Compose a 600-word paper that addresses theological knowledge, which can be applied to your understanding of what it means to be a Christian.
As you respond to the prompt, reflect on how theological truths can best be applied to your current sphere of influence. Using the textbook, Theology Applied: A Living Faith as an example, you are to interact with a theological topic by providing the theological definition, the biblical foundation, and the practical application of the doctrine.
Provide a theological definition from a theological reference book. Explain the doctrine by using and interacting with a theological definition from an outside source (a source that is not used in this course).
Explain the biblical foundation of the chosen theological term. Demonstrate where this particular theological concept is found within Scripture and trace the concept throughout the Bible. Include at least 2 biblical references in this section.
Apply the theological term to your life and sphere of influence. Explain how the truth of the theological term influences how you live your daily life and how the truth of the theological term can best be lived out in your daily life.
In many cultures ancient and not so ancient suicide has been seen as the best option in certain circumstances. Cato the Younger committed suicide rather than live under Caesar. For the Stoics there was nothing necessarily immoral in suicide, which could be rational and the best option (Long 1986, 206). Conversely, in the Christian tradition, suicide has largely been seen as immoral, defying the will of God, being socially harmful and opposed to nature (Edwards 2000). This view, to follow Hume, ignores the fact that by dint suicide being possible it is not against nature or God (Hume 1986). Nevertheless, the idea of being allowed to take our own lives impinges on the ethics of public policy in a variety of ways. Here we will briefly examine the case of physician-assisted suicide (PAS) where an individual’s wish to die may be aided by the action of another. Hume considered suicide to be ‘free from every imputation of guilt or blame’ (Hume 1986, 20) and indeed suicide has not been a crime in the UK since 1961 (Martin 1997, 451). Aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring a suicide is however a special statutory crime, although few prosecutions are brought. Recently the issue of PAS has brought the debate about ‘whether and under what conditions individuals should be able to determine the time and manner of their deaths, and whether they should be able to enlist the help of physicians’ (Steinbock 2005, 235). The British Medical Association opposes euthanasia (mercy killing) but accepts both legally and ethically that patients can refuse life-prolonging treatment – this that they can commit suicide (BMA 1998). Failing to prevent suicide does not constitute abetting (Martin 1997, 451) although PAS ‘is no different in law to any other person helping another to commit suicide’ (BMA 1998). In Oregon, however, PAS, restricted to competent individuals who request it, has been legalised (Steinbock 2005, 235, 238). A distinction should be maintained between suicide and (mercy) killing, acts in which the agents differ, though of course exactly where the line should be drawn is part of the problem. The ethical arguments in support of PAS involve suffering and autonomy (Steinbock 2005, 235-6). The first assertion is that is cruel to prolong the life of a patient who is in pain that cannot be medically controlled; the second, in the words of Dr Linda Ganzini based on her study in Oregon, involves the idea that ‘being in control and not dependent on other people is the most important thing for them in their dying days’ (quoted in Steinbock 2005, 235). The logical outcome of these arguments is that, if PAS can be justified on the grounds of suffering or autonomy, why should it be restricted to competent individuals or the terminally ill? Indeed the judge in Compassion in dying v State of Washington (1995) stated that ‘if at the heart of the liberty protected by the Fourteenth Amendment is this uncurtailable ability to believe and act on one’s deepest beliefs about life, the right to suicide and the right to assistance in suicide are the prerogative of at least every sane adult. The attempt to restrict such rights to the terminally ill is illusory’ (Steinbock 2005, 236). As noted above, religious disapproval of suicide has becom>