Question of the week: How can God judge a human fetus who dies before being born?
My answer: This question is the subject of much divergent debate among Christian scholars. What follows is my personal interpretation of certain relevant Bible texts. Several scholars that I highly respect disagree with me.
In Psalm 51:5, David declares that he has been a sinner since he was conceived in his mother’s womb. The reason I and many other Christians are against abortion at any time after conception is that based on this text and Exodus 21:22–25 (see The Fetus in Biblical Law), such an act is taking the life of a spiritual being. If the fetus is indeed a spiritual being, then it is likely that God’s Spirit can communicate with the fetus’s spirit independent of education, experience, and brain development.
Exactly how this communication occurs I do not know. However, based on John 1 I am persuaded that it does. John 1 declares that God’s spiritual light has been communicated to every human being. If any human receives God’s spiritual light, that person proceeds toward redemption and salvation. If any human rejects God’s spiritual light, that person proceeds toward condemnation. As for what exactly is God’s spiritual light, John addresses that question in 1 John. 1 John 1 declares that God is light. 1 John 2–4 explains that God’s spiritual light has three components: life, love, and truth. God the Son gives us life. God the Father gives us love. God the Spirit gives us truth. Evidently, every fetus somehow has the capability of perceiving God’s life, love, and truth. Another scriptural example is Luke 1:39–45, where the fetus in Elizabeth responds to the fetus in Mary.