I am newly married and so have come across the issue of contraception. Prophylactics, birth control pills, natural family planning, abstinence, etc.  Is contraception at all Biblical? 


What an excellent question!  It is sad that more Christian couples don't ask it. I also asked this question years ago and found no one with the answer.  So I looked at the Scriptures and here's what I saw:   

1.  God said, to Adam and Eve, and to Noah's and his sons, (which would be a command for all generations after them), "Be fruitful and multiply" and He never rescinded the command. Therefore I could conclude that God wanted husbands and wives to have children, and it is implied that they are to be fruitful (having much fruit--lots of babies)  

2.  God wants Christians to have lots of children because he was seeking "godly offspring"   

"Has not the LORD made them one? In flesh and spirit they are his. And why one? Because he was seeking godly offspring. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith with the wife of your youth."  [Malachi 2:15]

2a.  God considers children a blessing from Him (something that will make us happy!)

"Sons are a heritage from the LORD, children a reward from him.  Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one's youth.
Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them."  [Psalm 127:3-5]   

3.  God has the ability to "open and close" the womb causing conception or not.

"Ephraim's glory will fly away like a bird - no birth, no pregnancy, no conception."  [Hosea 9:11]  (God will prevent it)

"The angel of the LORD appeared to her and said, "You are sterile and childless, but you are going to conceive and have a son."  [Judges 13:3]

"Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife. Then he went to her, and the LORD enabled her to conceive, and she gave birth to a son."  [Ruth 4:13]

"When the LORD saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb: but Rachel was barren (womb kept closed by God)."  [Genesis 29:31]

"Then God remembered Rachel; he listened to her and opened her womb."  [Genesis 30:22]

"But to Hannah he gave a double portion because he loved her, and the LORD had closed her womb."  [1 Samuel 1:5]

So we can easily see, that God is capable of opening and closing the womb, therefore controlling birth.  But now it comes down to a question can God be trusted to control the number of births, providing just the right number for the couple?

4. God has commanded that all Christians, to include the Christian couple to live by faith.  

"In the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: 'The righteous will live by faith.'"  [Romans 1:17]

"But the man who has doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin."  [Romans 14:23]

Let me try to put this together for you.
 I believe that Birth Control for a Christian couple is a matter of faith.  Those who have great faith can trust God to provide just the right number of children, at just the right time.  Their God will honor their faith, and never give a child that is not good for the family, nor withhold one that would be beneficial.  So the couple can simply rely on the Lord to provide the children and the resources to care for them.  And guess who gets all the glory for the timing of the births?  God does.   

Now when man decides to make the decision as whether to have children or not, then there are some problems:

1.  The glory for the decision goes to man, not God.

2.  The heart is deceitful (at times), even for the Christian, and our selfishness may prevail.  We may think it is not the "right time" to have a baby because we don't want the responsibility, nor the restricted life style.  It is easy to think selfishly.  A woman could say, "Well I have my career to think of, maybe later."  Yet she forgets the high-calling of motherhood, and God's prescribed role of the wife/mother, to be "in the home" as a 'helper' to the man.

3.  A couple could say, "Well we can't really afford a child (or another child) at this time."  But again, their hearts may be saying, "we don't want to give up our current lifestyle, our that planned new car or boat."  Yet present financial circumstances are not a good indicator, for we don't really need more income, until after the child arrives, and then only a little more each year, and then a lot when they are teenagers!  Yet God promises to meet ALL the needs of Christians, if--they will "seek His Kingdom and His righteousness."

4.  The various forms of man's birth controls seem to indicate that they are not God-sent:

A. The Rhythm - This method requires abstinence, which is prohibited in the Bible, except for special times of "prayer" and then both must be in agreement:
  "Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control."  [1 Corinthians 7:5]  (context is sexual intercourse in marriage).   

B. Withdrawal - God designed that sexual intercourse in marriage is to be a mutually enjoyable, fulfilling experience, and to "withdraw" at the critical point in the lovemaking, would seem to take the pleasure of the moment, that God designed, and replace it with frustration.

C. Prophylactics - Disrupts the spontaneity (getting ready), often robs the man of some of the feelings of intimacy.

D.  Birth Control Pill, IUDs - Can and often cause side effects of cramping, headaches, and even worse: (updated 1/13/03) they can cause an abortion to take place!  Please go to this link to read an article that exposes the danger of Birth Control Pills causing abortions:

Bottom line, it will depend where the Christian couple's faith is.  If they are of little faith (not a sin, just a point in the faith growth process), then they would not be sinning to exercise "birth control" assuming of course they are continually asking for wisdom from the Holy Spirit and avoid any chance of causing an abortion.  Yet those with great faith, can and must trust God, and enjoy the joy and peace of such a decision, and then share that faith with those of little faith.  God can be trusted.  

My wife and I both had great faith in God before we met.  After we dated for almost a year we decided on marriage and both agreed that God could be trusted in the control of births. We let Him decide on the right number of children.  A year after our marriage we had our first child, and then about every 14-18 months.  We  ended with six children, three boys and three girls.  All are precious and very close friends.  They range in ages from 13 to 20.  Because of our great faith (a gift from God Himself) we have and are passing that faith onto our children, and they are growing rapidly in faith.   After the sixth child (three C-sections, and three vaginal deliveries), the doctor said that another pregnancy could cause a great danger to my wife and the child.  At that point, we felt it would be testing God to continue on with that new information.  So we agreed to the tubal ligation, and felt this was from the Lord.  We have seen that with each child, our income continued to rise to meet the new expenses.  And now that the older ones are reaching the college age, it is amazing to see how God is meeting those needs.   

By the way, we also knew a couple with the similar great faith, and trusted God for birth control and had no children, which they accepted as God's perfect plan for their lives (they may have adopted some--we moved away from the area years ago).

Added to Bible Bulletin Board's "Tony Capoccia's Questions and Answers" by:

Tony Capoccia
Bible Bulletin Board
Box 119
Columbus, New Jersey, USA, 08022
Websites: and
Online since 1986