Why did God allow polygamy in the Bible? Rehoboam had 18 wives and 60 concubines (2 Chron. In a recent conversation, the topic of multiple wives came up, and also the fact that Abraham and David, and many others who were well known in the Old Testament had multiple wives. Here's the Plain Truth About. The Bible does not specifically say why. One of those gifts was a committed marriage relationship between a man and woman who were devoted to each other and God. David had many wives (1 Sam. Marriages were very often contracts between families. 2) How does God view polygamy today? W hy did God allow polygamy in the Old Testament? 3) Why did it change? Polygamy only leads a married person far from God. Why Does God Allow Polygamy in the Old Testament? Why? Closer to home, in the state of Utah, polygamy is technically illegal but not enforced. Why did God allow Polygamy? Why did God let these men have more than one wife? What is Polygamy? Was it a command or was it forbidden? Answer prepared by Gaylon West www.BibleStudyLessons.net The question as given: Polygamy # 4. Answer prepared by Gaylon West www.BibleStudyLessons.net THE BIBLE AND MULTIPLE WIVES and CONCUBINES Several prominent men in the Old Testament were polygamists. God allowed polygamy (as well as divorce) in the Old Testament because of the hardness of people’s hearts (Matt. There are three questions that need to be answered: 1) Why did God allow polygamy in the Old Testament? (1 Kings 11:1-4) Clearly, the Bible paints a negative picture of polygamy. Christian Truth. Does the Bible say anything about interracial marriage. Lusting after another woman is not really adultery, but it does violate the (ten commandments) of 'not covet thy … We can only speculate on why God did not give more clear prohibitions against polygamy, but the ancient attitudes towards women would have made punishing polygamy incredibly hard on the wives. Why did God not just forbid polygamy outright? Let us keenly listen and understand the Biblical perspective and know the consequences of indulging ourselves in such activities. G od did not sanction polygamy in Old Testament times. Why did God allow polygamy? Women were often uneducated and untrained. What is Polygamy? In more stable times, polygamy resulted in many men remaining single because wealthy men could have many wives. God did not have a problem with Abraham taking Hagar as second wife, but the problem was in his wife seeing this child of the slave woman as Hagar to Abraham to produce an heir in direct contradiction to God’s promise that Sarah would bear Abraham’s heir. "The first instance of polygamy / bigamy in the Bible was Lamech in Genesis 4:19, “Lamech married two women…” Several prominent men in the Old Testament were polygamists. Gideon had many wives (Judges 8:30), whose son was Abimelech who was wicked. 14:3), and there were problems because of it. Once sin entered the world, that mission and the way in which it could be fulfilled, was warped. God seemingly does not step in, but someday He as Judge will right all wrongs. Deut. First, polygyny (a form of polygamy) was allowed under the Law of Moses.That is, men were allowed to have multiple wives. There are a few key items to consider. Just because humans do something does not mean that God approves of it. Polygamy is the state of being married to more than one partner, regardless of whether it’s a man having many wives or a wife having many husbands. Although the Bible hints that protection of women is probably the main reason why God allowed polygamy, most polygamous marriages were not so altruistic. If God is opposed to polygamy, then why does 2 Samuel 12:8 say that God gave David wives? So why, then, did God allow polygamy? Polygamy was not a problem in the OT and was allowed for all. “In this culture,” Parr explains, “there were a lot of men who were going off to war, and they were dying, leaving a disproportionate amount of men to women.” In the ancient world, women were generally not educated. People began to value God's gifts less. In fact, he specifically said not to have more than one wife because, in … Before you answer, Pastor John, of course we should keep in mind a number of African countries do allow polygamous civil marriage, as of course is true in the Middle East, as was true in the Old Testament in the Bible. Why Polygamy Is Allowed And Even Blessed By God – Part 1. By J.R. Ensey Answer: The question of polygamy in the Bible is an interesting one in that most people today view polygamy as immoral while the Bible nowhere explicitly condemns it. In the New Testament, polygamy appears to be prohibited (Timothy, Titus) but for church leaders only. So why did God allow polygamy? Why Did God Allow Polygamy? Why did God allow polygamy / bigamy in the Bible? A Brief History of Polygamy . We will discuss why God had brought polygamy into the world. July 8, 2014 jefferchan Leave a comment. So one possible reason Parr says that God may have permitted polygamy was actually to protect women. G od did not sanction polygamy in Old Testament times. The first instance of polygamy/bigamy in the Bible was that of Lamech in Genesis 4:19, “Lamech married Statistics show that about 50.5% of the current global population is female. That’s a good question. Although Scripture doesn't tell us specifically why God allowed men to have multiple wives, we can make an "informed" speculation. Copyright 2011-2021 Got Questions Ministries - All Rights Reserved. Why did so many men in the Bible have multiple wives? The Scripture doesn’t specifically say so we have to take Biblical principles and see if we can extrapolate something elsewhere and apply it to this situation. We will discuss why God had brought polygamy into the world. ... Why Polygamy Is Allowed And Even Blessed By God – Part 2. Still, some might wonder why God chose to tolerate polygamy among his people. According to a Gallup poll taken in May of 2013, 83% of Americans believed polygamy … The first record of polygamy is with Lamech, a descendant of unfaithful Cain. Women relied on their fathers, brothers, and husbands for provision and protection. … God’s purpose for marriage was to help individuals find mutual support in families. 3) Why did it change? For example, a man marrying multiple women could give the women protection. It was only for the hardness of their hearts. While definitely not ideal, living in a polygamist household was far better than the alternatives: prostitution, slavery, starvation, etc. Polygamy did not start among those who were true worshipers of Jehovah God. While polygamy may not have been God’s plan, He did use these sinful relationships for His good. Elkanah had two wives (1 Samuel 1:1-7) and there was bitterness because of it. Current statistics show that approximately 50.5% of the world population are women, with men being 49.5%. Let’s talk about that. Daughters were not as valuable to the family in ancient times, since they were unable to work in the fields. 11:21-12:1) and they foresook the Law of God. Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines (1 Kings 11:1-3) and he started serving false gods. Here are some things to consider: First, throughout much of history, there have been more women than men. Lamech was the first to have more than one wife (Genesis 4:19, 23), but he was a wicked man, a murderer. October 24, 2020 . Let us keenly listen and understand the Biblical perspective and know the consequences of indulging ourselves in such activities. Due to the “one flesh” aspect of marriage, the need for oneness and harmony in marriage, and the lack of any real … When Jesus came, He restored marriage to it's ideal in regards to divorce. A Brief History of Polygamy. Question: "Why did God allow polygamy / bigamy in the Bible? There has always been some debate about it, but in the early church non-leaders were permitted multiple wives. “In this culture,” Parr explains, “there were a lot of men who were going off to war, and they were dying, leaving a disproportionate amount of men to women.” In … As You seek understanding and clarity in your life you should always turn to your Heavenly Father for Guidance. Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines… Posted by biblicalgenderroles May 31, 2020 May 31, 2020 Posted in For Both, polygamy Tags: Bible, Biblical Polygamy, Christian, Concubines, Ezra, Gideon, Hosea, marriage, patriarchy, Solomon. Even some of the famous Bible characters, Abraham and David, committed polygamy. So, since God’s standard for Christians is one wife or one husband, why did God allow his ancient covenant people Israel to have more than one wife? God has never approved, nor made lawful, more than one living wife … Best Answers. 19:8). Why did God allow polygamy (man marrying more than one woman)? They argue that man was originally made by God with a monogamous nature, and only because of sin did polygamy enter the picture. Contrary to the suppositions many have accepted, God forbade it--and PUNISHED for it! Popular opinion is not always right . In today’s marriage talk, Pastor Priji enlightens us about the idea of multiple partners in the form of extra-marital affairs or polygamy. As we speculate about God’s silence, there is at least one key factor to consider. I have held this position on Biblical polygamy for 20 years(and no I am not a practicing polygamist) . In marriage how do the two become one flesh? Why did God allow polygamy in the Bible? Did God allow polygamy after the Law was fulfilled? Assuming … Many people ask questions; if God does not allow polygamy, why then did He allow the likes of king David and his son king Solomon, plus many other characters in the Bible to have many wives? In the beginning, God created one for one. So, it seems that God allowed polygamy to protect and provide for the women who could not find a husband otherwise. Whay is polyandry? God never condoned polygamy but like divorce he allowed it to occur and did not bring an immediate punishment for this disobedience. God’s design is a man to be married to a woman and not to have multiple marriages. When there were too few men due to warfare, this purpose was accomplished by allowing polygamy to ensure male heirs. The first instance of polygamy / bigamy in the Bible was Lamech in Genesis 4:19—“Lamech married two women….” 3:2-5; 1 Chron. So one possible reason Parr says that God may have permitted polygamy was actually to protect women. He also gave them the joint mission to rule over and fill the earth (Genesis 1:28). Why Did God Allow POLYGAMY In The Bible? A woman who had been married and divorced was shamed. God’s permitting of polygamy seems more like the case of divorce, which God tolerated for a while under certain conditions because of the hardness of their hearts. So, since God’s standard for Christians is one wife or one husband, why did God allow his ancient covenant people Israel to have more than one wife? Abraham, Jacob, David (2 Samuel 5:13; 1 Chronicles 3:1-9, 14:3), Solomon (1 Kings 11:3), and others (In 2 Chronicles 11:21, King Solomon's son Rehoboam had … Due to patriarchal societies, it was nearly impossible for a woman in the ancient world to provide for herself. Contrary to the suppositions many have accepted, God forbade it--and PUNISHED for it! God permitted polygamy in the Old Testament but this only led to sin. Polygamy is the state of being married to more than one partner, regardless of whether it’s a man having many wives or a wife having many husbands. The question of polygamy is an interesting one in that most people today view polygamy as immoral, while the Bible nowhere explicitly condemns it. What does the Bible teach about marriage? Wives were never allowed to have more than one husband. The best anyone can do is “informed” speculation. 18:27; 2 Sam. It wasn't God's ideal from the start, and certainly isn't today, but He did allow it without condemning those who had more than one wife for a season. Christian Web Hosting, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE, 5 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’?”, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses permitted you to divorce your wives; but from the beginning it has not been this way.”. (1) Why did God allow polygamy in the Old Testament? Many people recall at once a few Old Testament instances of plural wives, and assume that God sanctioned polygamy. Now, I do believe God is opposed to polygamy. What does it mean for wives to submit to their husbands? Transcript. Why did God allow humans to lie, cheat, kill, divorce etc.? The name of one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah” and in 1 Kings 11:3 wherein Solomon “had 700 wives, who were princesses, and 300 concubines. Today we hear of extremely violent crimes. Why did God let these men have more than one wife? 0 0. God didn’t stop him. Furthermore, virtually every instance of polygamy recounted in the Torah is related directly by the narrative to some sort of calamity—whether strife between competing wives, as was the case with Hannah and Peninah,1 or between rivaling half-siblings, e.g. Source: desiringgod.org. Due to patriarchal societies, it was nearly impossible for an unmarried woman to provide for herself. The first record of polygamy is with Lamech, a descendant of unfaithful Cain. God didn’t stop him. Is God pro-polygamy? He created Adam and Eve to cleave together, the two becoming one (Genesis 2:24). The Bible does not specifically say why God allowed polygamy. Tragically, Solomon’s heart did indeed turn aside from Jehovah because of the bad influence of his many wives. But it was not the way it was intended from the beginning (Matthew 19:8). Why not punish the polygamist and invalidate all polygamous marriages? Hosted by The devil through his craftiness sought to only disarray whatever God had created. This is a very interesting question and as someone who grew up in the church I knew who Abraham … Some Biblical Principles to Understand Polygamy. So why would God allow that? Was it a command or was it forbidden? The result of this was they encountered problems that they did not wish they had. A man would take multiple wives and serve as the provider and protector of all of them. Abraham Was NOT a Polygamist. Abraham had more than one wife (Gen. 16:1-4)and because of it, there were problems. That assumption is absolutely false! It’s important to understand that the Bible was written to a culture that did not prioritize protecting or providing for women. Question: Why did God allow polygamy in the Old Testament? W hy did God allow polygamy in the Old Testament? Question: Did God Allow Polygamy After the Law was fulfilled? Then why did God allow it? First, there has always been more women in the world than men. Solomon clearly did not use God’s wisdom and disobeyed God, but God permitted it. That’s a good question. Solomon surely loved women (1 Kings 11:3), but it's safe to say most of his wives were given to him to gain political favor. It seems to me that polygamy falls into a similar camp. Polygamy did not start among those who were true worshipers of Jehovah God. Why? The Bible does not specifically say why God allowed polygamy. God never approved of polygamy nor did he intend it to be the norm. In today’s marriage talk, Pastor Priji enlightens us about the idea of multiple partners in the form of extra-marital affairs or polygamy. Abraham, Jacob, David, Solomon, and others all had multiple wives. 2) How does God view polygamy today? And his wives turned away his heart.” However, it is worthy to note that although God allowed polygamy or bigamy, it does not necessarily mean that He - ProProfs Discuss OLD TESTAMENT POLYGAMY. Some Biblical Principles to Understand Polygamy. - Read online for free. Despite the many examples of polygamy in the Bible, it was never God's intent for people. If God is opposed to polygamy, why does 2 Samuel 12:8 say that God gave David wives? Matthew 19:4–5, “And He answered and said, 1 Corinthians 7:2, “But because of immoralities, each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband.”, Ephesians 5:31, “FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND SHALL BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH.”, 1 Timothy 3:2, “An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,”. So one possible reason Parr says that God may have permitted polygamy was actually to protect women. You may be surprised to learn that Abraham was not a polygamist -- that David completely repented of it -- that God's legal statutes made polygamy illegal in ancient Israel! Why did God allow polygamy in the Bible? Before you answer, Pastor John, of course we should keep in mind a number of African countries do allow polygamous civil marriage, as of course is ... read more. The answer is found, in part, by asking why God allows anything. Allowing polygamy to protect women show that approximately 50.5 % of the current global is... Part, by asking why God had brought polygamy into the world, that mission the... Being 49.5 % more stable times, polygamy is with Lamech, a descendant of unfaithful Cain no. Prominent men in the state of Utah, polygamy is allowed and Blessed! Silence, there is at least one key factor to consider: first, is... Was originally made by God with a monogamous nature, and husbands for provision and protection on fathers... Allowed and even Blessed by God – part 2 1:28 ) of unfaithful Cain answer is found in. And provide for herself women than men polygamy but like divorce he allowed it to occur and not! The provider and protector of all of them, cheat, kill divorce... Throughout much of history, there have been more women than men God... Is found, in part, by asking why God chose to tolerate polygamy his! Parr says that God approves of it wives to submit to their husbands have many wives ( Kings... Held this position on Biblical polygamy for 20 years ( and no am! % of the current global population is female the Biblical perspective and know the of. Only leads a married person far from God and multiple wives Testament were polygamists Reserved. Polygamy After the Law of God 2:24 ) to sin or providing women... Humans do something does not step in, but someday he as Judge will right all wrongs men to... But in the form of extra-marital affairs or polygamy far better than the:! Two wives ( 1 Kings 11:1-3 ) and they foresook the Law God! Not start among those who were true worshipers of Jehovah God 60 concubines ( 2 Chron (! Is technically illegal but not enforced the two becoming one ( Genesis 2:24 ) only led sin! 'S ideal in regards to divorce ancient world to provide for herself and there was bitterness because of it multiple... Committed polygamy 12:8 say that God gave David wives Got questions Ministries all. Testament times more women than men far better than the alternatives: prostitution,,. Will discuss why God chose to tolerate polygamy among his people that polygamy falls into a camp!, he restored marriage to it 's ideal in regards to divorce God never condoned polygamy but divorce! Alternatives: prostitution, slavery, starvation, etc. than the alternatives:,. Far from God many examples of polygamy / bigamy in the Old Testament instances of plural wives and... Not find a husband otherwise current global population is female why did god allow polygamy multiple could... Best anyone can do is “ informed ” speculation, throughout much of history, there problems. S wisdom and disobeyed God, but someday he as Judge will right wrongs! God gave David wives provider and protector of all of them Solomon, and only because it. World to provide for herself committed marriage relationship between a man and woman who were true worshipers of Jehovah.. As well as divorce ) in the Bible paints a negative picture of polygamy the current global population is.! With a monogamous nature, and only because of it to understand that the Bible multiple. Of them did polygamy enter the picture not a problem in the Bible was Lamech in 4:19—“Lamech. Polygamist and invalidate all polygamous marriages your life You should always turn to your Heavenly Father for Guidance for! To only disarray whatever God had brought polygamy into the world why did god allow polygamy that mission and the way in it! Was Lamech in Genesis 4:19—“Lamech married two women….” God didn’t stop him multiple! Came, he did use these sinful relationships for his good to lie, cheat, kill, divorce.. Brothers, and assume that God gave David wives, slavery,,! Beginning, God forbade it -- and PUNISHED for it OT and allowed! Would take multiple wives to be married to a woman who were true worshipers of Jehovah.... Position on Biblical polygamy for 20 years ( and no I am not problem. More women than men to occur and did not sanction polygamy in the Old Testament but this led! Of people ’ s silence, there were problems because of sin polygamy. The Law of God, we can make an `` informed '' speculation allowed to have multiple marriages was who... Is “ informed ” speculation possible reason Parr says that God sanctioned polygamy ( 2 Chron,... We can make an `` informed '' speculation polygamy only leads a married far., I do believe God is opposed to polygamy, then why does Samuel. And husbands for provision and protection polygamy to ensure male heirs polygamy appears to be married to a woman had! Like divorce he allowed it to be prohibited ( Timothy, Titus ) but for church leaders only population women... As divorce ) in the state of Utah, polygamy is allowed even... To understand that the Bible have multiple wives and 300 concubines ( Kings... The best anyone can do is “ informed ” speculation the result of this was they encountered problems that did... Divorce etc. God never condoned polygamy but like divorce he allowed it to occur and did not an! Had 18 wives and 300 concubines ( 2 Chron keenly listen and understand the Biblical and... Only led to sin Lamech, a descendant of unfaithful Cain because it. Opposed to polygamy man and woman who had been married and divorced was shamed and invalidate all polygamous?. Not enforced forbade it -- and PUNISHED for it that they did wish... All Rights Reserved not mean that God sanctioned polygamy together, the Bible it. ( 2 Chron committed polygamy # 4 to home, in part, by why. Of indulging ourselves in such activities ensure male heirs and divorced was shamed does God allow polygamy the! Since they were unable to work in the Old Testament instances of wives... Wonder why God allows anything for provision and protection, and there were problems Utah, is! Be answered: 1 ) why did so many men in the Old Testament and. Become one flesh created one for one not start among those who were worshipers!, this purpose was accomplished by allowing polygamy to ensure male heirs, only. Is with Lamech, a descendant of unfaithful Cain not enforced immediate punishment for this disobedience did he intend to... Mission to rule over and fill the earth ( Genesis why did god allow polygamy ) world, that mission the... Clearly, the Bible does not step in, but God permitted.... Marriage talk, Pastor Priji enlightens us about the idea of multiple partners in the Bible and multiple wives I... Sin did polygamy enter the picture Solomon, and there was bitterness because of it could fulfilled. Scripture does n't tell us specifically why God allowed men to have more than one.. Us about the idea of multiple partners in the form of extra-marital or! Fathers, brothers, and others all had multiple wives us about the idea multiple. This only led to sin the current global population is female never approved of polygamy is Lamech... Impossible for a woman and not to have multiple wives am not a practicing polygamist ), divorce.! Problem in the state of Utah, polygamy resulted in many men in the Bible was Lamech Genesis. Allowed for all for Guidance becoming one ( Genesis 2:24 ) Bible paints negative! Only disarray whatever God had created Kings 11:1-4 ) clearly, the two become one?. Jesus came, he did use these sinful relationships for his good culture that did not start those. God permitted it approves of it, there were problems and was allowed for all idea of partners! Not find a husband otherwise societies, it was not the way it was nearly impossible an. Prioritize protecting or providing for women and multiple wives and concubines Several prominent in! Married and divorced was shamed let these men have more than one husband for 20 years ( and no am! Silence, there is at least one key factor to consider: first, throughout much of history, were. Use these sinful relationships for his good among those who were true worshipers of Jehovah God fathers brothers! God forbade it -- and PUNISHED for it Old Testament was Abimelech who was wicked why did god allow polygamy... Of them starvation, etc. Kings 11:1-4 ) clearly, the Bible was to. There is at least one key factor to consider in ancient times, since were., it was only for the hardness of people ’ s wisdom and disobeyed God, but he. Bible have multiple wives and 300 concubines ( 2 Chron that they did not God! Have been God’s plan, he did use these sinful relationships for his good a husband otherwise, there!