Why Do Christians Use Birth Control?
by Randall Terry
Have you ever stopped to think why Christian couples use birth control?
"We just got married and we are not ready for kids. "
"We want to give quality time to the children we already have."
'We simply cannot afford another child."
"I'd go crazy if we had any more kids."
Do any of these excuses sound familiar to you? Or better yet, are you using any of these excuses?
When I discuss the notion that we should trust God with how many children we should have, I hear the
above excuses again and again, plus a multitude more.
I have heard these excuses before — on the doorstep of an abortion mill.
The dreadful truth is that most of the excuses that women give for having their children killed through
abortion are the exact same reasons we give for not having children.
At its core, birth control is anti-child. And I am not only speaking about abortifacients such as the pill or
I.U.D., but any drug or device that prevents us from having children. When we use birth control we are
saying, "No, I do not want children."
Is it any wonder that the church cannot stop child-killing? How do we expect to defeat child-killing in the
world when we cannot defeat child-rejection in our own midst? Jeremiah said if we run with footmen and
grow weary, what will we do with horses?
I cannot be too hard on Christians who use birth control. My wife and I fell into the same trap when we
were first married. We were told by all of our peers and spiritual leaders that it was the "wise" thing to do.
Frankly, we would much rather have a nine year old son or daughter than such wisdom.
In an age of Christianity when we constantly talk about faith, trusting God, God supplying our needs, etc.,
why can't we simply trust God for how many children we have?
When we use birth control, we are cutting short our heritage; we are perhaps short-circuiting entire
generations of humanity. Consider this: Mrs. Wesley's thirteenth child, Charles, wrote hundreds of
glorious hymns; Mrs. Whitefield's seventh child, George, was the most prominent preacher in the Great
Awakening in America; Mrs. Washington's fifth child (fifth out of ten) was our beloved first President.
If Mrs. Washington had been in some of our churches today, after her third or fourth child half of the
women in the church would have told her to get a diaphragm or have her tubes tied! What a tragic loss
that would be for all of us.
What do you think when you see a woman with five children? Are you happy or embarrassed? Do you
approach her with congratulations or condolences? Do you happily exclaim, "Are these all yours?! What a
blessing!" Or do you somberly question," Are these all yours? You poor thing. How do you do it? I would
The horrible reality is that much of the Church today in America is anti-child. We view children as a
burden, a nuisance, an interruption in our lives, a drain on our finances, a sapping of our strength, and on
Many Christians can't get righteously indignant about child-killing when in their hearts they sympathize
with why some women have abortions.
So what do we do? Hopefully, nobody reading this is on the pill or using an I.U.D. If you are, stop
immediately. They are abortifacients. If you know someone who is using them be a friend to them and tell
them the truth. But furthermore, if you are using any kind of birth control—stop. Leave the number of
children you have in God's hands.
"Oh, but I'll have 10 kids!" I hear someone exclaiming. With all due respect, you don't know how many
children you will have. Leah had six, Rachel had two, Sarah and Rebekah had one. The truth is, you
simply don't know how many children you will have.
If you have been "sterilized," seek a medical reversal. I recently met a pastor in Oregon who sold his
baseball card collection in order to pay for his wife's tubal ligation to be reversed. They are rejoicing in
the Lord as she enters her seventh month of pregnancy with a child they almost never had.
One final thought; consider the origins of the birth control movement—Margaret Sanger and Planned
Parenthood. Margaret Sanger wanted Christians (among others) to use birth control. She despised our
God, and loathed large Christian families. If someone could laugh in hell, she would surely laugh at us.
I would like to quote one of the least popular Psalms of our day, Psalm 127:3-5.
Behold, children are a gift of the Lord; The fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a
warrior, so are the children of one's youth. How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them; They
not be ashamed, When they speak with their enemies in the gate.
These verses clearly proclaim how we should view our children they are our heritage, our reward. In fact
our children are the only eternal possession we have except for our own souls.
God restore to us a respect, a love and a desire for our most precious possessions — the fruit of the womb.
© 1997 Advocates for Life Ministries