Polygamy


#1

I wanted to know about Jesus’s views of polygamy. Did he ever denounce it?


#2

Why yes… let’s start at the beginning… remember Adam in the garden and talking to God? God created A SINGLE mate for him not many. Next look at the problems of Abraham… when his wife was barren, she offered him her servant to have a baby… that didn’t turn out so well did it? All through the OT there are stories like this… but Jesus also addresses the issue in the NT. Remember when he comes upon a woman at a well and she tells him she doesn’t have a husband… and he says NO, you had like 7 of them? Or how about the fact that there are no “good” multiple wife stories in the Bible… the silence speaks there too.

I say this as an unwitting participant in a marriage where my husband had 2 wives… I had no clue! Wow, it wasn’t happy when I found out… I felt like “the other woman” even though I had no clue… I was a mess for years until I could forgive myself and him.


#3

Genesis says “and the two shall become one flesh”, not ‘and the 15 shall become a huge conglomeration of flesh’. Very specifically says TWO, and yes, that means a MAN and a WOMAN. God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve. One man, one woman is how He designed it from the beginning.


#4

So what changed between Genesis chapter 2 and chapter 29, in which Jacob becomes a bigamist – establishing a precedent that goes all the way through Kings?


#5

The same thing that caused God to have to kill that animal to provide clothing for Adam and Eve–sin. In the garden, there was no sin, so God’s plan was carried out to perfection. After the fall, people had to live in a sinful world, and God’s plan was corrupted, in many many ways, including his plan for marriage.


#6

Well, there is always the thought that a man should have as many wives as it takes to support him.

Matthew


#7

You might find the CCC citations on polygamy to give you insight:

**2400 **Adultery, divorce, polygamy, and free union are grave offenses against the dignity of marriage.

**1610 **Moral conscience concerning the unity and indissolubility of marriage developed under the pedagogy of the old law. In the Old Testament the polygamy of patriarchs and kings is not yet explicitly rejected. Nevertheless, the law given to Moses aims at protecting the wife from arbitrary domination by the husband, even though according to the Lord’s words it still carries traces of man’s “hardness of heart” which was the reason Moses permitted men to divorce their wives.

See also:

2387
1664-1665


#8

Jacob’s marrying two sisters is not condemned, but seen as a matter of fact; the villain of the story is Laban. And David is not condemned for his many wives either; he is condemned for his actions in obtaining the hand of Bathsheba, but not for the marriage itself.


#9

Yes, but my point was, if there had been no fall, man would never have been inclined to stray from the monogamy that was the original plan. Men did a lot of things after the fall that they would not have done before. But the New Testament makes it clear that for Christians, monogamy is the only choice (besides celibacy, of course). Christians did a lot of things differently from their Jewish forefathers, such as no longer being obligated to circumcize, or eat Kosher, etc.


#10

Neither is the eating of meat condemned after the Flood, yet it is clearly not what God intended. Just because a post-Fall practice isn’t condemned doesn’t mean that it was what God wanted us to do.


#11

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