The average Australian family size with 2.4 kids is not as common as it used to be. Increasingly small sedans are making way for either Toyota Coasters or a Mazda MX5s. When we look to the Bible for guidance, we cannot find a passage that tells us how many children is ideal.
The often quoted verse is “blessed is he whose quiver is full.” In Christian pop culture, the pressure is on. Through their reality TV show, the Duggars have communicated their version of family life—and it is large. While I appreciate some of the principles that large families espouse, we should be deliberate in how we filter some of those messages.
On the other side of the equation, our society has uplifted the status of the deliberately barren. Whether it be financial pressures or simply the desire for more time for selfish pursuits, the choice to remain single and build a career is growing.
An Australian politician once famously but accurately said that the West was aborting itself into non-existence. The average birth rate in Christian Italy is 1.6 children per woman, while Islamic Yemen’s average birth rate is 7.3 children per woman. Even a simple mathematician can extrapolate where these trends will lead. If part of the purpose of having children is to share the gospel with future generations, then we are failing greatly.
While the Bible does not say how many children we should have, the command to multiply and fill the earth is still in force. Continuing to ignore this will result in great changes. So what do you think? Should we be trying to have large families?