Matters of Life and Death - Edexcel
GCSE Religious Studies Unit 3
1 Christianity and Life after Death
1.1 Resurrection of the body - when people die,
they stay in the grave until the end of the
world. Then God will raise everyone and judge
them. Good=Heaven, Bad=Hell
1.1.1 Jesus rose from dead
1.1.2 St Paul'd teaching in 1Cor 15
1.1.3 Part of Christian Creed
1.2 Immortality of soul - no belief in
resurrection! Instead the belief
that the soul lives on after the
death of the body. When people
die, their soul goes straight to
1.2.1 Jesus said criminal on cross would be
in paradise straight after death
1.2.2 Near-death experiences (soul
leaving body and going down a
tunnel of light to God) show
2 Why do Christians believe in Life
2.1 The Bible and Creed teaches that there is
2.2 Jesus rose from dead.
2.3 Evidence of ghosts and spirits
which are said to haunt places
are believed to be souls of
those whose passage has been
disrupted on the way to their
2.4 Near Death Experiences have occurred
at moments of death, whereby people
experience sensations of floating away
from the body towards bright light
where they meet a religious figure.
2.5 Life after Death gives life
meaning and purpose.
3 Why do some people not believe in Life after Death?
3.1 Religions all teach different things
about life after death -
resurrection - and they cannot all be
3.2 Religious people simply
believe an afterlife exists by
faith, but ultimately they
cannot prove their belief to
3.3 Near Death Experiences can be
scientifically proved by the brain
being starved of oxygen, and so
3.4 Ghosts and spirits are
figments of people's
3.5 The soul has no physical substance and therefore does not exist.
4 Abortion and the Law
4.1 Cannot be carried out
after 24 weeks
4.2 If mother's life is at risk, physical
or mental health is at risk, child is
likely to be born severely
handicapped and serious effects
on children in family - abortion is
5 Christianity and Abortion
5.1.1 Human life begins at
conception, so this would
be killing life.
5.1.2 "Do not Kill" Decalogue
Commandment - it is God
alone who should be the giver
and taker of life, and we
cannot mess with his plan and
5.1.3 Human life is sacred and
all life belongs to God - the
embryo/foetus is human
and therefore should be
given the right to life and
full human rights.
5.1.4 God has a plan for each and
every one of us - we cannot
mess with the Creator.
5.2.1 The Bible does not teach
anything specifically on
5.2.2 Lesser of two evils.
5.2.3 Acceptable if the child
will be brought into a
family whose parents
will not be able to cope
and the child's quality
of life may be deficient.
5.2.4 Rape, Psychological
effects, Lack of
support in terms of
6 Sanctity of Life
6.1 God created life, so only God can take it.
6.2 Decalogue - "Do not commit murder"
6.3 "Your body is a temple of the Holy
Spirit. It is not your own!" - St Paul
6.4 "All human life is sacred" - Magisterium
7 Christianity and Euthanasia
7.1.1 Life is sacred - can
only be taken by God.
7.1.2 "Do not kill" - Decalogue
7.1.3 Doctors are required
and paid to save lives,
7.1.4 Hospices are in function for terminal illnesses.
7.2.1 Doctors should be allowed to give lots of
pain killing drugs, even if they will shorten
life, in order to stop suffering.
7.2.2 Expensive treatments need not to
be carried out to lengthen the lives
of dying patients.
7.2.3 "Love your neighbour" and
8 Causes of Poverty
8.1 War - sometimes caused by
corruption or by the way the
country was split when it was
colonised. Wars destroy homes,
crops, schools, hospitals and
8.2 Natural Disaster - LEDC's are in areas of
floods and earthquakes which destroy
homes, crops etc. e.g.. Bangladesh.
8.3 Debt - all LEDC's suffer
from debt. Have to
borrow money from
banks in developed
countries and pay large
amounts of interest
which could be spent on
8.4 Unfair Trade - High
taxes so goods are very
8.6 Other Factors - Lack of clean water,
too many children, lack of education -
all prevent country from developing.
9.1 Catholic Agency for Overseas Development
9.1.1 Work to relieve poverty
9.2 Many churches have
fundraisers throughout the
year and money is donated
to the charity.
9.3 Raises money through
education on poverty.
9.4 Long term Aid - deals with root causes of
poverty and helps people to help themselves
out of poverty. Groups of people come up
with ideas in which people can become self
supporting and CAFOD fund these projects
such as food production, technical know-how
or community development.
9.4.1 Support for health programmes,
such as eradicating the largest threat
9.5 Short term Disaster Fund - deal with
natural disaster that usually takes
priority over long term aid.
9.5.1 Send food, antibiotics, shelters, blankets.
9.6 Some of budget
spent on educating
Christians on how
they can help LEDC's.