Faith in the Final Days: Understanding the Christian Approach to Life Support Decisions

“Christian ethics, while upholding the value of life, also consider the context and conditions under which life is sustained. The critical distinction between allowing natural death and actively causing death informs the Christian stance on life support.” - C.Leaders


I didn’t know you’d written that. Thanks for sharing.

It’s a difficult topic and, unfortunately, we mostly don’t think about it until facing a crisis—which isn’t the best time to sort it out.

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

I have often equated the challenge of these issues as the result of a fallen world. Man, whether he knows it or not, wants to become a god. We strive to extend life, we strive to create artificial life. On and on we try to look more like God, but in the end we are wholly unequipped to actually live with our work. 150 years ago, this was not such a big thing. A book written would have been more focused around how do we die with dignity and strengthen our faith in Christ during our last days. Instead we are consistently faced with very difficult ethical situations. And in 100 years the books we write today will be wholly inadequate to face the challenges in the future. We continue to extend life through medical and scientific means, and since these do not ultimately heal us, we are faced with the equally daunting task of what we do with this extension. As a scientist I am a proponent of medical and scientific intervention. But I find it amusing that given all of our knowledge, we are still faced with the same death, and because of our intervention we have made it all the more difficult.