Is it Sinful For Christian Couples Not to Have Children if They Can?

Is it Sinful For Christian Couples Not to Have Children if They Can?

Married women have written to me and told me that they are deliberately choosing to not have children, then ask me if this is a sin. What if ALL Christian couples who could have children decided to not have children? Would this be sin? Of course! One of the main purposes for marriage is to raise godly offspring. The first command God gave to Adam and Eve was to be fruitful and multiply.

Did you know that the United States fertility rates have fallen to an ‘all-time low’ according to the CDC. Our culture has become anti-child. In the women’s fights for their rights, they have left children behind and children have barely any rights at all. Couples deciding to deliberately not have children should not be named among Christians. This type of attitude supports the abortion mentality that children are a nuisance instead of a blessing. This world needs godly offspring more than it needs anything else, and we should value life and giving life. We don’t need more female nurses, teachers, CEOs, senators, or anything else in the workforce. We need more mothers at home raising their own children.

I asked the women in the chat room how they would respond to the question of whether or not it is a sin for a couple to decide not to have children. Here are a few of their answers:

Lindsay: “Yes, it is sin to decide to marry while intending never to have children. In fact, it is not marriage. To reject a large part of what God designed marriage to be is to reject marriage. It is just as much a deviation from God’s plan to reject children in your marriage as to reject having sex with your husband or to reject that marriage is one man and one woman. It means you don’t want marriage.

“Of course, some marriages are childless because of infertility, and people who cannot have children can still make a marriage. The issue is rejecting children in principle and thus deciding to reject what God made marriage to be.”

Sharon: “God’s Design – marriage, sex, biology, His express words, godly older women training younger as well as His principles for health, lifestyles, attitudes, work – ALL will result in children IF we don’t do anything to interfere. To CHOOSE to interfere, to go against His Design WILLFULLY, has to be sin. IF a young woman ‘doesn’t want’ children, there is something amiss: her training, her understanding, her selfishness, her worldview. She needs to ‘be transformed by the renewing of her mind!’ You cannot say you love God and reject the fundamentals of His Design.”

Lorrie: “I would respond with the thought that there is something wrong with our hearts if we do not want to obey Gods commands. This is something that needs to be mourned—if you do not want children as a woman, your heart is on earthly matters, not heavenly things. All reasons for not wanting to have children are earthly treasures that will eventually be burned up. The only thing that lasts forever is our souls. As a Christian mother and father, when you have a child, you have contributed (prayerfully) to an eternal soul that will spend eternity with God.”

Al Mohler wrote in his article “Deliberate Childlessness: Moral Rebellion with a New Face, “Marriage, sex, and children are part of one package. To deny any part of this wholeness is to reject God’s intention in creation and His mandate revealed in the Bible. Couples are not given the option of chosen childlessness in the biblical revelation. To the contrary, we are commanded to receive children with joy as God’s gifts, and to raise them in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. We are to find many of our deepest joys and satisfactions in the raising of children within the context of the family. Those who reject children want to have the joys of sex and marital companionship without the responsibilities of parenthood.”

I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.
1 Timothy 5:14

26 thoughts on “Is it Sinful For Christian Couples Not to Have Children if They Can?

  1. Amen! I would question someone’s faith if they didn’t want kids and they could in marriage. How many and birth control is up to the husband but having kids in general is biblical.

    1. I would agree that the size of our family is u to God and our husband (as head of the family).

      But the practice of contraception is beyond doubt a sin a rejection of God’s purpose for marriage and his design for a Godly wife

      As such as Christian women we should submit our womb to Christ and I pray that no Christian husband should permit or encourage his wife to prevent conception.

  2. While the questions you’ve received are from women deliberately choosing to not have children, I would encourage your readers to not assume couples without children are making that choice for themselves.

    Infertility is a devastating reality for many, and some choose to keep their struggle PRIVATE.

    It’s quite possible that couples that look like they’re investing time and energy into careers and enjoying the freedom and/or financial benefits of a “double income, no kids” lifestyle could be waiting on the Lord to provide a baby.

    Unless a couple shares their situation with you (NEVER ask-it’s personal, painful, and heart wrenching), don’t conclude they’re in the category Lori mentions in her post.

    Imagine if a couple longs for a child more than anything in the world to discover their Christian friends believe they’re selfish, sinful, and living outside of Biblical principles when they’re desperately pleading with God to bless them with a child? I would hope that an authentic believer would not wish to deepen a wound in others’ lives with false accusations and judgment.

    Great post, but only applicable to those who can have children, but choosing not to-your title is clear, but do not assume all childless couples fall in that category!

      1. I am very curious how you view infertile couples, and more specifically infertile women. Is infertility God’s will? Is it a punishment? If children are a blessing to a marriage, doesn’t it follow that infertility is a curse? Why would God curse people who follow Him? Do you automatically assume an infertile couple is being punished for some hidden sin? Are infertile people inherently bad? You gloss over this topic, and I’d love to hear your thoughts.

        1. Infertility is a result of sin in general. We live in a fallen, sinful world. Some women are infertile from being sexually promiscuous prior to marriage so yes, sometimes infertility is a direct result of sin in a person’s life. The birth control pill can also cause infertility. Many things can cause infertility but it doesn’t always mean it is a punishment of God. It’s a result of living in a fallen world. My oldest daughter was barren for 7 1/2 years. We pleaded daily for the Lord to open up her womb but I knew without a doubt that even if He never did that He is good and His plan for them was good. I prayed daily but trusted Him and that His will would be done.

          Here’s a great post for single and barren women:

          1. Whilst infertility is always very sad and for many in no way their fault.

            There is no doubt that in some cases it is caused directly by earlier sin, especially promiscuity and the use of hormonal contraceptives. And in others by the wider sin of feminist and unGodly attitudes which lead women to delay marriage in favour of a career.

        2. I’m part of an infertile couple. I’m even Catholic. I read Lori every day.

          It’s fine.

          A lot of infertility is caused by Sin. This is true. A lot of infertility is caused by bad decision-making.

          Our infertility was caused by a birth defect…a birth defect that ironically has been linked to wartime pollution and has high incidence in certain geographic locations. War is bad. So I guess even our infertility can be linked to sin, although not specifically our own.

          You don’t take things personally. Bad things will always happen to good people no matter how we try…but we don’t have to contribute to it or make it worse 🙂

          Listening to Lori’s advice will certainly not contribute to anything bad in the world.

        3. 13.1 of every vaccine package insert reads, not tested for carcinogenic, insertional or mutagenic potential or impairment of fertility.

          By injecting ourselves and babies with poison, plus using birth control (which affects estrogen levels PLUS it messes with our pheromone choice of mate), plus delaying childbearing, we are messing with God’s design. Then turning around and blaming God! Of course this is not everyone, but infertility is EVERYWHERE now and it shouldn’t be this way.

  3. I am very sad when I look around at all the young couples I know, and no children. And no intention to have children.

    We recently attended a party at my husband’s workplace. I got to chatting to 2 young women, both about 30 and childless. One of them said she didn’t want children because, she said, “I feel like I have enough on my plate just looking after my own self”!

    The other one said that she and her husband have 2 dogs, and they consider the dogs their children.

    Dogs as “children” has become so commonplace! Countless young couples I know openly declare they are “parents” to their dogs!

    My own children, now grown, have been such a joy in my life, it’s hard to imagine all these young people who do not want kids.

    Very sad indeed. Obviously a sin

    1. It’s this way even among Christians. Many of the young couples I speak to are either waiting to have children or just wanting one or two when they feel like it. This birth control mentality has led to the murdering of millions of unborn babies since babies are seen as an inconvenience.

  4. So true. My husband and I wish we had been taught this earlier. It hadn’t even crossed our minds that the possibility of pregnancy was not to be stopped. We have committed to teach and do teach our children differently.

    Ironically everyone is upset about the dwindling numbers on the pews of churches and it is our own faults.

    1. We were lied to. Even the churches didn’t teach the value of having children and warning against birth control when I was growing up. Birth control and controlling our fertility are valued, even among Christians.

  5. I have 3 children. I would absolutly love to have more (as many as the Lord would give) but sadly my husband doesn’t share this view. All I can do is pray, gently share my view and honour his decisions. But sadly this has never been anything the churches have addressed and unfortunately many well meaning Christians around me are using birth control. Oh how far we have come from God’s ways!

  6. I pray for married Christian couples to have children. However, child neglect, abuse, murder are real. In fact, less children are abused today than 100 or 150 years ago in this country. I remember a survey done when I was a teen in the 80’s that said more people gave more thought to what features they wanted on their next car than the impact of having children would have on their lives. Again, I would wish for married Christian couples to have children, but I’d rather witness the sin of not having children than neglect and abuse of those children. Additionally, the Fertility Rate is defined as the number of live births per 1000 women of a given age bracket. The Fertility Rate doesn’t mean people are infertile. It means they aren’t having children for whatever reason (abstinence, birth control, infertility…)The numbers have fallen most significantly in the 15 to 19 year old age group. So, that is not a bad thing. I am sincerely sorry for those struggling to have children, but I think there is no more true infertility than there ever was. People just didn’t talk about it in generations past. My Paternal great-grandmother had children in her 40’s, my Maternal great-grandmothers on both sides of my Mom’s family had children in their 40’s, my Maternal grandmother had two children in her 40’s, my Mom had a child in her 40’s, and two of my sisters had children in their 40’s. (All naturally/unplanned.) I had two children in my 40’s. Because of my age, I was automatically in the ‘high risk’ pregnancy group with my OB GYN. I was far from alone. I would say it was about 80 % women who were surprised to discover they were pregnant and about 20% who ‘worked’ to get there. Again, I feel sympathy for those who struggle to have children, but I think true infertility is another fear mongering tactic of western medicine.

    1. I can’t agree that less children are abused and neglected today than they were a 100 years ago today. Just that fact that almost a million babies are slaughtered in their mother’s womb each year wipes out your argument. Abortion has led to an anti-child mentality that have left children neglected and unloved. So many mothers put their children into daycares when they are young babies. Who know what goes on in some of these daycares. It’s all tragic.

  7. Hi Lori,

    Recently I read your post from December 3rd. I agree that the Bible states that men were created as leaders of the household however I am struggling when it comes to deciding when to start a family. My husband is reluctant, even going as far to saying he does not want children. I am a registered nurse and work with the the elderly but cannot wait to be at home with children fulfilling my godly duties and raising a family. I do not want to fight with my husband and pray he makes the best decisions to guide our family but i want a family. Am I living in sin? How do I talk to my husband? Do I let it go?

    1. It’s too bad you didn’t talk about this before marriage, Abigail, or did you used to not want children, too? Now, give it to the Lord daily and ask Him to change your husband’s mind. He hears your prayers.

  8. Hi Lori, thank you for your blog with this great content, which is hard to find anywhere else. Among my relatives there are two young (meanwhile not so young) married couples, where the man wants to be a father (and they would be good ones), but the women refuse, because they want to make a career. One other couple has now got a baby-girl, which is “everything” for them, but it is already enrolled in daycare (with then 14 months). Family gatherings and celebrations were, back in time when I was a child, full of kids running and playing around. Today there are almost adults coming together, a lot of fun is gone.

    1. This has become the norm these days, sadly, even among Christians. This is why Christians who value life and love God’s ways must begin having children and raising their up in the ways of the Lord.

  9. It is often forgotten that until the 1920’s ALL Christian denominations taught very clearly that contraception was a sin.

    It is only the sinful influence of feminism and the eugenics movement which lead to that conviction being abandoned. With only the Catholic Church maintaining (all be it very half heartedly) the position which all Christians had accepted for nearly two thousand years.

    1. Michaela – what an excellent post ! it is wonderful (and the work of God) that it had such a good influence on your husband ! I am pleased that my husband takes the same view and I pray that all Christian couples, and especially the husband’s, as head of those families will come to understand that the gift of life is to be welcomed and that we as wives should submit our bodies to Christ.

  10. I have several friends using “natural” family planning methods to space their children. They consider that good health practice.
    What would you say about that?
    Others use NFP to prevent any future children, also for health reasons.
    I can’t help but think this line of reasoning is lack of Faith but on the other hand I know there’s no scripture verse that says “thou shalt not prevent the conception of children” so what do you think?

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