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Community Pantry

Greetings brothers and sisters in Christ,

Obtaining Inward Light Ministries is currently holding a community pantry in Siniloan, Laguna Philippines, to provide some food to the needy. As COVID 19 continuously spread worldwide, our sister church in the Philippines reached out to us to support the undertaking to feed the less fortunate. In the remote area of Siniloan, as COVID cases rise, the officials are sporadically announcing community quarantine, leaving the citizen jobless. Therefore, our ministry responded to the call having in mind Jesus’ instruction to feed the hungry and clothe the poor.

Now, we are extending the invitation to you to be part of the great commission in feeding the hungry spiritually and physically, also assisting our brethren in this great work.  We are also asking for your prayers that the peoples’ hearts be touched as they read the Word of God.

Would you like to have a perfect baby?

Imagine a society filled with athletic, intelligent, and ravishing citizens; sounds impossible before, but not anymore. Scientists nowadays are trying to make modified human beings -through engineering human genetics. Over the years, scientists are aggressively revolutionizing the method of human genetic engineering, from the discovery of the double helix in 1953 through the first human trials for CRISPR in 2018 (History of Genetic Engineering and the Rise of Genome Editing Tools, 2020). At first, discovering cures for malignant diseases like cancer, HIV, Alzheimer’s, etc. are the main objective of the scientists in furthering their expertise in genome editing. However, some scientists are getting to an extreme in modifying babies before birth, although the experiment is dangerous. Genetically engineering babies is unethical; and must not be permitted worldwide due to its harmful effects. In addition, it would also create an artificial standard in the future generation, more importantly it is against the Creator of humankind.
As scientists developed new techniques in designing babies, facing rejection and failure, they still move forward in improvising their studies. Nevertheless, they cannot encompass the danger of the methods they are working on from 3-person IVF, which did not work, to early Pronuclear Transfer, which results are still not guaranteed (Cussins, 2017, par. 14). Based on the article written by Cussins (2017, par. 11): Scientists worldwide who worked on 3-person IVF technique wrote their conclusions to Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) announcing that 3-person IVF methods “were too dangerous to ever be ethical.” In this process, the baby would be having three parents: the birth mother, father, and the donor. Having the genes of three people in one child, inheriting all possible (good and bad) traits with any irreversible risks made the method perilous. As Regalado asserted after his interview with a young postdoctoral scientist named Luhan Yang: “the genetic changes created by germ-line engineering would be passed on, and that is what has made the idea seem so objectionable. So far, caution and ethical concerns have had the upper hand” (2015, par. 7). Since babies cannot consent themselves before birth, they have no choice but to suffer the consequences due to the contingencies of the method applied. Moreover, their future children would suffer too, because once their genes underwent genetic editing make-up, it would pass along from generation to generation, including the harmful effects that go with it.
Since the 3-person IVF method failed in genome editing, scientists then discovered an improvised method called Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR). In CRISPR, scientists are assuming a higher probability of modifying babies without inherited diseases from their parents. Furthermore, scientists simplified the technique of genome editing with CRISPR. As an illustration, it is like computer encoding: wherein a scientist can cut any bad genes of a person and paste a good one (What are genome editing and CRISPR-Cas9?). In this case, scientists are eying designer babies to be viable soon. As a repercussion, natural babies would seem like an inferior standard of humanity, because parents would then be able to choose better genes for their babies. Therefore, Regalado saw the danger of having designer babies; he feared that: “germ-line engineering is a path toward a dystopia of super people and designer babies for those who can afford it” (2015, par. 5). With this precariousness, even “The U.S. intelligence community last year called CRISPR a potential ‘weapon of mass destruction’” (Connor, S. 2017, par.9). If wrong authoritative persons get a hold of CRISPR, it would indeed be a powerful equipment in annihilating the normal human beings. Even if it has not started yet, the deaths of “defective babies are rising.” According to Charis Thompson, a sociologist: “ The number of live births to children with Down syndrome is declining because 92 percent of all women who receive a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome choose to abort” (Khazan, O. 2014, par. 13). It is a clear indication that humanities’ willingness to terminate life of inferior unborn babies are higher, when there is a set standard of superiority to follow in the society.
God being the only Creator of humanity, is the sole Supreme designer of every human being. God fearfully and wonderfully makes every individual (Psalm 139:14). Amazingly, “God created man in His own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them” (Genesis 1:27, KJV). Hence, God has not given humanity the power to choose the color of their skin or hair, for the originality of each human being is a unique gift by the Heavenly Creator. For these reasons, editing human genetics is not acceptable to God, for He made everyone with distinct unique characteristics. He even made humanity a little lower than the angels. In addition, God entrusted each individual to take care of themselves, for “your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your” (1 Corinthians 6:19, KJV). It is undeniable that God is all-knowing, that He knew every creature even before their existence (Jeremiah 1:5). God has His reasons for creating a variety of colors in humanity, but one thing is for sure: that all He has made are beautiful, and no creature can exceed his Creator.
After the fall of man in the garden of Eden, God’s original design has been tainted by evil. The propensity of sin has been handed down from generation to generation. Now, scientists are trying to attain the perfectness of humanity before sin. They are trying to make perfect babies through genome editing. Future babies that are free from hereditary diseases, more intelligent, athletic, and good in stature. Though these promises seem enticing, the results are still uncertain. Hence, despite of the uncertainties, people are already looking forward to having the perfect babies that they could raise. Consequently, in hopes of having ideal children, parents are losing sight of the real meaning of beauty: beauty that comes from within, the beauty that the Heavenly Creator has designed. Humanity should always keep in mind that: “Our ways are not God’s ways. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9, KJV). God knew what is best for everyone, even before his/her conception. Science might be a great tool in finding out cures in diseases, but not in designing a baby. Humanity should also remember the limits that the Lord has bestowed to His creation.
In the presence of advanced science these days, parents that are wanting to have ideal babies should not risk the lives of their future children in exploring genome editing. They should first consider the safety of their future children instead of trusting in the unknown result of science. As the Word of God proclaimed: “For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness” 1 Corinthians 3:19, (KJV). Nothing is impossible with God; He can give each and every one a perfect baby, only if He wills