Biblical Use Of Natural Insemination To Have Children


The Slave Hagar Being Presented To Abraham For Impregnation


In another forum, someone mentioned that she thought that artificial insemination was mentioned in the bible. Well, it isn’t mentioned but there are two examples of Natural Insemination being used, and one of them was a biblical hero and man of faith.

The first is in the Book of Genesis when Abraham’s wife Sarah couldn’t get pregnant. A tribal custom was that a woman unable to have children could use a slave as a surrogate mother.  The child she gave birth to would be considered the wife’s child, and not the slaves.  With that in mind, Sarah took her personal slave  to Abraham and presented  Hagar to her husband as her surrogate.  This being several thousand years ago and conceiving by artificial means was not known, Abraham had to use old school methods to impregnate Hagar.  The bible doesn’t record how many attempts it took for Abraham to get Hagar pregnant but eventually he did.  The resulting baby (named Ishmael) was then brought to Abraham by Sarah who was legally the boy’s mother.

The second use of Natural Insemination is also recorded in Genesis when a young man by the name of Onan was told that he needed to impregnate his sister-in-law after his brother died without having children. Biblical law stated that if a man died without children then his brother had to impregnate his brother’s wife and the resulting child would legally be recognized as belonging to his brother. That was done so the brother would have an heir to his property and be ensured that his name was passed down.  The actual text in Genesis 38:9-10 states:

Then Judah (Onan’s father) said to Onan, “Sleep with your brother’s wife and fulfill your duty to her as a brother-in-law to raise up offspring for your brother.”  But Onan knew that the child would not be his; so whenever he slept with his brother’s wife, he spilled his semen on the ground to keep from providing offspring for his brother.  What he did was wicked in the Lord’s sight; so the Lord put him to death also.

The problem was that even though Onan would be the father, the baby would be legally a son of his dead brother and would inherit his property.  Onan then tried to circumvent this by doing his duty as required, but at the last minute pulling out so he semen would spill on the ground.


Not a good idea when an angry God is watching what you are doing.  This incident is actually why the Catholic Church considers masturbation a sin.  Gives you pause now (if you are religious) that maybe a bolt of lighting is waiting for you the next time you masturbate.

If one is honest there, I bet there are a lot of women throughout history that has used this method of getting pregnant when their husbands were not up to it.  Remember, the woman was always thought of as the one being at fault for not having children.  The husband’s never got the blame.   And the pressure to have children was so great that it would be very tempting for a woman to use a “sperm donor” from any available man.  Since there were no blood or DNA tests, as long as the wife used a man that somewhat resembled her husband as far as body, hair, and eye type, she would probably get away with it.


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