Wednesday, September 25, 2013


A Yale University Divinity School professor defended abortion, gay marriage and the Palestinian cause in a recent public lecture, saying modern Christians have misinterpreted the Bible.

On abortion, Professor John J. Collins argued the Bible does not support a right to life, the Bible does not mention abortion, and early translations of scriptures only recognized a fetus as a person after birth.

“The modern assertion of a right to life is not Biblical” and “there is no discussion of abortion in the Bible,” he said. Citing a brief, early translation, he added “usually the fetus was only regarded as a person after birth or at least after the crown of the head appeared.”

He added that today people often fail to review Biblical text when they denounce something, instead assuming their customs are rooted in divine law. He said based on the Biblical text, society should be the deciding factor on abortion.

Collins, who teaches Old Testament criticism and interpretation at Yale and formerly taught at Notre Dame, made the comments at a Texas State University lecture on Sept. 19.

About 100 students and scholars attended the presentation, described by university sponsors as “a public lecture on the concept of biblical values and how the idea plays a role in contemporary ethical discourse.”

For nearly an hour, Collins, who identified himself as an Irish Catholic, read from a prepared text serving in part as a retort to views previously expressed by evangelist Rev. Billy Graham.  (more...)

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