המוסד למען קדושת חיי אדם
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We're Making the Original Pro-Life Religion Pro-Life Again! ✡︎

✡ FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ✡

What is abortion? 
The intentional torture to death of an innocent human being in the womb by means of poisoning, starving, dismemberment, or lethal injection. These procedures are done without administering pain medication to the baby. Medical research shows that pain capability occurs as early as 8 weeks gestation.

Do babies ever survive abortion?
Yes. Babies who are aborted later in pregnancy may be born alive accidentally and then allowed to die, or deliberately born alive and then killed or kept alive for highly profitable sale to research facilities for organ extraction. Intact dilation & extraction (D&X) abortion, otherwise known as partial birth abortion, was banned by the Supreme Court in 2003. This involves partially delivering a late-term baby then killing the baby before the entire body has exited the birth canal. Although banned by the Supreme Court in 2003, documented evidence has been uncovered that shows this practice continues. A billion dollar medical research industry hungry for baby parts drives the political pressure to legalize abortion up through all nine months of pregnancy. 

What is the JPLF position on abortion? 
Torah prohibits abortion based on Genesis 9:6, “He who spills the blood of man within man shall have his blood spilt, for in the image of God made He man. And you, be fruitful, and multiply; swarm in the earth, and multiply therein.” The Talmud interprets "the blood of man within man" as to include an unborn child in the womb of the mother. Things that are prohibited under the Noahide laws are also prohibited to Jews.

Does the JPLF support abortion bans enacted through legislation?
The right to life of all innocent human beings is given by Almighty God, the Creator. An abundance of help and support for life makes abortion services unnecessary and unpalatable to any person of conscience. According to Rav Moshe Feinstein, zt”l, “Not only are Jews prohibited from having an abortion, but they are prohibited from assisting non-Jews from having an abortion, too. According to halacha, abortion is prohibited for non-Jews; it’s actually a capital crime. A Jewish doctor may not perform an abortion even if it would result in antipathy towards Jews.” (Igros Moshe, Choshen Mishpat 2:73:8). Concurrent with this view, the JPLF agrees with public policy that limits non-Jews and Jews from accessing services that enable the deliberate torture and murder of innocent human beings in the womb. We do not engage in political activity.


What does the Torah say about abortion?
The first mention of the unborn child is in Genesis 9:6 “He who spills the blood of man within man shall have his blood spilt, for in the image of God made He man. And you, be fruitful, and multiply; swarm in the earth, and multiply therein.” The Talmud interprets "the blood of man within man" as to include an unborn child in the womb of the mother. Things that are prohibited under the Noahide laws are also prohibited to Jews. Leviticus 18:21 clearly prohibits child sacrifice. "And thou
shalt not give any of your offspring to pass through for Molech, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God. I am the Lord." The often cited Exodus 21:22-25 says nothing about abortion. It refers to premature birth, not miscarriage. Please see our power point, Judaism: The Original Pro-Life Religion, for clarification and for more references on the sanctity of human life and the prohibition of shedding innocent blood in Torah and, Mishnah Torah, and Talmud.Judaism: The Original Pro-Life Religion

What does Tanakh say about abortion?
The Tanakh comprises the books of the Jewish bible, the Torah, the Prophets and the Scriptures. The last two feature many references to life in the womb as valuable humans, alive and members of the human family given significant, essential tasks to perform on earth. Noteworthy are "The Lord called me when I was in the womb, before my birth He had pronounced my name.” Isaiah 49:1. “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart, I appointed you as a prophet of nations.” Jeremiah 1:5. "For you created my inmost being: you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made... My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to me. “ Psalm 139:13-16. Did not He who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same One fashion us in the womb? Job 31:15.  And the children struggled within her, and she said, "If [it be] so, why am I [like] this?" And she went to inquire of the Lord. And the Lord said to her, "Two nations are in your womb, and two kingdoms will separate from your innards, and one kingdom will become mightier than the other kingdom, and the elder will serve the younger. Genesis 25: 22-23.

What is the Jewish Halacha on abortion?
Rav Moshe Feinstein, zt”l "Not only are Jews prohibited from having an abortion, but they are prohibited from assisting non-Jews from having an abortion, too. According to halacha, abortion is prohibited for non-Jews; it’s actually a capital crime. A Jewish doctor may not perform an abortion even if it would result in antipathy towards Jews.” (Igros Moshe, Choshen Mishpat 2:73:8) In responsum 69, Rav Moshe not only categorizes abortion as bloodshed; he takes the rare step of unequivocally warning against relying on an erroneous meter for aborting Down Syndrome babies. According to Jewish law, unborn children can inherit property. Halacha does not authorize destroying a baby before 40 days gestation, rather this milestone in the development of a human being protects the mother from normative social taboos in biblical times. Jewish law does prohibit Jews from engaging in behavior or business transactions that mutilate a human body, destroy innocent human life. Furthermore, Halacha commands us to break every Sabbath prohibition to save the life of an unborn child. Please see our power point, Judaism: The Original Pro-Life Religion, for clarification and more Halachic references.

What about the exception to the prohibition of abortion to save the life of the mother? 
The rabbinical exception to the prohibition of the deliberate torture and murder of an unborn human being to save the life of the mother was intended to be used only in the case of breech birth when no other intervention was known that could save both mother and child. The legal permission to save the mother’s life by taking the child’s life was restricted to this grave imminent danger. Today, pregnancies that threaten the mother’s life can be remedied by humanely removing the baby from the uterus. If viable, the baby’s life can be saved by placement in neonatal intensive care. If not viable, the baby can be allowed to pass peacefully, receive a dignified burial, and a normal grieving process follows. This is much safer for the mother than abortion procedures that endanger a woman’s life. Ectopic pregnancy is now primarily the only case where the pregnancy must be terminated to save the mother’s life. By the time an ectopic pregnancy has been discovered (usually by 7 to 8 weeks gestation) the embryo has died in the majority of cases. However, the supporting tissues for the pregnancy often continue to grow and can cause life-threatening bleeding, either through rupture of the fallopian tube or other mechanisms. Visit the links below for more details on medical interventions that respect the life of both mother and baby.

What about exceptions to the prohibition of abortion for rape and incest?
According to the Mishneh Torah, a mamzer is a full-fledged Jew conceived through incest or rape who is not allowed to marry another Jew. Despite the social challenges, these Jews are recognized as a full member of the Jewish nation and able to achieve spiritual greatness. “A mamzer who is a Torah scholar,” say the sages, “precedes an ignorant High Priest. The death penalty is not the punishment for these unfortunate circumstances of conception. Torah offers life affirming outcomes for rape and incest. King David himself was descended from the Moabites, whose progenitor was the product of incest between Lot and his daughter. Jacob’s daughter, Dinah, conceived a daughter, Asenath, from her rape by Shechem. Joseph married Asenath and produced Manasseh and Ephraim. Research shows that women who abort a pregnancy conceived in sexual assault reported that abortion had been the wrong solution. Most women who had abortions say that abortion only increased the trauma they were experiencing. In many cases, the victim faced strong pressure or demands to abort. In almost all the cases where the victim became pregnant through incest, abortion was chosen by the perpetrator to cover up the incest and the victim rarely, if ever, had a say in the matter. None of the women who gave birth to a child conceived in sexual assault expressed regret or wished they had aborted instead. Adoption is life saving and only God knows the contribution of the child to this world. Fathers shall not be put to death because of sons, nor shall sons be put to death because of fathers; each man shall be put to death for his own transgression. Deuteronomy 24:16.

What are my other options other than abortion?
Abortion is a dangerous medical procedure for women and deadly for the baby. A safer, wholesome life saving option is completing your pregnancy and raising your baby with help. Pregnancy care support and practical help during your pregnancy and after the baby is born are widely available. Jewish only pregnancy care resources can be found in the United States at SHIFRA (In Shifra’s Arms), a unique Jewish support network designed to meet your needs. They provide layers of emotional and practical support throughout pregnancy and motherhood. Jewish friendly pregnancy care can be found at Birthright International, a well established, non-religious pregnancy care resource that welcomes people of all faiths. In Israel, we recommend contacting EFRAT. 
 
What about adoption?
Adoption is another wonderful life saving alternative to abortion. Many Jewish couples want to parent Jewish babies. No longer do birth parents have to feel a painful separation from their child because arrangements can be made to allow birth parents communication with the child if this is desired. Babies who are allowed to be born and are given loving homes flourish to fulfill their God given destiny. Parents who choose adoption avoid the regret and pain experienced by many who choose to abort their baby, Adoptive parents who want to include babies with disabilities in their family are available, too. Adoption can be done as a private arrangement with a relative or friend who wants to help. Agency guided adoption is another path. Jewish Adoption and Family Care Options (JAFCO) and Jewish Children's Adoption Network(JCAN) are two agencies that can help., ith a relative or friend who wants to help. Agency guided adoption is another path. Jewish Adoption and Family Care Options (JAFCO) and Jewish Children's Adoption Network(JCAN) are two agencies that can help.

What medical complications can arise from abortion?
Research shows many serious short term and long term medical complications from abortion including life threatening hemorrhage and reproductive damage.

What other harm can occur after abortion?
We’ve been told that abortion helps women; however, research now shows that abortion damages women. Abortion causes physical, relational, psychological, emotional and mental damage. A strong correlation exists between abortion and breast cancer rates, later premature births, and  infertility. Abortion as birth control encourages irresponsible, dangerous sexual activity leading to an explosion of sexually transmitted disease. Unborn female babies perish as a result of abortion. It is well documented that women who choose life have better outcomes than those who choose abortion.

What is chemical abortion - the Abortion Pill, RU-486?
Chemical abortion (also known as RU-486, medical abortion, athome abortion, self- managed abortion, & pill abortion) is the abortion of a baby typically in the first trimester using powerful drugs called Mifepristone and Misoprostol. This type of abortion makes up more than half of all abortions in the U.S. and has killed 28 women and injured thousands more since its legalization in 2000. Chemical abortion is often used for later term pregnancy and despite contraindications, leading to increased risks for women.
Learn about chemical abortion, harm resulting from chemical abortion, and how it works using the button below. 

What is abortion pill reversal?
Abortion pill reversal is hormone therapy that allows a pre-born baby to avoid the lethal effects of chemical abortion once the mother has taken the first abortion pill. Learn all about abortion pill reversal using the button below.

How does abortion harm men?
When a Jewish man pressures his partner into abortion, he may feel relief immediately afterward from the social, financial, or religious obligations of claiming fatherhood. Later, though, feelings of anger, resentment, regret, and guilt can surface. Alternatively and tragically, men have no legal rights concerning abortion, and are powerless to save their own child.

What are the risks of teen pregnancy and abortion?
Teen usage of birth control often leads to pregnancy, so birth control is not a reliable way to avoid pregnancy. The best way to avoid pregnancy is to avoid sexual activity until marriage. Teen abortion has many serious outcomes. Teen Abortion Risks: A Medical Fact Sheet. Rather than seek an abortion, it is safer for teens to select adoption.

What healing opportunities exist for Jewish parents who suffer after abortion?
The Jewish Pro-Life Foundation offers a Teshuvah based healing program for Jewish women and men who suffer after abortion. Our program is called Tikvat Rachel - hope for all her children both both and unborn. Tikvat Rachel offers a healing pathway for Jews who seek a confidential, safe, accepting, and Jewish program to address the deeply personal issues that arise after abortion. We honor and encourage the healing journey of every post abortive Jew, young or old, male or female, religious or secular. Tikvat Rachel also welcomes any Jew with an indirect abortion experience, such as former clinic workers, grandparents or siblings. Our program is held in our private zoom room at no cost.
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