Abortion - Seventh-day Adventism is Pro-Choice

"You show me a church that fails to take a stand on political issues that involve moral principles, and I'll show you a church that is spineless, irrelevant, and morally bankrupt."
--Uriah Smith, SDA Pioneer, Advent Review and Sabbath Herald

Seventh-day Adventists take the popular "pro-choice" position that the decision to terminate the life of a baby "should be made by the pregnant woman."1 SDA women who terminate their babies prior to birth face no censure from the sect. In fact, many SDA hospitals perform abortions on a regular basis.

Historical Position on Abortion

When the SDA Church started out, Adventists were staunchly pro-life. Early SDA leaders such as James White, J.N. Andrews, Dr. J.H. Kellogg, and other SDA pioneers all denounced abortion in the strongest terms:

  • James White called it "devilish" and "murder."2
  • John Harvey Kellogg, M.D., called it a "most heinous crime...MURDER, child murder, the slaughter of the innocents more cruel than Herod, more cold-blooded than the midnight assassin, more criminal than the man who slays his enemy?the most unnatural, the most inhuman, the most revolting of all crimes against human life."3
  • J.N. Andrews wrote: "One of the most shocking, and yet one of the most prevalent sins of this generation, is the murder of unborn infants. Let those who think this a small sin, read Ps. 139:16. They will see that even the unborn child is written in God?s book. And they may be well assured that God will not pass unnoticed the murder of such children."4
  • Ellen White never directly mentions "abortion" although she wrote that women who drink even a "drop" of strong drink (alcoholic) while they are pregnant commit "a direct sin against the Creator."5 It is reasonable to assume that if a mother permitting a "drop" of alcohol to enter her body while pregnant is a sin against the creator, how much more of a heinous sin would it be to permit the mother to murder that same baby!

The SDA Church did not even permit abortions until 1970.

Shift on Abortion Position in 1970

The SDA position on abortion changed in 1970, when an SDA hospital in Hawaii (Castle Memorial Hospital) began permitting abortions reportedly because they were afraid of losing patients who would go to other hospitals to get abortions!

In the early 1970s, the SDA Church developed two pairs of "guidelines" about abortion. One contained strict guidelines, and was for the PUBLIC to see. The other was much more liberal, and it was released privately to the hospitals. The PRIVATE version allowed physicians to perform ANY type of abortion-on-demand. (See SDA Church engaging in deceptive practices)

SDA Evangelist Kevin Paulson defends Abortion claiming, "Seventh-day Adventists have a time-tested heritage of adhering strictly to the Bible in matters of faith and morality." Apparently he believes abortion is consistent with the Bible's teachings. Ironically, he then unleashes a tirade against non-Adventist pro-life Christian leaders who he denounces as not having the "truth":

"Many are forming opinions about abortion, not from the study of Scripture or the Spirit of Prophecy [Ellen White's] writings, but from listening to popular Christian leaders like James Dobson, Tim LaHaye, Franky Schaeffer, and Bill Gothard. Sincere though they may be, these men espouse many theological errors and have no understanding of God's truth for this time. Seventh-day Adventists should listen to such persons with extreme care and discriminating judgment."6

Apparently if a Christian ignores Adventist "truth" and wears a wedding ring, ignores the Sabbath, or eats meat, anything he says about the Bible is suspect.

How Many Babies are Adventists Killing?

Wrapped in secrecy, it is difficult to obtain exact figures on who is performing abortions, but there is some evidence to indicate Adventists are one of the largest performers of abortions in the USA (that includes both official SDA institutions and those operated independently by Seventh-day Adventist individuals). Here are some facts:

  1. Dr. Irving "Bud" Feldkamp III, member of the Azure Hills Seventh-day Adventist Church in Grand Terrace, California, is the owner of Family Planning Associates of California, which is the LARGEST ABORTION PROVIDER in the state of California.7

  2. Dr. Richard Fredericks says, "In Adventist Hospitals where abortions are performed the overwhelming percentage are elective..."8

  3. In 2005, George Reid, of the SDA Biblical Research Institute, reported to Teresa Beem that the SDA Church was "pro-choice" and Washington Adventist Hospital was becoming an "Abortion Mill".9 The Washington Times reported that SDA hospital performed 1,494 abortions between 1975 and 1982.

  4. There are reports of SDA teen-agers attending SDA Academies getting pregnant, and being taken quietly to SDA hospitals for abortions. The author has seen reports of this from more than one source, but this is a very private matter and it is difficult to get exact figures.

Biblical View of Abortion

SDA Evangelist Kevin Paulson claims "the writings of Inspiration say nothing about" the "issue" of abortion.10 Is that true? While Scripture does not use the word "abortion", neither does Scripture use the words "drugs" or "tobacco" or "gambling," all of which the SDA Church condemns. Therefore, it is ludicrous for SDA corporate leaders to insinuate there is no moral teaching regarding the sanctity of human life in the womb simply because the word "abortion" does not appear in Scripture. The truth is that Scripture has a great deal to say about the sacredness of life inside the womb.11

1. Children are a gift from the Lord

"Truly children are a gift from the Lord; the fruit of the womb is a reward." (Psalm 127:3).

2. The child in the womb is alive, is human, and can have a relationship with the Lord

The same Greek word is used for the child before and after birth (Brephos, that is, "infant," is used in Luke 1:41 and Luke 18:15.)

God knows the preborn child: "You knit me in my mother's womb . . . nor was my frame unknown to you when I was made in secret." (Psalm 139:13,15)

God also helps and calls the pre-born child: "You have been my guide since I was first formed . . . from my mother's womb you are my God" (Psalm 22:10-11). "God from my mother's womb had set me apart and called me through his grace." (Paul to the Galatians 1:15)

3. Scripture repeatedly condemns shedding of "innocent blood" (Jer. 7:6)

"Thou shalt not kill" (Exodus 20:13, Deuteronomy 5:17). Jesus reaffirms it in Matthew 19:18. Revelation affirms that (unrepentant) murderers cannot enter the kingdom of heaven (Revelation 22:15).

4. The Torah considers the pre-born child a living being

If an unborn child was killed during a fight, the one who caused the death must pay with his life:

"If men who are fighting hit a pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely but there is no serious injury, the offender must be fined. If there is serious injury, you are to take life for life." (Exodus 21:22,23)

5. God forms us in the womb

"...You knit me together in my mothers womb...Your eyes saw my unformed body..." (Psalm 139:13,16)

"Your hands shaped me and made me? Did You not clothe me with skin and flesh and knit me together with bones and sinews? You gave me life." (Job 10:8-12)

"This is what the Lord says?He who made you, who formed you in the womb." (Isaiah 44:2)

6. It is contrary to the Golden Rule

"Do unto others as you would have them do to you" (Matthew 7:12). Would you want someone to abort you? No? Then don't abort them!

7. God will not hear the prayers of those with blood on their hands

"When you spread out your hands, I close my eyes to you; though you pray the more, I will not listen. Your hands are full of blood!" (Isaiah 1:15).

8. Those who murder others belong to Satan

"Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning..." (John 8:44)


While giving lip service to respecting life, the leadership of the SDA Corporation continues to permit abortions in its institutions and by its physicians. The SDA Church insists their followers abstain from eating pork, having a glass of wine, or engaging in "secret vice" because the "body is a temple of the Holy Spirt" (1 Cor. 6:19). Yet they seemingly have no qualms whatsoever about allowing a murder to take place within that same temple. They even go so far as to employ SDA physicians working at SDA institutions "of healing" to perform those temple killings and then profit from the shedding of innocent blood!

For a people so focused on the Ten Commandments, it is ironic to find them allowing their institutions and members to break the sixth commandment: "Thou shalt not kill".


1. "Official Statement Guidelines" of the Seventh-day Adventist Church on "Abortion". October 12, 1992. http://www.adventist.org/en/information/official-statements/guidelines/article/go/0/abortion/

2. James White, editor. Solemn Appeal (Battle Creek, Michigan: Stem Press, 1870), p. 100.

3. J.H. Kellogg. Man the Masterpiece (Battle Creek, Michigan: Modern Medicine Publishing Co., 1894), pp. 424-425.

4. J.N. Andrews, editor. ?"A Few Words Concerning a Great Sin,"?Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, Nov. 30, 1869.

5. Ellen White, Ministry of Healing, p. 373.

6. Kevin D. Paulson, "SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTS AND THE ABORTION QUESTION: WHERE SHOULD WE STAND?", http://adventistlaymen.com/Documents/SEVENTH-DAY%20ADVENTISTS%20AND%20THE%20ABORTION%20QUESTION.htm, extracted July 13, 2014.

7. Christian Newswire, Mar. 24, 2009.

8. Richard Fredericks, Ph.D., Proclamation, Jan/Feb 2003.

9. Teresa Beem, http://arthurandteresabeem.blogspot.com/2009/05/ten-commandments-and-abortion.html.

10. Paulson.

11. Some of the points in this section are abridged from Fr. Frank Pavone, "The Bible's Teaching Against Abortion", April 8, 2009. http://www.priestsforlife.org/articles/4376-the-bibles-teaching-against-abortion. Brother Anderson notes: "How ironic that Catholicism--a religion which Seventh-day Adventism decries as 'The Whore of Revelation 17'-- has more Biblical clarity on this subject than those who supposedly have 'the truth for this hour.'"