Counsel of Chalcedon
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Does the Bible Forbid Family Planning?

Not too long ago, while visiting an out-of-state church, I had a spirited discussion with a prominent woman who questioned me about my convictions regarding the legitimacy of birth control. She had read Mary Pride's book The Way Home and had become convinced that all forms of birth control are sinful. She cornered me and began to importune me with questions. How many children did I have? Did my wife and I use birth control devices? Did I plan to have more children? Where does God condone birth control in the Bible? What about Onan's sin in Genesis 38? Could I find for her anyone in the Bible that practiced birth control? Was I afraid of a large family? Did I not know that the purpose of marriage was procreation? Doesn't the Bible say that women will be saved through childbearing?