Talk:Polygamy in Christianity

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Deletion discussion[edit]

You need to make your comments on the deletion discussion page if you want them to be considered in the deletion process: Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Christian Plural Marriage. You may find it beneficial to read the Wikipedia policies on inclusion and sourcing first. For example WP:RS will explain reliable sources. --DanielRigal (talk) 11:18, 3 July 2008 (UTC)

Christian Plural Marriage is a movement/doctrine that has a large following, and has existed for around 15-20 years in the United States. On that basis, it is a topic which many people would like to know more about, and would make an appropriate article for inclusion in Wikipedia. It's inclusion is certainly covered legitimately under Wikipedia:Reliable_sources#Extremist and fringe sources. This article deserves to be included on the same basis as including articles on minor religious cults or religious doctrines. -- JohnBoyTheGreat (talk) 10:02, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

Old Testement Examples[edit]

I Samuel 1:8 is about the birth of the prophet Samuel, and as such he could not have said anything about polygamy practiced by Kings in that passage. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:33, 12 May 2017 (UTC)

Someone added this back in:

"The traditional Christian view believes that all Mosaic laws were handed to Israel at the same time, but modern Bible studies have revealed that these laws do not all date from the same age. It is likely that the contradictory views of polygamy in the Old Testament are due to different ages and circumstances under which the laws were passed."

It does not make sense. They are no "contradictory views" sited and it is not referenced. I will delete.

--Cnystrom (talk) 05:15, 8 May 2010 (UTC)

Deuteronomy 17:17

This verse is actually a PRO-polygamy verse. It does not mean one and only one wife any more than the second part of the verse means one and only one monetary unit or verse 16 means one and only one horse. Since polygamy is acceptable to God we have a command here that God prohibits marital "gluttony" so to speak by the very rich who could afford many wives such as in this case a king. If monogamy were the standard there would be no need for this verse.

In view of the fact that Duet 17:17 is pro-polygamy the 4th paragraph in this section no longer makes sense as there are no anti-polygamy verses in the OT. --Cnystrom (talk) 05:24, 8 May 2010 (UTC)

Parable of the Ten Virgins[edit]

To answer the claim that the ten virgins are brides, not bridesmaids: in Classical Antiquity, all unmarried women were referred to as virgins. It was the common denominator meaning unmarried woman, and this is apparent from multiple passages in the Bible, the epics of Homer, and Roman authors. The Bible does not call the bridesmaids virgins to emphasize their relation to the bridegrooom. That is a modern misinterpretation. They are called virgins to emphasize their status in society, meaning: unwed. It is not necessary for the Bible passage to emphasize their relation to the bride, since this was probably apparent to all contemporaries who heard the parable. It is pretty evident from the passage that they must be bridesmaids, if the parable is viewed in a broader cultural context. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Void78 (talkcontribs) 10:05, 28 June 2010 (UTC)

Someone edited the New Testement section to indicate that this is likely not a reference to polygamy. This fails the plain reading test. There is a bridegroom and ten virgins. There is no separate bride. Why are they described as virgins if they were bridesmaids? Why would that matter? Why are they so intent on pleasing the groom if they were not marrying him? No, the only reason to read this parable in any other way other than as a polygamy story is if you have a prejudice against polygamy. I am changing it back.

"Some Christian commentators consider the ten virgins parable to be a story about bridesmaids, rather than virgins. However, if this were so, then the focus would be with their relationship with a bride, rather than with a bridegroom."

"... since the women are specifically referred to as virgins, they go with the bridegroom when he arrives, and no other bride is ever mentioned in the story."

"In the parable of the ten virgins (Matt 25:1-13) there is no mention of the bride simply because the virgins are the brides. In fact, copyists of New Testament manuscripts recognized the straightforward meaning and added "and bride" to a number of manuscripts at the end of Matthew 25:1. As mentioned above in the quote from Maimonides, Jewish law permitted marrying multiple wives at the same time and no doubt some Israelite kings built their polygamous households in this manner."

--Cnystrom (talk) 04:13, 8 May 2010 (UTC)

US Census Bereau[edit]

Given the nature of the form of marriage that Christian Plural Marriage is, one man, more than one wife, the US Census Bereau does not even include in its heading of recognized marriages, a place for mutliple marriages. They have the following;

Under the Heading, Table A1. Marital Status of People 15 Years and Over, by Age, Sex, Personal Earnings, Race, and Hispanic Origin/1: 2004

Married Spouse Present; Married Spouse Absnt; Widowed; Divorced; Separated; Never Married; Total; Married Spouse Present; Married Spouse Absnt; Widowed; Divorced; Separated; Never Married

The ommission of this data set does not preclude this form of marriage or existance in the US. Nor does it quantify the amount of people that believe in this form of marital status. Even with the data sets that are listed, many such unions may be included in the above headings. Now this does not mean that the government precludes all relevant data. Under the Heading;

C3. Living Arrangements of Children Under 18 Years/1 and Marital Status of Parents, by Age, Sex, Race, and Hispanic Origin/2 and Selected Characteristics of the Child for All Children: 2004

They have the following data sets;

PRESENCE OF ADULTS OTHER THAN PARENTS;Other relatives only; Non relatives only;Both relatives and non relatives; No other relatives or non relatives

HOUSEHOLDER HAS OPP. SEX UNMARR. PART.; No unmarried partner of householder; Parent is not householder or partner; Householder has unmarried partner; Parent is not householder or partner; Parent is householder;Parent is partner

Given these sets of data, multiple christian marriage numbers can be included with them, though not actually meantioned.

Christian Plural Marriage[edit]

The whole reason I have placed these cultural listings is the fact that you all want reliable references to provide proof of the articles or posters legitimacy. Even though this form of marriage has existed for thousands of years, without the government recognizing such unions, we are left with are individual references and articles of such to provide satisfactory proof to the legitimacy of our claims, and therein lies the fallacy of your reasons for considering deletion of this page. Those of us that believe in this form of marriage, take our beliefs from the Holy Bible, the word of God. Our faith has told us that this is good in the grace of God, therefore the name Christian Plural marriage. If you will not accept the bible as a reliable source of reference, then you will not accept any source for what source is more reliable than the Holy Bible. If you do accept the word of God, then there will be many that will post many verses that will backup our claims and beliefs, a couple small such verse are the following;

Isaiah 4:1-2

1 And in that day seven women shall take hold of one man, saying, We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel: only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach.

2 In that day shall the branch of the LORD be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel.

as well as

Deuteronomy 25:5-6

5 If brethren dwell together, and one of them die, and have no child, the wife of the dead shall not marry without unto a stranger: her husband's brother shall go in unto her, and take her to him to wife, and perform the duty of an husband's brother unto her.

6 And it shall be, that the firstborn which she beareth shall succeed in the name of his brother which is dead, that his name be not put out of Israel.

In conclusion, allow us to defend this truth through God's word and there will be more than enough references to justify this sites existance. Truthfinder1967 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:40, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

In conclusion, I find it most interesting that adherents of plural marriage only quote the Old Testament, and never the New Testament, although Paul says that the old law has been abolished (in his Epistle to the Jews), and he says several times that a decent Christian man must only take one wife (in his Epistles to Timothy and Titus).

I think they quote the OT because they want to show that there was a long history, before Christ. Secondarily, many people give low importance to the words of Paul. Atom (talk) 21:13, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
See new added section on New Testement examples - Cnystrom, May 5th, 2010

To Do[edit]

The reference for Biblical Patriarchy needs to be fixes as it is no longer valid. - User:CNystrom - 9 July 2008 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:55, 9 July 2008 (UTC) Fixed

Some parts of the "Criticisms and defenses" section do not present a neutral point-of-view. Could somebody add the "neutral point-of-view" warning? Thanks. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:26, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

Indeed. That section is a mess of epic proportions. The rest of the article isn't much better. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 21:21, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

Why is the quote on Martin Luther's views consistently placed in the section Early Church, when it belongs in the section on the Reformation Period? I have tried to remove it and put it in its proper place several times, but some ninny always puts it back in Early Church. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Void78 (talkcontribs) 21:34, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

Massive link spam.[edit]

The external links lead to several domains owned and run by the same person. It needs to be cleaned up and trimmed down. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 21:22, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

One or two of them looked legitimate, the others were definitely linkspam. Sherurcij (speaker for the dead) 18:35, 21 November 2009 (UTC)
One was a forum (Yahoo group) and the rest were self-published sources. I removed per WP:ELNO and WP:SPS, respectively. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 20:59, 21 November 2009 (UTC)


Answer: I have edited the "Criticisms and defenses" part with linguistic material. I hope that will do. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Void78 (talkcontribs) 20:13, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

Just a note that I've added the neutrality tag for a variety of reasons.

First, the 'Criticisms and defenses' is nothing more than an uncited propaganda piece. It needs work or needs to be removed.

Secondly, the external links, as noted above, is nothing but spam to a single POV. Most, though not all, of them are from the same group. Serious undue weight issues there.

The rest of the article is just cobbled together historical factoids of varying degrees of notability. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 01:40, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

Should be fixed now. Sherurcij (speaker for the dead) 18:42, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the hard work. It is certainly much better, though there are a few remaining issues that can be addressed. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 00:49, 21 November 2009 (UTC)


This section contains some major historical mistakes. Polygyny was never accepted by the Catholic Church. What happened in the 1300's, was that the Church expressly brought laws prohibiting concubinage, which had become a massive problem. It was prohibited because it was seen as contrary to Christian laws. Roman Law expressly forbade polygyny during Imperial times, when Christianity was born and began to spread. But the practice had fallen out of use within Judaism several centuries earlier. Check the sister page Monogamy in Christianity for further details. All Early Church Fathers forbade the practice. The stories that polygyny was ever practiced by Christians is misinformation propaganda spread by certain American groups. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Void78 (talkcontribs) 21:39, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

I went ahead and returned the original wording in the introduction and am considering some other tweeks as well, but wanted to start a section here before doing so.

My concern is that the article might create the impression that the practice is more widespread in contemporary Christianity than it is. The Roman Catholic Church expressly condemns the practice, as does the major churches in the Eastern Orthodox Communion. Furthermore, the Church of England, most if not all of the mainline Protestantism, most of the Evangelical churches, and Anabaptist sects also have doctrines condemning polygamy. Finally, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that is headquartered in SLC has not practiced polygamy, at least officially, since 1890. Those sects easily comprise the vast majority of Christianity.

There are, of course, denominations and sects that do allow or recommend this form of marriage. They are, however, a tiny minority within the overall Christian landscape as of 2010. While we would be in error not to mention these beliefs, we would also err in not putting it in the proper context. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 23:05, 19 February 2010 (UTC)

All sects believe in obeying the local laws. Obeying the laws does not mean that they specifically "reject" the concept. In fact the topic is almost completely ignored by most sects in their articles of faith. One could make the statement "It would be supported by most Christian denominations if it were legal in the Americas and European countries." However, that also would be as speculative as trying to say that "mainstream" Christianity rejects it. At one time, ALL of christianity accepted polygyny. Changes in the Catholic church resulted in prohibition in the 1300's, which was followed by changes in secular laws. Abiding by the law can not be construed as a rejection of the practice. In countries where polygyny *is* legal, it is found throughout all religions, including Christianity.
It would be incorrect to suggest that the opinion about Polygyny amongst hundreds of sects of Christiantity is the same as in the times of the Old testament, or in the times of Christ. It would be equally incorrect to suggest that just because the laws of many countries that are predominantly christian forbidding Polygyny that hundreds of sects of christian "reject" polygyny when there is not evidence to support that.
Also, use of the term "Mainstream" is not useful. Just because Catholicism dominates all other sects of christianity in number, that gives us no information about the many other sects and their views. If one were to say that "Catholicism has rejected Polygny since the early 1300's" That would be one thing. Would it be useful to say that "mainstream Christians reject their religious leaders being married."? That is only true of Catholicism. Even if they do predominate Christianity, it would be inaccurate to say. Atom (talk) 20:06, 21 February 2010 (UTC)
First, your claim that the topic is ignored in the articles of faith of most sects is totally, factually incorrect. The cites currently given in this article alone cite numerous articles of faith and related documentation. Even those that don't address the topic by name define marriage within a monogamist construct. By definition, this would preclude sanctioning or solemnizing polygamist unions. None of the aforementioned statements of faiths, catechisms, et al, reference obedience to a secular authority as the rationale for the doctrine, but instead really on scripture, tradition, church writings, or other doctrinal source.
Secondly, the evidence is seriously lacking "that all Christianity accepted polygyny" in church history; particularly in light of the New Testament and comments by the early church fathers. If you think so, please come up with a reliable source of a universal or very widespread doctrine and practice of polygamy. The current single sentence and cite is suspect at best. Regardless, that point is off the topic of the original talk entry.
There has been examples throughout church history of the practice being mentioned, advocated and practiced. As such we should indeed document both the historical and contemporary examples of said.
I agree with you that the term "mainstream" is not a good choice of wording. However, the fact remains that the practice and/or advocacy of polygamy is almost universally reject in all of the sects of contemporary Christianity. As such, I have reworded the lead sentence accordingly to remove this term. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 22:09, 21 February 2010 (UTC)

Biblical doctrine is not my area of expertise, and so I will bow out of this at this point. I read each of the references regarding church doctrine and articles and faith, and there are several places where it is clear, but many cases of where the topic of marriage is discussed, but it is ambiguous. They may say that they believe in marriage, and that marriage should be between a woman and a man -- they don't say that either the woman or the man should be limited to one marriage however. I did not suggest that they sanctioned "polygamist unions". Even when Polygny was practiced it was as one man marrying a woman, and then another -- not as a group ceremony. I can see how you, or someone else might read it as only sanctioning marriage between one man and one woman (which is clearly stated that way in a few places). But in most it says that marriage is between a man and a woman, and does not comment to limit it to one marriage. I admit that the current leaders of those churches would likely balk at anyone trying to read their articles of faith as permitting polygyny, since polygyny is illegal in most of those places. But the practice of it being illegal, or interpreted in the bible as "rejected" is recent within the last few hundred years of the history of the bible (old testament times) of several thousand years. It was accepted prior to Christ, during the time and Christ for hundreds of years after Christ. (not that I said accepted, and not advocated.)
My earlier statement was that Polygyny was accepted within Christianity. I did not say, nor mean to imply that it was widespread, or "advocated", but only that it was actively practiced and allowed.
I feel that several things could be supported and agreed upon. Polygny was paracticed and accepted all throughout the old testament, and for ten of thousands of years before Christ. Polygyny became forbidden by the Catholic church, and since that time has fallen out of practice throughout Christianity. (Although started the decline from the time of Paul -- after Christ.) We can also agree that Polygnyny still exists. Within Christianity it is in small numbers. It exists in many/nearly all sects even though not sanctioned or allowed by many churches. (Although this may be in the form of Polyamory, since legal/secular or religious marriage is not allowed.)
Describing the current situation/condition of Polygyny as it currently exists should be the preferred method used in the article. Trying to describe it as a matter of unified Christian doctrine or mainstream belief should be avoided. There are after all, large numbers of Christians that are not subject to any churches doctrine or rules. (Their faith makes them Christians, not the sanction of any particular church.) Also, there is no unified Christian authority, nor even a set of agreed upon doctrine other than a common claim of the acceptance of Christ. Trying to rewrite or repaint history to suggest that Polygyny is (or was) wrong or immoral should also not be in the article. Atom (talk) 12:45, 22 February 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the reply and glad we are set on the initial wording. That was my main concern. I believe the doctrines of the sects are unambiguous, but that point as been gone over and I'll leave it at that. I have to disagree that the motivation of clergy not to bless these unions is driven by the state, when ecclesiastical authority is reason enough.
Also, the notion that "polygamy became forbidden by the Catholic Church," is somewhat of a mischaracterization as the evidence of church texts and practice predates the Papacy by some time. Furthermore, the Eastern Orthodox and Protestant sects did not opt for that form of marriage after their respective splits from the RCC.
Interestingly, polygamy was legalized during the Münster Rebellion, but disappeared after it was put down. While off-topic about what we're discussing, it may be of some interest as it is an example (albeit brief) of polygamy during the Reformation. I'll do some research and see if I can come up with some material.
As to polygamy being sanctioned by the Old Testament, there is no disagreement there as that is a clear teaching within the Mosaic law. How common the practice of said varies and there is evidence it was not widely practiced by the intertestamental period period. The Talmud also forbids the practice. But, that's all totally off-topic and out of the scope of this article.
Finally, I am in complete agreement that rewriting the article to suggest polygamy is wrong or immoral would be in error as we don't make such judgments. By the same token, history and doctrine shouldn't be repainted to suggest the opposite. There was a point when this article had a wildly pro-polygamy POV. As with any article, neutrality should govern the content. :) Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 15:11, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

'Modern views' section expansion[edit]

I can think of a couple of contemporary movements that would warrant inclusion in the 'Modern views' section.

The first is the "Christian Patriarch" or "Patriarchal" movement that exists, largely, in the United States. Being that they are a driving force behind the contemporary advocacy of the doctrine, it is likely worth mentioning.

Also, I have recently read that a small minority of the Messianic Jewish churches sanction polygamous marriage. This too might be worth mentioning.

The problem I've found, so far, is the lack of solid, reliable sources on both. There are more for the former than the latter, but it is still lacking. The vast majority of the material seems to be self-published and therefore wouldn't work.

Thoughts on expansion? Any good sources? Thanks. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 15:32, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

I've never heard that any more than a tiny minority of either of the above movements sanction polygamy. Are there references? DJ Clayworth (talk) 20:37, 4 March 2010 (UTC)
I agree that the Christian Patriarchal movement is worth covering...if we can find RS on it. I think we're more likely to find newspapers, than books or scholarly articles covering them - they seem to like getting coverage for themselves...even on this WP article. Sherurcij (speaker for the dead) 20:50, 4 March 2010 (UTC)
Another modern example would be the doctrines and practice of the Branch Davidian leader David Koresh. While they remain a controversial sect for a number of reasons, it is nonetheless a contemporary example. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 17:06, 30 April 2010 (UTC)



I reverted to remove what I had removed before, namely "Never more than a minority view at any period in Christian history, it"

The article should be NPOV. My removal was not intended to indicate that Polygamy was predominant, but only because the the article already says that few Christian sects find it acceptable, and, because saying that it is a minority view makes it sounds like a matter of opinion or something. It was, and is a chosen lifestyle. It might be correct to say that it has not been, and is not widely practiced, which is something altogether different.

We are not making judgements about the topic, we are only trying to write accurately about the topic. The sentence that remains saying that it is not widely accepted says that well already.

Atom (talk) 14:46, 1 March 2010 (UTC) copied from User talk:DJ Clayworth

Hi Atom. The statement I added that Polygamy was never more than a minority view is true and in my opinion neutral. I also am not making judgements about the topic. While it does already say that "most sects reject it", that only tells us about the current situation - I believe that it is also important to tell people about the historical situation. As for the difference between "opinion" and "lifestyle" I don't see what you are trying to say there; while it important to talk about how widely polygamy is practiced, it is also important to talk about how widely it is permitted - the Lambeth Conference bishops permitted polygamy under certain circumstances, but they didn't go out and practice it. DJ Clayworth (talk) 14:54, 1 March 2010 (UTC)
I believe the historical context would be that it was widely accepted prior to Christianity, and accepted by Christianity until the 1300's. (widely permitted -- even if rare in occurrence) What is the case throughout is that has not been widely practiced. It has never been a competition with Monogamy, but rather a fairly rare cultural practice that served useful purposes (protection of widows, etc) and was accepted/permitted by the Christian church for a long time.
I think saying that is "a minority view" is incorrect because it has never been a viewpoint, but rather a lifestyle choice. If you desire to say that throughout the 2000 year history of Christianity that Polygamy has not been widely accepted or permitted, then the sentence you put back does not communicate that effectively. Also, I would not think that to be accurate or citable. Atom (talk) 15:08, 1 March 2010 (UTC)
The 'view' to which I am referring is the view as to whether it is permitted or not. That, as you say, is different from practice. Could you supply a reference to indicate that polygamy was widely accepted or permitted within Christianity prior to 1300? Augustine of Hippo, for example, would appear to disagree with you. DJ Clayworth (talk) 15:45, 1 March 2010 (UTC)
Let me research -- the article gives many references to polygamy existing in that time period. It became increasingly less accepted as time went on. Atom (talk) 23:49, 1 March 2010 (UTC)
The wording by DJ Clayworth is very much accurate and therefore neutral. While there have been examples of polygamy in Church history, it has always been and currently is a tiny minority opinion. I agree we want to avoid any "judgement calls" on anyone's choice of lifestyle (direct or implied), but the fact of the matter is that the practice and doctrine simply has never been widespread within the Christian sects.
On the point of pre-Christian history, the Old Testament does indeed permit polygamy and it was practiced by the Israelites. However, there is evidence that the practice had decline considerably during the intertestamental period. As that period was one area of intense study during my theological training, I know of some texts that should make good resources if that would be of interest to the article. I hesitated adding much about the pre-church age considering the topic is polygamy within Christian history, doctrine and practice.
All that said, I would support returning the aforementioned contributors wording or at least some variation of said. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 00:53, 2 March 2010 (UTC)
I would welcome seeing sources added about the decline during the intertestamental period - since right now we just cover "It seems okay in OT..." and then NT and onward seems to have a lot of original research/extrapolation. So the more reliable sources we can get, the better. Sherurcij (speaker for the dead) 15:03, 4 March 2010 (UTC)
Per your request a section on just that has been added. Surv1v4l1st (Talk|Contribs) 22:54, 4 March 2010 (UTC)

Sister page[edit]

The page Monogamy in Christianity has been created to represent the opposing view. All the information about Christian monogamy could not have been fitted into this page. It is more balanced if both sides of this subject are represented. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Void78 20:14, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

There really aren't two sides to this topic, just a documented history. I don't see a problem with an article on Monogamy in Christianity, as that is a different topic. There seems to be a small fringe viewpoint that polygamy is wrong and has never been part of Christianity. As that is basically a current faction, and not represented by facts, I don't think that belongs here. That Polygamy was well accepted within the Bible both before and after Christ, as a minority preference, and that it since then become less and less accepted is what this article is about. Perhaps it can discuss how Polygamy (in the form of polyamory) has started to become more acceptable again. However, as that is a recent trend (the last 20 years) I think that keeping that as part of other articles (such as the polyamory article) makes more sense. Atom (talk) 17:44, 1 May 2010 (UTC)

Emphasis on intro is incorrect[edit]

The intro to the article currently is heavily focused on whether polygamy in Chrisitianity is accepted or not in modern culture. Although this is a fair and relevant part of the topic, it should not be emphasized in the Intro. The intro should focus on the topic of the article, just like in all other Wikipedia articles, with the history, definitions and trends related to the topic within the body.

Clearly individuals with strong views have edited the article intent on making their point regarding the current prevailing opinion about how Christianity views Polygamy (or at least their opinion about that.) I suggest an edit that moves that out of the intro and into the body, as well as an edit to balance that new section. Atom (talk) 12:42, 14 January 2011 (UTC)

Polygyny, not polygamy[edit]

This article addresses no other types of polygamy other than polygyny. Page name should be changed to 'Polygyny in Christianity', or else the topic should be broadened to include how christianity dealt with other aspects of polygamy.

Approsemite (talk) 23:04, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

Original research paragraph?[edit]

This seems like original research, particularly since no sources are given in support of the conclusion drawn:

Seemingly in support of polygamy, in addition to the many examples of plural marriage, the Pentateuch also lists guidelines and rules concerning the taking of multiple wives; noting that "If he takes another wife to himself, he shall not diminish her food, her clothing, or her marital rights, [Ex 21:10] and making it an obligation for men whose brothers have left a widow to marry her and support her family.[Deut 25:5–10] These verses encourage or promote polygamy and there are no verses in the law or Old Testament Bible that clearly forbid this practice.

JayHubie (talk) 02:28, 4 November 2012 (UTC)

Solved. Tgeorgescu (talk) 20:46, 26 April 2014 (UTC)

Jacob's Oath[edit]

Is the note about Jacob's oath to not take additional wives necessary? First Laban told him not to take more wives after he took his wives' servants as concubines. Second, I was always under the impression that they did not count against that promise as they were basically surrogates for his wives, something tolerated then, and that the oath only kept him from taking outsiders as wives. Emperor001 (talk) 04:52, 24 January 2014 (UTC)

It is necessary, but you can attribute if there is denial. Bladesmulti (talk) 12:55, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

Undue tag removed[edit]

The article cites Church Fathers, Popes, famous reformers, notable Bible scholars and present-day developments, I don't see why it would be undue, if you want to tag it as undue explain it on talk page. Tgeorgescu (talk) 21:00, 26 April 2014 (UTC)

References to earlier era than Christian[edit]

There are two references that cite sources discussing polygamy in the era before Christianity, one by Luck and one by Coogan. I think these should be deleted but it has been suggested by Editor2020 that this be discussed first. What are the arguments for keeping these references? Pete unseth (talk) 23:26, 14 February 2015 (UTC)

The history of Christianity registered attempts to revive polygamy (for Christians). E.g. Martin Luther states from a Sola Scriptura perspective that polygamy is to be allowed, Mormons have recovered polygamy until faced with persecution and some fundamentalist Mormons still hold that polygamy is God's way revealed in the Bible. From a Sola Scriptura perspective, the imposition of monogamy is the victory of paganism over the Law of God. Tgeorgescu (talk) 23:44, 14 February 2015 (UTC)
Editor Tgeorgescu has not answered addressed my question about the two refernces. They refer to events and practices before the Christian era, therefore I suggest the references be deleted. The unsourced allusions to Luther are a separate point. Let's discuss carefully and gently. Pete unseth (talk) 00:41, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
Mormonism did not happen before the Christian era, Mormonism belongs to Christianity, so the Coogan quote refers to 19th century views of the Mormon Church, which have survived among fundamentalist Mormons even in the 21st century. If other churches are allowed to make arguments against polygamy which claim to be based upon the Bible and their views are rendered in the article, I don't see why other churches are not allowed to make their own arguments in support of polygamy and we render their views because they are notable. Tgeorgescu (talk) 00:55, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
Let me gently clarify. I did not say anything about Mormons. I said that the quotation cited from Coogan was talking about practices from before the Christian era. The current version of the article cites Coogan on practices before Christ and then the text uses this as the basis to talk about Mormonism. I earlier deleted the Coogan reference. And since that is the only cited basis for the brief reference to Mormonism, I deleted that, also. My edit was not aimed at Mormonism, but the irrelevant citation of Coogan. Trying to speak gently and precisely. Pete unseth (talk) 14:00, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
Coogan is talking about Mormonism, so it isn't WP:OR. Tgeorgescu (talk) 19:00, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
If you read Coogan's quotation in context, he bases his stand on pre-Christian events. If you want to say that a quotation about pre-Christian events is relevant to this article, I cannot follow the logic. What do other readers think? Pete unseth (talk) 02:40, 17 February 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Christianity has a basis in the Old Testament, which is significant in the development of Christian ethics. Therefore the Bible, both Old and New Testament, are relevant to the discussion. Editor2020, Talk 03:28, 17 February 2015 (UTC)

A pattern/requirement to have at least 2 wives?[edit]

From here:

"...In order for Moses to rule, he had to have two wives. This pattern of rulers having two wives is first found in Genesis 4 which mentions Lamech and his two wives. It continues through the generations with Nahor, Terah, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and as we have seen with Moses. [3] This also explains Abraham's urgency to fetch a cousin wife for Isaac so that Isaac could rule after Abraham's death..."

"...The pattern of ruler-priests having 2 wives continues throughout the Bible..."

I thought that point would be good to include in the article. I don't know of good sources for this and I'm not a very good article writer. Though I guess "Over 40 important figures had more than one wife" kind of implies this. Legowolf3d (talk) 06:23, 12 May 2017 (UTC)