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  #31  
Old 07-19-2009, 08:33 PM
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Greenbear

So happy to have helped a little bit
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  #32  
Old 07-20-2009, 02:46 PM
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Hi again Amanda - you have certainly entered the forum with all guns blazing (I love your posts!) And now you have got me thinking haven't you!
What would I say to a new convert (a muslim convert) who has come to Christ in repentance and tears, wants to serve Him with all of his heart, but he has seven wives?
I am not playing the devil's advocat - but I am curious as to how we would deal with such a case as Christians (especially if he has had a child with every one of them!

I am certainly open to thoughts on this one as it is a very real possibility in the multicultural world that we live in!

God bless

PaulB
  #33  
Old 07-20-2009, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by PaulB View Post
Hi again Amanda - you have certainly entered the forum with all guns blazing (I love your posts!) And now you have got me thinking haven't you!
What would I say to a new convert (a muslim convert) who has come to Christ in repentance and tears, wants to serve Him with all of his heart, but he has seven wives?
I am not playing the devil's advocat - but I am curious as to how we would deal with such a case as Christians (especially if he has had a child with every one of them!

I am certainly open to thoughts on this one as it is a very real possibility in the multicultural world that we live in!

God bless

PaulB
PaulB,

No one asked me but I never let that stop me. Here's my answer:

1 Corinthians 7:24 Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.

1 Timothy 5:8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.

The man continues to fulfill his husbandly obligations to his seven wives and fatherly obligation to his children. It would be a toss up whether he would encounter more persecution remaining in the muslim world as a christian or emmigrating to a christian culture as a polygamist.
  #34  
Old 07-20-2009, 03:29 PM
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Greetings Bro. Paul


Quote:
I am not playing the devil's advocate
Hmmmm...sure your not. LoL

Quote:
What would I say to a new convert (a muslim convert) who has come to Christ in repentance and tears, wants to serve Him with all of his heart, but he has seven wives?
Well, I will have to go think a bit on that one...but I can say that he couldn't be a pastor

1Ti 3:2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;

Tit 1:6 If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly.
  #35  
Old 07-20-2009, 04:28 PM
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Hello again Amanda – It is just that your posts do tend to get my mind ticking over and over and before I know it I want to know more (I suppose that is what forums are supposed to be all about!)

When I look at the marriage/divorce issue I try and look at it from the heaven to earth type of a way, because when I try and examine it the opposite way it blows fuses in my mind. When an ever-changing world brings new demands upon the church of Jesus Christ, we are often put into a difficult place by the pieces that we have to pick up.

I know that the law said that divorce was permissible because of the hardness of the hearts of the people whom were under the law. Then Jesus takes this further by saying “It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement: But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.

I recognise that divorce is not something that God wants for us and that (by His grace) there are occasions where it is permitted. I have no doubts that there are really tender issues involved in every divorce case that couples go through especially when there are children in the middle of it (like Greenbear rightly points out).

But when I approach this from the “heaven-earth” way of thinking I see every marriage (whether Christian or heathen) as a “God-joined” “one-flesh” relationship that only death can bring to an end.
So when our Lord Jesus said what He said concerning marriage “But I say unto you…” the standards are raised rather than slackened concerning divorce.

I recognise that a person under the circumstances that Christ mentioned are permitted to divorce but I am not all that sure about any suggestion about re-marriage (as, is this what God has joined together?)

Now, with the Muslim scenario it is not only the man that is in an awkward position – can any of his wives re-marry? (As I don’t see all of them as genuine wives because God would not have joined all of them to that man as “One flesh”). But like I said in a previous post, a heathen marriage is just as valid as a Christian one (although less likely to reflect what it is supposed to) as it would be impossible for them to commit adultery otherwise.

One thing that I would like to bring into the mix (which is why I said that heaven-earth) perspective into it is the following passages:

Era.10:9-19 “Then all the men of Judah and Benjamin gathered themselves together unto Jerusalem within three days. It was the ninth month, on the twentieth day of the month; and all the people sat in the street of the house of God, trembling because of this matter, and for the great rain. And Ezra the priest stood up, and said unto them, Ye have transgressed, and have taken strange wives, to increase the trespass of Israel.
Now therefore make confession unto the LORD God of your fathers, and do his pleasure: and separate yourselves from the people of the land, and from the strange wives.
Then all the congregation answered and said with a loud voice, As thou hast said, so must we do. But the people are many, and it is a time of much rain, and we are not able to stand without, neither is this a work of one day or two: for we are many that have transgressed in this thing. Let now our rulers of all the congregation stand, and let all them which have taken strange wives in our cities come at appointed times, and with them the elders of every city, and the judges thereof, until the fierce wrath of our God for this matter be turned from us. Only Jonathan the son of Asahel and Jahaziah the son of Tikvah were employed about this matter: and Meshullam and Shabbethai the Levite helped them. And the children of the captivity did so. And Ezra the priest, with certain chief of the fathers, after the house of their fathers, and all of them by their names, were separated, and sat down in the first day of the tenth month to examine the matter. And they made an end with all the men that had taken strange wives by the first day of the first month. And among the sons of the priests there were found that had taken strange wives: namely, of the sons of Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and his brethren; Maaseiah, and Eliezer, and Jarib, and Gedaliah. And they gave their hands that they would put away their wives; and being guilty, they offered a ram of the flock for their trespass.”

I recognise that this is Old covenant, but the situation stands in history that there would have been children and in-laws involved in all of the break ups here. The reason that I put this forward is that it was seen as culturally acceptable for such a compromise (because of the spiritual state of Israel at that time). But when they saw it from God’s point of view they acted without question.

Are we asking the questions that we are asking on the basis of the culture that surrounds us dictates or are we asking them because of what the word says? This is the real issue when we all stand before Him on that great day!

God bless

PaulB
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Old 07-20-2009, 07:05 PM
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(As I don’t see all of them as genuine wives because God would not have joined all of them to that man as “One flesh”). But like I said in a previous post, a heathen marriage is just as valid as a Christian one
Jacob had a number of wives among others, like DAVID. If the Bible shows where that practice ended, other than with the church, I am not aware. What is your scripture reference to prove that God would not have joined all of them to that man as "one flesh"? I have never studied this topic, but I have read the Bible a number of times and I don't know where that verse is.
  #37  
Old 07-20-2009, 07:49 PM
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Bro. Paul

After talking with my husband and lightly studying it out I cannot come down hard on either position. I am not sure how one would/could decide which one he would stay married to?

It certainly isn't brought up in Scripture specifically so therefore some would say that it's ok. There's not a verse that reads "thou shalt not"...Although any reference to marriage in the New Testament is between 1 man and 1 woman.

I am sure I am not getting the bigger picture, but these are my ever so scattered thoughts.
  #38  
Old 07-21-2009, 10:59 AM
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Hello again Greenbear,

Thank you for responding to my post I find your thoughts interesting.
The question still arises in my heart (in the fleshly sense!) if Jacob could marry a number of women and Muslims can then why am I disqualified? (Not that I would truly want another, as one can be hard enough to live with!)

1 Corinthians 7:24 “Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.”

Personally Greenbear I don’t see this as a way of authorising a number of wives to be joined together by God as “one flesh”. Yes, there are occasions in the OT were things happened that are contrary to the norm, but the historical recording of them isn’t the spiritual endorsement of them.

Mk.10: 5-9 “And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept. But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife;
And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

There may have been acts recorded in the OT that tell us what happened throughout God’s plan of redemption up until Christ restored the direct connection between God & man. But when you say “where is my Scripture reference to prove that something stopped happening?” (as in more than one wife is being a genuine reflection of biblical marriage). The reverse can also be applied – Where is the scripture reference to prove that God has ordained more than one wife to be a genuine reflection of biblical marriage?

Th above passage is what I see as being joined together as one and the words of Jesus are spoken to restore the correct concept of marriage from all of its previous and present deviations. Because when you look at it – even the Pharisees were finding excuses to put away their wives in order to marry another – otherwise what would be the point, why not just add a new wife to existing ones?

Secondly, your reference concerning the provision of a man over his household:

1 Timothy 5:8 “But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.”

This is not speaking about a man with many wives – but is addressing the basic responsibilities of those who name the name of Christ and were in danger of denying the faith by avoiding them. Now having said that, I do believe (regarding the man with 7 wives scenario) that he is responsible to feed, clothe and provide for those whom he has under his roof, but I don’t see any justification that he is to sleep with them all, as he did before. The future of those women is a difficult one but only one of them can truly be his wife in the intimate sense – in effect he will not be divorcing the others as they are not all truly married to him.

I have heard of a Muslim in the UK who has a few wives but tells everyone that they are his sisters because he knows that his lifestyle is not permitted by the law system over here. Now if the law has that power how much more authority does Christ’s words on marriage?

Well, lets put it this way, would you apply the same passage to a homosexual couple that claim to be validly married (i.e. 1 Corinthians 7:24 “Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.”). Not at all! (but what about their wedding album and all of those intimate memories, what if they have adopted children who have only known them as mom and dad?)
Does this mean that they must remain “one flesh” (as they were called?). somehow I don’t think so!

What about a western man who has two wives as an outright act of polygamy (and has children with both). Let’s say that neither wife knows of the existence of the other or of the children and then he gets saved! Does this man remain wherein he is called?

I once had a minister publicly rebuke me because I refused to baptise a woman who was living with an unsaved man as though they were a married couple. As I see it I would have been authorising something that Scripture gives me no grounds to do so and that is how I look at the scenarios above. Once leeway is granted then where do you draw the line before it gets ridiculous?
Was I unreasonable because I expected that woman to get married or move out before she got baptised or would it have been the Christian thing to do by just pleasing the crowd?

When I say all of this, please believe me that there s no malice in any of my words or thoughts towards you. All that I hold is a conviction to uphold the word with the motive of interacting with other believers on deep, sensitive and practical issues. Because these are scenarios that churches are now facing and pastors are seeking answers to them.

If things like these are raised it gives all of us the opportunity to think in depth about how we can address them.

God bless Greenbear

PaulB
  #39  
Old 07-21-2009, 11:27 AM
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Greenbear,

Quote:
1 Timothy 5:8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.

The man continues to fulfill his husbandly obligations to his seven wives and fatherly obligation to his children.
As I am told rather often it seems, let's keep this verse in the context. This passage is not refering to having multiple wives it is talking about the care of widows. If this were the case then one could have as many wives as he pleases as long as he could pay for them.
  #40  
Old 07-21-2009, 11:28 AM
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Bro. Paul,

I am following your line of reasoning and I agree.
 

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