruits, Dan and Naphtali. God’s purposes in all these events should verify the truth of Romans 9.
Whenever topics like this come up, it is indeed excellent to debate them. Iron sharpens iron. But wisdom comes from the Lord, and Job 38, 39, and Job 40is a comfort to Christians when we run out of answers for the questions. This same sovereign, triune God is sidestepped, even in so-called churches, regarding the conception of Christ, via the virgin birth through Mary. Can unbelieving science answer that question of conception? Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the Word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.
Thank you for writing on an interesting topic, Mr. Lanning.
I write briefly to thank and congratulate you for the series in the Standard Bearer concerning common grace, in “He Shines In All That’s Fair.”
This is by far the clearest, most manageable and lucid defense of the Protestant Reformed Churches’ position I have read. Some down here who were only vaguely aware of the issue (or have found it too difficult) are now taking a real interest. How the Lord might be using Mouw’s book for the opposite purpose to what he intended!