They hate everything that God calls blessed

I was going to name this post Inverted Values, but I decided to name it the above instead.

Carlotta from Dalrock’s hierarchy equals abuse makes this comment:

Interesting isn’t it? If you work as a nurse for strangers, cook for strangers in a restaurant or teach other people’s children those are heroic career choices. Do any of it for your flesh and blood and you are an oppressed idiot slave.

I reframe it this way when femenists start their crap. I tell them I am a strong and independent women who has made a choice to live my own lifestyle and their bullying and intolerance of my liberated choices will not be tolerated in my safe space. I tell ya, the expressions are priceless.

The real interesting thing is the inversion of values across culture.

  • Abortion — No value on children.
  • Sex — Pre-marital sex is great. Withholding sex in marriage is good if she doesn’t feel like it.
  • Marriage — all marriage is good, except one man-one woman. If you only believe in one man and one woman we’re going to fine you and put you in jail.
  • College — If you’re a Christian your campus group isn’t allow. But everyone else can have one. If I educate you in this class correctly, by the end you won’t be a Christian. But no other religion.
  • Family — Dad is doofus. The wife and kids know better than him.
  • Family — Have 0-2 kids that’s great. Have 5+ kids you’re looked at like you’re crazy.

When you examine it in the context of feminism, it shouldn’t be all that surprising though. They hate everything that God calls blessed.

Obviously, there’s many more examples, but taking care of the family versus taking care of strangers is only another such example of inversion of values. Some are more obvious than others, and Christians also fall for some of them.

Carlotta makes the right choice to confront it head on and make people think about it.

Posted in Godly mindset & lifestyle | Tagged | 14 Comments

The Scriptures, Tradition and Canon

I’ve thought about writing this for a long time. We’ll see where this goes. Cane and Moose have been discussing some of these things, which prompted me to take another look at it.

Jesus, for the most part, almost always lambasted the tradition of the Pharisees. In particular, this occurred on multiple occasions such as the washing of hands and honoring their father and mother (Matt 15, Mark 7). Both Paul and Peter also do this as well decrying the tradition of men (Col 2, 1 Pet 1). Tradition is generally referred to in the Greek as G3862 paradosis, which is transmission of a precept or law.

Alternatively, Paul does refer to what they have given to Church plants as tradition in a few circumstances:

2 Thess 3:6 Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you [f]keep away from every brother who [g]leads an [h]unruly life and not according to the tradition which [i]you received from us. 7 For you yourselves know how you ought to [j]follow our example, because we did not act in an undisciplined manner among you, 8 nor did we eat [k]anyone’s bread [l]without paying for it, but with labor and hardship we kept working night and day so that we would not be a burden to any of you; 9 not because we do not have the right to this, but in order to offer ourselves as a model for you, so that you would [m]follow our example. 10 For even when we were with you, we used to give you this order: if anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat, either. 11 For we hear that some among you are leading an undisciplined life, doing no work at all, but acting like busybodies. 12 Now such persons we command and exhort in the Lord Jesus Christ to work in quiet fashion and eat their own bread. 13 But as for you, brethren, do not grow weary of doing good.

1 Corinthians 15:1 Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast [a]the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you [b]as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; 7 then He appeared to [c]James, then to all the apostles; 8 and last of all, as [d]to one untimely born, He appeared to me also.

What we have here is an understanding that what the Churches received from the apostles, especially concerning the gospel of Jesus and godly living, is tradition.

Going back a bit, the “Scriptures” of the OT to which Jesus refers to are what should be adhered to but not specifically the traditions of men. Obviously, we believe that what the apostles transmitted, at the behest of Jesus in the Great Commission (Matt 28), are true words about the gospel message and not simply the tradition of men.

2 Timothy 3:14 But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; 15 And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

2 Peter 3:14 Therefore, beloved, since you look for these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless, 15 and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, 16 as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. 17 You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard so that you are not carried away by the error of unprincipled men and fall from your own steadfastness, 18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.

By the time that that 2 Timothy and 2 Peter are written, these “tradition” writings that have been transmitted are known to both Paul and Peter as the “Scriptures.” Scriptures are what Jesus refers to, and what both Paul and Peter refer to including the gospels and Paul’s epistles. The word used here for Scriptures is G1124/1121 graphe/gramma, which Jesus also uses in the gospels in red letters.

Now, the canonization of the Scriptures into the Bible as it exists today is a very interesting process. I am by far not an expert in this area, but here is the general timeline of everything that happened.

  • 33 AD — Jesus was crucified and resurrected. Typical dates say Friday April 7, 30 AD or Friday April 3, 33 AD, with most convincing arguments for 33.
  • 33-34 AD — Pentecost, miracles, and the Church grows mightily (Acts 2-6)
  • 34-35 AD — Stephen stoned (Acts 7)
  • 34-36 AD — Paul’s conversion (Acts 9)
  • 36-38 AD — Paul visit to the disciples in Jerusalem and stays with Peter 15 days (Gal 1). Picks up the “tradition” creed in 1 Corinthians 15 quoted above (Acts 9)
  • 38 AD — Paul flees Jerusalem and starts preaching in the countryside (Acts 9).
  • 39 AD — Peter also starts to preach in the countryside (Acts 9).
  • 39-40 AD — Conversion of Cornelius, the first Gentile converted (Acts 10).
  • 43 AD — Church at Antioch planted. Believers are first called “Christians” (Acts 11).
  • 40-45 AD — Apostles James martyred by beheading via Herod Agrippa (Acts 12).
  • It’s likely that James’ martyrdom along with the establishment of Gentile believers, GentilesChurches, and the moniker “Christians” ushers in Christianity not a sect of Judaism but as a stand alone religion.
  • 46-49 AD — Paul’s first missionary journey
  • 48-49 AD — Galatians written.
  • 48-55 AD — Gospel of Mark written. Compiled by Mark based on Peter’s experiences.
  • 49 AD — Council of Jerusalem dispute in Acts 15
  • 50-52 AD — Paul’s second missionary journey
  • 50-60 AD — James written by James (Jesus’ half brother) who was later martyred.
  • 50-58 AD — Hebrews written
  • 51-52 AD — 1 and 2 Thessalonians written.
  • 53-58 AD — Paul’s third missionary journey
  • 54 AD — Apostle Philip martyred by torturing and crucifixion.
  • 55-56 AD — 1 and 2 Corinthians written.
  • 57 AD — Romans written.
  • 57-62 — Gospel of Luke written
  • 60-62 AD — Paul’s arrest in Jerusalem, imprisonment, and move to Rome. Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon written.
  • 62-63 AD — Acts written.
  • 63 AD — James (Jesus’ half brother) martyred by throwing him off the top of the temple.
  • 63-64 AD — Titus, 1 and 2 Timothy written.
  • 64 AD — Apostle Peter martyred by upside down crucifixion
  • 64-68 AD — 1 and 2 Peter written
  • 65-67 AD — Apostle Paul’s rearrest and beheading by Nero.
  • 65-80 AD — Jude written by Jude (Jesus’ half brother)
  • 70 AD — Second temple is destroyed.
  • 70 AD — Apostle Andrew martyred by crucifixion.
  • 70 AD — Apostle Doubting Thomas martyred by impaled by pine spears, red hot plates, and burned alive.
  • 70 AD — Apostle Bartholomew martyred by flaying and crucifixion.
  • 70 AD — Apostle Matthias martyred by crucifixion and stoning.
  • 70-80 AD — Gospel of Matthew written.
  • 72 AD — Judas (not Iscariot) martyred by being beaten with sticks.
  • 74 AD — Apostle Simon martyred by crucifixion.
  • 80-90 AD — Apostle Matthew martyred by beheading.
  • 85 AD – Gospel of John written
  • 90s AD — 1 and 2 and 3 John, and Revelations written.
  • 95-100 AD — John dies without being martyred.
  • 100-150 AD (90-175 AD) — P52 manuscript of Gospel of John is the earliest known manuscript of New Testament texts.
  • 125 AD Polycarp — refers to Ephesians as Scripture.
  • 140 AD Marcion — proposes a canon of 10 Pauline epistles and a [heretical] version of the Gospel of Luke
  • 150 AD — Justin Martyr mentions memoirs of the Apostles including Pauline epistles. Held up as authority for living on par with OT Scriptures
  • 170 AD — earliest currently known list of books of the NT the Muratorian fragment includes the 4 gospels, Acts, 13 Pauline epistles, and a few others including the Apocalypse of John. Not mentioned were Hebrews, 1 and 2 Peter, James, and perhaps a few of the latter books of 1 and 2 John.
  • 180 AD — Irenaeus asserts that there are only 4 legitimate gospels
  • Early 200s — Origen proposes canon of all current NT books except with some dispute over James, 2 Peter, and 2 and 3 John.
  • 325 AD — First Council at Nicaea.  Substantial progress since Origen had been made. Eusebius recognized all NT canon but was doubtful on James, Jude, 2 Peter, and 2,3 John.
  • 350 AD – Cyril of Jerusalem all NT canon minus Revelation plus gospel of Thomas (only inclusion of gospel of Thomas in canon every).
  • 367 AD — Athanasius of Alexandria lists all 27 books of the current NT and uses “being canonized”
  • 382 AD — Council of Rome Pope Damasus issued identical list of NT canon
  • 383 AD — Vulgate (Latin) translation of the Bible
  • 390 AD — Gregory of Nazianus has 27 canon
  • 393 AD — Canon of Trent accepts present Catholic canon
  • 394 AD — Jerome has 27 canon
  • 397, 419 AD — Council of Carthage under St. Augustine accepts canon of Trent
  • 5th century (400s) and onward — Western Church NT canon is the same

Here is one of the recent lectures on Mike Licona on evidence on veracity of the text, translation, and canon.

41:05 time stamp:

  • Undisputed (authoritative): 4 gospels, Acts, 10 Paul’s letters, 1 John, 1 Peter
  • Disputed but included: 3 of Pauls letters (Titus, 1 and 2 Timothy), Hebrews, James, 2 Peter, Jude, Revelation
  • Not authoritative, some historical: 1 Clement, Didache, Shepherd, Gospel of Thomas, Ignatius’ letters, Gospel of Barnabas, Polycarp
  • On the outside: Not even gnostics included in their canons — Gospel of Peter, Gospel of Hebrews, Acts of Paul, Gospel of Philip, Gospel of Mary, Gospel according to the Egyptians

Note: Donalgraeme’s Tradition Thursday has been going through a lot of 3rd group on the list if you want to check it out. The Didache is interesting because it was how the early Apostles and disciples of Jesus practiced the commands of Jesus. Also, writings of many other fathers of the Church.

edit: Wintery Knight has a recent post on 2000 year old copy of the book of Leviticus that confirms accurate text to the versions we use today.

Overall, the process is one that is very interesting. Generally, the tendency is to exclude things that are doubtful rather than include. This eliminates as much heresy as possible, as can be seen from the early Church defense against gnosticism and other forms of heresy mentioned in Revelations.

Additionally, there is a tendency to include mainly writings that further the gospel of Jesus Christ rather than on extraneous knowledge or diversions. Paul expressly makes this point multiple times.

1 Cor 8:1 Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up.

1 Timothy 6:3 If anyone advocates a different doctrine and does not [d]agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness, 4 he is conceited and understands nothing; but he [e]has a morbid interest in controversial questions and disputes about words, out of which arise envy, strife, abusive language, evil suspicions, 5 and constant friction between men of depraved mind and deprived of the truth, who suppose that [f]godliness is a means of gain.

2 Timothy 3:But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. 2 For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, [a]haters of good, 4 treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 holding to a form of [b]godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these. 6 For among them are those who [c]enter into households and captivate [d]weak women weighed down with sins, led on by various impulses, 7 always learning and never able to come to the [e]knowledge of the truth. 8 Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men of depraved mind, rejected in regard to the faith. 9 But they will not make further progress; for their folly will be obvious to all, just as [f]Jannes’s and Jambres’s folly was also.

The line between Scripture and tradition appears straight forward, even though the canonization of the Scriptures themselves are a result of tradition.

Debate over something like transubstantiation seems more and more like controversial questions that don’t help believers learn how to live a more fruitful life in Christ Jesus. We are commanded to take the Eucharist/Communion. We don’t necessarily need to know what actually happens to the bread and wine when we take it, even though questions like that could be interesting to know.

Jesus was able to sum up the Law and the Prophets into two commandments: ‘Love God and Love your Neighbor.’ So too, we have one of the basic summaries of the Christian faith straight from the mouth of Jesus: John 13:34 and John 15:12 “A new commandment I give to you: That you love one another, as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” When the gospel and commandments of Jesus are not the focus, we are going off track.

Conclusion

Telephone. Remember that game? The further you tend to get away from the original voice, the more distorted the meaning has gotten. We know that the New Testament Scriptures are written by the Apostles themselves (Matthew, John, Peter, Paul) or colleagues of the Apostles (Mark, Luke), who often had direct interaction with Jesus.

To say that we now have “new knowledge” on what Jesus and His apostles (to whom Jesus gave authority to spread the gospel) actually meant seems exceedingly disingenuous, like a lot of Protestant denominations on divorce and headship. This is how you get perversion of Scriptures such as egalitarianism and complementarism, which Dalrock has dissected complementarism in All roads lead to Duluth and The root of the problem. The only Biblical marriage is Patriarchal.

This is why I try to read a lot of the writings of the Church fathers as well as the Scriptures themselves. Generally, I think the Orthodox have it right by only affirming Patristic writings and the 7 ecumenical councils which condemned various heresies. They also haven’t changed any of their tradition in the past 1000+ (?) years if I remember correctly. If I have Orthodox commenters, and you know some confirmation would be great.

One of the major failings of the Evangelical Church is to try to make the Scriptures culturally relevant. In reality, the Scriptures are Truth among a relativist culture.

Jesus’ message, as preserved by Church tradition, is fairly straight forward and clear. I don’t see a reason to bring up controversial questions on extraneous things in the Scripture, especially when it’s clear that the Scripture itself and the early Church fathers were not concerned about those things. They were concerned about living a daily life devoted to God, and fulfilling Jesus’ commands to spread the gospel, make disciples, and baptize new believers.

In my humble opinion.

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Complementarians are worse than egalitarians

I’ve talked about this before briefly in other posts, but it deserves its own post. Somewhat goes with Dalrock’s Hierarchy equals abuse, which is funny because i had this post typed up a few days ago.

The reason why complementarians are worse than egalitarians is that they both espouse equality between the sexes in marriage. In complementarism, the husband and wife always come together to discuss decisions (subtext: as some sort of equals) exactly like egalitarians. The only difference complementarians simply pay lip service to the husband as the authority/head in marriage as some sort of last resort “tie breaker.”

Complementarians try everything possible to make men and women equal, but at the end of the day they can’t ignore the plain text of Scripture regarding headship and submission. They begrudgingly give the husband a tie breaker vote, but only because the Bible said so.

At least the egalitarians are honest about their position. They believe, albeit wrongly, that husbands and wives are equal in marriage. Complementarians deceive and are deceived regarding the nature husband authority in marriage.

Egalitarians are overt feminists. Complementarians are disguised feminists.

Deception is worse than a blatant lie because the blatant lie is easier to pick out. Deception is when you think you know the truth, but in reality you don’t. That’s the scariest one because you don’t know you’re being led astray. It’s harder to pick out what is wrong when Truth is mixed with lies rather than just a straight forward lie.

edit: This is why the “tie breaker” argument does not work with egalitarians. It isn’t Scripture and lacks authoritative power. Egalitarians try to twist Ephesians 5 into what they want it to mean, but they ignore Colossian 3, Titus 2, 1 Peter 3, and 1 Cor 11 (“head of”). Every time they bring up Ephesians 5 just bring up the other verses instead.

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Usurpers

Somewhat of an offshoot of we live in a polytheistic culture.

I’m beginning to gain a greater understanding of the ancient Israel and their interaction with the surrounding cultures.

  • El is a generic term for the word god that was generally used to refer to any god such as the ones mentioned below. Most of the names of the Hebrew God are based on it, such as Elohim, El Shaddai, El Elyon, and so on.
  • Ba’al and the derivatives are actually a term that means “lord” much like Adon/Adonai mean. It’s was also one of the Hebrew words for husband, which the Scripture righteously lauds Sarah for calling Abraham lord from Genesis and 1 Peter 3.
  • Moloch is actually a derivatve from ‘melek‘ which in Hebrew means “king.” A melek means the king. Somewhat of a primer on the background of the Amalekites from the OT.
  • “Virgin” Anat is a violent war goddess and lover of Ba’al (at least one of the versions of him). The original cross dresser perhaps now that we see women in the armed forces
  • Asherah the ‘Queen of heaven’ and ‘goddess of the sea.’ Also, called Qudesh which is a term for ‘holiness.’ Interestingly, artifacts have been found from ancient Israel which depict “Yahweh and his Asherah” and variations like that. Perhaps all of these are semi-references to Gen 1:2b “And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.”
  • Chemosh of the Moabites probably means destroyer, subduer, or fish god, but where it was derived from is the Babylonian Shamosh who is the god of law, justice and salvation.
  • Dagon the fish god (Samson knocked over his temple in Philistine) is probably derived from grain and thus associated with fertility and agriculture.

Essentially, what we have a bunch of usurpers. The gods are basically take on qualities of the real God who created everything. Perhaps it is not exactly a surprise because God warned Israel with the first commandment: “you shall have no other gods before me.”

2 Corinthians 11:13 For such men are false apostles, deceitful workers, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. 14 No wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is not surprising if his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness, whose end will be according to their deeds.

It could also be said that Christianity has its fair share of imposters such as Islam. I don’t think it to be a coincidence that Satan or Lucifer is known as the great deceiver. Satan is a counterfeiter of God.

Matthew 7:15 “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 You will [k]know them by their fruits. [l]Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? 17 So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 So then, you will [m]know them by their fruits.

Jesus warns us of false prophets among other things as well.

In tracing out some of this, there are some other interesting tidbits on Israel’s archaeological past. The Egyptians probably called the Israelites the Shasu which means “those who move on foot.” The word we would use for it now is nomads. There are Egyptian references to “the land Shasu of YHW.” Since they had distinctly different dress from the Egyptians it can be inferred that they originated from somewhere else. This would make sense given the Scripture tells us Abraham was a nomadic cattle herder, and his descendants eventually made their way to Egypt.

Supposedly, tracking YHWH back further you get the origin from a root word such as HWY which means “he blows.” Although scholars attribute this to a “weather divinity,” I believe it probably more likely refers to God breathing life into man: Genesis 2:7 Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living [f]being.

The primary attribute of God in the OT is YHWH (among other epithets) is the [Life] Breather, which attests to the creation. The primary attribute of God in the NT is our Father. How cool is that.

Elohim in Genesis is plural of God, which refers to the “triune” nature Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The “-im” ending is masculine, and although it’s a plural it uses a singular verb. They all co-exist as one and act as one. John 1 refers to the fact that Jesus was there in the beginning.

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We live in a polytheistic culture

Some thoughts after Cane’s whore mother may I and my comment.

Complementarism is simply another form of feminine worship. Mother worship. It’s all the same stuff, except in different forms of ancient Canaanite idol worship. For example,

Goddess worship, fertility worship, spirit of jezebel. Baal = god of fertility/storm. Asherah = goddess of heaven, creator of earth, goddess of the sea.

It seems interesting to me that there is no incarnation of the ‘Trinity’ as feminine. We only have the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Perhaps because it’s very easy for humans to get sidetracked into idolatrous worship of the feminine.

Abortion is simply human sacrifice. The mother is the fertile creator who gives and takes life at her whim. She is a god. Why else would women be “victims” of abortion when they are the ones choosing to have it.

In fact, all cultures, save Israel for a time, have lived in polytheistic cultures.

Idols of wood and stone have been traded for idols of self, money, pleasure, fame, and feelings.

Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods [b]before Me.

Is it any wonder why the first commandment is the first commandment? The second commandment on not creating the likeness of idols is only a minor part of the first. It’s only when you have an idol that you can create one.

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Men try to out work their suffering example

edit: I forgot to note this was sent in by a reader.

I recently wrote on Men try to out work their suffering.

Husbands fall into this trap a lot. They try “work” in order to curry favor because of a bad attitude from their women.

Unfortunately, it shows the wife responding “well” which is a farce. Anyone who has experienced in real life know that wives almost always get more discontent, dissatisfied, and demanding.

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Ideas for a treatise on Patriarchal marriage

I’ve thought about writing on this for a while, and I believe this is a topic of great need within the Church.

  • Patriarchy, at it’s simplest definition, is Father/headed led families. (Scripturally speaking, Father/husband headed families).

Both of these are affirmed throughout the Scriptures including Pre-fall and the Old and New Covenant. This includes examples ranging from Adam to the Patriarchs to David and the Kings and finally to Jesus, with the New Covenant revealed nature of the primary way God desires to be represented: our Father.

As we know, CBMW in their “complemenatarian” position has already been infected by feminism. Dalrock has done an excellent job of exposing that specifically in these two posts:

I’ve also discussed the concept some in terms of Patriarchy one, two, and three and the two options open to single Christian men: Patriarch or Monk.

I don’t see a need to “defend” Patriarchy as it is an inherently good system as it was created and affirmed by God throughout the Scriptures. Hence, the term treatise. However, it seems that a “defense” is needed because most Christians are entrenched unknowingly in the Necropolis (e.g. formerly churchianity) and are convinced by secular culture that Patriarchy is an evil system.

Some articles I’ve found on ideas stem from sources like these on the defense of Patriarchy. Included is part of C.S. Lewis’ section in chapter 16 of Mere Christianity.

So much for the Christian doctrine about the permanence of marriage. Something else, even more unpopular, remains to be dealt with. Christian wives promise to obey their husbands. In Christian marriage the man is said to be the `head’. Two questions obviously arise here. (1) Why should there be a head at all – why not equality? (2) Why should it be the man?

(1) The need for some head follows from the idea that marriage is permanent. Of course, as long as the husband and wife are agreed, no question of a head need arise; and we may hope that this will be the normal state of affairs in a Christian marriage. But when there is a real disagreement, what is to happen? Talk it over, of course; but I am assuming they have done that and still failed to reach agreement. What do they do next? They cannot decide by a majority vote, for in a council of two there can be no majority. Surely, only one or other of two things can happen: either they must separate and go their own ways or else one or other of them must have a casting vote. If marriage is permanent, one or other party must, in the last resort, have the power of deciding the family policy. You cannot have a permanent association without a constitution.

(2) If there must be a head, why the man? Well, firstly, is there any very serious wish that it should be the woman? As I have said, I am not married myself, but as far as I can see, even a woman who wants to be the head of her own house does not usually admire the same state of things when she finds it going on next door. She is much more likely to say ‘Poor Mr X! Why he allows that appalling woman to boss him about the way she does is more than I can imagine.’ I do not think she is even very flattered if anyone mentions the fact of her own ‘headship’. There must be something unnatural about the rule of wives over husbands, because the wives themselves are half ashamed of it and despise the husbands whom they rule. But there is also another reason; and here I speak quite frankly as a bachelor, because it is a reason you can see from outside even better than from inside. The relations of the family to the outer world -what might be called its foreign policy -must depend, in the last resort, upon the man, because he always ought to be, and usually is, much more just to the outsiders. A woman is primarily fighting for her own children and husband against the rest of the world. Naturally, almost, in a sense, rightly, their claims override, for her, all other claims. She is the special trustee of their interests. The function of the husband is to see that this natural preference of hers is not given its head. He has the last word in order to protect other people from the intense family patriotism of the wife. If anyone doubts this, let me ask a simple question. If your dog has bitten the child next door, or if your child has hurt the dog next door, which would you sooner have to deal with, the master of that house or the mistress? Or, if you are a married woman, let me ask you this question. Much as you admire your husband, would you not say that his chief failing is his tendency not to stick up for his rights and yours against the neighbours as vigorously as you would like? A bit of an Appeaser?

In general, I think it would be best to approach this purely from a Biblical standpoint and contrasting them to the fabricated statements made by modern feminists trying to subvert the Scripture for their own gain. Such statements include things like “Women were treated horribly before Jesus’ time.” This gives any random Christian the false impression that women were treated terribly in the OT, which is simply not the case. Women were a protected and provided for class under the Law.

In any case, this is probably a massive project that I need help on in terms of compiling as many examples as possible from the Scriptures on the nature of authority, Patriarchy, and attempted christo-feminist hijacking.

When I say “marriage,” I shouldn’t have to explain that all marriage is Patriarchal marriage as that is what God has ordained as good. Made up human inventions that attempt to subvert the structures that God has created — such as “complementarian,” “egalitarian,” and “gay” marriage — are not marriage. They’re warped and corrupted monstrosities that do not honor God.

In all honestly, “gay” marriage is not a Christian problem. Let the world worry about things like that. The Christian problem is “complementarian” and “egalitarian marriage” as these are things that masquerade as Truth and lead Christians astray into falling into pits.

Anyway, what I’m looking for in the comments is:

  • Compilation of the Scriptures on God’s structure of authority marriage.
  • Writings and commentary on the structure of marriage with sound logical defense.
  • Examples of Christian organizational structures going off the mark on marriage. CBMW is obviously one of them.
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On divorce Part 4

This post is a rere-consolidation and simplified explanation of the Scriptures on divorce. Previous discussions include several conversations and much of the same material from On divorce and On divorce Part 2 and On divorce Part 3. One of the reasons for this is the discussion of divorce on polygyny. Thus, if you’ve read them before or if you don’t care feel free not to read it again.

This is one of the original research articles that got me started on reading to understand what the Scriptures say myself. Read it if you have time.

The biggest thing that I learned from my discussions is that people don’t properly understand the background of all of the OT passages on divorce and putting away which set the stage for why Jesus is talking specifically about putting away and not divorce.

Table of contents

  1. Deuteronomy 24 — What is legal divorce according to the Scriptures?
  2. Deuteronomy 22 — What constitutes marital fraud?
  3. Jeremiah 3 and Isaiah 50 — The adulterous cases of Israel and Judah
  4. Malachi 2 — the background from the Old Testament to the New Testament
  5. Deuteronomy 24 and Matthew 5 and 19 — The synonymous terms of legal divorce in the OT and NT
  6. Matthew 19:3 — the Pharisees’ multi layered trap
  7. Matthew 19:4-6 — Jesus goes back to the creation
  8. Matthew 19:7 — The Pharisees’ confusion
  9. Matthew 19:8 — Jesus’ response on hardness of heart
  10. Matthew 19:9 — The heavily misinterpreted passage of Scripture
  11. Matthew 19:10-12 — the disciples actually understand the gravity of marriage
  12. Matthew 1:18-19 — the case of Joseph and Mary
  13. Mark 10:2-12 and Luke 16:13-18 — the unification of Matthew with Mark and Luke
  14. Romans 7 — understanding the context of Jewish divorce
  15. 1 Corinthians 7:10-11 — the Lord’s command to husbands and wives
  16. 1 Corinthians 7:12-15 — Paul, not the Lord, says to live with unbelieving spouses
  17. Conclusion

Let’s get started.

Deuteronomy 24 — What is legal divorce according to the Scriptures?

Deuteronomy 24:1 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement (sêpher kerı̂ythûth), and give it in her hand, and send (shâlach) her out of his house. 2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man’s wife. 3 And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement (sêpher kerı̂ythûth), and giveth it in her hand, and sendeth (shâlach) her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife; 4 Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the Lord: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.

Legal divorce is composed of two parts in Mosiac law. This will be important when we look at the passages in Matthew.

  1. Sepher keriythth — Writing and giving the wife a bill of divorcement.
  2. Shalach — Sending her out of the house or away.

Deuteronomy 22 — What constitutes marital fraud?

Marital fraud is found in Deuteronomy 22.

Deuteronomy 22:13 If any man take a wife, and go in unto her, and hate her, 14 And give occasions of speech against her, and bring up an evil name upon her, and say, I took this woman, and when I came to her, I found her not a maid:

15 Then shall the father of the damsel, and her mother, take and bring forth the tokens of the damsel’s virginity unto the elders of the city in the gate: 16 And the damsel’s father shall say unto the elders, I gave my daughter unto this man to wife, and he hateth her; 17 And, lo, he hath given occasions of speech against her, saying, I found not thy daughter a maid; and yet these are the tokens of my daughter’s virginity. And they shall spread the cloth before the elders of the city. 18 And the elders of that city shall take that man and chastise him; 19 And they shall amerce him in an hundred shekels of silver, and give them unto the father of the damsel, because he hath brought up an evil name upon a virgin of Israel: and she shall be his wife; he may not put her away (shâlach) all his days.

20 But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel: 21 Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father’s house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you.

From a historical perspective, very few if any women that were caught in marital fraud were actually stoned. What occurred is that when a woman was caught in marital fraud were simply put away without being legally divorced (put away + writ of divorce). Such a fraudulent marriage was invalid (no blood as proof), and therefore the couple was not legally married.

Distinguishing legal divorce from marital fraud is important because this outlines a case for which a woman could be put away (without being officially divorced).

Jeremiah 3 and Isaiah 50 — The adulterous cases of Israel and Judah

The Lord is shown to follow the laws he outlined in Deuteronomy 24 for legal divorce in the cases of Israel and Judah.

Jeremiah 3:6 The Lord said also unto me in the days of Josiah the king, Hast thou seen that which backsliding Israel hath done? she is gone up upon every high mountain and under every green tree, and there hath played the harlot. 7 And I said after she had done all these things, Turn thou unto me. But she returned not. And her treacherous sister Judah saw it. 8 And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away (shâlach), and given her a bill of divorce (sêpher kerı̂ythûth); yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also. 9 And it came to pass through the lightness of her whoredom, that she defiled the land, and committed adultery with stones and with stocks. 10 And yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah hath not turned unto me with her whole heart, but feignedly, saith the Lord.

Israel was not brought back out of Assyrian captivity. They were no longer physically or spiritually “Jews” because they have been divorced by God and intermixed with the surrounding nations. This passage in Jeremiah 3 shows that God Himself divorces the Israelites, gives her a bill of divorce, and sends/puts her away into Assyrian captivity. God abides by His own Law.

Don Quixote notes that in Jeremiah 3:14 the Lord claims to be married to Israel even after the bill of divorce and invites repentance. This is the nature of God’s forgiveness if she turns back to him, even though God plays by His rules in divorce.

However, the Lord speaking to Judah does not divorce her even though He puts her away.

Isaiah 50:1 Thus saith the Lord [to Judah], Where is the bill of your mother’s divorcement (sêpher ‘êm kerı̂ythûth), whom I have put away (shâlach)? or which of my creditors is it to whom I have sold you? Behold, for your iniquities have ye sold yourselves, and for your transgressions is your mother put away (shâlach). 2 Wherefore, when I came, was there no man? when I called, was there none to answer? Is my hand shortened at all, that it cannot redeem? or have I no power to deliver? behold, at my rebuke I dry up the sea, I make the rivers a wilderness: their fish stinketh, because there is no water, and dieth for thirst. 3 I clothe the heavens with blackness, and I make sackcloth their covering.

In the case of Judah, we know that Jesus comes from the lineage of Judah and David. The Lord allows Judah to be put away into captivity for their transgressions. Afterward, He redeems and delivers Judah out of captivity as read in Nehemiah and Ezra and upholds  His covenant with them through the rebuilding of His temple. Then He brings full redemption to them through sending His Son Jesus to die bring forth the New Covenant.

Malachi 2 — The background from the Old Testament to the New Testament

Malachi is the last prophet for 400 years before Jesus. Malachi points out Israelite backsliding due to assimilation of the surrounding cultures much like today.

Malachi 2:14 Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the Lord hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant. 15 And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth.

16 For the Lord, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away (shâlach): for one covereth violence with his garment, saith the Lord of hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that ye deal not treacherously. 17 Ye have wearied the Lord with your words. Yet ye say, Wherein have we wearied him? When ye say, Every one that doeth evil is good in the sight of the Lord, and he delighteth in them; or, Where is the God of judgment?

The main background behind this passage is that “divorce” in surrounding cultures was simply putting away (without a writ of divorce). Husbands sent their wives out of the house and that was a divorce. There are two main reasons why the Lord was saying putting away [without a writ of divorce] was treacherous:

  1. Selfish monetary gain. If a wife was legally divorced — put away with a writ of divorce — she would receive back the dowry that the bride’s father paid. However, if she was put away without a writ of divorce she would not receive back the dowry.
  2. Marginalized wives. A legal divorce — put away with a writ of divorce — would allow the divorced wife to remarry. However, if a wife was put away she would still be legally married to her husband, which allowed her unable to remarry without committing adultery.

This assimilation of the surrounding culture sets the stage for Jesus’ interaction with the Pharisees in the New Testament.

Deuteronomy 24 and Matthew 5 and 19 — The synonymous terms of legal divorce in the OT and NT

Since the OT was written in Hebrew and the NT was written primarily in Greek, we need to critically examine the Scriptures to see if there are synonymous terms that were used in order to understand what the Pharisees and Jesus were speaking about in the Law of Moses. There are.

Deuteronomy 24:1 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement (sêpher kerı̂ythûth), and give it in her hand, and send (shâlach) her out of his house. 2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man’s wife. 3 And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement (sêpher kerı̂ythûth), and giveth it in her hand, and sendeth (shâlach) her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife; 4 Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the Lord: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.

  1. Sepher keriythth — Writing and giving the wife a bill of divorcement.
  2. Shalach — Sending her out of the house or away.

Matthew 19:3 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away (apoluō) his wife for every cause? 4 And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, 5 And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? 6 Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.7 They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement (apostasion), and to put her away (apoluō autos)? 8 He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away (apoluō) your wives: but from the beginning it was not so. 9 And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) his wife, except it be for fornication (porneia), and shall marry another,commit adultery (moichaō): and whoso marrieth her which is put away (apoluō) doth committeth adultery (moichaō).

G630 — ἀπολύω — apoluō — ap-ol-oo’-o
From G575 and G3089; to free fully, that is, (literally) relieve, release, dismiss (reflexively depart), or (figuratively) let die, pardon, or (specifically) divorce: – (let) depart, dismiss, divorce, forgive, let go, loose, put (send) away, release, set at liberty.

G647 — ἀποστάσιον — apostasion — ap-os-tas’-ee-on
Neuter of a (presumed) adjective from a derivative of G868; properly something separative, that is, (specifically) divorce: – (writing of) divorcement.

  1. GREEK Apostasion and HEBREW Sepher keriythth — Writing and giving the wife a bill of divorcement.
  2. GREEK Apoluo and HEBREW Shalach — Sending her out of the house or away.

Note: I crossed out the two instances of “divorce” within Strong’s definition of apoluo because apoluo does not denote a legal divorce according to the Law of Moses. Hence, Jesus would not have used apoluo to mean “divorce” in Matthew because He does not abolish the law but fulfills the law.

Matthew 19:3 — the Pharisees’ multi layered trap

Let’s start delving into the line by line analysis given our solid background of understanding.

Matthew 19:3 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away (apoluō) his wife for every cause?

First, the key word “every cause” is another instance of background. The Pharisees, specifically the Hillelites, claimed you could legally divorce for “every cause” due to an interpretation of uncleanness in Deuteronomy 24 meaning any form of displeasure. (The article gets the conclusion wrong, but the background is important).

Deuteronomy 24:1 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement (sêpher kerı̂ythûth), and give it in her hand, and send (shâlach) her out of his house.

Now, your spider senses should be tingling because the Pharisees use an interesting set of wording of “lawful” with “putting away” (without writ of divorce) and “every cause.”

The complexity of this trap is that the Pharisees are pitting Roman occupation law versus a specific interpretation of Jewish law. In Roman law you could “divorce” your wife by “putting her away” (apoluo). However, Jewish law in Deuteronomy 24 you could divorce your wife by “putting her away” (apoluo or shalach) AND giving her a bill of divorcement (Apostasion or Sepher keriythth). This is similar to other traps the Pharisees employed such as it being lawful to pay taxes to Caesar or God (Matt 22, Mark 12).

Thus, the trap. If Jesus answers that you can put away a wife without a bill of divorcement the Pharisees can call Jesus a blasphemer as He is not following Jewish law. If Jesus says that you need a bill of divorcement then the Pharisees can take Jesus to the Romans and say that He is subverting Roman law. The additional wrench of the trap is that “every cause” is thrown in so that they are not referring directly to standard Jewish law but solely one liberal interpretation of it.

Matthew 19:4-6 — Jesus goes back to the creation

Matthew 19:4 And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, 5 And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? 6 Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

Jesus knows that it’s a no-win question. He neatly sidesteps the Pharisees’ trap by avoiding talking about Roman and Jewish law and instead discusses the creation of man and what God intended. He would know because He was there in the beginning (see: John 1:1-4).

This is Jesus’ answer on divorce: “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.” No divorce.

Matthew 19:7 — The Pharisees’ confusion

Matthew 19:7 They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement (apostasion), and to put her away (apoluō autos)?

The Pharisees see that Jesus has cleverly sidestepped their trap and now are confused. If God did not intended for any divorce then why was it written in the Law of Moses in Deuteronomy 24 (Putting the wife away AND giving her a bill of divorcement)?

The Pharisees quick acknowledgement that the Law of Moses declared that a divorce is composed of putting away AND bill of divorcement reveals their own trap. They knew that a divorce was putting away and a bill of divorcement, but they tested Him on putting away only.

Matthew 19:8 — Jesus’ response of hardness of heart

Matthew 19:8 He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away (apoluō) your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.

Jesus responds to the Pharisees that this part of the law was created because human hearts are hard. Jesus doesn’t want “putting away” for any reason: valid divorce which is “putting away + writ of divorce” or simply “putting away” because of the hardness of hearts.

Matthew 19:9 — The heavily misinterpreted passage of Scripture

In this section, Jesus is answering the original question that the Pharisees posed which is “what lawful instances can a man put away?”

Matthew 19:3 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away (apoluō) his wife for every cause?

[…]

Matthew 19:9 And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) his wife, except it be for fornication (porneia), and shall marry another, commit adultery (moichaō): and whoso marrieth her which is put away (apoluō) doth committeth adultery (moichaō).

Remember, from Malachi 2 to the current Roman occupation the Israelite husbands were putting away their wives treacherously. Thus, it is important for Jesus to answer this question in order to clarify the instances of which a wife can be put away.

  • Let’s walk through this part by part: “Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) his wife.”

We recognize that Jesus knows what a writ of divorce is as He is familiar with Jewish law. Additionally,  the Pharisees had just asked him about putting away (apoluo) and writ of divorce (apostasion). Thus, Jesus is talking about putting away only.

  • Jesus specifically says “except it be for fornication (porneia). “Fornication” is any illicit sexual union including incest (1 Cor 5) and adultery. However, if Jesus was referring specifically to adultery here then “moichao” would have been used instead of “porneia.” Moichao is used later in the verse, yet it is not used here.
  • The combination of “putting away (apoluo)” and “fornication (porneia)” refers to Deuteronomy 22 where a husband marries a wife but it is fraud. If the passage was talking about “putting away (apoluo)” and “bill of divorcement (apostasion)” and “adultery (moichiao)” this would reference Deuteronomy 24 on rules of divorce.

If Jesus was talking specifically about a legitimate divorce for adultery he would have instead said:

“Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) with a writ of divorce (apostasion) his wife, “except it be for adultery (moichiao),

Instead, He says:

“Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) his wife, “except it be for fornication (porneia),

Therefore, the Greek wording is important because it tells us what passages Jesus is referencing in Mosaic Law. The answer is Deuteronomy 22 and illegitimate marriages as opposed to Deuteronomy 24 and rules on divorce. This becomes clear in the final part.

  • Jesus says: “and shall marry another, commit adultery (moichaō): and whoso marrieth her which is put away (apoluō) doth committeth adultery (moichaō).”

Let’s put all of the parts together now. Remove the “except” part for a moment. Jesus is saying:

And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) his wife, except it be for fornication (porneia), and shall marry another, commit adultery (moichaō): and whoso marrieth her which is put away (apoluō) doth committeth adultery (moichaō).

Simplified:

And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) his wife, […], and shall marry another, commit adultery (moichaō): and whoso marrieth her which is put away (apoluō) doth committeth adultery (moichaō).

Jesus is saying that if you put away your wife and marry another then you commit adultery. This makes sense because if you put away your wife under Jewish law without giving her a writ of divorce then you commit adultery as you were still married to her! This is similar to today’s culture because we have marriage certificates: if you put away your wife without annulling the marriage you commit adultery according to the law.

This also explains exactly happening in Malachi 2 and Roman times. Husbands were putting away their wives without a writ of divorce. The wives could not marry again because they were still married to their original husbands. If they did they were committing adultery.

Let’s continue the textual analysis:

  • What about the “except it be for fornication (porneia)” part? The Pharisees rightly understood that in Deuteronomy 22 that if a husband accused his wife of not being a virgin then the proof was the sheet with the blood stains on it. If the parents were able to produce that (gross, I know), then the husband must pay a penalty and could never put her away as long as he lives. However, if the woman was guilty, she was committing fraud by lying/deception by claiming to be a virgin when she was not.

Therefore, this “except” clause refers directly to the Deuteronomy 22 example. The man could put the wife away (without a writ of divorce) because the marriage was a sham. Thus,

And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) his wife, except it be for fornication (porneia) [illicit/fraudulent sexual deception which forms an invalid marriage], and shall marry another, commit adultery (moichaō): and whoso marrieth her which is put away (apoluō) doth committeth adultery (moichaō).

Putting away (without a writ of divorce) and marrying another constitutes adultery because you are still married to your former spouse. The exception is for a fraudulent marriage because the marriage itself is invalid.

Therefore, Jesus makes two distinct statements in this entire passage:

On marriage and divorce:

Matthew 19:6 Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

On putting away in regard to fraudulent marriages (referencing Deut 22):

And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) his wife, except it be for fornication (porneia) [illicit/fraudulent sexual deception which forms an invalid marriage], and shall marry another, commit adultery (moichaō): and whoso marrieth her which is put away (apoluō) doth committeth adultery (moichaō).

In conclusion, Jesus says there is no divorce period. You can only put away if there is marriage fraud.

For example, in the case of fraud, a wife that lies about her past sexual history can be put away because it’s a fraudulent marriage. A covenant must be willingly agreed to openly and truthfully. Interestingly, though we often negatively critique him, Mark Driscoll has a episode like this. You can see the devastation of what this does to a man. That’s why God makes an exception for this.

Matthew 19:10-12 — the disciples actually understand the gravity of marriage

Matthew 19:10 His disciples say unto him, If the case of the man be so with his wife, it is not good to marry. 11 But he said unto them, All men cannot receive this saying, save they to whom it is given. 12 For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.

The disciples, despite how they are often mocked at not understanding things, readily understand that Jesus is saying that there is no divorce period. The only exception is that you can put away a wife if she fraudulently married by deception.

When Jesus fulfills the Law, it is always vastly more difficult than the former Law. For example, Love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength and love your neighbor as yourself (Matt 22) goes to a new command I give to you: that you love one another, just as I have loved you, that you love one another (John 13, John 15). Yes, obviously, it SHOULD be harder than what the Mosaic Law said. That’s why the disciples were so amazed.

No divorce period except for fraudulent marriages is a hard word. A really hard word.

Matthew 1:18-19 — the case of Joseph and Mary

This also agrees with Matthew 1:19 where Joseph was going to put Mary away.

Matthew 1:18 Now the birth of Jesus [r]Christ was as follows: when His mother Mary had been [s]betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily.

Joseph marriage with Mary would have been fraudulent because he was supposed to be marrying a virgin. To him Mary was not a virgin because she was with child. It took an angel of God to convince him otherwise.

Mark 10:2-12 and Luke 16:13-18 — the unification of Matthew with Mark and Luke

 In Mark 10:

Mark 10:2 And the Pharisees came to him, and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away (apoluō) his wife? tempting him. 3 And he answered and said unto them, What did Moses command you? 4 And they said, Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement (apostasion), and to put her away (apoluō autos). 5 And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept. 6 But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. 7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; 8 And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. 9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

10 And in the house his disciples asked him again of the same matter. 11 And he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away (apoluō) his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery (moichaō) against her. 12 And if a woman shall put away (apoluō) her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery (moichaō).

And also in Luke 16:

Luke 16:13 No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. 14 And the Pharisees also, who were covetous, heard all these things: and they derided him. 15 And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God. 16 The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it. 17 And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail.

18 Whosoever putteth away (apoluō) his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery (moichaō): and whosoever marrieth her that is put away (apoluō) from her husband committeth adultery (moichaō).

The background behind these passages is that Mark and Luke were mainly written to the Gentiles while Matthew was written to the Hebrews. Thus, there is no “except for fornication” within these two passages when Jesus repeats the same thing in Matthew.

The reason for this is that “putting away” was “divorce” for the Gentiles. The instruction is that they should not do that at all. As they were not under the Law of Moses, this goes back to Jesus statement of original intention: “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.” There is no divorce for  Gentile believers.

Romans 7 — understanding the context of Jewish divorce

Romans 7:1 Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth? 2 For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. 3 So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.

Romans 7 does not speak specifically about whether you can legally divorce or not. Obviously, Deuteronomy 24, which Paul is quite familiar with being a Pharisee of Pharisees, states that husbands could divorce their wives.

Paul is instead speaking to the scenarios of being unbound by the law (in death) rather than about divorce because He is discussing our salvation and grace versus works. Husbands were allowed to divorce their wives in Deuteronomy 24, but wives were not allowed to divorce their husbands. Hence, when Paul speaks to the scenario of a wife being bound by the law to her husband until he dies as the example instead as a wife cannot divorce her husband.

1 Corinthians 7:10-11 — the Lord’s command to husbands and wives

The Lord speaks through Paul:

1 Corinthians 7:10 And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart (chōrizō) from her husband: 11 But and if she depart (chōrizō), let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away (aphiēmi) his wife.

G5563 — χωρίζω — chōrizō — kho-rid’-zo
From G5561; to place room between, that is, part; reflexively to go away: – depart, put asunder, separate.

G863 — ἀφίημι — aphiēmi — af-ee’-ay-mee
From G575 and ἵημι hiēmi (to send; an intensive form of εἶμι eimi (to go)); to send forth, in various applications: – cry, forgive, forsake, lay aside, leave, let (alone, be, go, have), omit, put (send) away, remit, suffer, yield up.

G630 — ἀπολύω — apoluō — ap-ol-oo’-o
From G575 and G3089; to free fully, that is, (literally) relieve, release, dismiss (reflexively depart), or (figuratively) let die, pardon, or (specifically) divorce: – (let) depart, dismiss, divorce, forgive, let go, loose, put (send) away, release, set at liberty.

It’s important to understand that the Lord is speaking to a Roman/Greek population in the Corinthians here and not the Jewish people. Hence, the Lord is speaking against the Roman law that “divorce” could be done through “putting away” or simply “departing” in the case of the wife.

Likewise, the Lord follows this up with the only correct path for those separated or divorced: stay single or reconcile. This is a hard word for most Christians because divorce and remarriage is not an option.

This agrees with Jesus’ original statements on divorce: “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.” Jesus and the Father are one, and they are in agreement.

1 Corinthians 7:12-15 — Paul, not the Lord, says to live with unbelieving spouses

1 Corinthians 7:12 But to the rest speak I, not the Lord: If any brother hath a wife that believeth not, and she be pleased to dwell with him, let him not put away (aphiēmi autos). 13 And the woman which hath an husband that believeth not, and if he be pleased to dwell with her, let her not leave him (aphiēmi autos). 14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy. 15 But if the unbelieving depart (chōrizō), let him depart (chōrizō). A brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases: but God hath called us to peace. 16 For what knowest thou, O wife, whether thou shalt save thy husband? or how knowest thou, O man, whether thou shalt save thy wife?

This passage is also used as a so-called exception clause for remarriage. “Well, if I’m not under bondage anymore because my unbelieving wife or husband left me then I can remarry.” That is not what this passage says at all. It only says that if they depart then you’re not under the bondage of the marriage anymore. However, it does not necessarily condone remarriage either.

Overall, it’s not specifically clear so there is the possible that you are allowed to remarry. Although if this is the case I would personally recommend staying single.

Conclusions

Jesus talks about marriage, divorce, and putting away. Understanding which passages Jesus refers to is critical to unifying all of Scripture on the topic of divorce.

  1. Putting away is NOT divorce in the context of Mosaic Law and in the gospel of Matthew. It is a two part process of putting away and a bill of divorcement. – Deut 22, 24; Mal 2; Jer 3; Isa 50; Matt 5, 19
  2. Putting away is synonymous with divorce for the Gentiles. — Mark 10; Luke 16; 1 Corinthians 7
  3. God and Jesus’ plan for marriage is that “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.” – Gen 2, Matt 19; Mark 10
  4. There is no get-out-of-marriage adultery clause. Who you are married to you should stay married to regardless of any sins they commit. This is a hard word as even the disciples said it was better not to marry. Separation seems to be an option if you can’t live with them. Reconciliation is ideal. – Matt; 19, Mark 10, Luke 16, 1 Cor 7
  5. Your marriage is illegitimate if your wife committed sexual fraud prior to marriage. Example: Claiming she was a virgin when she was not (Deut 22). Hence, you can put her away without divorcing her since it was a sham. – Deut 22, Matthew 5, 19; Mark 10; Luke 16,
  6. If a spouse leaves stay single or be reconciled. – 1 Cor 7
  7. If an unbelieving spouse leaves you are not under bondage. Note the wording: “10 But to the married I give instructions, not I, but the Lord … [remain unmarried or reconcile]” versus “12 But to the rest I say, not the Lord, that if [they leave you are not under bondage]. Given the context of the wording about the Lord saying versus Paul saying it would seem that stay unmarried or be reconciled is the ideal. Remarriage may be an option according to liberal interpretation. – 1 Cor 7
  8. Those already remarried in their second and third marriages are NOT to divorce and reconcile with their first spouse if they come to Christ (See: Note 3 for more details). The heretical interpretation is perpetual adultery with the new spouse. In this line of thought, divorce and reconcile and remarry with the first spouse. This view goes against what Deuteronomy 24 says in that if a first husband divorces a wife and another marries her even if she is divorced or her husband dies then she is not to remarry him again otherwise is it an abomination. – Deut 24, Matthew 19

Note 1: This is one of the original research articles that got me started on reading to understand what the Scriptures say myself. Read it if you have time.

Note 2: Hopefully this is the last ever post I make on divorce. The logic and continuity of the Scriptures on this topic is clear that I need not revisit. (It wasn’t, sigh).

Note 3: Divorce, remarriage, and perpetual adultery:

1. I agree that there is perpetual adultery if the participants are made completely aware of the roles and responsibilities and the everlasting nature of marriage. In other words, “sacramental marriage” affirmed by the Church.

2. However, those who were not made aware sinned in their ignorance. If I remember correctly those that don’t undergo the rites of the Church in the marriage ceremonies in both (?) Catholic and Orthodox tradition means that the marriage formed is potentially invalid. Hence, since the marriage wasn’t valid they are free to marry another.

3. This would also go along with the position that those in their 2nd or 3rd marriages and then come to Christ would not have to divorce and go back to their first spouse. They can get their current marriage affirmed by the Church with all of the details of the Covenant.

Final Conclusion

  1. No divorce period. Even for adultery. “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.” Your recourse is separation if you absolutely can’t live with them.
  2. If you are separated, stay single or reconcile. No remarriage.
  3. Stay with an unbeliever if they want to live with you, otherwise you are not under the bonds of marriage. Remarriage is potentially possible with a liberal interpretation of Scripture.
  4. Fraudulent marriages are not marriages.
  5. If you have a “Christian marriage” (or sacramental marriage) — both of you know that marriage is forever on earth and the accompanying roles and responsibilities — then any divorce and remarriage is perpetual adultery. 2nd or 3rd marriages that come to Christ can be affirmed as Christian marriages, and they would not have to go back to their first spouse.

This is why I believe (as a Protestant) that the Catholic and Orthodox methods of sacramental marriage are probably the best method to deal with marriage and divorce in a broken world. Protestant views on marriage are trash, and it is no surprise that they have the highest divorce rates of any denomination of Christianity and divorce rates almost as high as secular culture.

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Chinese culture and chastity

More and More Chinese People Are Having Pre-Marital Sex

First the Chinese were hungry. Now that they’re satiated, they’re ready to talk about – and engage in – more sex.

“Things have changed because in China people are fed, so when you are fed sexual desire comes next,” said well-known Chinese sociologist Li Yinhe, at a talk hosted by the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China this week. “Sex has gone from a luxury to a common demand for the Chinese people.”

China is still a country where sex education isn’t taught in schools, and where many teens learn about fornication through foreign porn films. But it’s a rapid change from only 20 years ago, when a woman could be jailed for having sex outside of marriage. “It’s quite a revolution, isn’t it,” Ms. Li said, after citing her research, which shows 71% of the population has had premarital sex, up from 15% in 1989.

A 2011 survey of Chinese attitudes and behaviors towards sex, conducted by condom-maker Durex, showed that 86% of more than 2,000 respondents believe that good sex is a vital part of life, said Ben Wilson, marketing director of Reckitt Benckiser in China, Durex’s parent company. The survey also showed individuals are losing their virginity at a younger age; the median age for Chinese to have sex for the first time is now 21.2, and 60% of Chinese aged 19 to 25 have had sex.

Technology has sparked much of this change, with the Internet being the number-one source of sex education and a way to find sexual partners because its anonymity removes embarrassment, Mr. Wilson said.

Pre-marital sex has gone up from 15% to 71% in about 25 years.

I’m not sure if I believe the reasons they gave like luxury to a common demand. This could be true simply based on the fact that Chinese society was relatively poor in recently history and has been undergoing a rapid industrialization much like the US did in the early 20th century.

Overall, it’s an interesting scenario because Chinese society has not been asserted as ‘Christian’ at any point unlike the US, but it has similar trends as the US in terms of pre-marital sex. Perhaps it would be more accurate to assert that money and birth control are the natural causes rather than the supposed rebellion against Christian morals.

More money to fix problems = less need for God and/or morality. Birth control = no need to worry about consequences of sex.

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Polygyny

There’s been many discussions on this over the years. I think it’s an interesting topic, but have never really officially written on it before. Most topics have never really handled the situation(s) in context of the totality of Scripture. I’m going to go through most of them.

God and Jesus

Matthew 19:3 Some Pharisees came to [b]Jesus, testing Him and asking, “Is it lawful for a man to [c]divorce his wife for any reason at all?” 4 And He answered and said, “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’? 6 So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.” 7 They *said to Him, “Why then did Moses command to give her a certificate of divorce and send her away?” 8 He *said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses permitted you to [d]divorce your wives; but from the beginning it has not been this way. 9 And I say to you, whoever [e]divorces his wife, except for [f]immorality, and marries another woman [g]commits adultery[h].”

Jesus when commenting on divorce brings up the topic from Genesis 2 from the beginning: “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? 6 So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.”

The question was not about polynyny, but I think we can easily and reasonably infer that God intended and created marriage for one man and one woman (and no divorce).

Kinsman Redeemer

Deuteronomy 25:5 “When brothers live together and one of them dies and has no son, the wife of the deceased shall not be married outside the family to a strange man. Her husband’s brother shall go in to her and take her to himself as wife and perform the duty of a husband’s brother to her. 6 It shall be that the firstborn whom she bears shall [e]assume the name of his dead brother, so that his name will not be blotted out from Israel. 7 But if the man does not desire to take his brother’s wife, then his brother’s wife shall go up to the gate to the elders and say, ‘My husband’s brother refuses to establish a name for his brother in Israel; he is not willing to perform the duty of a husband’s brother to me.’ 8 Then the elders of his city shall summon him and speak to him. And if he persists and says, ‘I do not desire to take her,’ 9 then his brother’s wife shall come to him in the sight of the elders, and pull his sandal off his foot and spit in his face; and she shall [f]declare, ‘Thus it is done to the man who does not build up his brother’s house.’ 10 In Israel his name shall be called, ‘The house of him whose sandal is removed.’

This is only one of kinsman redeemer laws. The most prominent example where this was followed in the OT was Ruth. The most prominent example where this was not followed is probably Onan, Judah, and Tamar (although this was before the Law was given). Polygyny in this case is permitted in order to ‘redeem’ the line of the deceased.

I’m not going to reference the rest of the kinsman redeemer verses here (see the link above), but the overall context is that polygyny is permitted in order to ‘redeem’ the line of the deceased. The husband who had to take his brother’s wife also had obligations such as to redeem his property (if it was sold to another), raise the child, avenge the kin if he was unjustly killed, and so on.

It’s more about filial responsibility than being able to take another wife. In other words, benevolence to your relatives (e.g. love your neighbor).

H1350 — gâ’al — gaw-al’

A primitive root, to redeem (according to the Oriental law of kinship), that is, to be the next of kin (and as such to buy back a relative’s property, marry his widow, etc.): –    X in any wise, X at all, avenger, deliver, (do, perform the part of near, next) kinsfolk (-man), purchase, ransom, redeem (-er), revenger. Total KJV occurrences: 104

It’s interesting that “redeemer” literally means “next of kin.” When Jesus is referred to redeem us, it is in the context of the second Adam due to the nature of the first Adam’s sin.

War

Deuteronomy 21:10 “When you go out to battle against your enemies, and the Lord your God delivers them into your hands and you take them away captive, 11 and see among the captives a beautiful woman, and have a desire for her and would take her as a wife for yourself, 12 then you shall bring her home to your house, and she shall shave her head and [g]trim her nails. 13 She shall also [h]remove the clothes of her captivity and shall remain in your house, and mourn her father and mother a full month; and after that you may go in to her and be her husband and she shall be your wife. 14 It shall be, if you are not pleased with her, then you shall let her go [i]wherever she wishes; but you shall certainly not sell her for money, you shall not [j]mistreat her, because you have humbled her.

The circumstances around allowed polygyny make it beneficial for both the husband and the wife in this circumstance. The husband receives another wife who is also able to help with the household. The wife is either a widow or unprotected virgin in a time of war.

The Wisdom of the Lord in this case is a full month of seeing a woman at her most unattractive: with shaven hair, trimmed nails, and mourning. (Insert dumb Marilyn Monroe quote: “But if you can’t handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best.”). I suspect that most men after seeing this would not want to marry the woman, and the Law specifically explains that if he doesn’t want her after that she is to be freed and not mistreated.

Hillary Clinton’s quote has been dissected many times because it ignores the literal deaths of many thousands or even millions of men like in the case of World War 2. But there is some ‘truth’ to it as well.

The experience that you have gone through is in many ways comparable to what happens with domestic violence. Women have always been the primary victims of war. Women lose their husbands, their fathers, their sons in combat. Women often have to flee from the only homes they have ever known. Women are often the refugees from conflict and sometimes, more frequently in today’s warfare, victims. Women are often left with the responsibility, alone, of raising the children. Women are again the victims in crime and domestic violence as well. Throughout our hemisphere we have an epidemic of violence against women, even though there is no longer any organized warfare that puts women in the direct line of combat. But domestic violence is now recognized as being the most pervasive human rights violation in the world. Here in El Salvador, according to the statistics gathered by your government, 1 in 6 women have been sexually assaulted and the number of domestic abuse complaints at just one agency topped 10,000 last year. Between 25 and 50 percent of women throughout Latin America have reportedly been victims of domestic violence.

Women who do not have the protection of men — either fathers, or husbands, or potentially brothers — are at high risk of being exploited by slavery, rape, or other atrocities during war time. In these cases, polygyny benefits both parties.

Relating war to domestic violence is quite dumb though.

Regulations against mistreatment

Deuteronomy 21:15 “If a man has two wives, the one loved and the other [k]unloved, and both the loved and the [l]unloved have borne him sons, if the firstborn son belongs to the [m]unloved, 16 then it shall be in the day he [n]wills what he has to his sons, he cannot make the son of the loved the firstborn before the son of the [o]unloved, who is the firstborn. 17 But he shall acknowledge the firstborn, the son of the [p]unloved, by giving him a double portion of all that [q]he has, for he is the beginning of his strength; to him belongs the right of the firstborn.

We can see that this is the case of Jacob, Leah, and Rachel prior to the Law being give. The Lord blesses Leah with many sons because she was unloved. The general concept that is underscored here is that favoritism is bad. This concept is also promoted in the NT — Rom 2, Eph 6, Col 3, James 2.

Exodus 21:10 If he takes to himself another woman, he may not reduce her [j]food, her clothing, or her conjugal rights. 11 If he will not do these three things for her, then she shall go out for nothing, without payment of money.

This is the regulation of provision that is also referenced by Paul in 1 Timothy 5:8But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”

David and the Law

2 Samuel 12:7 Nathan then said to David, “You are the man! Thus says the Lord God of Israel, ‘It is I who anointed you king over Israel and it is I who delivered you from the hand of Saul. 8 I also gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives into your [e]care, and I gave you the house of Israel and Judah; and if that had been too little, I would have added to you many more things like these! 9 Why have you despised the word of the Lord by doing evil in His sight? You have struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword, have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the sons of Ammon.

10 Now therefore, the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised Me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.’ 11 Thus says the Lord, ‘Behold, I will raise up evil against you from your own household; I will even take your wives before your eyes and give them to your companion, and he will lie with your wives in [f]broad daylight. 12 Indeed you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel, and [g]under the sun.’”

This passage is interesting because it has been used to defend polygyny, but the text doesn’t say that. The text specifically states that David was given his master’s house and his master’s wives for his care. Who was the master? The master is obviously Saul, the former king of Israel. David did not actually marry any of Saul’s wives, and we know that he takes care a large portion of his household including Mephibosheth, son of Jonathan. Inheriting the ‘house’ of the old king was seen as the legitimate right to kingship.

On the other hand, we know that both David and Solomon had many wives for themselves. Those that we know of are: Michal, Abigail, Bathsheba, Ahinoam, Maacah, Haggith, Abital, and Eglah and potentially more 2 Samuel 5:13 “And David took more concubines and wives from Jerusalem, after he came from Hebron, and more sons and daughters were born to David.” We know that Solomon took 300 wives and 1000 concubines.

Deuteronomy 17:14 “When you enter the land which the Lord your God gives you, and you possess it and live in it, and you say, ‘I will set a king over me like all the nations who are around me,’ 15 you shall surely set a king over you whom the Lord your God chooses, one from among your [l]countrymen you shall set as king over yourselves; you may not put a foreigner over yourselves who is not your [m]countryman. 16 Moreover, he shall not multiply horses for himself, nor shall he cause the people to return to Egypt to multiply horses, since the Lord has said to you, ‘You shall never again return that way.’ 17 He shall not multiply wives for himself, [n]or else his heart will turn away; nor shall he greatly increase silver and gold for himself.

H7235 — râbâh — raw-baw’

A primitive root; to increase (in whatever respect): – [bring in] abundance (X -antly), + archer [by mistake for H7232], be in authority, bring up, X continue, enlarge, excel, exceeding (-ly), be full of, (be, make) great (-er, -ly), X -ness), grow up, heap, increase, be long, (be, give, have, make, use) many (a time), (any, be, give, give the, have) more (in number), (ask, be, be so, gather, over, take, yield) much (greater, more), (make to) multiply, nourish, plenty (-eous), X process [of time], sore, store, thoroughly, very. Total KJV occurrences: 224

God predicted that Israel would want a king for themselves in Deuteronomy, which comes to pass in 1 Samuel 8. God also specifically warns again multiplying horses, wives, and silver and gold lest the heart of the king turn away from God Himself. I suppose the irony is that this actually happened with both David and Solomon as well.

Obviously, multiplying wives to yourself is in the form of many wives. Only famous and powerful men, such as a king of Israel, could command and provide for many wives. The same is true throughout history. God strictly forbids this.

Conclusions

As Paul tells us, the Law is for Law Breakers.

1 Timothy 1:8 But we know that the Law is good, if one uses it lawfully, 9 realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers 10 [f]and [g]immoral men [h]and homosexuals [i]and kidnappers [j]and liars [k]and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching, 11 according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, with which I have been entrusted.

The very fact that the Law must regulate such behavior is because of selfishness opposed to the two great commandments:

Matthew 22:34 But when the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered themselves together. 35 One of them, [n]a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the great and [o]foremost commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.

There are certain circumstances where polygyny is permitted, and from these passages we can draw a few conclusions:

  1. God intended that marriage be one man and one woman. Jesus confirms this.
  2. Polygyny is a benevolence to the deceased relatives’ household in the form of a Kinsman Redeemer.
  3. Polygyny is to be beneficial to both parties in a time of war. If not, then the captive woman is to go free without any mistreatment.
  4. Any man in a polygamous relationship cannot mistreat or show favoritism to any wife, and he must provide for all of them.
  5. A king is not allowed to multiply wives as it is strictly forbidden according to the Law.

This leads to the conclusion that the totality of Scriptures infer that marriage should be between one man and one woman. Polygyny is only permitted in extremely extenuating circumstances (e.g. relative died, war) and must be beneficial to both parties (e.g. child to continue the lineage, raising the child, provision, no mistreatment, no favoritism). Famous, rich, powerful [kings] should not multiply wives as it will lead them astray from God. Also, if there are laws against it then Christians should obey the law of the land (Romans 13, 1 Tim 2, Tit 3, 1 Pet 2, Hebrews 13, etc.).

Finally, the ironic part about a topic like this is that [Christian] women often get disgruntled with they hear the word polygyny and assert that it is selfish for men. This is false. In reality, the vast majority of women wouldn’t marry a man who already has a wife unless she were reaping major benefits out of the situation anyway (e.g. fame, power, provision, etc.). This is another one of those “blame men for being selfish while women are innocent victims” instances that have become so prevalent in the Necropolis. It takes two to opt into a marriage.

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