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Joined: 2009/1/16
Posts: 393

 Questions about being a Christian in our time and having children?...

I have been in a relationship with a certain sister and we are in talks of engagement.

She wants to have children. I am not sure if I want to have children.

Actually, for many years I chose to not even have a wife.

This being in light of seeking to be without care because of the present distress of which Paul speaks of.

However, over time I have changed my mind and do believe that I do want to marry.

I am writing here to seek out wide counsel as I may call the talks of engagement off. Since, I am not sure I want children and probably don't.

Before making a big decision I thought I would seek to delve further and possibly get more clarity on the matter.

My mindset with a wife is just that it may be problems. There could be problems with having to care for her family, if she gets sick, if she possibly apostasizes, ect, and then there is just the matter of really godly women that will match with you being rare. However, of course you know I have changed my mind.

I figured if I could marry a godly sister that was ministry minded we could be married yet as though we were not. In the sense of not living lavishly ect.

Now, as marrying was a far off concept for a while imagine how much further the thought of children were.

My mindset toward children is this. Before I was saved I thought it would be great to have a little me running around for my own pride and pleasure. To raise him up to be what I wanted ect. Now, though that concept is not so much an interest though it is not all bad in some senses to want certain types of those things.

I thought what would drive people to want children so bad. All my life I have naturally not really strongly desired children at all though that one prior reason gave me a little motive.

I figure it can be neat to share something like that with someone you are in love with. I once did not know what it was like to fall in love. SO maybe this falling in love also creates some chemical reaction to also want children. Or to create life. Or to be useful in raising them. Or to have them help you in life as arrows in your quiver and even in old age. To have blood relatives that are naturally close to you ect.

However, as a Christian many of these things to not strongly apply to me. I do not want to live my life to fulfill myself and have some strong romance with a wife and have a strong self centered marriage but one that is ministry centered. I don't feel the need to create life as there are many orphans and plus I would rather spend my time bring people to life as children of God. I would also find my use there. I don't feel the strong need for blood family, but have the Church the family of God. I don't need children to take care of me I can have ministry partners or I do not count my life dear to myself ect.

There is a good chance no matter how well you raise your children that they will not be saved. Even if they do get saved how fruitful of Christians will they be. The list just goes on.

Now, I understand that there is the matter of calling. However, leadings and such are often quite light and I would not want to base my weighty decision on light impressions. Nor am I even sure of all of that in some ways. I mainly believe I would seek to do what I thought was right and that would be not having children unless I had a strong reason to have children.

We are also in the last times and who knows what will occur let alone shaky financial things and the dark state of the world no matter what time it is with poverty and disease ect.

I mean even if one has a strong desire to have or love children then why not start an orphanage. The answer would be probably because it is more special and personally feeling to have your own. Yet, I think one can get over that and be a people that are marked with moderation in all things.

At one time I did not really even think I would have to say this. But, to say that we need to have children so that the Church can be built or so that Christianity can continue is to me ridiculous. We do not need to race with Islamic demographics or what not. This is not a mark of the NT Church to be doing such things. The main emphasis was external evangelism. Plus, there already are way more Muslims then Christians in the world in reality since most "Christians" are false converts.

I may be leaving some things out.

2 thoughts have crossed my mind mainly on this topic.

The first being one I have already mentioned in the leading of God. I mean if I go by some light impressions and prophetic reasons why I am to marry this sister then if she wants children and it can be no other way then maybe the Lord would have me also to have children.

However, again the whole prophetic thing can be very difficult and many times something I cannot rely on in lightness of heavy matters. And, to tell the truth with such weighty things as not wanting to have children the prophetic things are just not strong enough.

The other thing being of understanding. I have often times been zealous beyond my spiritual portion. I have often been zealous without correct knowledge. I have often over the years been gradually taught things. There is also the matter that possibly as I age I will naturally biologically or other generally have a strong desire for children for one reason or another as I have also changed my mind on the wife thing.

So... again.. I thought I'd post here to maybe receive some thoughts that I have not considered. Or maybe to be corrected in some way that I have possibly skewed myself. Or other it is just that these are big life time decisions. Also, it would be a big things to break this off. I would not want to do anything rash or ignorantly. In light of such importance, the need for undistracted laborers, and true correct pastoral knowledge I petition the conservative body of Christ here. I hope also that input is unbiased, mature, well thought out, and solidly Scriptural beyond the deceit of the flesh and western cultural Christianity.

 2009/10/24 2:51Profile

Joined: 2006/9/13
Posts: 3156

 Re: Questions about being a Christian in our time and having children?...

Dear anonymity,

It is not about what you want, or what you think you should/could/would have. It is about the Lord and what He would have you to have. It is about trusting Him to provide, or not provide, according to His will. Children are to be godly seed that are to be raised unto the Lord - for His good pleasure - for His use - to further the Kingdom and bring forth more fruit for His glory.

Pray and ask Him to show you this precious truth.

 2009/10/24 3:13Profile

Joined: 2005/6/18
Posts: 1481


hi, your correct ... you need not have children.jimp

 2009/10/24 4:11Profile

Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7471

 Re: Questions about being a Christian in our time and having children?...


Your problem is lack of faith in God for the future.

Let me ask you a few questions: how was yesterday? the day before that? a week ago? a month ago? Good, bad or worse? You survived it? Why? Was God there? Yes or no? If he was what on earth makes you think he won't be in the future? What are you basing your fears on? The world systems? Seems to me you are just discovering how seriously flawed the world systems are and that is nothing new: they always were.

Let me tell you something...I am 62 years old and your excuses to not marry and/or have children is an OLD one, one that was discussed way back when we were having children in the 60s and 70s and into 1980.

I will tell you another thing: you better not marry at all if you do not want children. If you are intimate with your wife, sooner or later she may conceive and then what will you do? Abort the child and reap untold grief on your spirits and souls? Did you consider that the first command God gave to Adam and Eve was to be fruitful and multiply and he did not make this conditional.

What kind of girl are you considering to marry? Can you reasonably ask God to bless this girl as a wife? Does she reverence God in her heart and by her lifestyle? Is she morally pure? what is it like when you are together - what is your main attraction and why do you like to be with her? Are you following a hands off relationship? No, then you better run in the opposite direction. (To be attracted physically is not sin but to act on it is.) Does she have a former husband living?

Brother, when you marry the whole tribe comes with the territory. She also acquires your tribe - ever think about that? There are plenty of loose nuts and bolts in every tribe so you will have to consider how this will be dealt with. (And maybe her family might consider you unstable, ever think about that?) And yes, you may have to help care for an ailing one sometime in the future. This is the Biblical thing to do.

You say you want to do ministry...then begin by living it out in the insignificant areas of life. I am sensing in some young folks the desire to go into formal ministry when life gets hard financially. This is a red flag, meaning there are questionable motives propelling this desire.

And in the end if you really sense that God does not want you to marry, then by no means don't! And break off the relationship with that girl immediately. It is the ultimate cruelty to keep leading her on.

Anyhow, these are a few things that came to my mind as I read your post...may think of more later but do think I said enough - don't want to be too hard on you...


Sandra Miller

 2009/10/24 8:02Profile

Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC


Psalm 127:3 Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. 4 Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one's youth. 5 How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them;

Children are ALWAYS a blessing, gift, and reward from the Lord, no matter what age one is in. A dear friend of mine, who is in his 20's and has 1 child, absolutely loves this passage. He can't wait until he can have more children one day. I remember when he asked me, "Jimmy, do you know how many arrows a quiver held? They hold five!" As a result, he likes the idea of at least having five kids one day.

Having children is considered one of the greatest blessings God can provide somebody in this world. I believe it would rank right up there with every spiritual blessing we have sitting with Christ in heavenly places. Indeed, to not have children, especially in the OT, is tantamount to being accursed by God. We might not be under the old covenant any more, but I believe the same sentiment still applies.

There are two approaches you can take. Isaiah the prophet, in spite of the violent times he was living in, when Assyria would one day invade and destroy the northern kingdom, still got married and had children... children which he declared "were for signs and wonders" (Isaiah 8:18) in the land. Then there is the approach of Jeremiah, who lived during the destruction of Judah at the hands of Babylon, whom God told, "You shall not take a wife for yourself, nor have sons or daughters in this place." (Jer 16:2).

So, if you get married, intend on "being fruitful, and multiply." Otherwise, don't plan on getting married.

Jimmy H

 2009/10/24 9:55Profile

Joined: 2006/6/19
Posts: 927


Friend, based on your post I would strongly advise you to not get married until you have a serious change of mind and heart. Your comments about not wanting a romance filled relationship with your wife are not good. If you think you will be effective in ministry without a passionate, loving relationship with your wife, think again.

With care in Christ...

Taylor Otwell

 2009/10/24 10:00Profile

Joined: 2006/6/15
Posts: 343
VCU @ Richmond, VA


Wives are not to be partners in a dynamic Batman and Robin ministry team.

Wives are to be loved unconditionally.

Paul said he wished all people were like him, single; but if you cannot handle it, then get married.

Sam Yoon

 2009/10/24 13:19Profile

Joined: 2005/1/14
Posts: 2164



TaylorOtwell wrote:
Friend, based on your post I would strongly advise you to not get married until you have a serious change of mind and heart. Your comments about not wanting a romance filled relationship with your wife are not good. If you think you will be effective in ministry without a passionate, loving relationship with your wife, think again.

With care in Christ...


Josh Parsley

 2009/10/24 13:59Profile

Joined: 2009/6/14
Posts: 703


This is not advise. It is simply a narrative of how I dealt with this in my life:

I have been happily married for almost 20 years now. When my wife-to-be and I started talking about possibly getting married, we were already deeply in love with each other and sharing a ministry in evangelizing and discipling others as a mission point outreach of our local church. But love for each other was not enough for us. We both earnestly went to the Lord in prayer about it, and seriously looked at each other with the question in mind: will this person be a help or a hindrance in my walk with God? Because of our experiences in our shared ministry, we both concluded that we would be stronger Christians together than apart. In seeking God's will, we prayed for the sign that both our parents, all of whom were alive at that time, would welcome us into their respective families and express openly their approval of our marriage. We went out of our way to meet each other's families and get to know them. Both our families embraced us wholeheartedly, which we took as the final sign of approval from God. For us, this was almost a miracle because my wife's parents were very protective of her and had rejected all previous would-be suitors at the first opportunity. In my case, they didn't just welcome me, they invited me to join them in exclusive family outings and always made sure to make me feel at home with them. In fact, it was my father-in-law-to be who proposed that I should propose marriage to my wife already, when the time seemed right (4 years after we first met).

The question of whether we would have children never came up with us. It was taken for granted that, because of our love for each other, we would raise a family for the glory of God. We now have three wonderful children ages 19, 14, and 12. We raised them according to the teachings in the Bible, and are very proud and happy with how they have grown. They are respectful, obedient, generous, intelligent, and God-fearing.

Our life has not been a bed of roses. We have been through more struggles and trials than I think most others will experience in two lifetimes. But together, we have weathered the storms and remained faithful and obedient to the Lord.

Each morning, I wake up thanking God for the wife he had given me, who has faithfully stood by me no matter what the difficulty, who has been for me both a source of joy and a source of strength.

 2009/10/24 14:47Profile

Joined: 2009/1/16
Posts: 393


Hi all,

I feel like some have taken some of the things I have said in the wrong way to an extreme.

Again, I know I need to pray about it and do. It is however hard to go on light impressions. Also, there is much already in Scripture.

I don't think it is lack of faith. I know God works wonders. However, even though, we are not to intentionally build cares for ourselves in this life. Paul would have us to be without care if we could. If we took on this mindset then why not just tack on a whole bunch of other cares in this life and believe that God will work past them. I think it is our duty to live as sacrificially as we can.

I do not really see a problem with practicing birth control. I am not sure about the medicine thing as I have heard negative things about it, but there are other legitimate means.

I think some people are taking to much doctrine from the ways in which God worked in the past. In the past God worked by the military of Israel in the natural. Now, however we battle spiritual battles over souls. So, also, children were to be one of our main emphasis back then but now it is spiritual children. This is the similar mentality as saying the US is the new Israel and we ought to crusade ect.

When you marry a woman you marry her whole family. I am not sure this is always the case. The disciples left their fathers business by call. So also there is a way in the calling of God to not be as tied to family as a normal person in this world would be. We are to be as soldiers who are not entangled with the affairs of this life. Even, her family may not like this but such has been for Christians for centuries.

Ginny, I will not respond to all of your comments as they are many. Also, I don't think you have reason to really think any of those things of me as I have given no reason for you to. I can tell you though that I am not walking in any of those errors.

Jimmy, that is a good passage of Isaiah I have not considered. I will have to study over that thanks.

Taylor, by not having a romantic relationship I did not mean it in the extreme that you are thinking. I believe that we should be married yet as though we are not as Paul states. It is not that we would not have romance for sure, but there would be moderation. We would not be engulfed in a self centered romance novel caring for the things of each other mostly.

I think that a married couple to a degree can be like a batman and robin. Think of Aquila and Priscilla. This is not the main means, but it is often the case to some degree.

Leo, thanks for sharing.

Again, I think that some have taken some of the things I have said and misinterpreted them extremely with some level of a critical spirit. I think it is often the case though not always that people have a carnal attitude about these things. I remember when I would talk of how Paul said it is better to not be married and how many criticisms I would receive and how many false interpretation or things plucked from the ways in which God was working in the OT. I believe it was based on their natural desires overcoming their spiritual mind since they so desired marriage loftily. The same I think can be the case with children I have been criticized over the matter. I am sure the same thing happens when war comes and the Christians start saying we need to wage a holy war. Their desire to be safe at home and for their families to be safe overcomes the mindset of the cross life and they self deceive themselves.

I am saying some of these things quite far and do not apply them to that level specifically, but I do think there may be some of that in this post.

Lastly, as I originally posted I am thankful for you input on the matter as I seek to mull over things and receive wide counsel. So, far for some of the part it has been replies of the things I already mentioned that I believe to be not credible. The calling things sure but we do not always receive prophetic words and have to live by faith. Maybe one can take the mentality of Keith Green who said don't pray if you should go to the mission field but ask God if you shouldn't and go until. Then there is the OT blessing thing however things have shifted more toward the spiritual and we are to be without care as much as possibly not entangling ourselves with civilian affairs. As for being fruitful and multiplying we do not see this emphasis in the early Church. The emphasis is to reach the lost that are already living. There are 7 billion people on this planet and many of them fatherless who have not been birthed as children of God and this is where out emphatically critical ambition should be. Not on raising children, taking them to soccer games, getting them a 100k college education ect. I know that there is good to these things, but sometimes the bad out weighs or the better makes the good not so good. Then there were some variation of other things which I believe I have dismissed...

 2009/10/24 17:07Profile

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