A biotech company promising to resurrect the dead through the use of stem-cell technology recently was criticized by a rabbi for violating divine law with its plan.
Now an American pastor is adding his voice to the condemnation, claiming medical science is coming close to replicating the first deception of Satan in the Garden of Eden.
He cites Genesis 3:4, "And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die."
Pastor Carl Gallups, author of "When the Lion Roars: Understanding the Implications of Ancient Prophecies for Our Time," said there is a clear pattern by modern scientists and entrepreneurs of pursuing what is essentially godhood.
"Here is the dirty little secret that few are discussing – all of this goes directly to the deception first implanted in the Garden of Eden – by Satan himself," warned the pastor.
"Think of the elements of that anthropic disaster. Adam and Eve were promised, ‘You surely shall not die.' They were told that if they would just follow the ‘promise' that Satan offered that they could be ‘like gods.' They were told that death would not be a hindrance and that the knowledge they would gain would give them everything their hearts desired. Of course, every bit of Satan's salesmanship was a lie.
"But do an Internet search on these topics today. Observe how many of today's godless, arrogant elite are talking about ‘becoming gods,' or ‘we're on the verge of eternal life technologies,' or our ‘knowledge growth rate is becoming almost supernatural.' Those who do not have a biblical worldview are missing what is actually happening right before our eyes. We are actually on the cusp of being in the ‘days of Noah,' and the ‘days of Lot' that Jesus warned would mark the days just before His return in Luke 17."
Scientists have received permission from ethical watchdogs to attempt to stimulate the regrowth of neurons in clinically dead patients. Trials are expected to begin this year.
However, as Gallups notes, there is a difference between using medical technology to help someone who has just died and sensational claims that companies will soon be "raising the dead." As the pastor observes, there is not even true agreement on when a person is completely "dead."
"With the modern advancements in medical technologies regarding life-sustaining capabilities, all manner of theological and ethical questions have arisen," he explained. "Is brain-dead really ‘dead?' We can now keep a body ‘alive' on machines that do the breathing, blood circulation, and keep the heart beating artificially for the comatose patient – but is that artificial existence really ‘life?' To make matters more difficult, there have been those extremely rare cases where a patient makes a recovery from such a state, causing even more questions and controversy."
Similar questions arose this week when President Trump suggested he would help Charlie Gard, a 10-month-old baby in London with a rare genetic disease who has been barred by the European Court of Human Rights from traveling to the United States for experimental treatment.
The controversy over Terri Schiavo roiled the country during the George W. Bush administration. While neither Gard nor Schiavo was "brain dead," it's possible new treatments could create new controversies about whether medical care should be mandated for people who have clinically "died."
Mark Biltz, author of "God's Day Timer," suggests these kinds of treatments are not necessarily sinful.
"We are to do everything possible to bring life," he told WND. "People become clinically dead after a heart attack and are brought back to life and there is no argument of that medical procedure. If this is a new medical procedure where now the brain can be brought back to life after being declared clinically dead, that is great!"
Biltz also suggested those "brought back from the dead" would not be soulless or something unnatural, as the treatment described would be immediately following clinical death. He suggested there is nothing inherently evil about any form of technology.
"Technology is a tool that can be used for good or evil and based on the motivation and the intent of the user will determine the morality," the pastor told WND.
However, Biltz did suggest the acceleration of technological change suggests those who believe the Second Coming are on to something.
"In [the book of] Daniel, it does mention that in the last days knowledge would be increased," he told WND. "This is a clear indicator of just how close we are to the coming of the Messiah!"
The Bible story is more miraculous and astounding than you could have imagined. See the incredible proof of the unchanging nature of God – and the exciting clues to what awaits at the end of days in "God's Day Timer" by Mark Biltz, available as a book or documentary now in the WND Superstore.
Jan Markell of Olive Tree Ministries also believes such efforts are a sign of the end times, but she has a far more hostile view of the technology.
"This is a ‘last days' type of perversion with thinking that was likely going on in the days of Noah," she told WND. "The very idea is an affront to God, who alone gives and takes life. Mankind today wants to be godlike and do away with the one true God. He is an inconvenience. If they are trying to compete with the resurrection, they are really competing with the Rapture and even eternal life. Their efforts will not be successful."
Markell believes the effort is just the latest attempt by mankind to try to supplant God, an impulse, as Gallups suggested, that ultimately comes from Satan.
"Satan states in Isaiah 14 that he will ascend and be like God," Markell told WND. "He is putting ideas into the minds of men to challenge God. It won't work. But mortal men have always challenged God or wanted to be like God. He has the final say. I suspect He is sitting in the Heavens and laughing at them – Psalm 2:4."
A remarkable story of finding God's light in a time of darkness. Don't miss this testimony of faith in amid the Holocaust. "Trapped In Hitler's Hell," now available as a book or documentary now in the WND Superstore.
Gallups takes a more nuanced view, suggesting commentators should be precise and cautious when analyzing new technology.
"There are two related issues in this matter: the science problem and the theological problem," he said. "The science problem arises from the fact that most of the headlines regarding ‘resurrection of the dead' are more hysteria than fact. What we are really talking about, thus far, is resuscitation technology and not true ‘resurrection' technology. Up to this point, the potentiality of the theorized process is limited to patients who are clinically brain dead and have been kept ‘alive' on life support.
"The problem, so far, is that the process is untested and is largely theoretical, not to mention the number of detractors within the scientific community itself who are skeptical of the actual success of such a quest. The theoretical side of this potential technology has been discussed for years. The last five years or so has seen the discussion explode into international headlines."
However, Gallups also says many are now making un-ironic and expansive claims about defeating death entirely.
"There are now sincere discussions among some in the scientific community regarding the possibility of true ‘eternal life' technologies eventually arising out of successful trials of the upcoming resuscitation experiments," he said. "Most legitimate scientific resources estimate that we are still decades away from even coming close to real eternal life potentiality achieved through technological processes."
Gallups said Christians should not be opposed to the advance of technology. But he also warns the perverted quest for godhood is a constant in human history.
"I am absolutely in favor of technologies that bring comfort, healing and restoration of the quality of life to hurting people," Gallups told WND. "I believe these technologies and knowledge-sets are gifts from Yahweh himself – and I am grateful for them. However, like with any other gift from God, there is always the process of the corruption of that knowledge, instituted by the demonic.
"I believe we are watching humankind's God-denying lust for the ultimate conquering of death in an attempt to thwart the curse that Yahweh has decreed upon a fallen creation. Of course, Yahweh will not be thwarted. He will not be mocked. To create and to give life – real life – is the glory of Yahweh himself. That glory will not be shared with fallen man."
The worst part, says Gallups, is mankind already has the key to eternal life.
"The saddest thing in all this to me is that while fallen humanity so disparately looks for the gift of eternal life – Yahweh has already graciously provided it through Jesus Christ."
Extraordinary events predicted centuries in advance are unfolding now. Here is your guide to the remarkable prophecies being fulfilled before our very eyes. Don't miss the bestselling sensation from one of America's most prolific and beloved pastors. "When the Lion Roars: Understanding the Implications of Ancient Prophecies for Our Time" by Carl Gallups, available now in the WND Superstore.