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One Woman Man


1)What is polygamy?

2) How did it start and why did God allow it to happen?

3) How does God feel about polygamy?

1) What is Polygamy?

Ancient practice; Poly- Many, Gamy- Marriages

Note: There is no way we can fulfill our duties to the Lord and practice polygamy. Polygamy is a false doctrine.

2) How did it start and why did God allow it to happen?

Polygamy started after the fall of Adam and Eve.

Before the flood, the distortion of God’s “good creation” happens. We see the first account in Genesis 4:19-25, where Lamech, a descendant of Cain, takes two wives for himself and brags about the murder he commits. As a result, his wives leave him. Lamech has a perverted idea of justice. From his story we see a decline in ethics, morality and justice.

After the flood, polygamous relationships are mentioned many times.

Abraham, Jacob, David, Solomon, and Elkanah all had multiple wives and they also suffered consequences:

  • Abraham: There was bitterness and jealousy between Sarah and her handmaid, Hagar. Abraham turns Hagar and her son, Ishmael to the desert, and as a result conflict between Issac's offspring and Ishmael's offspring continues to this day! (Arabs vs Jews)

  • Jacob: Led to Rachel's jealousy of Leah, which led to Rachel's son Joseph being betrayed and sold into slavery by his jealous half brothers.

  • David: Produced many tragedies, including the rape of his daughter Tamar by her half brother Amnon, and Amnon subsequently being murdered by Tamar’s brother, Absalom.

  • Solomon: Many wives turned his heart from the Lord to worship false gods.

  • Elkanah: Peninnah is jealous of Hannah, BECAUSE HER HUSBAND FAVORS her. Even though Peninnah is the one that is able to have kids, she is not the favorite.

The flood came to judge the sinful nature of mankind!

The only direct command against polygamy is given to the kings in Deuteronomy 17:17 which reads “He must not take many wives, or his heart will be led astray.”

Important to Note: Satan’s job is to pervert the order of creation and cause division. A husband can not be all he needs to be for his wife and family if his attention is divided. (Romans 16:17-18 ESV)

Important to Note: God tolerated polygamy, but he did not condone it!

Women had roles in the household, and were equal to their husband, BUT decisions for the household were made by the men. Men had the responsibility to clothe their wives, feed their wives, and perform sexual relations. If the woman did not have a husband, more than likely, the woman would have to prostitute or be sold into slavery to support her family. So considering these facts, polygamy would be better than prostitution or slavery.

3) How does God feel about polygamy?

God intended marriage to be monogamous, and between one man and one woman. One flesh, not multiple flesh. (Genesis 2:23-24)

God formed one woman from Adam; not multiple women.

When Jesus was questioned about divorce by the Pharisees in Mark 10:2-9, He was clear that God permitted divorce because of the “hardness of their hearts” BUT Jesus let it be known of God’s original plan by quoting Genesis 2,“But God's plan was seen from the beginning of creation, for he made them male and female. This explains why a man leaves his father and his mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one. Since they are no longer two, but one, let no one separate them, for God has joined them together.”

Marriage is a beautiful picture of Christ and the Church. (Ephesians 5:21-33)

“And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church. As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything. For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault. In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church. And we are members of his body. As the Scriptures say, “A man leaves his father and mother, and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.” This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one. So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”

Qualifications for Leaders In the Church

  • 1 Timothy 3:2-12, "Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full respect. If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God's church? He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil's trap. In the same way, deacons are to be worthy of respect, sincere, not indulging in much wine, and not pursuing dishonest gain. They must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience. They must first be tested; and then if there is nothing against them, let them serve as deacons. In the same way, the women are to be worthy of respect, not malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything. A deacon must be faithful to his wife and must manage his children and his household well."

Titus 1:6, “An elder must be blameless, faithful to his wife, a man whose children believe and are not

open to the charge of being wild and disobedient.”

Conclusion: God's creation of marriage is for one man, one woman, one flesh.

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