Like Tesla’s invention, Yul Edochie shocked some polygyny-hating but baby-mama-culture promoting folks when he announced having a child with his “second wife”.
Polygyny seems to be out of fashion where Yul is from even though they are Christians. “One Man, One Woman”, they say referring to the Bible. However, a man may have a wife and 12 mistresses.
Though accused of obsolescence, the Old Testament is the premise for many New Testament verses citing “a man and wife shall be one flesh”. We will take a look at the Old Testament verse:
“Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.”
Genesis 2:24, KJV
When Christians argue against Polygyny, they focus on the New Testament verse like:
“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? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.”
Matthew 19:5-6, KJV
“And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh.”
Mark 10:8, KJV
“For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.”
Ephesians 5:31, KJV
As we can see, the premise of these NT verses is Genesis 2:24. In the same New Testament, we have verses that clearly mentioned one wife, albeit, not for an average believer. We read:
“A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;”
1 Timothy 3:2, KJV
“Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.”
1 Timothy 3:12, KJV
It is important to know that 1st and 2nd Timothy, though traditionally attributed to Paul, might be some unattributable Christian writings; a view most Bible scholars now affirm.
Also, Apostle Paul is not the best source of reference when it comes to marital affairs. His opinions on one wife are entirely his and if he had his way, he’d have someone remaining celibate to getting married. We read,
I wish that all men were as I am. But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.
Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I am.
Conclusively, the stance of the Old Testament on marriage is not obsolete because Jesus did not invalidate it. The same Old Testament Christians quote to justify marrying one wife also says,
“If he takes another wife for himself; her food, her clothing, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish”. – Exodus 21:10
Many Prophets and important figures in the Bible had more than one wife and it was not counted to them as unrighteousness except for those who transgressed.
The Bible is not against polygyny. Anyone who thinks and believes so should rather become celibate. It should also be noted that polygyny is not mandatory and not a prerequisite for salvation. Nevertheless, we cannot wrong what is right in the eyes of the LORD.
Bashir Lucas Samson Lukman