Christian Ethical Theory and Voluntary Euthanasia.docx - Christian Ethical Theory and Voluntary Euthanasia A Moral Matter of Life and Death Alexandra

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Christian Ethical Theory and Voluntary Euthanasia: A Moral Matter of Life and Death Alexandra Mundrick August 24, 2018 Capstone Essay ETHC101-D12 1
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Table of Contents I Introduction ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 3 II Ethical Theory --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 4 III Voluntary Euthanasia ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 6 IV Conclusion ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 8 V Bibliography --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 10 Introduction My paper is about a Christian ethical theory perspective regarding voluntary euthanasia or otherwise known as assisted suicide. A central question appears, is it moral or ethical to support 2
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or practice voluntary euthanasia for the terminally ill? In the last few decades, the states of Oregon and Washington have legalized voluntary euthanasia for the terminally ill who have less than six months to live. This decision was met with a myriad of controversy between the spiritual moralities of suicide in taking a life before God intends. In a global sense, the nations of Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands have legalized this practice with the advisement of a physician while countries like Switzerland fully legalized suicide without a physician but with strict rules such as only if the suicide is not deemed “selfish” which is determined through video evidence and reported to police. 1 A Christian approach to the issue is complicated, we all do not want to see our loved ones in pain and a respectful service can be performed at death, but on the flipside suicide and human control of death is against Christian beliefs and the Bible. This paper is going to be approached by first examining the Christian meta-ethical theories of reality and then discussing potential arguments for and against voluntary euthanasia while also sharing my general opinions on it and how I believe it should be legal with care worldwide. I hope to offer a well-rounded perspective on voluntary euthanasia and how it relates to my personal meta-ethical theory. I wish to persuade, educate and effectively question previous perspectives readers may have, my viewpoints were changed within my research so offering this blessing back is a genuine way to approach such a sensitive and emotional topic. In the future, I hope those who are terminally ill find peace in death and I also hope society can reach an educated middle ground consensus on voluntary euthanasia for those who suffer daily. Ethical Theory 1 Laura A. Stivers et. al, Christian Ethics: A Case Method Approach, 2012, 315. 3
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My ethical theory is like a pie chart of a few ideas and considerations. Reality is much more complex than just one absolute idea. Theories are meant to be hypothesized, tested, replaced and improved through time. Life is not black and white or at all simple, it is gray. The first part of my theory is natural law ethics where humans determine what is ethical solely by our free will and the conscious decisions we make throughout our lives. This is important because God offers each of us free will, scripture exemplifies this when it states, “ A man's heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.” 2 We all both have free will and a divine path; it is the conviction of whether or not each of us as individuals will be tempted by evil and sin. This natural law is an
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