QUOTE: “Birth control is wickedness. The abuse of this holy covenant has been the primary cause for the downfall of nations. When the sacred vows of marriage are broken and the real purpose of marriage abused, as we find it so prevalent in the world today, then destruction is inevitable.” –Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, p. 86. [source]
QUOTE: “We don’t dictate family size. That is left to the father and the mother, the husband and wife.” –Gordon B. Hinckley, in an interview with Mike Wallace for 60 Minutes, restated in General Conference, October 1996. [source]
QUOTE: “False prophets and false teachers are also those who attempt to change the God-given and scripturally based doctrines that protect the sanctity of marriage, the divine nature of the family, and the essential doctrine of personal morality.” –M. Russell Ballard, in General Conference, October 1999. [source]
COMMENTARY: When you claim that your doctrine is eternal, but it’s really just based on current moral trends, you should probably read what previous prophets have said about a subject before you speak on the same topic, or you’re liable to contradict what the eternal doctrine used to be. Birth control became widely accepted in the United States in the 60’s, and by the 80’s church leaders stopped preaching against it, and today church leaders act as though the church had never opposed it. When you claim to speak authoritatively about God’s will regarding human sexuality, families, and marriage, it looks just a tiny bit suspicious when your doctrines evolve along with the morals of the greater society. Delaying the changes by about twenty years, though, is probably enough to fool the more unquestioning members of your church. But what do I know? I’m just another apostate.