If you’ve listened to any fundamentalists lately, you might think they’ve always held that a foetus is the same as a human being, with full human rights, and that this is what the Bible says about it.
Fred Clark points out that that’s bullshit, and until the late 1970s, non-Roman Catholic Christians regularly argued with the Vatican position on the subject:
Keep in mind that this is from a conservative evangelical seminary professor, writing in Billy Graham’s magazine for editor Harold Lindsell:
God does not regard the fetus as a soul, no matter how far gestation has progressed. The Law plainly exacts: “If a man kills any human life he will be put to death” (Lev. 24:17). But according to Exodus 21:22-24, the destruction of the fetus is not a capital offense. … Clearly, then, in contrast to the mother, the fetus is not reckoned as a soul.
Christianity Today would not publish that article in 2012. They might not even let you write that in comments on their website.
Yes, but mainstream Christians of the 1970s were really heretics.
The Bible is the inerrant word of God, and apparently sometimes we need to change it and then pretend our new version is the inerrant word of God.