Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

History of Contraception in the Protestant Church: How Protestants Learned to Love 'The Pill'
Bound 4 Life ^ | Allan Carlson

Posted on 08/26/2020 3:20:25 PM PDT by CondoleezzaProtege

In constructing his evangelical family ethic, [Martin] Luther placed emphasis on Genesis 1:28: “Be fruitful and multiply.”

This living-together of husband and wife—that they occupy the same home, that they take care of the household, that together they produce and bring up children—is a kind of faint image and a remnant, as it were, of that blessed living together [in Eden].

Luther knew that the contraceptive mentality was alive and well in his own time. He noted that this “inhuman attitude, which is worse than barbarous,” was found chiefly among the well born, “the nobility and princes.” Elsewhere, he linked contraception to selfishness:

How great, therefore, the wickedness of [fallen] human nature is! How many girls there are who prevent conception and kill and expel tender fetuses, although procreation is the work of God! Indeed, some spouses who marry and live together…have various ends in mind, but rarely children.

In short, Luther’s fierce rejection of contraception and abortion lay at the very heart of his reforming zeal and his evangelical theology. His own marriage to Katherine von Bora and their brood of children set a model for the Protestant Christian home, one that would stand for nearly four hundred years.

And yet, by the 1960′s and 1970′s, virtually all Protestant churches—in America as in Europe—embraced contraception...Pope Paul VI’s courageous opposition to these acts in the 1968 encyclical, Humanae Vitae, won broad condemnation from Protestant leaders as an attempt to impose “Catholic views” on the world...

How had a central pillar of the evangelical Protestant ethic been reversed so completely?

Some recent historical investigations offer partial answers...

For example, the first formal break came within the Anglican communion, or the Church of England, with the clergy themselves leading the way...

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Moral Issues; Religion & Culture; Religion & Science
KEYWORDS: birthcontrol; contraception; evangelical; family; marriage; protestant
Allan Carlson, Ph.D., is the founder and president of the Howard Center for Family, Religion, and Society and currently is Distinguished Visiting Professor of History at Hillsdale College. He is a member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Dr. Carlson is the author of numerous books including, most recently, Godly Seed: American Evangelicals Confront Birth Control, 1873-1973 (2011).

1 posted on 08/26/2020 3:20:25 PM PDT by CondoleezzaProtege
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: CondoleezzaProtege

Once again I’m reminded of one Harry Fosdick who gave a talk (too much to call it a sermon) he called “Shall the Fundamentalists Win?”

Fosdick apparently thought he had prepared the congregation he “ministered” to so they would accept his modernist theology but instead he, having let the cat out of the bag about modernist heresies, lost his job and his talk became infamous as actual Christians learned about the sort that had been sneaking in.

What we call “liberal” Protestantism then saw a period of frequently leaving or forcing to leave the company of those who didn’t go along, who still clung to the fundamentals of the faith.

It is from these you will find the “virtually all Protestant churches” going along with the culture in the sexual revolution ... I’m guessing that “all” has less to do with the flyover country as it was then than more.

2 posted on 08/26/2020 3:53:36 PM PDT by Rurudyne (Standup Philosopher)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: CondoleezzaProtege

At least Great Britain passed a law to legalize abortion. In the US, contraception and abortion and faggotry and fag marriage and cross dressing are, thanks to a few lawyers, all made-up rights. And GB has a monarch while we are supposedly a self governing republic.

3 posted on 08/26/2020 4:32:17 PM PDT by Jacquerie (
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: CondoleezzaProtege


4 posted on 08/26/2020 4:58:59 PM PDT by Albion Wilde ("When you open your heart to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice." --Donald Trump)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Jacquerie
Interesting. I never thought of it that way. A lot of the activities Americans are now allowed to engage in are not so because they are specified in a law, but because whatever laws there were against those activities were invalidated by the Supreme Court.

It's like the Supreme Court is there to create vacuums into which debauchery can be released.

5 posted on 08/26/2020 5:07:27 PM PDT by who_would_fardels_bear
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: CondoleezzaProtege

Oh look, another “I hate non-Catholics with a hot hot hate” thread.

6 posted on 08/26/2020 5:10:50 PM PDT by Luircin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Luircin

You don’t remember the bad old days of the religion forum.

There was a guy who said all Protestants and most Catholics are going to hell because of some sort of particular Catholic sect he was in said so.

Then there was the great thread on the various supposed bodily relics of Jesus (think about that) and Mary.

Good times.

7 posted on 08/26/2020 5:37:58 PM PDT by redgolum (If this culture today is civilization, I will be the barbarian)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: who_would_fardels_bear
<>create vacuums into which debauchery can be released.<>

Well said.

The Roe decision enshrines the "right" of one generation to terminate the next. What nonsense under a Constitution that promises to secure the blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.

8 posted on 08/26/2020 5:44:24 PM PDT by Jacquerie (
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Jacquerie

I think the liberals misread that as ‘posterior’.

9 posted on 08/26/2020 6:28:21 PM PDT by who_would_fardels_bear
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

10 posted on 08/27/2020 11:02:52 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (Imagine an imaginary menagerie manager imagining managing an imaginary menagerie.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson