. They believe that the gender balance will eventually even itself out and the world will thereafter return to the more 'natural' monogamous condition. Then there are others who like myself believe that this will be a natural condition both at the beginning and at the end. The statistical arguments for this are given elsewhere in my writings.
In giving a fair hearing to the monogamy-only position to my own soul's continuing search for truth I have recently returned to the concept of Yahweh's 'image' in Genesis 1:27 - in whose image "male and female" were made, a passage which can potentially be the basis of endless speculation about the nature and gender (or lack of gender) of the Elohim (God). The passage is actually a double connundrum because it says two different things which at first seem contradictory:
(i) "God (Elohim, plural) created man in His own image, in the image of God (Elohim, plural) He created him", and
(ii) "Male and female He created them"
On the one hand, the male man is in Elohim's (God's) image, but on the other the male man and the female woman are in His image too. Of course, the male Adam was created in Elohim's (God's) image first of all and then the female Eve was made from Adam. Thus Eve is in Elohim's (God's) image only by derivation from the original image, Adam. She is, in a way, a 'sub-image'.
This one passage has enormous implications both for and understanding the nature of Elohim (God) as well as the matter of the mariage equation of monogamy vs. polygamy. For myself I have interpreted this passage quite literally, viz. that originally Elohim (God) was an antetype of Adam, being male but possessing the potential of having female created out of him. Is there any evidence for this? Certainly. For the Book of Proverbs describes the female Wisdom as being created out of Elohim (God) in a way not dissimilar to the creation of Eve from Adam, which is discussed at length elsewhere. This "Wisdom" or Hochmah, as also discussed elsewhere, is associated with the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit) throughout the Old Testament and in Hebrew tradition. If this is true, as I believe the Scriptures teach, then we have a very clear model of the male-female relationship in both its heavenly and earthly aspect. This would mean that the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit) is our Heavenly Mother, derived from the Father as a derived Being just as Eve was made from Adam. Similarly the Son (Yah'shua/Jesus) is the Only Begotten of the Father just as the murdered Abel was (to be replaced by Seth) the "only begotten" spiritual son of Adam.
But what has this to do with polygamy? If polygamy is a principle built into creation, and not just an expediency in mortality to meet special needs in a degenerate society, then we should expect to find something concrete in Scripture to reflect the pattern already seen between Yahweh and the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit), and Adam and Eve. Indeed, we find such a pattern for we learn that Elohim's (God's) Spirit is seven-fold, described even as seven Persons in the Book of Revelation. Is it a coincidence that Isaiah speaks of seven women claiming one man polygamously in the ideal Millennium? Does this per chance reveal something about polygamy in the heavenlies?
To be sure this is meaty doctrine and there is a chance that it is complete nonsense. For sure it upsets some commonly held ideas about the Godhead and about marriage after death. Nevertheless, it has to be admitted that it is possible. And if it is true, then obviously polygamy takes on a much higher meaning than most, if not nearly all Evangelical Christian and Messianic Jewish polygamists, have hitherto assumed.
There are some who believe that polygamy exists only as a prophetic model for the relationship between the Body of Christ and the Bridegroom, Christ, and no more, in much the same way that Yah'shua's (Jesus') bones were not broken in order to fulfil the prophecy in Isaiah, as opposed to their not being broken because He just happened to be dead already which Yahweh had forseen and told prophetically through Isaiah. The difference is in the emphasis and how you view prophecy.
But what if, as some claim, Elohim (God) is not a "He" at all but a kind of female-including male as Adam was before Eve was made? After all, He only made one Eve, and not seven. Monogamy-only'ers are fond of this argument. But as another article shows, if Yahweh had made seven wives for Adam in Eden, this would have set the precendent for all future marriages, and He would have had to have genetically modified the first humans to ensure there was always a surplass of females. But this He did no do. Rather we are left with a picture of a monogamous Eden as a kind of model of heaven, with monogamy and polygamy being created for the emerging fallen world. Thus, it could be argued, polyagmy was allowed and blessed solely to meet earthly conditions and needs, with monogamy inextricably associated with the Edenic type of heaven. If this is the case, then polygamy is merely something transient and, whilst hard indeed to live and really only suited to the spiritually mature, will eventually pass away. And it could be argued further that the ideal would be before even Eve was created, when there was no marriage at all. And if this is what we are to look forward to in heaven (a place with no human marriage), then might it also be a place where either everyone is male or all the women revert back to a pre-Eve Adam-type? Perhaps this is what is meant by being single "like the angels"?
I must admit this does not sit comfortably with me, though this may just be my 'natural' reaction. Nevertheless, I have other grounds for my uneasiness too, namely, Scriptural. The idea of a heaven filled with singles, whether all male or a mixture of males and females, seems like a retrogressive step to me. Why go to all the trouble of creating men and women, pronouncing marriage "good" under ideal Edenic conditions, to then 'go back' a step to the pre-Eve man? Will Yahweh the Father re-absorb His Hochmah, the Heavenly Mother (assuming this ever happened)? Or is our world a part of an unfolding, imperfect thought it is, remembering that Elohim (God) is the ultra-conservationist, never wasting anything?
Thus polygamy is brought into a very question about the raison d'être for everything. It may be just a passing earthly phenomenon, or it may have far, far greater significance than anyone has dreamed of. One thing it most certainly is not, and that is a sin. Yahweh is not the author of sin, neither would He liken His relationship to Israel and Judah as a polygamist were it to be so.
And so I unapologetically return to my original proposition whilst granting other polygamists the freedom to maintain their's. Most, I know, don't like to get their hands deep into such a pot of philosphical and theological speculation, and fear such may lead souls astray from the simple Gospel of salvation or be the means of introducing damnable heresies. The fear is, I admit, partly justified, but someone has to try and figure these things out because at some time or another unbelievers are going to ask pointed questions about Bible teachings on Deity which traditional Christians may find themselves impotent to answer.
My conclusion is that my vision of marriage and polygamy in the heavenlies might be wrong and that polygamy here might only be a provisional sort of arrangement to meet the 'local circumstances' of earth life. But I doubt it. Experience and otherwise baffling passages in Scripture suggest to me that there is much, much more than is commonly held to be true in 'orthodox Christianity'. I realise that many evangelicals and messianics do not like what I am doing and are only too eager to cry 'heretic', which is a pity, really, for I hold nearly all the same Christological teachings as they do. I guess it must remain like that in these dark corridors of mortality until the brighter day when all is revealed. For now we would do well to simply get on with one another, whether Christian polygamists of divergent views or those Christians who believe polygamy has no part in the divine scheme of things. To the latter I would simply say: take a closer look at your Bible. For if you are willfully blind in one matter, might you not also be willfully blind in another, and might that possibly be affecting your salvation? We ought at least to be sober in our thinking, not jump to premature conclusions, and have an open mind where the Bible is, or seems to be, ambiguous. In the end, the truth harms no true believer.
Note: for those who believe in a pre-tribulation rapture, the implications must be that men are so much more righteous that women to the extent that seven times as many men are raptured as women, leaving behind seven times as many women behind. As I find this very hard to believe because of the more natural disposition of women to righteousness than men, I am convinced that this is another argument against both the pre-trib as well as mid-trib rapture hypotheses. Just look at the ratio of men to women in the churches today and you will see what I mean.
First created on 17 January 2001