One of the most difficult quests in this life is undoubtedly finding our soul-mates whether monogamously or polygamously. Today it has become so hard that in the West 50% of all marriages are failing, leaving embittered and lonely casualties in their wake. This may, in part, explain why fewer and fewer people are finding Christ because without a proper marriage rôle model, the searcher is going off down dangerous self-exaltation pathways where fulfilment is sought in realising one's own so-called potential. Yahweh lives in an allegorical marriage relationship with His people and it is little wonder, therefore, that those disillusioned with life because of failed marriages find little to attract them in a spiritual marriage of cosmic dimensions. Those that do come to Christ tend to have the 'solo-Christian' mindset, keeping their faith to themselves, living out in the spiritual sphere their frustrations on the marrital one.
Yahweh-Elohim, the Sovereign Creator, has made some very simple but profound promises to us: if we seek Him first in everything He will arrange our marriages for us, not as is done in the world by imperfect (and usually very uninspired) parents but by one who knows our make-up, personality, potential and future choices in the greatest of detail. Yahweh's provision of Adam with a wife was based on this premis and this was without a doubt the happiest and most fulfilling marriage there ever was until the woman went into rebellion and the man, afraid to lose the love of his life, followed after her.
I could in this essay list and discuss the various things that cause men and women to come together and marry, such as physical attraction, an invisible 'chemistry', money, etc., but this is not Yahweh's way. In pursuing marriage companions using these guidelines we are, in fact, following after the leadings of the fallen nefesh-soul and not the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit). Just as Eve refused to trust Yahweh that she not eat the forbidden fruit in Eden, so mankind, in his stupidity and lack of trust, refuses to believe that divine providence is a better way of finding a lasting mate than trusting in something 'pleasing to the eyes' or 'delicious to the taste'. You see, the forbidden fruit had all the qualities that we mortals find in sexual attraction based on physical sense, personality and psychic energy (soul-power), but it led to anything but the happiness Eve thought it would give her. Once she had sunk her teeth into the fruit and swallowed, the darkness descended upon her like a frightful thunderstorm. And sadly far too many people enter marriage on the same premises and discover that their 'true love' is anything but. After the passion has subsided they find that they are married to incompatible strangers.
Many a time Mr.Right has passed up on Miss.Right (or vice versa) because she did not fulfil his carnal expectations and so he ends up in a mediocre or disasterous marriage. He refuses to judge by the Ruach (Spirit) either because he wishes to make his judgments based on the physical, intellectual and/or and emotional or because he simply does not have the Ruach (Spirit). Either way he is setting himself, and his prospective partner, up for a life of, at best, medioctrity, and at worst, great unhappiness.
All my wives, who had Christian backgrounds, were led to me providentially. The first was told in a prophecy that she would meet her husband in my home town which she was visiting from abroad. She met two men - myself and one other - whom she knew were the only possibilities. I fell in love with her, recognising her as my beloved, and she fell in love with the other man who was not interested in her. She married me but lived for the other man in the hope that one day he would come and get her. He never did. In the end she ran off with a third man who was an occultist, eventually ditched him, and went off with a fourth, perhaps having others in the interim, and picking up two illegitimate children on the way. I am still waiting for her to come home after nearly 30 years absence.
My second marriage failed also but in this case my wife received a direct revelation from Yahweh telling her to marry me polygamously. None of my other wives has ever received such clear and unambiguous supernatural direction. Her problems came with polygyny itself which, though she knew it was a principle of Yahweh and that I was called to live it (since she was called while I was still married to my first wife who was her best friend), never fully left the monogamy mindset which subsequently caused inner division and chaos. She stayed true to her original revelation, however, and remained celibate, and eventually we began the, sadly short-lived, process of reconcilliation this time built on the polygamy mindset.
My third wife, who remains faithful to this day, received a proposal, prayed about it for many months, and finally obtain a word from Yahweh to go ahead. The relationship has been steadily growing and deepening for the past 25 years.
My fourth wife grew up in a tightly-knit home that itself became polygamous so her parents counselled her throughout and were completely supportative and involved in the betrothal in line with ideal Torah practice. The seeds of later trouble were sown when her entire family - parents and siblings - abandoned the Gospel, withdrew their support and turned adversarial. Sadly, after a long and successful marriage, she eventually succumbed to the pressure, likewise abandoned the Gospel, and became adversarial herself.
I shall not mention here those few who received a calling from Yahweh to join the family other than to say they never entered into either betrothal covenants or full marriage and went their separate ways. At least two of them received powerful revelation as to their calling but later denied it.
I have three current wives. The last two have very strong testimonies as to how Yahweh called them and much time was invested before the marriages took place. Their stories are recorded elsewhere on this website.
It is my belief, having counselled many married people over the years, that a substantial proportion of men and women never find their soul mates in this life, and with the moral anarchy in our world, the numbers are increasing exponentially. The vast majority of men and women in the West have had multiple unstable relationships with the churches not doing a lot better than the secular society in general.
As we look at the parable of the Ten Virgins we see the basic pattern in operation in this life, of five wise future wives (virgins) who kept their spiritual lamps trimmed and full of oil (the Ruach haQodesh/Holy Spirit) and five who did not and were denied the choice blessing of a divinely ordained marriage. In this parable we are being shown a picture of the average failure rate in marriage. Five is the number of grace or favour with ten the number of completeness or order in the Bible. But we are incomplete because of the fall and our lack of faith and obedience and so we must walk in Elohim's (God's) grace to provide our needs, discerning what our limited minds and hearts are unable to do.
With the advancement of years, it is unlikely many, or even any, more wives will join my family. I learned early on, from my experience in the chaos of the modern Christian (and now Messianic) polygamy movement, that few are actually listening to what Yahweh wants them to do as far as entering polygamy is concerned and even fewer have any spiritual awareness of, let alone interest in, divine providence. The way Christian polygamist hopefulls go about trying to find more wives, and women polygamous men, reminds me more of the spirit of the Mos Eisley Cantina on the Star Wars pirate planet Tatooine than it does the way marriage was conducted bibilically.
I also learned early on that whenever I have deliberately gone out seeking for wives, as I did for a period, I have usually failed. In almost every case Yahweh has brought the women to me and they have been left to make their free choice. Even so, I never dreamed the casualty rate would be so high, though, and it has been very painful to see through the eyes of the Ruach (Spirit) a soul-mate and to then see her turn away and marry, or have an affair with, Mr.Wrong. It is possible also, I suppose, that I have turned away someone who was supposed to be for me and have yet to confront the sorrow of that awful realisation. I hope not.
What a foolish species we are, rejecting soul-mates because they don't conform to a fantasy picture we have in our minds and hearts. Sometimes I think the children's fairy tales of Prince Charming and Princess Beautiful do more harm than good. Women have been turned away because of looks, a lack of wealth, differences in opinion as to how a household should be run, race, nationality, age, a perceived lack of compatibility with other wives, and almost every excuse imaginable. We have been taught by the consumer society in which we live to be absurdly picky, setting impossible targets for ourselves.
Out of interest, I visited a match-making agency on the Internet many years ago and read the captions of those seeking soul-mates. 95% listed what they EXPECTED from potential partners and only 5% listed what they were willing themselves to GIVE. The great majority had fantasy images of potential husbands and wives that were wholly unreasonable.
Yahweh wants us to put all these kinds of carnal judgments and expectations aside and let HIM do the match-making. The end-result, He promises, will be worth it, even if there will be troubles (as there are in ALL marriages) on the way. So if you've been humming and hawing over someone you have been led to by the Ruach (Spirit) because he or she hasn't fitted all the requirements on your marriage shopping list, I urge you to stop and think again, repent for your lack of faithfulness to the One who knows what is best for you and to act in trust. Just be sure your hearing the Ruach (Spirit) to you and not your hormones.
For myself, I try my very best to be open to all possibilities and not to prejudge on the basis of carnal expectatations. I have only one expectation, in fact, namely that a prospective wife loves and wishes to serve Father Yahweh and Yah'shua/Jesus with her whole might, obey the commandments, live the truth with her whole might, mind and strength, and accepts the biblical truth of polygyny. And I would hope that any prospective wives would do the same with me.
Without any doubt doubt at all there are going to be differences of opinion in many things but these are to be expected - this is not the Garden of Eden where perfection reigned. I have also come to understand that the rest of my family is going to come from many different nations and that I should not be so near-sighted as to suppose that they will all come from my own country and culture, or even the West for that matter.
As I have aged I have grown more patient. I have ceased worrying about the ungathered wives of my family or those who have fled, leaving a trail of sorrows behind. They will come in Yahweh's own time and way. In the meantime I am getting on with my ministry and building up the family that I have here.
May you too, if you are searching, do the same, and confidently leave the match-making in your life to the Omnipotent and Omniscient Father. No matter what your background or experience, the way you look at yourself (positive or negative), leave any character changes that need to be made in marriage up to Him, for marriage will change you. Let any marriage failures be viewed as learning experiences and move on. Don't make comparisons. The important thing is that you find MR.RIGHT (or MISS RIGHT) and find union, peace and happiness in your mutual service to the King and Kingdom. Finishing the race is more important than all the falls on the way.
May Yahweh bless and keep you in His wonderful love!