Now, in 1 Samuel 1, we find the famous story about Hannah and she's not able to have a child. The Bible says in verse 5 and 6 that the Lord had shut up her womb. She’s praying to the Lord and Eli prays for her. She eventually has a child and that child, of course, becomes Samuel, the prophet, and so on, and so forth. What I want to preach about this morning is the subject of infertility or the subject of women not being able to have children.
This is a subject that the Bible deals with over and over again. In fact, you can almost say it’s one of the great themes of the Bible. It comes up so often. Just looking through the Bible, here’s the list that I came up with of ladies who were not able to have a child or the Bible calls them barren. We would call them infertile or not able to have a child for whatever reason. First of all, Sarah, Abraham’s wife, Rebecca, Isaac’s wife, Rachel, Jacob’s wife. Then, if you remember, Samson’s mother was barren. The wife of Elkanah, she was not able to have a child. The wife of Elkanah, Hannah, we just read about it.
Then, there was the Shunammite lady in 2 Kings 4 who was not able to have a child until Elisha prayed for her. Then, Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, the Bible also says of her that she was barren, she was infertile. Then, also there’s a story in Genesis 20 where the Lord had shut up the wombs of the House of Abimelech. Abimelech was the leader of the Philistines, and his whole household became barren as a result of the situation with Sarah being brought into Abimelech’s House and so forth.
There are a lot of women in the Bible who dealt with this but what’s interesting about it is that every single one of them eventually had children in the Bible. Did you hear that? All these women that I listed for you, all these stories throughout the Bible, every single one of them eventually gave birth to a child. Not one of them remained childless.
Now, some people will erroneously bring up Michal, David’s wife, and say, “That was one who was barren and remained childless,” because there is a verse in the Bible, 2 Samuel 6:23, you don’t need to turn there, where it says, “Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death.” They’ll say she was one that was barren until the end, but Michal was not barren at all. There’s no evidence of that whatsoever.
What really happened, and if you notice that that verse starts with “therefore,” and I heard somebody once say that whenever you see a “therefore,” you need to figure out what it’s therefore because therefore is a conjunction. If you look at what comes before the “therefore,” David is chewing her out and telling her and putting her in place. Then, it says, “Therefore, she had no child until the day of her death.” The reason why is because David had multiple wives and David basically, from that point on, after she rebuked him, he had nothing to do with her ever again. Obviously, that’s why she remained childless because he’s not having a marital relationship with her. That’s not barrenness. That story is not relevant to the discussion.
Every woman in the Bible who was infertile or barren eventually had a child. Now, I want to go through with you just biblical principles on this subject. What does the Bible teach us about this? How do we handle this? There are a lot of ladies today in 2013 that are barren or infertile. There are a lot that wish that they could have children and could not or perhaps you know someone who is in that situation. We need to learn from this.
The first thing that we see in this passage is that God is the one who opens and closes the womb. Look at verse 2. It’s just talking about Elkanah. It says he had two wives. The name of the one was Hannah and the name of the other, Peninnah. Peninnah had children but Hannah had no children. Jump down to verse 5, “But unto Hannah he gave a worthy portion; for he loved Hannah: but the Lord had shut up her womb.” That’s a key phrase. Look at verse 6, “And her adversary also provoked her sore, for to make her fret, because the Lord had shut up her womb.” Twice in this passage, the Bible makes it clear that it was the Lord’s doing that she was not able to have children. It was His will. It was something that He made a decision on.
Now, you don’t have to turn there but we see this over and over again. Genesis 20:18, the Bible says, “For the Lord had fast closed up all the wombs of the house of Abimelech, because of Sara, Abraham's wife.” Genesis 29:31, “And when the Lord saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb: but Rachel was barren.” Genesis 30:1, “When Rachel saw that she bare Jacob no children, Rachel envied her sister; and said unto Jacob, Give me children, or else I die. And Jacob's anger was kindled against Rachel: and he said, Am I in God's stead, who hath withheld from thee the fruit of the womb?”
We see then that this is a decision that God makes to open the womb and to close the womb. Genesis 30:22, about Rachel again, it says, “God hearkened to her, and opened her womb.” She prayed her. God harkened to her. He opened her womb. This is something that is in God’s hands, that is according to the will of God.
Another thing that we noticed in this passage is that this situation of not being able to have a child is a cause of great grief, and frustration, and sadness for those who are afflicted by it. We see that Hannah is very upset. She is crying. Part of the reason why she’s upset is how she’s being treated by Peninnah. We should be careful not to treat people badly. Obviously, this can be a sensitive subject with people.
Therefore, if people don’t have children and you don’t really know why, and maybe they’ve been married for long and they don’t have children, you may not necessarily want to go to them and just say, “When are you going to have kids? What’s the deal? What are you waiting for?” because you could be obviously opening up a sore subject. You just need to be polite and tactful, and just mind your business on things of that nature, and not always question. Somebody might only have one child and you say, “Aren’t you going to have another one? Why do you only have one?” It could be a source of sadness so you don’t want to open up a bad subject. You just want to treat people nicely, and kindly, and lovingly, and gently. That’s a biblical principle.
The first I would say on this subject, go back to Genesis 25, the first thing I would say on the subject of infertility is that if this is something that you’re dealing with or that anyone is dealing with is that women need to be patient when it comes to this subject. Patience is the first thing that I would advise because the Bible tells us that, of course, every woman in the Bible who was infertile eventually had a child but that doesn’t mean that it happened right away. Sometimes, we can pray and ask God to do things, and we think that God is not answering our prayer, but really, it’s just that He doesn’t always do it in our timing. Sometimes, there’s a delay before God chooses to answer our prayer. It doesn’t mean that He’s not going to answer it.
For example, in Genesis 25:20, it says, “And Isaac was forty years old when he took Rebekah to wife, the daughter of Bethuel, the Syrian of Padanaram, the sister to Laban the Syrian. And Isaac intreated the Lord for his wife, because she was barren: and the Lord was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived.” Now, it’s easy to read that verse and it just seems like it was just an instant answer to prayer. He marries Rebekah. She’s barren. He gets on his knees. He prays to God and asked God to open her womb. God opens her womb. Nothing to it, right?
Jump down to verse 25 though, this is when she gives birth to the twins, Jacob and Esau. It says, “And the first came out red, all over like an hairy garment; and they called his name Esau. And after that came his brother out, and his hand took hold on Esau's heel; and his name was called Jacob: and Isaac was,” how old, “threescore years old when she bare them.” He was 60 years old. A score is 20, three score is 60. The Bible says that he married her when he was 40. She was barren and was not able to have a child. Then, God answered the prayer 20 years later. Was that just an instant answer to prayer? Just, yeah, we prayed and just fixed. No, Isaac had to be patient. He prayed unto the Lord. God heard his prayer but it wasn’t an instant answer to prayer. It was 20 years that went by before the child came.
Here’s a scripture for you in Psalm 113. You don’t have to turn there but it says, “He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth the needy out of the dunghill; That he may set him with princes, even with the princes of his people. He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the Lord.” Is God able to open the womb? Yes. Is God able to make the barren to have a child? Absolutely. Does it always happen immediately when we pray and ask God to do it? No. Patience.
The Bible says, “But you have need of patience that after you have done the will of God, you might receive the promise.” So often, we just want everything right now. We’re like the prodigal son. “Give me the portion of the inheritance that falleth to me. Right now, I want everything now,” when sometimes, God wants us to wait. It’s difficult to wait and it takes faith to wait but that’s what God counts us to do, and that’s what the examples of these ladies in the Bible shows us to do is to wait.
Now, I have personally known people who thought, “We are unable to have children.” They were married for literally a decade or 15 years. I can name specific people like that who eventually had children even though they had completely given up and thought, “We are unable to have children.” I’m thinking of a couple in particular. Finally, they tried and tried for a decade and prayed. Then, they basically adopted children which there’s nothing wrong with that. I am going to get to that later in the sermon about adoption, the specifics of what I believe is right and wrong with adoption, but they adopted children.
Low and behold, she had children after they adopted. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with adopting children in that case but what I’m saying is that a lot of times, we think that it’s not going to happen but really the answer to prayer is just still coming. You just have to be patient. Just wait and not get ahead of yourself. Why are women barren? Because I don’t believe that every woman is barren for the same reason. Let me give you a list of all the reasons that I’ve come up with both just biblically and just what we see around us in the world why women are barren.
Number one reason why women are barren is that God has chosen to close the womb. Now, even if you go to the world and their science, and their statistics, and their research, depending on whose statistics you look at, they’ll say that 20 to 40% of those that are infertile, they have zero explanation for why. They’ll look at the man, they’ll examine him, and everything is good with the man. They’ll look at the woman, they’ll examine the woman, everything is good with the woman. They’ll just say, “Look, you’re both perfectly healthy. Everything is fine. We have no idea why you are unable to have children.” 40% of the time, that’s the case. They don’t know. Some would say 20%. A lot of them would say 40%.
That’s a pretty substantial number of women today where God has just closed the womb for whatever reason in His infinite wisdom. That might be hard to accept but that is what God chooses to do and His will is His will. What can we say to the will of God? He knows what’s best and He chooses sometimes to make people wait or to not have a child, whatsoever.
Now, if you look at the case with Abraham and Sarah, why do you think Sarah was barren? I don’t believe it was a result of any sin on her part. If we look at a lot of the women in the Bible who were barren, they were not living in sin. They were righteous and godly people. It was not a punishment but rather, God had a purpose for a lot of women there. Why do you think Rebekah was barren? Part of the purpose might have been that He wanted to give us that example today of prayer and waiting 20 years to get the answer. He was using that as an illustration to teach us something. God wanted to perform that miracle where Sarah gave birth at a very old age that’s why He allowed her to barren.
If you remember, there was a man who was blind from his mother’s womb in the Book of John. The disciples asked Jesus, “Why was this man born blind? Did he sin or did his parents sin?” God said, “Neither he sinned, neither did his parents sinned but he is blind for the glory of God.” It was so that Jesus could heal him. There could be all different reasons why God chooses for a woman to be infertile at a particular time in her life. Maybe it’s just God’s will that you only have one child. Maybe it’s just God’s will that you only have two children and you’re going to have that child later. As is the case with Abraham, Isaac, God had a plan, God had a will, and who are we to question God? It happened to righteous people.
Secondly, sometimes, God has chosen the womb or closing the womb because of the fact that it is a punishment. I am not going to get up here and lie to you and say it’s never a punishment because it is a punishment in the Bible. For example, with the House of Abimelech, they were punished by having the womb closed. That is something that comes up in the Bible. I’d be lying to you if I told you that God never closes the womb as a punishment because He does, but where we make the mistake is where we look at somebody or look at ourselves and say, “I am not having children. It must be a punishment.” No, because there are a lot of examples where it was not a punishment.
It’s just like the Book of Job. Job wasn’t being punished and God became very angry when Job’s friends accused him of sin just because bad things were happening to him and Job was not in sin. We never want to judge ourselves or someone else on that basis and say, “It’s a punishment of God, it’s a judgment of God,” because we don’t know what God is doing.
You say, “How do I know if God is punishing me?” Are you living in sin? Are you breaking His Commandments? If you’re violating God’s Word and breaking His Commandments, and bad things happen, it’s a punishment. If you’re following God’s Commandments and doing what’s right, then it’s not a punishment. It’s that simple. Basically, we need to go by what the Bible says to determine what’s right and wrong, not on the circumstances of our lives. We can’t really judge based on that.
God chooses to close the womb is the number one reason. Even the world will say that could be up to 40% of the time, no explicable reason. God could even use other causes that science could even recognize. He could use those to close the womb. Is it always a punishment? No. Most of the time, it’s women in the Bible who are righteous, godly women who are not being punished. Sometimes, it is a punishment.
Let me say this, sometimes there are STDs that can cause one to become infertile, whether male or female. By the way, when we think of infertility, we often just think of the woman but in reality, 50% of the time, the modern science will tell us that 50% of the time, it’s the men. Just as often as it’s the woman, it’s a problem on the man’s end. A lot of STDs or diseases that are transmitted through fornication can cause one to become infertile.
This is something that people don’t think about when they go out and commit the sin of fornication, and they go out and commit all this sin, and then they wonder when there are repercussions to it where infertility could result in those type of diseases. That could be a punishment right there just built into the sin of fornication. Most of the time, it’s not a punishment but it could a punishment. That’s number one, God choose to close the womb.
Number two, why are women barren today? Because of the residual effect of birth control. The residual effects of birth control. Women will take birth control for years. Then, all of a sudden, they’re “Okay, I want to get pregnant now.” It might not necessarily happen. In fact, they say that for as long as you are on the birth control pills, that’s about how long it might take you to become pregnant. If you’re on birth control pill for five years, it could take you five years just to get all of that out of your system and get your system back to normal.
Of course, I’m totally against birth control pills. I’ve written a whole article about it. I am not going to go into it just because I don’t have time all the reasons why birth control pills are bad, but the residual effect of birth control can sometimes make someone temporarily or permanently infertile from taking birth control pills.
Number three reason why women could be barren is because of health issues. Now, I will put this into two categories of health issues and this could be either in the man or the woman. Health issues could either be a medical problem or a lifestyle problem. For example, a medical problem is someone have cancer, or disease, or just other issues in the body where your body is not healthy for whatever reason could cause you to be infertile either temporarily or permanently.
Secondly, lifestyle. It’s a proven fact that being overweight, either man or woman, or being underweight can often lead to infertility. Just living an unhealthy lifestyle, being completely sedentary, just completely sitting around, not getting any exercise, eating junk food, all the toxins and the junk that we eat sometimes, all the chemicals going into your body, that’s stuff can throw you off hormonally. That stuff can affect your body and cause you to not be fertile. Stuff that’s in the water, stuff that’s in the food can enter in and contaminate.
This is not me just up here giving my politically incorrect opinion here. Anybody will tell you, anybody will agree, and common sense can tell you that if your body is not healthy, your body is not going to function properly. If your body is not functioning properly, that could result in you not being fertile. The Bible tells us in 1 Corinthians 12 that when one part of the body suffers, the whole body suffers. We know that that’s true. You could have a bad tooth that could cause problems in your blood and in your heart. Our whole body is one system that works together and when we live an unhealthy lifestyle, that will reduce your chances of being able to have a child.
If you’re overweight, if you’re underweight, if you’re sedentary, if you’re eating junk food, not exercising at all, sometimes amongst women, excessive exercise can cause them to become infertile. These that are just obsessed with just constantly running and bicycling and very underweight, and they’re vegan, and they’re exercising all the time, and they’re just so underweight, and they’re just exercising so much that they become infertile. That’s an issue. It’s not just the women, it’s the men. Just 50% of the time, it’s the men. The man is living an unhealthy lifestyle. That can cause infertility as well.
Then, the last reason I would give is just old age. The older you get, the less fertile you’re going to be. That’s why it was such a miracle when these people did give birth in old age like Sarah and others. Just a quick review. Why are women barren? Number one, because God has chosen to close the womb usually just for reasons unknown to us, just as it’s His will at this time. Sometimes, it could also be a punishment. Usually, it’s not but it could be a punishment. Number two, it could be the residual effects of birth control. Number three, it could be health problems in the men, whether a medical problem or a lifestyle problem. It could be a health issue in the women, medical or lifestyle-related. It could just be older age, just advance age. Those are the issues.
The question is then, biblically, what are the steps that should be taken when someone is infertile? If a woman is infertile, what are the steps to take and what are the steps not to take? That’s the remainder of the sermon. What steps should be taken biblically and what steps should not be taken biblically speaking? First of all, the step to take when infertile is to pray, of course. Remember, it says in verse 22 of Genesis 30, “God remembered Rachel, and God hearkened to her, and opened her womb.” That was an answer to prayer. Here’s a woman, she can’t have a child, she prayed, and had children. In reality, every single woman in the Bible who prayed eventually had children. Prayer works.
Number two, not just pray, you also need to have faith because we need to pray believing. The Bible says, “A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.” The Bible says, “Let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. F or let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.” A key thing when it comes to having your prayers answered is to have faith or to believe in prayer.
Let me give you a few scriptures on that. Hebrews 11:11. You turn to Matthew 21, if you would. Matthew 21. I’ll read for you from Hebrews 11:11. It says, “Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed.” How did Sara received strength to conceive seed? Through faith. “And was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised.” Hebrews 11:11. The Bible says the same thing in Romans 4 about Abraham, about how he had faith, how he believed God, and that’s why he was able to have a child because of faith.
Matthew 21:21 says this, “Jesus answered and said unto them, ‘Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done. And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.’” When we pray, we need to have faith. We needed not just go through the motions but we need to actually believe that God has the power and the ability to answer our prayer if it is His will.
Go to 1 John 5. 1 John 5 because we’re going through just biblical steps here of what to do when you’re infertile. What does the Bible teach? The Bible shows prayer as being the first recourse if a woman wants to become pregnant and is not getting pregnant, she prays? How do we get our prayers answered? It’s important that we have faith and believe in the power of God and believe in the power of prayer.
1 John 5:14 says this, “This is the confidence that we have in Him, that, if we ask any thing according to His will, He heareth us: And if we know that He hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him.” The Bible says that we know that if we ask anything according to His will, he heareth us. If we know that He hear us, we know He’s going to give us the petitions that we have desired of Him.
The Bible says “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” What does that mean, the peace of God? What does it mean to pray believing? What it means is that when you pray to God and you ask God to answer your prayer and to give you a child, you leave it at that. As far as you know, you don’t sit there and say, “Now, I am going to worry about it and stress about it. I don’t think God is going to answer my prayer so I need to go do something else.” That’s not faith.
Faith says, “I’ve prayed to God about it. I’ve put it in His hands. Now, it’s in His hands. I’m not going to worry about it.” Carefulness means worrying. That would be the modern day word for it. Carefulness is when we’re worried and stressed out about things. What we ought to do is just put it in God’s hands, pray to the Lord, and say, “God, it’s up to You.” What I think part of that is when we tell God and say, “God, I want you to do this but not my will but Thy will done. I am willing to wait, Lord. I am willing to be patient. I believe that You want what’s best for me. I want Your will to be done. God, I’m casting it all upon You,” and to understand that God hears you and He can answer your prayer, and believe that He will answer your prayer in His timing.
The Bible also says in chapter 3. Flip back to chapter 3 of 1 John. It says in 1 John 3:22, “And whatsoever we ask, we receive of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.” We should strive to live a life that pleases God and keeps His commandments. Then, we pray to God and put our request before Him. Then, it’s up to Him at that point. Then, we live it in His hands and let Him decide. If he chooses to make us wait, then you know what, we just are thankful for the good things that we have and we patiently wait for God’s will to be done.
What’s another step that you can biblically take? Obviously besides praying, obviously besides praying with a heart of faith and believing, you’re not doubting God, you’re not doubting His choices, you’re not doubting. What if God just decides to not give you a child, or to only give you one child, or to not give you a child for the first 20 years, are you willing to accept God’s decision and just believe that His best for you is good enough than to try to second guess His decision with a lack of faith?
Another thing you can do besides praying and believing is to basically get someone else to pray for you. For example, the pastor, because if you look at these stories in the Bible, this is actually something that frequently happens. For example, in 1 Samuel 1, what did Hannah do? She went and prayed and she had been praying for her son, but then, she actually told Eli her situation. When she told Eli the situation, Eli prayed. Then, it happened as a result of Eli’s prayer. Actually, Eli’s prayer was what actually got the job done in 1 Samuel 1. Then, Eli, again, after she had the first child, Samuel, Eli prayed for them again, and then they had five more children in 1 Samuel 2 is what records that part. You could get the pastor to pray.
Another example of that is with Abimelech’s House. When Abimelech’s household was barren, Abraham prayed for them. It was a result of Abraham’s prayer that they were no longer barren. Then, another example of that is with the Shunammite in 2 Kings 4. She had been barren for a very long time. She was an older woman. Elisha prayed for her that she would have a child, and she conceived and had a child. That would be one thing you could do. You could pray. Number two, you’d get a man of God to pray, have faith, et cetera.
Now, another thing that you could do is improve your health. Now, I don’t think that this shows a lack of faith to improve your health. To say, “Okay. I’ve prayed. I’ve put it all in God’s hands. I’m trusting in the Lord. I am not going to worry about it.” Covetousness can become an issue when it comes to infertility, can’t it? Isn’t covetousness a sin? Wishing that you had what someone else has Wishing that you had what you do not have.
We need to learn also to be content with such things as we have and be sure that covetousness does not enter in. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to have a child. There’s nothing wrong with praying to God and asking the Lord to give you that child, but we don’t become covetousness where it’s like, “God is not giving me a child but I want one anyway.” That’s a bad attitude. Getting angry at God. Getting angry at other people around you that are having children. Coveting what other people have, that’s not the right attitude.
There should be a faith and a peace that says, “God, I trust you. I trust your timing. I trust your judgment. I pray to you. You know my heart. You know my request. I’m thankful for everything else I have.” You say, “I don’t have children,” but you have a husband. That’s what Hannah’s wife told her, “Am I not better than ten sons?” He said, “Look, Elisha have me.” There are always people who have less than you and who are worse off than you. You don’t want to get a covetous attitude where you’re not content with what you have.
That being said that you put it in God’s hands, you have peace about it, you don’t worry, and fret, and covet about it, you just live your life, and trust the Lord. Improving your health is not a lapse in faith because that’s something that you should probably be doing anyway. Keep in mind, is every woman infertile or is every man infertile because God has closed the womb? Not necessarily because remember when I was giving the list of reasons why women are infertile, sometimes, it’s a lifestyle issue or a medical issue.
I don’t think that it’s a lapse of faith to improve your health. If you’re saying, “Man, I would really like to have children. I am not able to have children,” you may want to address health issues. If you’re just eating a really unhealthy diet, living a really unhealthy lifestyle, and then you just say, “God is not blessing me with children,” maybe it has something to do also just with you physically, with your lifestyle.
I realized that God could perform a miracle and give you a child in spite of a bad lifestyle but He does teach us in the Bible to take care of our bodies. He does tell us what we should and should not eat. How many times in the Bible does He warn in Proverbs about eating too many sweets? Doesn’t he tell you, “Hey, don’t eat too much honey. Eat honey but don’t eat too much because you’ll vomit it up.” Did He not say that? Did He not tell us to eat our daily bread and to eat our meats, but He does warn us also about gluttony and overeating. Obviously, also, there could be under-eating issues. There could be all kinds. Also, God does warn us to work with our hands and he tells us to basically do things that would be giving us exercise.
Now, I don’t think that necessarily the people in the book of Genesis had a membership to the gym but do you know what? They lived a different lifestyle than we lived. The women are spinning wools, spinning flax, washing clothes. They’re doing all kinds of physical work. They’re hauling water around. They’re hauling babies around. They’re cooking meals. They’re bringing food around. The men are out farming. 90% of men have been farmers throughout history or they’re doing a job like a blacksmith. It’s all jobs that require physical work. The Bible talks about working with sweat to your face.
If you do have a job where you’re just seated a lot or you’re just in front of a computer a lot, in order for your body to be healthy, you do have to get out and get some exercise. Go soul winning is a good start. At least, it will get you walking up and down the streets. Then, go to an apartment complex and we go up and down those stairs. Honestly, you got to get some exercise in your life. You got to stop eating junk. The Bible warns us about all of those things. I don’t think that there’s anything lacking in faith or unbiblical about improving your health.
Go to Ecclesiastes 11. What do you? You’re infertile, what do you do biblically? Number, you’d be patient. Don’t expect it to happen overnight. Number two, you pray. Number three, you pray, and you believe, and have faith in what you’re praying. Number four, you get someone else to pray. You go to the man of God and have him pray for you. Whether in the Bible, that was Abraham or whether it’s Eli, or whether it was … Who’s the other one? Elisha. You know what, the great thing is that Eli being overweight didn’t stop them from conceiving when he prayed for them because the Bible says that Eli was a very heavy man and he was rebuked for gorging himself on the fat of the sacrifices and so forth. Where did I have you turn?
Ecclesiastes 11. Here’s another thing that you can do if you’re infertile. I want to say this very delicately but I feel that I need to tell the whole truth on this subject is that another thing that you could do is you could lie with your spouse more frequently because I have literally spoken to people a long time ago, no one that you know, but somebody has literally asked me to question before, “If we’re trying to have a child, is once a week enough? Is that enough if we’re trying to get pregnant?” No, it’s not enough. That right there could very well be the problem because that is scientifically just not going to be enough. You might get lucky but no, that’s not enough.
Look what the Bible says in Ecclesiastes 11:4. This is a parable but he’s using it in regard to actually having children as well. Look at verse 4, it says, “He that observeth the wind shall not sow; and he that regardeth the clouds shall not reap. As thou knowest not what is the way of the spirit, nor how the bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child: even so thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all. In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thine hand: for thou knowest not whether shall prosper, either this or that, or whether they both shall be alike good.”
Again, I’m trying to be as discreet as possible here as I explain this but there are some people who think to themselves, “Okay, we really want to have a child. We’re going to get out a calendar, and we’re going to map it all out.” There’s eve software that you can buy. There’s an app for that literally. I am not kidding. There is an app for this. There is software. It’s like, “If you’re trying to get pregnant, you need to buy this software,” and the software is going to tell you, “Okay, this is the day that you need to do it. This is the day that you need to sow that seed.” It’s like, “Okay, that’s what we’re going to do.” Is that biblical according to this passage?
The passage is saying you don’t know. You don’t know when it’s going to happen. You know what? It’s not that exact of a science, my friend, of just there’s a certain time and a certain day, and you hit the window, and the software is going to tell you when that is. No, wrong. The Bible says here, you don’t really know. Science doesn’t even fully understand the whole process of reproduction of how it even takes place. That’s why even 40% of time, they’re like, “We can’t tell you why you can’t get pregnant,” because there’s a lot of things that science still doesn’t understand and know. The doctor is not God. Scientists are not God.
For us to sit there and think that we can plan this and understand this, and no, the Bible says you don’t know how the bones grow in the womb of her that is with child. You don’t know the way of the Spirit or the works of God that makes all. He says, “Look, in the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thine hand: for thou knowest not whether shall prosper, either this or that, or whether they both shall be alike good.” It’s saying you don’t know when it’s going to work out. You just do it and it’s going to either happen or it’s not, and it’s up to God, but you have to do it or else, it’s not going to happen.
To sit there and plan out some once a week, once a month according to some app, it’s just not going to happen, my friend. It’s just chances are you’re not just going to hit that bull’s eye. That’s a really silly way to go about it. If you’re trying to get pregnant, just scientifically, it needs to be happening a minimum of every other day but ideally, it should be happening every day but, at least, every other day if you actually expect to get pregnant. That’s just the hard truth of it.
Again, I don’t want to go into a bunch of detail on that but I feel the need to say that just because there are people who misunderstand this and don’t comprehend this. This could be part of the reason why people are infertile. Again, it’s probably a rare thing where that’s the problem but still, I’m just throwing it out there because it is a biblical teaching here in this passage.
He’s using this to talk about two different things because he is also talking about actually sowing a seed out in a field like a farmer. He says in verse 4, “He that observeth the wind shall not sow; and he that regardeth the clouds shall not reap.” What he’s saying is you’re never going to find that perfect day to sow the seed. If you’re a farmer and you’re just like, “The clouds aren’t. It’s too windy.” Pretty soon, it’s too late to sow the seed because you’ve waited for that perfect opportunity.
Then, do you see how God ties that in with having a child in the next verse? He puts this illustrations together. We could also take another interpretation of this and think about this, what about people who say, “We’re just not ready for children.” Think about this. We’re going to wait to sow that seed. We’re looking at the clouds. We’re looking at the wind. I just don’t know if it’s the right time for us to have a baby right now. Then, what happens? Then, eventually they decide, “Okay, now we’re ready, God. Okay, God, we’re ready to go.” Then, God doesn’t just snap to attention and give them what they want, and then they’re surprised.
What God is saying is we need to live it in His hands. We need to just get married, sow that seed, have a normal relationship with our wife, and you know what? She’s either going to get pregnant or she’s not. We don’t have to sit there and try to say, “We’re waiting and we’re trying.” People always ask me if I am trying for another one after this. I always think that’s funny because if you’re going to have eight, why would you stop there? Do you think anybody just says, “I’m going to have eight and I’m going to stop.” Pretty much, if people don’t stop after two, three, or four, they’re probably just going to keep going.
People ask me, “Are you guys going to try for another one?” I always just think to myself, I didn’t try for any of these. They just happened. I just think to myself, you have to try not to. You don’t have to try to have children. You just have a normal relationship with your spouse and children are the byproduct. Eventually, not always right away, it could be a long time, but that is the byproduct. It’s not something that you try for. It’s something you try not to. If you are wanting to look at it that way of we’re trying, then, once a week is not going to cut it. You need to put in the time.
Anyway, go to Matthew 9, the last legitimate step that you can take biblically after you’ve prayed, after you’ve had faith that your prayer was heard by God, after you’ve mentioned to your pastor, or some other man of God, or maybe just a close friend if you’re more comfortable with that because the Bible talks about it even just two or three gathering together, and agreeing on something, and praying together that that has power. When you agree with someone else and you pray together, even if it’s not the pastor, just whoever it is, just when you join together with someone and pray together, that’s another step you could take.
Then, you could improve your health just in case say, “Wait a minute. Maybe this could have something to do with my lifestyle or maybe this could have something to do with my diet or with my exercise or lack thereof.” Then, after you’ve decided, “Okay, am I even sowing the seed often enough to even expect to get pregnant just mathematically.” The other thing that I believe is a legitimate thing to do would be if there’s a medical procedure needed just to restore the body to health.
Now, I’m going to get to in a moment medical procedures that are not legitimate, that are not righteous for you to do, but a medical procedure to restore health. Look at Matthew 9:12, the Bible says, “But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, ‘They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.’” The Bible is not just completely anti-doctor across the board. Now, people often think of me that I’m just completely anti-doctor, anti-medicine, anti-medical and they’re about 99% right. Anyway, they’re not fully right though because I do believe that there’s a time a place for doctors.
In fact, the Book of Luke was written by a doctor. Luke, the Beloved Physician. It’s not that doctors are bad. Even Jesus here says that when people are sick, they may need a physician, doesn’t He? People that are healthy, do they need a physician?
No. The idea of healthy people using a physician is the part that I have a problem with but when it comes to those that are sick, sometimes, you need a physician. For example, when Brother Danny, sorry to pick on you Brother Danny, but when we went hiking with Brother Danny, and he slipped and fell, and dislocated his finger, he needed a physician. Do you know what I mean? Because Scott and I didn’t know how to fix it. Quinn was there and we’re like, “What do we do?” We didn’t know what to do. A physician was needed to reset that bone.
There are a lot of times when doctors can perform procedures that could help people, and save their lives, and so forth. I’m not against that. I’m just against unnecessary medical intervention. I think that medical intervention should be minimal. It’s my personal opinion on that, but a medical procedure to restore health. For example, there could be something wrong with you. You have an illness, a cancer for example, or some other problem and you’re just restoring the body to health, obviously, there’s nothing wrong with that if you have a problem going to the doctor and getting it fixed.
For example, let me just give you an example. Let’s say some women might have a cancer upon of their ovaries. There’s a cancer there. They basically have a surgery that just removes the cancer. Then, okay, now, they’re able to have children. Obviously, there’s nothing wrong with just restoring the body to health. Any medical procedure that restores the body to its normal function, restores the body to its normal health, that’s just part of just being healthy and just taking care of yourself.
Now, let’s get into steps that should not be taken. Go, if you would, to Genesis 30:1. Genesis 30:1. I am going to get into some steps that you should not take. Now, one more step that you could take is some people do choose to adopt children. I am all for that. Adopting children is perfectly fine but I do believe that it is wrong for you to adopt children that have been kidnapped from their parents by the government. I believe that’s wrong.
You know what? If you’ve done that or if you know people who have done that, I am not attacking you or attacking them. That’s your business but I’m a Bible-believing preacher and maybe you didn’t think of that or maybe they didn’t think of that. I am not hateful toward them but I am just getting up as a Baptist preacher who is preaching the Bible and what the Bible teaches in saying that is not right for the government to take people’s children away. You’ll hear people say, “Yeah, but the birth mother, she is a drug addict, and she didn’t love the child, and she didn’t care.” Look, it’s wrong. I don’t care if she’s on drugs. It’s wrong. Taking people’s children away is not biblical.
You say, “Prove it from the Bible.” If you remember King Solomon who had the wisdom of God, and this was an example of God’s wisdom working through Solomon, when he was confronted with the woman who is a prostitute and she’s got the child, and she’s a prostitute, and there are two prostitutes living together in the house, and one of them rolls over on the child, and suffocates it, which by the way is pretty much impossible to do unless you’re under the influence of alcohol because women have been sleeping with their children in bed with them for thousands of years. My wife has slept in bed with every baby that she’s ever given birth to. You don’t roll over it in your sleep. Even me, flailing around all night, I’ve never rolled over one of them. It just doesn’t happen unless you’re drunk or on drugs.
The bottom line is that this woman is a derelict. She’s a prostitute. They’re prostitutes. They’re negligent. One of the kids dies but yet, what did Solomon say? Take it and find a better home for it. Take it to CPS. No. He said, “Give her the child. She’s the mother thereof.” That’s biblical, my friend.
By the way, the government that we have today is criminal. Our government is a criminal government. I don’t care what level you want to talk about, city, state, federal, it’s all criminal. They’re thieves, they’re liars, they’re murderers, they’re adulterers, they’re homosexuals in many case. We have a wicked and godless government. The government today will take people’s kids away for smoking pot or just because they spanked them wrong or whatever. I don’t believe in it. I don’t believe that people’s children should be taken away from them.
You say, “What about these people who are pedophiles?” They should be killed. Then, you don’t have to take their kids away from them because they’re dead. If someone has committed a crime worthy of death, then they should be put to death by government but nowhere do we find in the Bible teaching taking people’s kids away from them because you don’t like their parenting.
Now, look, do I see people’s parenting and often disagree with it? Yes but does that mean I should take their child away? No. I might not agree with the way someone spanks. I might think they spank too hard. I might think they don’t spank hard enough. I might think that they’re taking drugs and they shouldn’t be taking drugs. I believe drugs are a sin. I believe that alcohol is a sin but you know what? It’s not my place to take someone’s child away. That’s not biblical and it’s not the government’s place.
When you’re complicit with the criminal kidnapping government that takes people’s children away and literally, many cases, sells them to the highest bidder, are you listening? They sell children. People pay thousands of dollars to them to place these children in a catalogue and look for children with blond hair and blue eyes or whatever. You say, “Yeah, you’re a conspiracy theorist.” Get your head out of the sand and wake up. Welcome to planet earth that’s filled with wicked people and criminals. We need to understand that we’re a part of a wicked system when we’re adopting children that have been stolen from their parents.
Now, if you adopt a child that has been voluntarily given up by its parent like sometimes, women will just drop a child off at the hospital, and just drop it off because a lot of hospitals will just accept babies like that where they just drop them off. If you adopted a child like that or a child who’s been orphaned, and there are a lot of children out there who are orphans, who’ve been dropped off, or being voluntarily given up for adoption, but when you’re doing it through the government system of stealing children from their parents, I think that’s wrong. That’s just a word on adoption if that’s a route that you choose to go.
Here are steps that you should not take. Number one, obviously, adultery or polygamy. Obviously, nobody thought that was legitimate but I am just throwing that out there because in the Bible, that’s what some people did. Remember Abraham went in unto Hagar, the concubine. Jacob had those concubines and so forth. In the Bible, there was adultery and polygamy that took place. Obviously, in 2013 in a Baptist church, I don’t need to spend a lot of time on that point but that’s not something that you should do.
Number two, you should not do IVF or in vitro fertilization. Let me explain to you why. Look at the Bible, it says in Genesis 30:1, “And when Rachel saw that she bare Jacob no children, Rachel envied her sister.” Now, first of all, is envy right?
No. That’s a work of the flesh. That is not a work of the spirit. The Bible says “She envied her sister; and said unto Jacob, Give me children, or else I die. And Jacob's anger was kindled against Rachel: and he said, ‘Am I in God's stead, who hath withheld from thee the fruit of the womb?’” What we need to be careful that we’re not doing is putting ourselves in the place of God. It’s one thing to restore health. It’s not one thing to remove a cancer, and restore health, and fix a problem. It’s one thing to eat healthy, and exercise, and try to improve your chances by sowing the seed more often. It’s one thing to pray and to go to other in prayer, but when you’re going to play God and create children outside the womb in a laboratory, you’ve gone too far.
Now, let me just prove to you biblically, even if you disagree with the playing God aspect of it, why in vitro fertilization is not right. Listen to me, there are independent fundamental Baptist pastors who will recommend their congregation to do IVF but I think it’s probably because they just don’t understand the process because I can’t imagine how any Baptist pastor could recommend this if he actually understood the process.
Let me just briefly explain the process to you just so that you understand why this is something that you should not even consider. In vitro fertilization is where basically, they will harvest the eggs from a woman, they’ll harvest eggs from a woman’s body, and then they will take the seed from the man, and they will take these things, and they will put them together in a laboratory in a petri dish. They will take the eggs and they will fertilize them with the seed from the man. Then, they’ll take the fertilized egg and inject it back into the woman’s body. Then, she’ll normal pregnancy.
What often is overlooked when you hear somebody describe that, “Yeah, what’s wrong with that? You take the egg, take the seed, put it together, make the fertilization happen, and then inject it into woman’s body. So what?” Because guess what, they don’t just do one. They don’t do one because it’s a very expensive treatment, $10,000, $20,000. I don’t know the exact price tag. I don’t think the exact price tag is that relevant but it’s expensive. Therefore, this is what they’ll do, 20, 20 or maybe 30, or maybe 40. Sometimes, people will get nitpicky because I’m not giving the exact right number. Sorry, it was 18, or 22. It doesn’t matter. The point is they do a large amount, approximately 20 from what I’ve read and studied.
What they’ll do, they will fertilize 20 eggs. Then, they will observe them in the petri dish. Then, they have a grading scale for how they’re doing, how healthy they are. The ones that are not making the cut, guess what they do, discard them. Who here believes that life begins at conception? You believe that when that sperm hits that egg, that’s the beginning of life, that’s fertilization, that’s conception. Who believes that? Put up your hand in eyesight if you believe that.
Here’s the thing, if you believe that and you’re taking 20 eggs, and then you’re fertilizing them, and some of them are doing poorly, and are being discarded, wouldn’t that be murder if you’re fertilizing an egg and then throwing it away? You say, “But it was going to die anyway.” No, because it wasn’t necessarily going to die anyway, number one.
Number two, a petri dish is not its natural environment. Yeah, it might die in that environment because it’s not as … It’d be like if I took a newborn baby and laid it out in the snow and said, “If it dies, it’s an act of God.” No, because you put it in an environment that’s not natural environment for that child to live and thrive. Basically, they’re fertilizing eggs in a petri dish. First of all, they’re observing which ones are thriving and those are the only ones that they’re going to use, the ones that are thriving and doing the best because they want the procedure to work. Then, they take the rest and discard them.
Then, not only that. Once they take the best ones and inject them, and again, if these numbers are not exact, that’s not the point, you’re still getting the idea, there’s only a 20% chance that it’s going to survive once they inject it. Again, you can say, “It’s got a sporting chance.” Yeah, but you’re putting it in a position where it’s more likely to die then to survive. They inject that. What they’ll often do is they’ll just inject five because they say, “If it’s a 20% chance, if we inject five, then there’s a real good chance that one of them is going to take on. Since we paid 20 grand, let’s put in five.”
Now, a lot of doctors will say, “We’re more ethical about it. We’re only going to put in a maximum of two,” because that way, if both of them take on, they’re just going to have twins and it’s not a big deal. Others that are less ethical will put in all five, and just if there’s too many of them that get fertilized, they’ll just do a little reduction where they kill a few of them. Even the most ethical is killing them in the petri dish and throwing them in the trash.
Then, here’s the thing, they’ll do 20 of them and then, they’ll put some in the freezer for later. What you get is it’s impossible to do this process without killing human life, first of all. If you’re doing IVF, you’re killing human life, no way around it because you’re fertilizing a bunch of eggs that are dying in the petri dish. That simple.
Not only that, you’re playing god because you’re tampering with God’s natural process for producing children. See, God has created this beautiful action between a man and a woman that results in a child. It’s this beautiful process. It’s this act of love and intimacy between husband and wife that produce that child. With IVF, you’re completely bypassing it. In fact, it will be possible for a virgin to conceive through IVF. True or false? Think about it.
Now, look, our Lord Jesus Christ was born of a virgin and you see how this could make a mockery of that? It’s almost blasphemous the way basically a virgin could conceive. Not only that but sodomites, lesbians use this frequently. Every famous lesbian out there that you hear about having a child, this is how they have a child, fact. We could name all the filthy sodomites in Hollywood and in the music industry that have had children through IVF with their sodomite partner.
Therefore, this is something where it’s paying god, where you’re circumventing the natural relationship between men and women, and conceiving children in a laboratory. You’ve gone beyond men’s realm and now, you’ve stepped into God’s realm. God says, “I kill and I make a life. The Lord is My Name.” It’s not our job to kill and to make a life in a petri dish and say, “Okay, we’re going to kill these. We’re going to let these survive. We’re going to inject this,” and so forth. I believe that IVF is sinful because it involves murder, because it’s playing god, and because it’s perverse because, again, it’s something that is twisting God’s design.
It’s also a lack of faith because now, you’re not trusting in the prayer that you prayed. When you prayed and said, “God, bless me with a child,” you’ve lost faith in that. Just like remember when Abraham had a lapse in faith and Sarah, and they went to Hagar. That was a lapse of faith. IVF is a lapse in faith.
Another step that I believe should not be taken, although not as extreme as IVF, is that often, women will take fertility pills. Somebody help me out, what’s the main called? It starts with a CL, clo something. Does anybody know? Help me out.
I can’t hear you.
Clomid or something. Yeah, it’s something that starts with a Clo. If it starts with a clo, I’m against it. Anyway, these fertility drugs or fertility pills, what they will do is they basically are an artificial substance, artificial hormone coming in just to cause a woman to just hyper-ovulate or to ovulate more than normal. This is different than just restoring normal health. That’d be like if I’m a bodybuilder and I took steroids, and say, “I’m just restoring normal health so I won’t be sore after I work out. I just want to restore my muscles after I work out so I am going to take steroids.” Would you think that’s legitimate?
No. I would liken this to steroids for your reproductive system. Taking these fertility pills that cause you to hyper-ovulate. Women who take this will often have twins, triplets, quadruplets, quintuplets because they’re just hyper-ovulating. Women who do IVF will often have twins, triplets, quadruplets, quintuplets because they’re tampering with it.
When my wife was pregnant with twins, there was a lot of people, “Are they natural?” That’s what everybody asked. I’m like, “Yeah, they’re natural,” but the reason they ask that is because today, it seems like most of the time, they’re not natural because of the fact that it’s done through IVF or through taking fertility drug. I think when you’re taking a fertility drug that cause you to hyper-ovulate, you’ve crossed the line. Now, you’re playing god. Now, you’re tampering with the reproductive process instead of just having faith.
Again, I’m for a medical procedure or a mental procedure if needed, but I’m for a medical procedure that restores health but I’m not for one that plays god and tampers with the normal reproductive process but, again, I believe that this is a subject that needs to be preached because it’s a subject that, number one, the Bible talks a lot about. I gave you all those examples at the beginning. Number two, it’s a subject that people are dealing with today. I think they say 10% of people in America, they’re dealing with it.
Now, the world will define infertility as you tried for one year and didn’t have a child. Now, I find that to be completely ridiculous. One year? That is impatience to the extreme but there is a medical industry, there’s a pharmaceutical industry that wants your money. When I was first married and this is not something that my wife and I have ever struggled with if you’ve noticed, but we haven’t struggled with infertility, but when we were first married, they said two years. That was 13-and-a-half years ago. Everyone said two years. If you tried for two years, get a fertility treatment. Now, they’re saying one year. They’re saying if you’re over 35, give it six months and then come see us. Six months?
Now, I’ve known people, I know someone who has, I think, six children and went well over a year where they were trying to get pregnant with one of those in the middle, and just wasn’t getting pregnant. Good night. You got to just give it some time sometimes. To sit there and say, “One year, give up. Six months, give up. Two years, give up.” Tell that to Isaac and Rebekah, 20 years, but there’s a pharmaceutical industry that wants you to play god and they want to take your money from you.
10% of people by those standards struggle with this. It is something that is common. It is something that’s dealt with a lot in the Bible. We need to know where we stand on this. We need to pray for those who are barren that they would give birth to children. We need to pray if that’s our situation but ultimately, we need to trust God. See, look, you think because we’re against birth control, we’re saying everybody needs to have 20 children. That’s not what we’re saying because you know what, I am against birth control both ways. I am against trying to prevent it and I am against doing things to make it happen. Do you know what I mean? Chemically, you’re using these fertility drugs or IVF.
What I’m saying is we just need to trust the Lord. If the Lord decides to bless you with one child, praise the Lord. If He bless you with two, praise God. If He blesses you with 17, praise God, but we should just let God be God. Let Him decide. Trust in Him. Pray to Him. Look, I am not saying don’t pray because prayer does change things. Pray. Ask God to do what you want Him to do but in the end, you need to just be happy with His decision and trust His judgment. Be patient, take care of your health, and let the chips fall where they may. Let’s bow our heads and have a word of prayer.
Father, we thank You so much for Your Word and Your promises, Lord. We thank you that every woman in the Bible who was infertile eventually had a child and that’s something that can give assurance and faith to those who are struggling with this. Lord, just please help us to understand what our job is, what our responsibility is, and help us to stay out of Your responsibility, and let You do Your part and we will do our part, and not to try to tamper with Your will and Your plan. In Jesus’ Name, we pray. Amen.