What does the Bible say about forms of Birth Control?
There are a few passages in the Bible which are interpreted as God’s opposition towards birth control. First, is the first commandment to humans after the creation when God said to the man and woman, “Be fruitful and multiply.”
Some people interpret that as meaning that intentionally preventing pregnancy would be wrong. But in its original context, this verse was part of a passage telling how God has given mankind stewardship over the world, and it was not a statement about birth control. Here is the New International Version (your personal preference in translation/version may vary slightly) of the verse in Genesis 1:28:
Genesis 1:28 (NIV)
God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
Here is the King James Version for comparison:
Genesis 1:28 (KJV)
And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
The second passage has to do with the Old Testament law of levirate marriage (Deuteronomy 25:5-10). If a man died childless, his brother or nearest relative was expected to marry his widow and father a child to carry on the deceased’s name and inherit his property. (These Old Testament laws do not apply to Christians.)
Deuteronomy 25:5-10 (NIV)
5 If brothers are living together and one of them dies without a son, his widow must not marry outside the family. Her husband’s brother shall take her and marry her and fulfill the duty of a brother-in-law to her. 6 The first son she bears shall carry on the name of the dead brother so that his name will not be blotted out from Israel.
7 However, if a man does not want to marry his brother’s wife, she shall go to the elders at the town gate and say, “My husband’s brother refuses to carry on his brother’s name in Israel. He will not fulfill the duty of a brother-in-law to me.” 8 Then the elders of his town shall summon him and talk to him. If he persists in saying, “I do not want to marry her,” 9 his brother’s widow shall go up to him in the presence of the elders, take off one of his sandals, spit in his face and say, “This is what is done to the man who will not build up his brother’s family line.” 10 That man’s line shall be known in Israel as The Family of the Unsandaled
Later in Genesis, Onan (second son of Judah) refused to fulfill that duty and used a birth control method known as coitus interruptus to prevent pregnancy:
Genesis 38:8-10 (NIV)
8 Then Judah said to Onan, “Sleep with your brother’s wife and fulfill your duty to her as a brother-in-law to raise up offspring for your brother.” 9 But Onan knew that the child would not be his; so whenever he slept with his brother’s wife, he spilled his semen on the ground to keep from providing offspring for his brother. 10 What he did was wicked in the Lord’s sight; so the Lord put him to death also..
Most experts say Onan was condemned for using his brother’s widow for sexual pleasure while refusing to provide offspring for him and that no general criticism of birth control was intended.
Nevertheless, the use of Birth Control and its use angering God is mentioned in the Book of Jasher.
Jasher 2:19-22 19
For in those days the sons of men began to trespass against God, and to transgress the commandments which he had commanded to Adam, to be fruitful and multiply in the earth. 20 And some of the sons of men caused their wives to drink a draught that would render them barren, in order that they might retain their figures and whereby their beautiful appearance might not fade. 21 And when the sons of men caused some of their wives to drink, Zillah drank with them. 22 And the child-bearing women appeared abominable in the sight of their husbands as widows, whilst their husbands lived, for to the barren ones only they were attached.
- The Book of Jasher, also called the Book of the Upright, is known in Hebrew as: סֵפֶר הַיׇּשׇׁר (sēfer hayyāšār), or Sefer haYashar. It is a Hebrew midrash book mentioned in the Hebrew Bible. It is known as the “Book of the Just Man” in the traditional Greek and Latin translations, while the transliterated form “Jasher” is found in the King James Bible, 1611. The Septuagint translation renders the Hebrew סֵפֶר הַיׇּשׇׁר (sēfer hayyāšār) as ‘Book of the Just’.
This passage was a double whammy, one for using birth control and going against the First Commandment given (Genesis 1:28) and then a second for abandoning their child bearing wives in favor of artificially barren fair figured women (Lusting).
To make things worse, it (drink a draught that would render them barren) was one of the transgressions (lust and sexual perversion, they mated with animals and birds too) that angered God to the point of repenting against creating mankind, along with the rest of His earthly creations which had been corrupted by the rebellious angels. This is shown in the First Book of Enoch when the Watchers (fallen angels) petitioned to God through Enoch for forgiveness and mercy.
Gods response was harsh and final.
1 Enoch 16:4
Say to them therefore: “You have no peace.”
Then came the flood to wipe them out.
During this time, God did show mercy to Zillah who had been drinking the birth control potion by opening her womb in her later years so she could conceive two children, Tubal Cain and Naamah.
21 And when the sons of men caused some of their wives to drink, Zillah drank with them.
22 And the child-bearing women appeared abominable in the sight of their husbands as widows, whilst their husbands lived, for to the barren ones only they were attached.
23 And in the end of days and years, when Zillah became old, the Lord opened her womb.
24 And she conceived and bare a son and she called his name Tubal Cain, saying, After I had withered away have I obtained him from the Almighty God.
25 And she conceived again and bare a daughter, and she called her name Naamah, for she said, After I had withered away have I obtained pleasure and delight.
Tubal Cain ended up causing the death of Cain (Abel’s cursed brother) and Naamah became Noah’s wife and was spared from being wiped out from the Great Flood god caused to cleanse the earth of its corruptions. The two births granted to Zillah by the Lord both had purposes; one to end Cain, and two to bring forth a new mother (Naamah, Noah’s wife) to re-people the earth after the flood.
With all of these passages (Genesis, Jasher, Deuteronomy, and Enoch) I would have to say God is against Birth Control as it goes against His First Commandment to Humans (Be Fruitful and Multiply) and that it opens the door to lustful behavior leading to further transgressions.
- Book of Jasher, chapter 2
- Lancelot C. Brenton. The Septuagint with Apocrypha: Greek and English. Hendrickson Publishers, 1986. ISBN: 978-0913573440
- Genesis 1:28 (NIV)
- Book of Genesis, Chapter 4, (NIV)
- Book of Genesis 38:8-10 (NIV)
- Deuteronomy 25:5-10 (NIV)
- Book of Jubilees
- First Book of Enoch
- Joseph Lumpkin. The Books of Enoch: The Angels, The Watchers and The Nephilim: Fifth Estate, 2011. ISBN: 978-1936533077
In December of 2017, Pope Francis announced that The Lord’s Prayer has been mistranslated and was being recited wrong. The Lord’s Prayer was given to us in the New Testament Gospels of Matthew and Luke and were originally written in Biblical Greek (Koine Greek), not from Latin (Vulgate Latin) as most most modern tranlastions of the BIble get their version from.
What was the original Lord’s Prayer given to us by Jesus?
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