1 Timothy 4 Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, 2 through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared, 3 who forbid marriage and require abstinence from foods that God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. 4 For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, 5 for it is made holy by the word of God and prayer. 6 If you put these things before the brothers, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, being trained in the words of the faith and of the good doctrine that you have followed. 7 Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness;
A popular teaching in the church is that a man can have only one wife. This teaching often stated as “ONE MAN, ONE WOMAN, FOR LIFE” is one of these silly and irreverent myths, a demonic teaching.
Have I lost you? Are you enraged? Do you think I am insane? Do you think I am evil?
If you are still reading this and had any of the above thoughts or similar ones, why?
What does God’s word say? Exodus 21:10 If he take him another [wife]; her food, her raiment, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish.
So God regulated marriage in His law given to the nation of Israel and supported the practice of men having more than one wife. God didn’t call it immoral and yet many if not most pastors will teach that is immoral and if a man does so he is committing adultery. Is that not irreverent? They call what God said was acceptable, evil. That seems irreverent to me.
This is a silly teaching. We find many righteous men in the Bible who had multiple wives. Beginning with Abraham, Jacob and then roughly 1/3 of the judges including Gideon. Then there is David, a man after God’s own heart.
It is also silly and irreverent because it implies that God didn’t know what He was doing and He had to change his mind. The Law God gave was good for a sinful world. God knew that though the sexes born would be fairly evenly divided that the sin’s of men would lead to the deaths of more men than women. And in such a world women needed a husband to protect her and plant seeds. All this monogamy only teaching does is make more women available for exploitation.
So how do these teachers support this myth? The only way they can is to add or change what the Word of God actually says.
Here is a real life example argument:
On this question, one cannot argue that we do not have clear and consistent passages in both the Old and the New Testaments. For example, in Matthew 19:3-9, we read:
Some Pharisees came to Jesus, testing Him and asking, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any reason at all?” And He answered and said, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So, they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.” They said to Him, “Why then did Moses command to give her a certificate of divorce and send her away?” He said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses permitted you to divorce your wives; but from the beginning it has not been this way. And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.”
The passage, to which Christ is referring, is Genesis 2:24-25. There we read:
For this reason, a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.
Though the Pharisees’ question concerned divorce, obviously – before one can divorce – they must first be married. Christ answers the question regarding divorce by going back to the beginning, to Creation, and to the origin of marriage. He explains that whatever Moses may have “permitted” was said because sin had been introduced into the “mix” of marriage. Yet, even in this, Christ reaffirms God’s original intent: One man, one woman, for life! He, further, declares that God’s continuing rule for marriage is: “what God has joined together, let no man separate!” He puts emphasis on this by concluding that marrying again, for any other reason than the infidelity of one’s spouse, is adulterous. The message is clear: whatever damage sin may have brought into the husband/wife relationship, a second spouse is not normative, let alone His will.
Ok, so do you see the illusionist’s tricks being played here?
First he takes the passage from Genesis and just associates it with the cultural mantra of “One man, one woman, for Life!” He even puts it in bold so it will further stick in you mind. And if you back up in that sentence you see he says that this is what Christ was saying.
Second, he takes the word’s of Christ “And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.” and rephrases it as “He (Christ) puts emphasis on this by concluding that marrying again, for any other reason than the infidelity of one’s spouse, is adulterous.“
It is sad to see the lengths otherwise good preachers and teachers will go to support ancient myths that distort the biblical views. We do all fall into these things so grace is definitely called for and it is even understandable because a lie that is often repeated, just sounds right. This is one of those lies that has been around for many centuries and encoded into the laws of many a nation, but that doesn’t make it biblical.
This myth like others of it’s kind are like parasites on the church body. The reformation went along way to removing much of the corruption, but some has remained and so the work of sanctification must continue.
But if you are willfully twisting the scriptures like in this example, this is not the work of the Holy Spirit in you. Something is wrong. Is your conscience seared? May God have mercy on you, but you need to repent!