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Ep. 460 Should I Bring a Baby Into Our Evil World?

Ep. 42 Should I Bring a Baby into Our Evil World

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Shows Main Idea – Is bringing a baby into our evil world right? Where is the line between God’s sovereignty and personal responsibility? We live in a broken world that is full of evil. Every future parent knows that when they bring a baby into the world, the child struggles with brokenness and fallenness while tempted and affected by our corrupted culture. Where is the balance? How are we to think about these things? Am I wrong not to want a baby because of the evil times that we live in?

Show Notes

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Episode Question

I desire to have children one day, but, in light of suffering, it almost seems selfish to want a child knowing that it will suffer. In my case, it could inherit a genetic health condition that could somewhat compromise its abilities. But even with that aside, life is full of trouble and suffering.

If the child never becomes a believer in Christ, he’ll suffer in this life and for eternity. If the child becomes a believer, suffering is seen as a mark of God’s grace by disciplining and drawing that child closer to Himself. So while it does at least have a good purpose at that point, it’s still suffering. If the child never exists, it knows nothing of suffering or anything; it won’t miss out on God’s favor either because it just won’t live.

If followed, I realize that this line of thinking could quickly diminish the population and goes against God’s command to be fruitful and multiply and consider children a blessing. I want children, and I love the idea of discipling them and having fun with them. Still, with the kind of suffering that some of us have been through or are going through (especially in the context of those who have challenging marriages), it seems almost cruel and selfish to have a child knowing their destiny is to suffer!

  • When what we long for is heaven, and earth holds little attraction anymore, why subject a child to this life?
  • How do you find the biblical balance on this? I can see that my current sufferings severely cloud my recent line of thinking.Anonymous

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Faith in God

  1. To answer your first question, though heaven is the goal, we carve the path to heaven through this world. Thus, to have a baby, they must be born a first time to be born a second.
  2. No third party can or should answer this question for you.
  3. Be careful as you listen to people’s personal experiences with how they handled this question and the results of their decisions.
  4. There is a temptation to map your experience over this decision to the degree that your experience becomes the interpretive filter for how you proceed. Let the Bible speak louder than any other voice—including yours.
  5. Faith is trusting God, not future outcomes. If knowing the future consequences is the only way for you to proceed, your faith would be in knowing the outcome rather than knowing God, who allows, manages, and controls all future outcomes.
  6. Guard against self-reliance: controlling future outcomes. If self-reliance is a tendency with you, examine why that is so. Perhaps your strong suffering shaping influence tempts you to lean into self-reliance.
  7. Part of the self-reliant spirit is anger: the person does not like how life has happened for them; they are angry with God, hindering any future trust in God.
  8. What does your husband think about this?
  9. Ask God, your husband, yourself, and a few trusted, competent friends who are not afraid to say what they believe rather than what they think you want to hear.
  10. Are you both “in faith” to proceed (Romans 14:23)? I’m not asking about perfect faith, but are you more sure, hope-filled, convinced, or believe in the direction you should go?
  11. Are you a fear-based person? Are you characterized mainly by faith or fear?
  12. Your situation is unique to you. Illustration: Every Christian should not homeschool their children because some families cannot provide that kind of education for their children.
  13. Consider adoption or foster care.
  14. All babies are born fallen, broken, depraved, and need physical and spiritual restoration. Be sobered by this and motivated to bring change to those within your sphere of influence. Despair, defeat, and passivity should not be what controls you.
  15. Don’t presume on God’s grace: I can do what I want to because God will take care of it (Psalm 19:13)? Some couples keep having babies to the detriment of the wife’s health or the detriment of the child because the parents are no longer physically, spiritually, or economically able to provide for the children.
  16. Your question lodges somewhere between God’s sovereign control and management of all things and His call on your life to cooperate with Him in the redemptive narrative He is writing. The doctrinal teaching is primary and secondary causes. See Genesis 50:20; Philippians 2:12-13.

Direct Video Messages

Personal Story

Our last child was born when I was 46. I knew I would be 66 before her assumed nest-leaving time. Of course, that does not factor in my ongoing care, training, and relational engagement with her after she becomes an adult, which I hope to be able to do when she’s thirty and forty years old.

When you have a child, you add twenty years to your life as you think about what it could be like when your child is twenty years old. This perspective is not a pessimistic view of life or an attempt to control outcomes, but a realistic view, as much as a finite person is supposed to make plans (Proverbs 16:9). Because of these things, we chose not to have any more children.

I do not know what disease you have or the chances of your suffering affecting the quality of life of your future child. I recommend factoring your disabilities into your decision-making, just as I have factored in my age and future ability to provide our child with a Christlike physical and spiritual environment.

It is not wrong to think about these things. It’s humble and wise. It’s trying to cooperate with God’s redemptive story rather than not thinking, praying, or asking about one of the most important decisions you and your husband will ever make. Having a baby is one of the big five: birth, marriage, children, death, and eternity.

Call to Action

  1. What is your disease, and what does your medical community say about passing it to your child?
  2. What are your husband’s wishes about having another child?
  3. Are you primarily self-reliant, having a hard time trusting God?
  4. Does cynicism manage your thinking, giving you a pessimistic view of life?
  5. What does it mean to live by faith?

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