Biblical Instruction on the Use of Condoms to prevent sexual disease and child birth

Written by Paul J. Bucknell on November, 05, 2020

Biblical Instruction on the Use of Condoms

The Question

I have to be straight forward with this question. Is it condemned in the scriptures for Christians to use “condoms” specifically if the purposes are to prevent transmission of sexual infections from partner to partner and also regulating of childbirth?

Seeking Condom Protection

The scriptures do not speak specifically on the use of condoms for they did not have the technology to make them two thousand years ago. However, the question is still relevant. But we must approach this topic a bit differently than it is presented: How can condoms help us have healthier and stronger families?

Why do believers think it might be wrong to use condoms for birth control or sexual disease prevention? It’s helpful to separate the items, sexual disease (STD) and birth control for their individual evaluation.

Before going on, I must tell you that I resist any advice on “partners,” which insinuates sexual activity outside a typical male-female marriage; they are condemned before God. The following discussion is for those who are in the Lord and prioritize God’s commands. Your question seeks this information, and so, I continue on.

Condoms and Prevention of Sexual Disease

In a normal God-seeking world, we would not need to use condoms at all. But we are sinners living in a sinful world.

First, sexual disease only occurs when one’s spouse has been involved in sexual immorality (though it’s possible to come by other means like rape, infected parents, etc.).

Sexual disease is passed on through a couple’s intimate times. By remaining pure for one’s future spouse before marriage, sexual disease does not enter the picture, except through some abnormal circumstances. Scientists have created a vaccine to give to girls in case they have sex before marriage. This is foolish and breeds undue confidence in something they should not do. Gardasil, however, does not prevent many sexual diseases.

Second, even if one partner has a sexual disease, how does the other not already have it?

I did counsel one couple who were to get married, one having a serious sexual disease. I counseled them that they were to openly talk about this and only then, with a doctor, make an informed decision on whether to proceed with the marriage. If they got married, one could die from the other’s disease. There are medications to mitigate the bothersome symptoms but to be free from them through faithfulness is far superior! Some, who have sinned in the past, might choose to show one’s love by not getting married due to the dangers of certain sexually transmitted diseases.

We need to openly teach standards of sexual purity so that our young people are not plagued with these issues. Christian marriages should have the brilliant blessing of the Lord!

The Effectiveness of Condoms

Do condoms work? The condom is no fool-proof method of disease prevention or child prevention. Purity teaching and high standards are more important. They remind us all of the rewards of following God’s ways and the dangers of judgment for those who disobey.

Let’s first consider the prevention of disease. Condoms are only regularly effective 80% of the time in the prevention of disease. “A large body of scientific evidence shows that male latex condoms have an 80% or greater protective effect against the sexual transmission of HIV and other STIs.”

Condoms can break, lessening their effectiveness for either birth control or disease protection. “Contraceptive Technology estimates that condoms either break or slip 8.08% of the time, which means there is an extremely high probability that a regular condom user will experience a catastrophic condom failure at some point, and with it the risk of exposure to any STD, including HIV.”

Those who use condoms to prevent sexual disease (STDs, STIs) need to realize that they are embarking on a path that might lead to infection. It’s not wrong to try to prevent sexual diseases, if one’s spouse has an STD, for the action protects life. But, honestly, one needs to have a good honest talk with God that you might find a peaceful way to conduct your marriage with someone who has such a disease. We must live in faith and trust God with the consequences. As an example, if my wife has the flu. How far and long do I avoid being near her? Treat one’s sexual disease as a negative consequence for sin (if it is), repent as necessary and seek healing. You need God’s mercy and grace. Fortunately, God is a redemptive God working with His children who seek Him in their distress. In the end, while using condoms is not wrong, we should put our final trust in God’s protection to find His peace.

Condoms serve as a means to gain Protection

Condoms and the Prevention of Children

Should condoms be used for birth control? The question needs to be rephrased. How can we use condoms to help us do God’s will with regard to building a strong, big, and happy family? The issue is not the use of the condom but the purpose of using them.

“Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, The fruit of the womb is a reward.” Psalm 127:3

Are we interfering or countering God’s purpose of giving us children? If so, then we can see our sin and stop using them. One’s spouse might not have faith that God will provide for the family. In such cases, the husband must prayerfully and tenderly lead forward. Couples need to discuss this before marriage. I find it helpful to remember that for thousands of years God watched over those having children. Children are a blessing from Him—not something to be avoided. I have included a list of articles that deal with birth control in more length.

If the purpose of using condoms is to counter God’s good purpose, then we should see our folly, trust God, and cease using them. As a family, we stopped using such devices after our third child. And somehow, we ended up with eight lovely children! We have many stories on how God miraculously provided for us.

If we are trying to protect and shield our wife to have another child immediately after bearing one child, then we discover a motivation of love. This is seen in the way the Lord called men to refrain from sex after the birth of a child in the Law. I have written about this in one of my books. The wife is largely protected from getting pregnant when nursing her newborn child. However, it takes a little time for this natural birth control to swing into full action. This is the reason the husband is to refrain from sex for the first month after the baby is born.

When we see that God has built-in birth control through knowledge and obedience of His law, then we can work with God rather than counter His purposes. We need not be guilty of using a condom after the birth of a child. When we generally observed these Old Testament laws, our children were nicely spaced two years apart or so, giving the wife time to recover fully. God’s law requires self-control rather than condoms, though this requires some self-control. Condoms might avoid having a child, but God might have greater purposes—such as allowing the wife not to have to deal with her man’s interest during post-delivery exhaustion and healing time. God’s design can be expanded to situations where the wife might be seriously sick, etc.

God’s purpose is not to have as many children as possible but to bear healthy children and to restore the wife to full strength. We can work with God to space children apart every few years, with or without a condom. We found it liberating to only follow the guidance of God in the Scriptures.

Summary

Often the Scriptures don’t speak of a particular item like condoms or computers. We need to observe why our concerns arise as we work out this verse: “Whatever is not from faith is sin” (Romans 14:23). If we think it’s wrong, then avoid it.

On the other hand, we should positively consider how the use of a condom in certain circumstances can help us observe God’s will. When we do this, we are driven to think of God’s design for our lives and the purposes for which He made us.

My general sense of the use of condoms is that believers don’t need to use them. But we live in an imperfect world, and sometimes their usage can help us carry out God’s good and perfect will (Rom 12:2).

“Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, The fruit of the womb is a reward.” Psalm 127:3

Discussion Questions on the Use of Condoms

  1. Why are some reasons that people want to use condoms?
  2. Did God’s people face these same concerns before the existence of condoms? What did people with the above concerns do before condoms?
  3. What are some sinful acts that people conduct because they have condoms?
  4. Are condoms fully effective in controlling sexual disease (STD)? Explain.
  5. Is it okay to use condoms between a married couple to prevent sexual disease?
  6. How is sexual disease typically passed on?
  7. How does (sexual) abstinence before marriage protect a couple from sexual diseases?
  8. How do you know it’s generally God’s purpose to give married couples lots of children?
  9. Why would married couples want to limit the number of children? Is that okay? How do you know?
  10. Describe God’s birth control method given in the Old Testament. Would it be okay today to use condoms to provide that same protection and help?

For further articles by Paul Bucknell on Birth Control:

Birth Control & Christian Family | Planning Is Family Planning a ...

The use of birth control is rarely thought of as a moral issue today. Should it be? I believe so. The reason is simple. God clearly expressed His will for us to have ...

Birth Control & Family Planning in Christian Families: Our Personal ...

Share the journey how God led us from having a typical birth control and family planning mentality to a biblical one regarding having children along with the ...

Birth Control & Family Planning in Christian Families: Genesis 1:28

This is 2/3 of Birth Control and Christian Family Planning. Biblical Principles. ” And God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the ...

Family Planning & Birth Control: Godly Beginnings for the Family ...

God speaks about family planning and birth control all throughout the scriptures. Included is the right biblical perspective Christian parents ought to have toward ...

Wise Decision Making, Session #3 - Premarital Counseling Manual ...

Share the journey how God led us from having a typical birth control and family planning mentality to a biblical one regarding having children along with the ...

God’s Family Health Plan: Godly Beginnings for the Family: Learning ...

Breast-feeding works along with this ‘birth-control’ system by inhibiting ovulation. God wants strong and healthy children. Note how these laws help protect the ...

Eliminating Miscarriage and Barrenness

... an in-depth study on these three topics: (1) barrenness and infertility, (2) miscarriage, (3) normal birth and pregnancies and (4) birth control or family planning.

Godly Beginnings for the Family: Learning how to care for infants ...

Many new or expecting parents have no idea what to think about the birth process or early baby care. Even worse ... Family Planning & Birth Control God says ...

Starting Families Right: Godly Beginnings for the Family: Learning ...

Birth control/abortion. Children interfere with what I want to do with my life. Desire for mobility. I want the freedom to do what I would like. Entertainment mentality

For further articles by Paul Bucknell on Sexual Disease:

Benefits of sexual purity for singles

Sexual purity protects a person from STD (sexually transmitted diseases). Venereal diseases are caught primarily ...

The Ruins of Sexual Immorality: Hugh Hefner is No Friend

... but the fact that his poisonous life philosophy could personally enter so many hearts and homes inciting adultery and bringing disease, fornication, and sexual ...

God’s Family Health Plan: Godly Beginnings for the Family: Learning ...

STDs (sexually transmitted diseases) are ravishing the countries of the world. These would all quickly die off if men and women only had sexual intimacies with ...

Debate: Why was Sodom Destroyed? (Genesis 19) – The Bible ...

Sodomy along with other sexual sins always devalues the ones they abuse. It is well known that some who have got a deadly disease continue to have sexual ...

Marriage Breakdown: Detecting a Modern Mindset

God has instead chosen that sex is for marriage only; sexual purity for singles. ... People would not normally invite disease into their bodies, but this is essentially ...

Speeding Up Personal Development with Wisdom by Paul J. Bucknell

... can learn without all the pain, loneliness, disease that issues from free sex. ... your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality” (1 Th 4:3).

1 Corinthians 6:12-20: Battling Sexual Immoralities in a Relativistic ...

1 Corinthians 6:12-20: ‘Battling Sexual Immoralities in a Relativistic World’ ... Cost of disease: infertility, some deadly (HIV), pain, embarrassment, affect spouse.

Five Kinds of Humility: Sickness, Sin, Design, Persecution and Death.

Just when we think we have mastered our understanding of disease, we face ... God even allows others to exploit the families, bodies, sexual parts, etc. of His ...

Biblical articles by Topics at Biblical Foundations for Freedom!

The Lord Your Healer - Answers to tough questions about disease and death. Suggested books for ... The Ruins of Sexual Immorality: Hugh Hefner is No Friend ...

Renewing Affections between Husband and Wife

‘Heart disease’ leads to ‘heart attack.’ Deal with the disease. Some people regularly ... God’s Sexual Design for Our Lives and Marriages. Goal and Design of ...

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