A family member repeatedly insists that birth control was made a sin by the Catholic Church to stop under-population. How do I respond next time he brings it up.
Say nicely, “Prove it.”
How would I respond if he does?
He won’t be able to because there is no official Church teaching that contraception is a sin for the reason he states. It’s up to him to show you documentation for his assertions not merely throw out his opinion as fact. The Church has no interest in how many children couples have. She asks that they be open to the possibility of having children, that’s all.
He says that the fact that underpopulation happened at that time proves it.
Again, documentation from the Church that states that. The Church has always taught that contraception is wrong. Indeed, all Christian churches did until the Lambeth Conferences in 1930 in which the Anglican Church gave it’s members permission to use contraception. The Church never declared contraception sinful because of low population numbers at any time in history. If he wants to remain in his ignorance that’s his problem, but don’t you believe him when he cannot prove anything.
I would like to add one thing-
The Genesis 38 indicates that spilling one’s seed is detestable before God.
I’m not certain if you’re dealing with a Protestant or atheist, but this obviously will not matter to the latter.
The war sections of Deuteronomy are an abomination in his eyes. He can ignore any Bible teaching he doesn’t like, because it is the family view that the Bible isn’t inspired, or only inspired to a limited sense. Sigh…
More like disease, hard life, limited resources, you antagonist needs to learn about a little thing called research…
Yes, all those Church fathers through the millennia were just concerned about underpopulation.
Listen. When anyone makes a claim it is up to them to provide documentary support for their claim that we can then discuss. It is not up to us to refute baseless claims.
If they cannot provide anything then you know they are just blowing hot air.
Artificial birth control was always a sin.
The first Church to allow birth control was the Anglican Church which voted to allow birth control in the Lambeth Conference held in 1930.
No other Christian Church taught that birth control was anything other than a sin before the Anglicans in 1930.
The Catholic Answers tracts, Contraception and Sterilization and Birth Control, have some Bible references and quotes from Church Fathers from the first through the sixth century, showing that the Catholic Church has been against artificial contraception, sterilization and abortion from the beginning.
To one who has faith no explanation is necessary, to one without faith no explanation will suffice. [Aquinas]
I’m curious, is this family member baptized?
He’s the only non-Catholic. Presbyterian.
That might be at the heart of his objections to the Catholic faith. He may feel he has to justify his own church affiliation by saying such things. Is he feeling pressure to convert or do some in the family make him feel like an outsider? Just a couple of things to consider for why he feels the need to say anything about the Church’s teachings. Just love him and let him know that he is accepted as he is. That might solve your problem with him more than any amount of apologetics.
Many Protestant churches have developed propaganda programs aimed squarely at the RCC in order to increase their congregations. Keep in mind he is getting an earful of this. In addition, their modern/reformed doctrines are appealing because they are easier.
I recommend listening to EWTN Thd Journey home program or Scott Haun’s conversion story. There’s also Call to Communion with Dr David Anders (all on YouTube).
As I understand it, from the professional apologists and converts, more people are convinced of the Catholic Church truths by action of Catholics than argument. Catholics need to live the Catholic faith faithfully. It speaks volumes.
That said, as our first pope said, we also as Catholics need to always be prepared to give an explanation / defense for the faith we hold, and do that with charity. 1 Peter 3:15