What does the Bible say about the practice of "playing God" and creating life through fertility treatments?
With the rise of infertility, your thoughtful question raises some difficult and complex implications. But since the Bible is silent on the matter specifically, we must be careful not to rush to conclusion. However Scripture does make a case that the work of creating and implanting an embryo is not inherently evil or sinful.
First, God’s word declares human life to be sacrosanct and precious to Him, but also credits God alone as the One causing a child to be born. Consider a sample of Psalms:
Psa. 127:3 Behold, children are a gift of the LORD,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Psa. 22:9 Yet You are He who brought me forth from the womb;
You made me trust when upon my mother’s breasts.
Psa. 22:10 Upon You I was cast from birth;
You have been my God from my mother’s womb.
Psa. 71:6 By You I have been sustained from my birth;
You are He who took me from my mother’s womb;
My praise is continually of You.
So clearly the Lord is the One determining when a child will be born to a family and under what circumstances. Doctors and other professionals play a role in the process but not in the outcome. At best, modern medicine is a tool used by God to bring forth those He has chosen to grant life. In that sense, fertility doctors are no different than the midwives of old, who brought forth children according to God’s purposes.
For example, consider the situation in Egypt during the Exodus:
Ex. 1:15 Then the king of Egypt spoke to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other was named Puah;
Ex. 1:16 and he said, “When you are helping the Hebrew women to give birth and see them upon the birthstool, if it is a son, then you shall put him to death; but if it is a daughter, then she shall live.”
Ex. 1:17 But the midwives feared God, and did not do as the king of Egypt had commanded them, but let the boys live.
Ask who was responsible for granting life to these Jewish children? In human terms the answer is the midwives, but in biblical terms the true answer is that God used the midwives to ensure the birth of the children He ordained to live. Likewise, who is responsible for bringing forth children from fertility treatments? Is it the doctors or God?
Finally, consider this well-known psalm:
Psa. 139:13 For You formed my inward parts;
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
Psa. 139:14 I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
Psa. 139:15 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth;
Psa. 139:16 Your eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Your book were all written
The days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.
Who forms the infant who lives? Who wrote the life of each child in the His book prior to birth? So when all is said and done, who is responsible for life and death? God considers new life a blessing and a gift, and so we should too.