Fornication, including rape, doesn’t think about children – the natural product of sex. Selfish and irresponsible, it just wants to fulfill its lusts whenever and wherever desire arises. When an “unwanted” baby is created, abortion is the common result.
Abortion kills unborn children. It wants to distinguish between “wanted” and “unwanted.” It claims to “plan” parenthood, to choose the time of a child’s arrival that will fit the desires of the parents (not the child). But abortion doesn’t reckon on God’s planning or parents’ post-abortion trauma. Many children are not planned. That does not make then unwanted. Sometimes an unplanned child is the best or only thing that will draw its parents to Jesus Christ.
Homosexuality makes sure that children are never created in the first place. Adoption isn’t the answer. Children need both a mother and a father. Besides, how can homosexuals say they love and want children when they engage in an ungodly practice that denies the biological possibility?
Even when children have a mother and father, the home isn’t always stable or loving. Some men and women prefer work or substance abuse to the daily task of parenting. They refuse to make sacrifices and put their children first. Other parents cruelly use and abuse their own children. Work can (and must) sustain a home economically, but it cannot replace the emotional rewards of parenthood. Abuse of any type is self-destructive and robs a home of love.
Other parents like to remind their children of the costs they paid to have and rear them, costs not always paid willingly. Such children are told what their parents could be doing if they weren’t building and feathering a nest. These children hear about sacrifice but want love. They hear about duty but want reward. No wonder they feel guilty about their existence and run away.
Marriage counselors like to make the marital relationship most important, but it’s not. The children come first. If divorce still rips apart a home, some parents fight over the children and use them as bait to take revenge on the former spouse. Then they tell the children they love them, but not the other parent. How is that possible? Children reflect both parents. When one stops receiving love during or after a divorce, no wonder the children feel guilty and unloved.
Society’s message to children in all these situations is loud, clear, and painful: “We don’t want you.” The Bible’s message is just the opposite. God tells his children, “I want you and I love you.”
A common thread runs throughout the pages of Scripture: God’s great love for children. The first command He gives in the Bible is to “be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:28). The first time love is mentioned in the Bible, God speaks of it in reference to the deep love Abraham had for his son Isaac (Genesis 22:2). God’s covenant blessings upon the patriarchs primarily involved the promise of children and how future nations would rise and be blessed through them (Genesis 26:1–4). He asked families to dedicate their firstborn as a gift back to Him (Exodus 13:2). The last verse in the Old Testament explains God’s desire to turn the hearts of fathers back to their children (Malachi 4:6). And perhaps most descriptive of all: “Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth” (Psalm 127:3–4). This word gift means an inheritance given by God, presented as part of one’s allotted portion in life (Isaiah 54:17). Children are like precious fruit in the orchard, a cherished reward to savor and enjoy, worth all the work invested by the farmer. They are like prized, life-preserving arrows in the hand of a warrior, uniquely formed to be launched out, making a powerful impact on the world. Consider how, contrary to common thinking, each of these analogies—inheritance, fruit, arrows—refers to things people usually want more of, not something they wish to avoid or minimize.
— The Love Dare for Parents (2013) by Stephen and Alex Kendrick
God often compares children to fruit (Deuteronomy 7:13, 28:4, 11, 18, 30:9; Psalm 127:3, 132:11, Isaiah 13:18, Hosea 9:16, Micah 6:7). It’s an apt metaphor. Children are the fruit, or tangible reward, of human love. God seeks fruit. He wants godly seed (Malachi 2:15) and blesses his saints with it, even after long trials. God loves the children he has created! Are we reproducing and rearing them for his kingdom?
Children are important to God in the spiritual realm too. There’s more to Christianity than salvation. We have been born again to bear fruit. God prunes those who don’t (Luke 13:6-9, John 15:2). Sometimes this “fruit” refers to the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23, Ephesians 5:9), other times to converts. Spiritual children are the fruit of our authentic faith in and love for Jesus Christ.
God wants us to grow up spiritually. We can’t remain babies, always feeding on the milk of the Word (Hebrews 5:12-13, 1 Peter 2:2). We must be weaned to eat the strong meat of the Word so that we can grow up (Hebrews 5:14). God then wants to make us spiritual fathers and mothers, first reproducing and then discipling new converts in his kingdom (1 Corinthians 4:15, Philemon 10, 1 John 2:13-14). God wants spiritual Rachels, Hannahs, Marys, and Pauls.
Will we answer God’s call? Will we put the children first? Will we tell them, “We want you and we love you”? God has given us a choice, life or death. Let us choose life – children.