Birth Control

A brief Seventh-day Adventist perspective

Birth control raises a number of moral issues. Is it appropriate for us to intervene in the natural, biological processes of human reproduction? If yes, then how do we intervene, with what and when?

What is the Seventh-day Adventist position on birth control?

We recognise Adventists have different opinions about birth control, but we offer the following principles based on the biblical teaching of sexuality, marriage, parenthood and the value of children.

 

1. Responsible stewardship

God created us with the ability to make decisions. Christian stewardship means taking responsibility for human procreation according to God's will.

 

2. Procreative purpose

God created us with the ability to reproduce, but procreation is not an obligation.

 

3. Unifying purpose

God designed sex for joy and pleasure, not just conception.

 

4. Freedom of choice

We should base our God-given freedom of choice on the ability to provide for a child's needs; the physical, emotional, and spiritual health of the mother and other care givers; the social and political circumstances into which children will be born; and quality of life and available resources.

 

5. Appropriate methods of birth control

The decision about which birth control method we use needs to be based on an understanding of the method's possible effects on our health, the manner in which the method operates and how much it costs. Abortion is not a morally acceptable form of birth control except in exceptional circumstances.

 

6. Misuse of birth control

The use of birth control methods to protect sex outside of marriage may reduce the risks of sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy. However, this does not alter our view that sex outside of marriage is harmful and immoral.

 

7. A redemptive approach

Education about sexuality and morality is a necessity. Our emphasis should be on education not condemnation.

The worldwide Seventh-day Adventist Church released in 1999 a statement of consensus about birth control. Read the full statement.