Rajiv enthusiastically participated in class debates on issues of embryo experiments, abortion and euthanasia. He was among those who advocated that a new biological human life is created at conception. Everyone has been a human embryo.

The Bible teaches that life begins at conception and that human life is precious and that murder is wrong (Genesis 9:6). Uniquely among all creatures only human beings have the capacity for a relationship with God. Only human beings have a spirit, which must be present from conception. Body and spirit cannot be separated until death. Both male and female were equally made in God’s image, in God’s likeness (Genesis 1:26). Therefore, they have a special intrinsic value regardless of how young, old, able-bodied or disabled that life might be. This truth of God’s word has guided Rajiv to serve all human beings rather than exploit and oppress or kill.

The Bible talks of God knowing an individual from conception (Jeremiah 1:5). Rajiv joins with the psalmist to thank God: “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:13).

The incarnation of Christ has important implications for medical ethics. Jesus Christ reveals not only the nature of deity but also the nature of what is human. It is the central claim of the Christian faith that God became man and dwelt among us to become the Saviour of human beings. The life of Jesus Christ on earth began when the Holy Spirit came upon Mary and the power of the Most High overshadowed her (Luke 1:35).

For God to become man in embryo therefore requires that man in embryo already bears the image. Sperm and ova which do not meet simply die—no human life exists. Once they do meet and fertilisation takes place, a new unique human life has begun. Let’s thank God who is the source of all life and uphold the sanctity of life that begins at conception!

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