Is being an organ donor right or wrong?
This topic cannot be found in the Bible, as medicine was not as advanced in those days. The first reliable report of a transplant surgery is from 1823 when a German surgeon (Carl Bunger) performed plastic surgery on a woman’s nose, grafting some skin from her thigh. The first successful transplant was in fact performed many decades later, in 1954.
There is no right or wrong answer to this question. It is a question of personal conviction.
Now, what Biblical guidelines do I believe that we can follow in connection with organ donation?
1. Love should motivate any Christian.
Jesus replied: “`Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: `Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
1 Cor 13:13
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
2. Is giving an organ a manifestation of love towards others? Absolutely. It can save a life, and Jesus is a specialist in saving lives.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
“I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
3. Does it give glory to God?
Absolutely, as we portray the same kind of love that God has toward us.
1 Cor 10:31-32
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
Again, if you are not certain, ask yourself the following questions:
e. Will it bring glory to God?
f. Will I honor God by doing so?
g. Is it Biblical?
h. What would Jesus do if he were in my place?
Then pray earnestly to your Heavenly Father for directions and He will guide you.
“If you love me, you will obey what I command. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever- the Spirit of truth.
By doing so in any decision, you can be assured that you will never make a wrong decision. God loves us. He is our guide and example in life!
Now this is a good question because it relates to something in our modern lives that is not mentioned in the Bible and we have to make judgement calls on many aspects of modern life. In such cases it is necessary to base our judgement on themes and guidelines found in the Bible.
Before I go any further, I want to make it clear that no selfish motive is ever ratified by God. This principle applies across the board. Those who ‘farm’ children for spare parts, (yes it does happen, I have seen the pictures), who use the parts of murdered unborn babies, and those who sell organs, either their own or belonging to someone else who has been ‘harvested’, and those who foster these evil practices by buying organs, will not find approval for their actions. Motives of profit or to benefit oneself at the expense of another person, is purely love of self and has nothing to do with God. I personally believe that the practice of buying organs is wicked because of the evil industry it fosters, and that countries that permit it are as guilty as those who do it. It would be better to die than to dishonor oneself in such a way. Now that is off my chest, let’s look at the voluntary donation of one’s organs. Usually in the event of untimely death, and sometimes as a gift of love of a part we can make do without, like a kidney.
First of all, there is a principle that ALL knowledge comes from God. This includes the knowledge that surgeons use to make organ transplants possible.
1Corinthians 1:5-AV That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and [in] all knowledge;
Daniel 1:17-AV As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.
Daniel 2:22-AV He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what [is] in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him.
In the following verses Solomon prayed for knowledge and wisdom to enable him to judge the people wisely and this request was granted.
2 Chronicles 1:10-AV Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people: for who can judge this thy people, [that is so] great?
2Chronicles 1:11-AV And God said to Solomon, Because this was in thine heart, and thou hast not asked riches, wealth, or honour, nor the life of thine enemies, neither yet hast asked long life; but hast asked wisdom and knowledge for thyself, that thou mayest judge my people, over whom I have made thee king:
2 Chronicles 1:12-AV Wisdom and knowledge [is] granted unto thee; and I will give thee riches, and wealth, and honour, such as none of the kings have had that [have been] before thee, neither shall there any after thee have the like.
These few verses are sufficient to establish that the knowledge and wisdom that mankind has, is given by God. It is my belief that God moves in the areas that man has no knowledge of but that when knowledge is given to man then God expects us to use that knowledge, and He then moves back into the unknown. It is frequently the case with prayers for healing that the healing is procured through the medical knowledge that God has given to mankind, and requires no direct intervention from Him. However, as it often occurs, and as it happened to me, one’s condition is such that they are beyond the help of doctors and medicine, and it is then that God provides a cure that is recognizable as a miracle.
Deuteronomy 29:29-AV The secret [things belong] unto the LORD our God: but those [things which are] revealed [belong] unto us and to our children for ever, that [we] may do all the words of this law.
The knowledge to perform transplant surgery has been given to us by God. How we use it will determine whether we serve God with it or not. If we use that knowledge in love to improve the lot of another without causing harm to the donor, I can see no reason why there could be a problem with it. Also, there is the case where a person, usually a close family member will donate an eye, kidney, bone marrow or piece of liver, for a loved one. Whilst this may cause some inconvenience to the donor, it does not cost the donor his or her life, and the donor is rewarded by seeing the difference made by the donation. It is a gift of love.
Mark 12:31-AV And the second [is] like, [namely] this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.
Galatians 5:14-AV For all the law is fulfilled in one word, [even] in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
John 15:13-AV Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
According to the above statement willingly laying down one’s life for another would be highly regarded. The donating of an organ from a person killed in an accident is hardly going this far. However, one gets the impression that a donation costing the life of the donor, would our laws permit it, would receive favor with God. Provided of course, that the donor did this willingly.
There is another aspect to consider. It is quite likely that the person requiring the transplant has not yet made peace with Jesus. The donation of an organ so that the person can go on living, may be just the catalyst needed to bring that person to salvation. Someone once said, “Nothing quickens the mind like one’s impending death.” People awaiting transplants are on ‘death row’. The sudden reprieve through act of love exhibited by the grieving relatives in donating an organ for someone they don’t know and have never met, is enough to make most people reconsider their spiritual condition and soften their hearts. It is another way the Lord can appeal to mankind through an act of love.
So in summary then, as with many such questions, it comes down to motive. Are you serving the needs of others or of yourself? Is the activity being done to the glory of God? God is love. If what we do is an act of love and mercy, then that is witnessing the love of Jesus to others and is entirely consistent with Bible teachings. Being an organ donor is an honorable thing to do.
May God add to us understanding of His word, and the interpretation thereof.
Yes I believe being an organ donor is right. Although the doctors did all they could for the woman with the issue of blood proves that people did turn to doctors in biblical times.
I think it is o.k. to be a organ donor. If people did not then just think how many other folks would die. I know it takes a lot for the family to decide that kind of a decision over a loved one, but thank God some do.
I do believe God would want us to give our organs to help others. After all He gave His only begotten Son to die on a cross that we might have eternal life. I can not donate organs because of my liver disease, but I have donated my body for medical research in hopes that the study of my body might bring forth a cure for this dreaded disease. If I could do anything to save the life of one person, I would.
God loved us that much to give His Son’s life, how could we be expected to do any less?
Peace in Prayer,
Anytime that we can give ourselves so that others can live, I think is ok.
There are many people in the world who are still young, they have families that love and care for them but because of sin and suffering they were born with a bad heart or some other health problem. By someone’s or someone’s family’s unselfishness this person now has the ability to live for many more years so that he can enjoy life and his family can enjoy having him with them.
Joshua & Inga Miller
I am very pro being an organ donor. I believe that if we can give the gift of life to another human being, we should. I have known several Christian organ recipients.
Having set myself up to be a donor, the Holy Spirit has not told me that it is wrong. For the bible says:
1Cor 15:51, We shall not all sleep, but we shall be changed-
If someone can use my body parts. I have been a blessing to them and may have saved a life for Christ to make a change in that life. According to his will..
This week’s Bible question is very interesting. Personally it is very close to my heart since I have had number of very interesting debates on the subject. Bible tells us to do good things to each other, to demonstrate our love and be there to make this world a better place. Jesus set us a great example.
Thus, if all the hope is gone — and there is absolutely nothing to be done to save someone, but his or her organs are in good and donatable condition…then why not to do so?
This truly is a gift of the life! It may give an alcoholic a second chance, it may give someone with heart failure new days and it may bless in number of ways?
In my view it is very much an act of love! At the moment I am not an organ donor, but I have thought of it. I’m looking forward to read other’s opinions on this subject. It will be great to see what others think of this.
Your Brother In Christ!
I think that a person should sit down and discuss this with family members but as an individual who believes in helping others to survive and that’s what its all about surviving and being alive. If any of my organs could help just one person to have life then I say its ok. I don’t see anything wrong with donating organs. Just think, what if someone in your family needed a heart. You know only way that person could get this heart if someone dies. Oh yes, you would accept that donor to keep this person alive. To answer your question, I see no wrong.
How can you answer this question? Its not what is right or what is wrong, its all about saving lives. Its each individual rights in the decision. If you feel its right then do it but if you feel its wrong then don’t do it. My opinion is I feel no wrong in it.
I would like to explain something. When our daughter was dying we had no choice but to do what was right. She had heart problems and her life depended on the surgery. Jan never lived to have her new heart or even have this one repaired. We should pray about a situation as this. Love
I think it’s a good thing to donate our organs, tough I must confess, I never heard or read any “official word” on the topic. As I see it, Jesus was the greatest donor there ever was. Instead of giving just a part of His body to one person or several, He gave ALL of His body for ALL of us. If anyone has any doctrine on this topic, I’d love to read it. Thank You!