Generation Cedar

Birth Control….doesn’t the very term indicate man’s undermining of God’s sovereignty? What if it were called “Life Control”. We wouldn’t be OK with that…I hope. Because that creeps to the brink of euthanasia, assisted suicide, genocide and other unthinkable atrocities. Hitler even comes to mind. Compare the two phrases…birth control/life control. Yikes…they are not really that far apart, are they?

OK, you say “there’s a difference in taking a life and preventing one”. Is there? Is it really OK with God for us to be “in control of birth”? Well, to answer that question, we must establish the cause of “birth”, or life, if you will. Do we cause it? If so, then I guess it’s OK to control it. Problem: we do NOT cause it. We CANNOT cause it.

“It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves.” Psalm 100:3…
“All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be”…Ps. 139:16
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart;” Jeremiah 1:5
Isn’t it funny how many of us never even question these things? Is it because we are afraid of what we will be forced to admit? Are we afraid of how the reality of the answers will change our lives? Points to ponder…does God really give us authority to “control birth”? (Who was it that said a man with a house full of kids would be happy?)
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11 Responses

  1. Maybe there are some who will disagree with me on this…

    Using “birth control” methods damages the husband-wife relationship. It is also detrimental in a Christian’s relationship with God.

    There is less expression of freedom and of unconditional love, through loss of the expressed desire to make more copies of one’s spouse.

    There is a lack of trust here, with the assumption that one’s spouse would not be able to properly care for, provide for, or love more children.

    There is also the lack of trust that the present may be the right time to have another child, so couples hold off ’till later. Who knows the future, anyway? (Only God knows all.)

    There may be a suppressed desire by one, and a lack of communication about this between spouses because it is such a hot topic(more life, or no more?)

    When the wife’s life could be in adverse danger from pregnancy, using birth control could still be debatable, but this is a very serious concern for both parents, and is perhaps another issue.

    In using birth control, there is also a lack of communication and sincerity in the couple’s relationship with God, for the reasons that none of Scripture teaches or even suggests practicing birth control. This has to weigh heavily on a Christian’s heart who is using birth control of some sort.

    Many, many people have told me that they wish they would have had more children. They sadly regret that they had not, and could not any more. I have never heard the opposite. No one has ever said to me that they wish they had had fewer. It is the hind sight that sees more clearly, and understands better.

  2. I agree “anonymous”…I don’t think you can find anyone that will say…”Gee, I wish I’d have gone on the pill after number 2 was born…I really didn’t care for numbers 3 thru 6 anyway.” I know I can’t imagine NOT having numbers 3 thru 6!!

  3. CONTROL. This could be one reason most people choose not to have more children.

    If there is not a health issue, a financial issue, or a government-imposed regulation, there are still many who could have more children, but choose not to. I think their issue is control. The motive for this control issue is selfishness. (Also out of selfishness comes a sense of arrogance, which is another source of thousands of more problems.)

    Most, if not every one of us, have this problem: the one of wanting to be god of our universe, to be the only one to orchestrate whatever happens in our world. For some of us, it might not go much further than oneself, but for others, it can extend very far, like wanting to be the one in control of all the nations of the world (e.g., the U.N. leaders). Most of us have a very good idea of how we want our lives to turn out, and we try our hardest to make that happen; to be in control.

    Trying to control our universe, we will eliminate anything we identify as a problem or as a roadblock. We also have to maintain our image as the unconquerable king (or queen).

    Children are experts at revealing the faults (and perks) of their parents, even when not trying! (This is good for the parents who are determined to learn and grow with these lessons, and who just enjoy watching and helping their children grow up and mature.)

    By the way, has anyone heard much in the news about the G. W. Bush children, or what about Chelsea Clinton? Hillary Clinton is the one who proposed, “It takes a village…” How much time has she spent with her one child over all these years, and especially this time during her campaign? But it is not only children that are being left for others or just ignored, like in the case of John Edward’s wife…Selfishness…the need to be in total Control of our own lives and agendas, and to maintain that impeccable Image………

    It’s a shame that so many folks do not open their hearts (well, actually, God does that part)and their ears to the Word of God and move on to a more fulfilling and rewarding life than the one that is mostly just wrapped up in selfish motives. We may never know what we are missing until it is too late.

    SUBMISSION to a loving authority is almost always very rewarding.

  4. The comments made have been very good points. The last one, regarding selfishness, sums a whole lot of the issue. Of course this isn’t a blanket statement, but if we all got honest, we would have to admit that our selfish desires to be in control have everything to do with cutting off the godly seed. One of the last comments sparked the idea for today’s blog…

  5. Word warrior, I tend to agree with everything you say, just curious what do you say about birth control in cases where the life of the mother would be in jeopardy?

    –brandy barnett 🙂

  6. Brandy,

    Given that “the life of the mother being in jeopardy” is such a rare case, I really haven’t discussed that. It’s a little like defending abortion on the basis of “what if a woman gets raped?” Obviously my stance on birth control deals more with the general refusal of God’s sovereignty.

    Several things come to mind…is the mom’s life truly in jeopardy (life-threatening), or is pregnancy just hard on her? In many cases, a doctor predicts that having another baby would harm the mother, when in fact, he has no way of knowing. A shaky pregnancy in the past does not necessarily predict any future danger. (I know of several women who were told not to have any more for health reasons, and they ignored the doctors, and have had perfect pregnancies since then.)

    I have also heard someone defend this argument from the standpoint that if God is sovereign, then He is completely sovereign, over mom’s health too.

    With that said, My husband and I have never personally “been put to the test”. I would never condemn a couple who has prayerfully made the decision to stop conceiving–that is between them and the Lord. I’ve always defended birth control from a “healthy reproductive” viewpoint; there are cases where a woman’s reproductive system is no longer healthy or functioning the way God intended. It’s a very tricky subject, and I don’t have an answer, just an opinion.

  7. I am a follower of Christ, and in full time ministry. I’ve been married for 14 years and my husband and I have two children. We feel as if our family is the perfect size, and we do not intend to have more children. After being married for three years, I began to have a strong desire in my heart to have children. I believe that God orders the desires of our hearts, and at that point in time, God put that longing in mine and my husband’s heart. We prayed, and conceived a child quickly. Two years later, I felt again the desire to expand our family. We prayed, and the Lord gave us another child. I have yet to feel the leading and longing to add to our family. I believe that each family is different, each couple is different, and therefore God’s plan for each family unit is unique and specific. We have chosen, using the free will that our loving Father gave us, to practice birth control. If I feel as if the Lord has called us to add to our family, I would happily be obedient. I do not sense that direction. Physical intimacy between a husband and wife goes so far beyond merely reproduction. Physical interactions between a husband and a wife is for the showing of mutual affection, the expression of commitment, the celebration of a marriage union, and the seal of two people brought together by God. The decision my husband and I have made is not a selfish one at all, and it makes me uncomfortable that those who don’t understand our decision accuse us of that. In fact, having no more children is an unselfish decision on our part. We feel as if we are now able to give our two children our full attention, guidance, and love. We feel that our family size is what is best for our children, our marriage, and our ministry. We feel as if we are able to give more of ourselves to the ministry because our demand at home is very manageable for us. Our children are reaping the blessing of having a mom and dad who are happy and fulfilled.

    I am thankful that God has creation physical intimacy to be shared between a husband and wife, and I’m thankful that He leads each person as He sees fit.

  8. I wanted to say that I find this comment rather rude and not logical in the least. ‘“the life of the mother being in jeopardy” is such a rare case, I really haven’t discussed that. It’s a little like defending abortion on the basis of “what if a woman gets raped?”’

    The two are not the same at all. A woman killing her unborn baby because it was conceived in rape is not the same as a woman preventing conception lest she die. Sometimes the issue may not be 100% clear that she will die in childbirth or labor, it may be highly likely for her or the BABY to die. Do we ignore the likelihood if the answer is not 100% certain, but 75% or 85%? If that is the case, as I can assume you happens legitimately, are you suggesting that we encourage her to sacrifice her life or the life of the baby to bring an eternal soul forth? I have heard that argument from others. That would be the logically conclusion if we encourage rape victims to keep the babies they have conceived if we follow through with your comparison above.

    And if you made a mistake and are not suggesting that, then would you be so kind as to shed some light on a subject that few Christians take the time to ponder:

    …Is it acceptable for women to employ permanent birth control if death is imminent for herself or the baby in a future pregnancy? And if so, what forms of birth control are acceptable?

    I believe, just as Satan suggested Jesus cast himself down from the temple, that the angels would bear him up and Jesus responded, “Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God”, neither should we tempt Him in this matter. If we can, with reasonable certainty, predict death for mother or baby, could we be tempting the Lord to see us through that birth?

    We may be well meaning in telling ladies that if they trust in the Lord, He will see them through, but what does that mean to the women who did trust Him and had babies that did die as predicted? Are we suggesting they did not trust enough or the Lord ignored their pleas for protection? What do we tell the husbands who are now widowers with children to care for alone? If only they had trusting harder, his wife would have been spared? I think we must be very careful in how we word our arguments for birth control in these situations. The hurt to these families is unimaginable by those that see this situation as rare or unlikely.

    I really hope that you respond. I look forward to a thoughtful, grace-filled response.

    1. Mrs. R.,

      First, I’m confused about why you think my comment was “rude”. There was nothing rude about it, quite an objective statement, I think, simply explaining why I didn’t go into all the various scenarios.

      To attempt to answer your questions:

      “Is it acceptable for women to employ permanent birth control if death is imminent for herself or the baby in a future pregnancy? And if so, what forms of birth control are acceptable?”

      I do not hold to a “no birth control, ever” stance. Given that, I do think we have to be very careful about using it as a caveat when we need one. I have rarely ever heard of a situation where a doctor could predict that “death is imminent” if she has a baby. Doctors predictions about such things have proven sketchy, at best. Many normal babies are aborted because tests show Down’s when in fact, there was none. So leaning on technology to make a life-altering decision is one I would do with fear and trepidation. I can’t give a black and white answer to such a hypothetical question, nor should I be forced to. My original post was to challenge us to consider birth control for uses of convenience. When we think clearly, it enables us to make better decisions when those hard ones come.

      I think overall your questions exclude the sovereignty of God, though I think there are times when a couple could perfectly well choose to delay or prevent children for certain reasons.

      Do I think it’s better to prevent a child than to have a baby die? No. Such would devalue life. Each life has a specific purpose no matter how long or short.

      I don’t know if this is clear…a lot of commotion around me so I can’t think as clearly as I’d like 😉

  9. I did not intend for my question or response to read as though I was forcing you to answer. I will refrain from asking more questions, but still see you logic as shallow and with a poorly chosen analogy. Thank you.

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