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The Blue Letter Bible

Blood Transfusions

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The Current Teaching Of The Watchtower Society:

Transferring blood from the veins or arteries of one person to another is equivalent to feeding upon or "eating" the blood and is unscriptural, causing loss of eternal life. Thus, if a person receives a blood transfu- sion, he will not inherit a place in the kingdom of God.

What the Bible Says about BLOOD:

1. The BLOOD OF CHRIST Has A Special, High Place In Scripture:
It alone is sufficient for eternal life - not ours Hbr 9:13, 14
With one sacrifice, it paid for all of mans' sins Hbr 9:24-28
It brought eternal life to every believer Jhn 6:53-56
2. Concerning The HUMAN CONSUMPTION Of Blood:
Nothing coming from the outside of a believer can make him defiled or impure; thus ending the possibility of eternal life Mar 7:15
Eating blood cannot defile a believer Mat 15:11
3. Concerning Any Eternal Penalty For The Consumption Of ANIMAL BLOOD:
Violation of health laws does not effect eternal life Act 15:20, 28, 30
Jesus' personal sacrifice made the observance of ceremonial law no longer necessary Lev 17:14; Gal 5:14
Eternal life is not based on ceremonial law observance Rom 6:14
Christ provided a means for any law breaker - that's 100% of earth's population - to be able to have assurance of eternal life Rom 10:4
Note: There are three important points the student of this subject must consider when seeking to understand the meaning of the Scriptures regarding the sanctity of blood...
  • First, the practice of the peoples in the days of the Apostles and before involved the drinking of blood as part of the worship of various deities, and, among some peoples, as a means of gaining supernatural power which they understood to be in the blood. It was this idolatrous purpose and practice which surely motivated God to forbid the drinking of blood in the first place.
  • Second, it is a scientific fact that blood cannot be completely removed from any living thing that is used for food. Virtually everyone that eats meat or its by-products has "eaten" a large amount of blood during their lifetime. This means that virtually every Watchtower Society members - unless they are strict vegetarians - has consumed a large quantity of animal blood during their lifetime.
  • Third, blood transfusions involve the use of blood for the same purpose as God intended it to be used: as a life giving agent in the blood stream. No worship of alien deities or the gaining of supernatural power is involved. The recipient of a blood transfusion does not "eat" the blood, which would be using it for different purpose. A similar example of this principle should be noted: a skin graft, a kidney transplant, cornea transplant, or the like. A pint of blood given by a willing, healthy donor is a gift of life in much the same way as that of a cornea or a kidney. No violation of any laws of sanctity are involved.

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The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.