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What Jesus Would Say to Jack Kevorkian

The consequences of legally assisted suicide would be morally and ethically disastrous.

You know how pets can endear themselves to you. Over the years, we've grown to love Dusty, our pet chinchilla. But a couple of months ago we took him to the vet, and he was diagnosed as having an incurable infection. After a few weeks, it was clear that his bad days were outnumbering his good days, so we had him put to sleep. Many of you have had to have a family pet put to sleep. It's almost a universal experience.

Some of you have been with loved ones who have suffered before they died. Maybe you've stood next to their bed and wondered, Is this the best thing, to let the suffering go on?

I think Jack Kevorkian might say, "If you have enough compassion to relieve your pet of suffering and give it death with dignity, then wouldn't you have that same compassion toward human beings by helping them kill themselves if that's what they want?

That, in short, is Dr. Kevorkian's crusade. As a leading advocate of suicide, also called "voluntary euthanasia, he has presided over the deaths of people, four of them in the last week alone.

These people have not been on the verge of death when they came to him. In fact, a medical examiner performed autopsies on of Kevorkian's patients and found that of the were not terminally ill. In at least three cases, autopsies detected no physical illness whatsoever.

Who is this Dr. Death?

Police have arrested Kevorkian three times, but sympathetic juries have let him go each time. So who is this Dr. Death?

Kevorkian is a pathologist, a doctor who deals with dead bodies and body parts, but he's been stripped of his medical licenses. In fact, the California Attorney General's office said, "He is fundamentally unfit to practice medicine. Kevorkian promotes all kinds of unorthodox ideasone is that we ought ...

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Lee Strobel is teaching pastor at Saddleback Community Church in Mission Viejo, California. His most recent book is The Case for Faith (Zondervan, 2000).

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Sermon Outline:


We've all wondered if it's the best thing to let suffering continue.

I. Who is this so-called Dr. Death?

II. God's attitude toward life is radically different than Kevorkian's.

III. If society approves voluntary euthanasia, the potential abuses could run rampant.


We must draw the line between killing a patient and letting him die.