1.1 Background to the Study
In African society in general and among Edo people in particular, children are very important. The joy of a family is full especially with the coming of the firstborn whether male or female. NwaoruEmmanuelcited that the prayer on the lips of all couples in Benin is that God would bless their marriage with children. Fathers adore them for they prove their manhood and mothers worship them for they remove the stigma of barrenness. A Benin man enters into marriage with a purpose to be “fruitful and multiply and fill the earth” or to increase his community especially his family (75).
Even for the Israelites, children were a blessing while childlessness denotes a curse. Sarah earnestly implored her husband to go to her slave girl in her desperation to have children. Others like Rachel and Hannah cried earnestly to God for children and God answered their prayers. Hannah sang a special song to God to show her appreciation (75).