Raising Greater Awareness of Human Life Issues
The Bible and Birth Control
A Brief Look At A Changing Culture
The book ‘Bible and Birth Control’ by Charles D Provan should be read by all Christians of all denominations. As with most pro-life, pro-family literature it is American in origin. However the arguments speak for themselves, no matter what the nationality of the reader. We have been given permission by Charles D Provan's son to upload the whole of the book online, for which we are extremely grateful.
For Christians to be united in promoting moral sex education there is a need for agreement in the fundamental area of contraception. To do this we need to know some of our history and to see how the following issues link together.
Until the beginning of the twentieth century (1900) all Christians stood firmly against any and all forms of artificial contraception. The following was an extract taken from the Church of England’s website that has now been superceeded. As you can now see, the Church of England, despite generations of tradition, have sadly declared that contraception is not a sin.
"Issues in Human Sexuality
The Gospels provide little evidence that Jesus said much about sexuality in his teaching. Nevertheless Christians have tended to be identified as people who have a great deal to say about sex - much of it very negative. There is no doubt that the Church’s understanding of the place of sex in God’s created order has developed significantly, particularly in the last 50 years.
(NB: This short paragraph on Issues in Human Sexuality has been removed on the C of E website from when this artilce was first written but we have left it on this page for your reference.)
Church and CONTRACEPTION
Church of England view
Is it different from the Roman Catholic view?
Full background briefing
In 1908 the Bishops of the Anglican Communion meeting at the Lambeth Conference declared that:- 'the Conference records with alarm the growing practice of the artificial restriction of the family and earnestly calls upon all Christian people to discountenance the use of all artificial means of restriction as demoralising to character and hostile to national welfare’
Some of the Church opposition at this time reflected a national concern about falling birth rates. By the 1920s, certain sections of the Church were beginning to develop a richer understanding of sexuality. Sexual love came to be seen as good not just because it enabled the human race to reproduce itself. Sexual love was good in itself, and it provided an essential way for a husband and wife to express and strengthen their love for each other. In the Garden of Eden God had said, ‘It is not good that the man (Adam) should be alone’ (Genesis 2:18). It was also argued that people were limiting their families in order to give children a better chance of success. The debate makes fascinating reading and went on through the 1920s until the Lambeth Conference of 1930. The 1930 resolution was greeted with mixed reactions and reads as follows: ‘Where there is a clearly felt moral obligation to limit or avoid parenthood, complete abstinence is the primary and obvious method.’ but if there was morally sound reasoning for avoiding abstinence ‘the Conference agrees that other methods may be used, provided that this is done in the light of Christian principles’.
By the 1958 Lambeth Conference, contraception was an accepted part of life among most Anglicans, and a resolution was passed to the effect that the responsibility for deciding upon the number and frequency of children was laid by God upon the consciences of parents ‘in such ways as are acceptable to husband and wife’.
In 1968, the Conference considered the Papal Encyclical Humanae Vitae and while recording their appreciation of the Pope’s deep concern for the institution of marriage and family life, the Bishops disagreed with his idea that methods of contraception other than abstinence and the rhythm method are contrary to the will of God.
The contrast between the Anglican position and the official Roman Catholic position (reiterated on many occasions by Pope John Paul II in the years following Humanae Vitae) illustrates, in part, different ways of approaching questions of Moral Theology. Roman Catholics have tended to look to the ‘Magisterium’, the official teaching of the Church, typically articulated by the Pope, as the source of authority on moral, as in doctrinal, questions. Anglicans have tended to call on ‘Scripture, Tradition, and Reason’. Increasingly these approaches are being supplemented by appeals to ‘human experience’. It is clear, for example, that the experience of Christian married people in relation to contraception explains some of the change in Anglican thinking between 1930 and 1958."
It would seem that the vast majority of Christians today are not aware of the above decisions by the Church of England. We have also seen the emmergence of hundreds (and possibly even thousands) of different denominations who, in all probability, have not even considered these issues and have just gone along with the status quo, thus accepting contraception without question. Contraception is therefore seen as the normal thing to use to prevent pregnancy. But what of the actual methods of contraception and how they came about?
Marie Stopes and Birth Control
Marie Stopes is not just the name of an abortion provider. Marie Stopes was the woman who founded the first Birth Control centre - The Mother’s Clinic - in Britain on 17 March 1921.
This clinic was originally meant for married women to enable them to enjoy sex following the publication of her book ’Married Love’ which was the first sex manual of its kind in the UK. The Church, medical establishment and the press all labelled the book as "immoral" and "obscene". ‘Married Love’ only briefly mentioned contraception but was followed by a more detailed book on contraception called ‘Wise Parenthood’.
By 1930, and gaining much publicity by fighting the Roman Catholic Church concerning birth control methods, other family planning organisations had appeared. They joined forces to form the National Birth Control Council. This later became the Family Planning Association. Although Marie Stopes resigned from the FPA when she disagreed how it should be run, she continued to promote birth control worldwide. Marie Stopes International now works in more than 40 countries.
Margaret Sanger, an eugenicist and founder of Planned Parenthood in the USA was involved in similar work at the same time as Marie Stopes. Their organisations, now linked through the Family Planning Associations (fpa), not only offer free contraceptives and advice, but also part of their ‘reproductive health care’ is that every woman (no matter what her age including girls as young as 10 years old) should have access to abortion on demand. These organisations are determined that a woman should not need to get permission for an abortion from her doctor, her husband/partner or her parents.
Contraception obviously does not work. If it did it would mean abortions would be unnecessary.
The failure rate of condoms is only based on pregnancy rates and does not take into account the time of the woman’s monthly cycle when she is infertile. The failure rate of a condom should be multiplied at least by 4 assuming that a woman can only become pregnant one week in four. Condoms also allow the spread of all STDs including the HIV virus which can lead to AIDS, as they can split in use or by means of the inherent holes that they may contain. These diseases can be caught 365 days a year.
The Pill is another form of contraception that needs to be looked at. There are three ways in which the Pill works.
Please note: It is not a fertilised egg that implants into the womb. The child is already about six days old.
Nobody is sure at any given time which way the Pill actually works. In theory a woman could be destroying a newly conceived child every month without even knowing it.
There are also medical dangers that users of the Pill need to be made aware of. Thrombosis is the most common risk. Women over 35 and smokers are at the highest risk although that doesn’t exclude younger women and non-smokers.
Research now shows that there are links with various forms of cancer and even that by using the Pill a woman has a greater risk of contracting HIV. As with abortion, there is a greater risk of breast cancer should the first pregnancy not go to term (see www.afterabortion.org).
The morning after pill is 50 times the dose of the mini pill (the Pill) and this also probably works in the same 3 ways as already stated above. It must be asked why any woman would wish to take such a high dose of steroids especially if she were not in her fertile period. This pill is currently aimed at youngsters and is now being given out by school nurses without parent's consent or knowledge.
The IUD or Coil prevents a newly conceived child from implanting in the womb.
Further methods of contraception that work in the same 3 ways as the Pill are Depo-Provera and Norplant. These are long-term contraceptives. Depo-Provera is given in the form of an injection and Norplant are small rods implanted under the skin. The long term risks associated with these are still not fully known but long term use of any drug may well have serious consequences.
A Christian Response
All forms of contraception, including sterilisation, are totally against the word of God. He tells us to "Go forth and multiply". Christians need to get back to trusting in the Lord and repent of their use of contraceptives over the years. This is a spiritual battle where Christians have been deceived over the years into destroying children whom the Lord would bless us with and have us love and cherish. Molech is the god of child sacrifice. Unless Christians of all denominations acknowledge this then there cannot be agreement in how we would see sex education being taught in schools, if at all.
Prayerfully reading ‘The Bible and Birth Control’ book will mean radical thinking and a radical change of heart and action - but then we have a God who was radical when He walked this earth.
The book, by Charles D Provan, is published by Zimmer Printing, 410 West Main Street, Monongahela, Pennsylvania 15063, USA. Unfortunately there is no ISBN number in the book.
It is also available free online in five parts to hear or download in MP3 format.
On the back cover of the book are some questions:
The cover than states that if you think that the above statements were made by Roman Catholics, then your quiz score is "Zero".
The answers are:
The cover continues: "If you are shocked, that really is not too surprising, because Protestant opposition to birth control has largely been forgotten in our decadent Twentieth Century. If you want to know what the Reformers and their heirs thought about this important subject, we certainly hope that you’ll get this book!"
Sadly, in this twenty first century the questions are interesting but many Christians today will probably not be shocked, as suggested by the comment following the questions, as we just do not know the history of our own Church. People nowadays join the Church and basically expect to bring ‘the ways of the world’ in with them.
To be able to teach 'Christian Sex Education' there is a need to return to our Christian roots. Before we go into schools we need to be clear of our own foundations. This does not mean we should all become Roman Catholic or any other denomination. But we do need to agree that sexual exploitation, abortion, contraception, eugenics, evolution, genetic engineering etc are all man's ideas and are demonically based.
The challenge before us is vast. We are not just coming against immoral sex education in schools. We are coming against a decadent society that has turned so far from the Lord that they openly call evil good and good evil. Our voices need not only be as one, but they must be loud. We must stop apologising for who we are. Jesus was not politically correct - nor must we be. Jesus is the only one who offers us salvation and forgiveness of sins. This must be uppermost in all we teach, whether it be to Christians or non-Christian, young or old.
Violence, sex and filthy language are sadly all part and parcel of our current culture. This all links in with what we are trying to stand against. We have only ourselves to blame. We have not spoken out strongly or loudly enough in the past. Our Christian message has become diluted to the point of only offering a ‘feel good’ factor - no different from what the world offers.
All we seek to achieve must be under-girded by prayer, preferably organised nationally, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Life is the fundamental issue. Christians of all denominations need to be taught the truth en masse. The world has led us down a blind alley that it cannot get out of. We know who the light of the world is and we must proclaim Him from the housetops.
There is no other name but Jesus to whom we bow and must all one day give account.
Please visit May Blossom Ministries - Christian Healing after Abortion, if you have been affected by a baby being killed by abortion, or if you know someone who has.