Skip to comments.Bernard Nathanson Dead at 84
Posted on 02/21/2011 10:34:54 AM PST by OddLane
NEW YORK Dr. Bernard N. Nathanson, an obstetrician who oversaw the performance of about 75,000 abortions before becoming a leading pro-life advocate and a convert to the Catholic faith, died after a prolonged battle with cancer this morning in New York. He was 84.
After performing his last abortion in 1979 and declaring himself to be pro-life, Nathanson produced the 1985 film The Silent Scream, which shows sonogram images of a child in the womb shrinking from an abortionists instruments, and the documentary film Eclipse of Reason, which displays and explains various abortion procedures in graphic detail. Both films had a significant impact on the abortion debate, solidified his credentials among pro-life advocates and earned him the scorn of his former pro-abortion friends and colleagues.
He also published a number of influential books, including Aborting America, written in 1979 with Richard Ostling, then a religion reporter for Time magazine, in which he exposed the deceptive and dishonest beginnings of the pro-abortion movement and undermined the argument that abortion is safe for women.
(Excerpt) Read more at ncregister.com ...
Rest in peace, Dr. Nathanson.
I haven’t killed anyone, yet people think I’m going to Hell because I’m an agnostic. He kills 75,000 and he’s praised for declaring he’s against the procedure later.
A serious question—anyone have any references to Christian writings on this sort of thing? Thanks in advance.
Rest in peace, Dr. Nathanson.
Luke 15:25 Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. 27 Your brother has come, he replied, and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.
28 The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. 29 But he answered his father, Look! All these years Ive been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. 30 But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!
31 My son, the father said, you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32 But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.
RIP Dr. Nathanson.
75K abortions seem high to me if he stopped in ‘79. RvW was ‘73. He could gave been practicing in a state that legalized it before then (but no sooner than the 60s) or could have been doing them illegally before (ugh) but large numbers didn’t come into play until the 70s IIRC.
Let’s say he did this for ten years - ‘69 to ‘79 - 7500/year?!
Non-Christians, and even some Christians, are under the mistaken idea that committing sins is what will send you to hell. They won’t. All sins have been forgiven; yes, even murder and genocide.
The acceptance of that forgiveness and the willingness to submit to the grace of salvation is what saves a soul from hell.
It’s not what you do wrong, it’s if you will accept the gift of salvation.
Give the Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard (Matthew 20: 1-16) a quick read. It’s as good a place as any to start.
RIP, Dr. Nathanson.
“I havent killed anyone, yet people think Im going to Hell because Im an agnostic. He kills 75,000 and hes praised for declaring hes against the procedure later.”
“A serious questionanyone have any references to Christian writings on this sort of thing? Thanks in advance.”
Christianity says, (speaking to relatively “more righteous” people): “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his bloodto be received by faith.” (Rom 3:23-25)
Anyone can accept the gift of life in Christ—waiting for them—however, they cannot claim it and cling to their own rights...their own “just deserts” or really, their own sins—to be able to accept that gift. You either trust yourself and your own goodness/righteousness.... or trust Jesus’ righteous life standing in for you.... and then: “if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17)
This is how the one thief on the cross next to Jesus was able to go to Heaven: he trusted Jesus at His word, and rested in that—NOT looking to his own good deeds (which evidently being a thief weren’t so good anyway!) to save him. The same is true for any Christian—we are only beggars and thieves compared to Jesus Christ, and we find rest only in trusting in Him.
Acts, chapters 7-9. He actually participated in a murder.
I for one do believe in God and believe he came to earth to save us from our sins..I have no answer for you about this man only God can tell you that..
Although I am a Christian I wonder why people like this and other murders get into heaven..I would never judge anyone because that is not my place..Oh I can think things and thing like this where this man murdered these babies and also wonder why he is getting away with it but I can't judge him....Well one day I will find out when I go to meet my maker..
[ Non-Christians, and even some Christians, are under the mistaken idea that committing sins is what will send you to hell. They wont. All sins have been forgiven; yes, even murder and genocide.
The acceptance of that forgiveness and the willingness to submit to the grace of salvation is what saves a soul from hell.
Its not what you do wrong, its if you will accept the gift of salvation. ]
So you are saying that Hitler, if he found jesus in the bunker with Eva could very well be in heaven?
What about if the devil asked for forgiveness?
Lucifer has condemned himself beyond grace, as far as we have an understanding of his betrayal.
In God’s hands.
Of course -anybody! That's why Christianity is so powerful and attractive.
“What about devil?”
No deal. Jesus’ sacrifice was for we humans only. Satan, angels, and other heavenly creations aren't covered.
During my teen years, I was very liberal. My mantra was: “if you’re against abortion, don’t have one”.
By my first presidential voting opportunity in 1980, I voted for Ronaldus Magnus and never looked back.
One day in the mid-90s when I went to get a passport, I grabbed my birth certificate and I was stunned to see the signature of the delivery obstetrician (at St. Luke’s Hospital in NYC in 1962) was none other than “Dr. Bernard Nathanson”.
God bless you, Dr. Nathanson, for bringing me into this world, and for your conversion to the value of life. May your soul rest in peace.
Anyone can accept the gift of life in Christwaiting for themhowever, they cannot claim it and cling to their own rights...their own just deserts or really, their own sinsto be able to accept that gift.
The above answer, from the Evangelical tradition, is excellent. Dr. Nathanson became a Catholic convert, which asks one thing more: Confession and penance. Someone in his position is required to confess his sins in private to a priest; to have real sorrow for them; to do whatever penance the priest prescribes for him, which in Dr. Nathanson's case probably involved extensive good works and public witness for the sanctity of life, perhaps in addition to daily penitential prayers and private mortification such as fasting; and do it all with a "firm purpose of amendment."
It's no walk in the park. Someone who is given a "walk in the park" by his confessor to amend for serious sin might do fine, if he is blessed with a full change of heart, but others need to do more to claw their way back to the faith, charity, and simplicity of a saint.
Dr. Nathanson's turnaround cost him more dearly in this world than any of us can know. He was the darling of the cultural elite, celebrated in the world's approved newspapers and feted in international capitals as the liberator of women and a wise and generous sage of medicine. Once he changed his views, he was shunned, and was soon accused of ignorance, lying, quackery, and lunacybecause he was the first to show the world, through his film, "The Silent Scream," that the unborn could feel pain.
RIP and thank you Dr. Nathanson. God help me do as well as you.
That’s an excellent question, Darkwolf. I can only refer you to John 3:18, two verses later than most Christians’ favorite verse.
I appreciate your not having killed anyone, but would like to pray for you anyway. May God bless you.
Although this scenario is highly unlikely based on what we know about Hitler, the answer is yes. The Bible tells us that "If you believe in your heart that Jesus is Lord, and confess with your mouth that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved." All who truly believe will have thier sins forgiven and will be spared the judgement. That Jesus could have saved Hitler shouldn't lead to anger, but rather to rejoicing-if Jesus can save even the wickedest man I can think of, he can save me, too!
(On a side note, Ravi Zacharias, who is much smarter than me, discusses Jesus and Hitler at length in his little book The Lamb and the Fuhrer. I highly recommend it.
As for Satan, the Bible declares that Jesus died for the sins of men, not angels. As far as we know the fate of Satan was decided immutably at the moment of his rebellion.
We often adopt a perspective that is ridiculously egotistical, thinking about the subject of salvation as if it were a natural right. Nothing could be further from the truth. God owes you and I nothing. And while some people are better than others from a human perspective, we all fall short as sinners, and we all have _nothing_ to offer God that He needs from us. So the Gospel really makes sense - either salvation is a free gift, or it would be at a price none of us could pay.
But I don't want to put that too flippantly either. Salvation involves reconciliation with God, and for it to be sincere there must be more than an empty affirmation of faith. We have to be willing to be transformed to enter Heaven (otherwise, to let us in would be to 'contaminate' it with sin, and it makes no sense to complain of others sins while holding on to our own), not holding on to our own sinful will.
So yes, a mass murderer who sincerely reconciles with God and accepts Jesus as Lord and Saviour (as I believe Dr. Nathanson did), is ready for Heaven, while a person who has rejected Jesus' sacrifice for themselves and is clinging to their sinful pride and will contra God, is destined for Hell. Regardless of how 'good' they are in their own eyes, it's never good enough in God's eyes.
What about his Jewish victims? Did they go from Auschwitz to an eternity of damnation?
God is both perfectly just and perfectly loving, and both those factors need to be kept in mind or a person will quickly develop a badly skewed perspective on Him. The Gospel is free and it reflects His perfect love for us; likewise His perfect justice means He cannot be a sloppy accountant regarding sin.
Care to address it?
Yes, everyone goes to Hell if they are not reconciled to God. Let me turn the question on you: what do you think is 'fair'? What standard would you hold God to, and what would be your justification? Moreover, upon what authority do you rest your argument?
“the signature of the delivery obstetrician (at St. Lukes Hospital in NYC in 1962) was none other than Dr. Bernard Nathanson.”
Wow, that’s quite a story. Scary also.
It’s between each man and God where he will spend eternity. Only God, and God alone, makes that judgement.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
God loves both you and the former abortionist. The difference is that the abortionist repented and you haven't decided that God even exists. Once you decide that He does and you repent of your sins and accept His salvation, then you'll be heading up, not down. I pray that you will come to know Jesus as your personal Savior and the best friend you'll ever have. Don't give up the search.
Saul of Tarsus violently persecuted Christians before becoming one of them. If any person in modern history has had a similar "road to Damascus" moment, I would wager it was probably Dr. Nathanson.
Applying what you wrote, I get that your answer would be: Yes, Hitler's Jewish victims will spend eternity in Hell. Correct?
Let me turn the question on you: what do you think is 'fair'? What standard would you hold God to, and what would be your justification?
I don't know what would be 'fair'. However, I do think the idea that the vast majority of human beings who ever lived and died are going to suffer eternal torment is unfair.
Moreover, upon what authority do you rest your argument?
My sense of right and wrong forms that opinion. Do you not react with horror when you read about appalling acts of cruelty? Why do you react that way? Why would you not react that way when we're talking about something much worse in the afterlife?
I want you to KNOW that you can KNOW Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. You are an agnostic. Jesus said, “Now this is eternal life: that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent.” (John 17:3) When you put your faith in Jesus, He will come into your life and you can KNOW Him in a personal way. Good works don’t count. It is by faith you are saved.
Do you not react with horror when you read about appalling acts of cruelty?
I would refine that a bit, or make a distinction at any rate. I 'react with horror' when I see _injustice_, not 'cruelty'. A person may suffer severely, but they may do so unjustly or justly. It is not cruel to punish an evildoer, for example.
This reaction you speak of, is either born of a God-given conscience, or not. If not, then it counts for nothing as far as determining an objective moral basis for anything. (I might as well seek to make my pizza preferences a legal standard.) And if it is, then when I correctly understand a given situation then there can be no contradiction between divine justice and a divinely-provided moral standard. It's easy to portray some people as 'innocent' (or relatively so), such as the victims of death camps. But none of us are innocent from God's perspective.
To answer your questions: Yes Dr. Nathanson was performing abortions in New York, where it was legal before Roe V Wade legalized it throughout the country. Secondly, note that the article states: “an obstetrician who oversaw the performance of about 75,000 abortions” . He ran the abortion mill. He didn't perform all 75,000 of the abortions personally.
If you read the article, it breaks down the number of abortions he was involved with: “Overall, Nathanson estimated, he presided over 60,000 abortions as director of the facility, instructed fellow practitioners in the performance of 15,000 other abortions, and personally performed about 5,000 abortions, including one on his own child conceived with a girlfriend in the 1960s.”
Thank you all for the serious responses, they’re much appreciated. I didn’t want anyone to think I was being a wiseguy, and I will read through all of these posts.
Belief aside, the Bible and theology are fascinating subjects. Thanks again.
Your asking questions as you did, is you responding to the grace He's already giving you. He's extending his hand. He wants you to know Him, and live as His son. I can see that very clearly, even if you can't right now.
I'll keep you in my prayers.
If I, a brine-shrimp in the general swim of things, had the power to command, I would command that people adopt the above-headlined attitude as their own; and if they cannot, they should stop talking in the name of the LORD.
As for appalling criminals getting unmerited mercy at the last second: that is God's business to figure out, not (thank God) mine.
Thanks for the ping. I met him once about ten years ago at a pro-life Christmas party. A story of redemption. RIP.
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Like Norma Covey, the “Jane Roe “ of “Roe v. Wade,” Dr. Nathanson was received into the Roman Catholic church. His baptismal sponsor was the Baptist, Charles Colson.
Thank you. It’s tremendous.
please remove me from this ping list......thank you
Between King and Chris Smith, I could feel the libs squirming! I can't remember the name of the next black woman Rep, but I kept yelling at her on my screen: “Honey, they're killing your race!”
P.S.: I had the news/talk radio on all day, and did not hear one word about his passing. I found out about it from this thread.
Chuck Colson is married to a practicing Roman Catholic and he’s given plenty of evidence he doesn’t understand the depths of the papist error.
I’m not familiar with the author of the following link, but it’s 100% accurate, IMO.