Not everyobody has the skills needed to become the President of the United States, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, or the President of the Polish Republic. Throughout history, as we know, wrong people sometimes have been elected to positions of national leadership (or have taken them by force) only to lead their country to decline and ruin. We remember some of the latter Caesars, their decadent living and their indifference to the welfare of the people they were supposedly responsible for. One of them bought off his people's displeasure with gold, and nowadays unpopulular rulers buy off their people with tax cuts the treasury cannot afford, storing up trouble later. Conservatives regularly accuse socialists of overspending to shore up their popularity whilst in office and then spend the rest of their tenure as a government making stringent cut-backs to balance the nation's books.
I remember once having a conversation with a politician from Białystok whose ambition was a place in local government. As this man was a neighbour and had previously been highly spoken of as a man of great industry and ability, I had assumed his interest in the political scene was because he wished to be of service to the citizens of the city. I subsequenly learned that his sole interest in becoming a local counsellor had been to further his own economic interests through insider deals and various corrupt schemes. One way or another the local Agrarian Party whom he had thought to represent got to hear about it and, mercifully, he never took office.
One thing about all of this is clear: far too often the wrong people occupy the positions of power and for all the wrong reasons. And what is true of politics is also sadly true of religion.
When it comes to Christian/Messianic polygamy, I meet far too many of the wrong kind of people who want to enter it, or who may not enter it at all but who use their belief in it as an excuse to sin. Like the man who wished to become a counsellor on the Białystok City Council for personal profit, so I used to meet on an almost daily basis men who wished to enter polygamy for purely sexual variety and self-gratification. And because of all these misguided, flesh-centred Don Juans and Cassanovas, I really can't blame the majority of women who are sceptical of men's reasons for entering this lifestyle, even if the perception of both regarding those who practice it for all the right reasons is 180 degrees off beam. Men have, quite simply, deservedly got the reputation that they have.
However, these things I have already discussed at great length in previous articles. If you have sifted through and absorbed my other writings you will know - hopefully without a shadow of a doubt - that I view all such justifications for living polygamy with the greatest of contempt. And so it is that most of the men who come to me expecting that I hold the key to a polygamist's bordello usually leave in an advanced state of disappointment and not infrequently without bitter recriminations and unsatisfied sexual borborygmus (rumblings of the stomach).
Like angry geese, carnal polygamists don't like to be corrected
Though we ought not to be surprised, given our knowledge of that devious wart called the Adamic nature, I am finding increasingly false, subtle reasons why both men and women are entering the polygamous lifestyle, and noticing the destructive effects of these on their spiritual life.
The Bisexual Problem
Polygamy has, for example, become a magnet for bisexual women, or those wanting to experiment with bisexuality, looking for a haven for stable lesbian relationships, requiring that I devote much time to exposing this danger. And lesbianism in any form is a doorway to demonic oppression and destruction. And because many of the men entering this lifestyle do not maintain the rigorous standards required of Yahweh in Scripture, they are often more than willing to admit bisexual practice in order, as they suppose, to bolster up their own wobbly positions as weak and ineffective patriarchs. One perversion inevitable leads to another and before you know it you may find, in a polygamous marriage with bisexual women, confusing hierarchies emerging where bisexual women with stronger personalities start dominating those with weaker ones instead of seeking the equality which is in Christ. And though such twisted relationships may only go so far down the road to spiritual destruction, it is nevertheless the same path that leads to BDSM (Bondage, Domination and Sado-Masochism) and even greater perversions. Many patriarchs and their bisexual cohorts will often rationalise that because there is no overt perverstion that a limited form of bisexuality amongst the wives is not only to be tolerated but to be preferred in maintaining the cohesion of a polygamous family. And whilst there can be no doubt that such a 'cohesion' results, it is neither the true bonding of Christian polygamy nor is if the same bonding agent, but belongs to 'another spirit'. The apostle Peter wrote:
Any kind of perversion leads to a departure from Christ. Instead of purifying the soul, it leads to its corruption. It results in not only an insincere love of the brethren, but actually leads to quarrels and strifes, because the spirit controlling any form of lesbianism is by definition anti-patriarchal and therefore anti-Christ even though it may accommodate patriarchy in name and make some concessions to it for the sake of outward appearances. And, of course, it sets itself up at odds with the Word of Elohim (God) and with those who abide strictly to it. I do know of examples of tolerated (and sometimes encouraged) bisexuality in both Christian/Messianic and non-Christian polygamy and have witnessed the destructive spirit that it brings.
"Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of Elohim (God) which lives and abides forever" (1 Peter 1:22-23, NKJV)
Do not be deceived by outer appearances. Anyone can present a bold and clean face to the world. And remember this: any kind of perverse relationship, when challenged by the Word of Elohim (God), always reacts with hostility because behind such a relationship is always a demon or group of demons. Always. It is at this moment that the fruits of such sinful behaviour are exposed for what it really is.
If the truth be known, there are some patriarchs who get a carnal kick out of bisexual behaviour in their wives, becoming infected by the same ungodly spirit themselves. It may not only be accommodation which motivates them to accept the perversion. And once they have allowed such an impure spirit to take root in their marriage, it will not rest until other perversions have at length been explored and likely absorbed. Any form of sexual perversion is a disintegrating force and whilst there may be some who think that they can indulge in 'limited deviation' from biblical norms, and who may believe they have control over it, in truth they are swimming against the stream which, by the by, will overwhelm them in one way or another. A patriartch may well find further down the, for example, that his wives prefer each other to him sexually which will lead to great unhappiness for him and create destructive forces that would break up his marriage. For it must be remembered at all times that just as an ordinary cold can become the prelude to bronchitis and pneumonia, so bisexuality is very often the first stage of full-blown lesbianism. A man who accommodates bisexuality in his polygamous marriage in any degree is playing with fire.
Ebionites and Messianic Compromises
This is a warning principally to some Messianic Jews who, because the Torah says nothing about lesbianism, condemn homosexuality amongst men but turn a blind eye to lesbianism amongst women. Paul, of course, condemns female-female relations as much as male-male. The problem is that some Messianics, who claim Yah'shua (Jesus/Yeshua) to be the Messiah (Christ), not only seem to ignore vast chunks of the New Testament which they have problems harmonising with their Judaising tendencies, but there are some sects - notably those of the Ebionite persuasion - who totally reject Paul the apostle as a heretic, thereby excluding from their truncated canon the writings of Paul which specifically condemn lesbianism. So if you are fellowshipping, or have contact, with Messianic Jews, make sure you find out their position on the Pauline writings (some accept some of his letters but not others). For I know of some Messianics, who accommodate polygamy, who are most definitely turning a blind eye to bisexuality in women, and I have been told that some actively promote it. Beware! Also be aware of those Messianics belonging to what is generally known as the 'Yah Cult' which denies the deity of Christ. Actually, there are now (2016) many pseudo-messianic cults which deny the apostleship of Paul and his writings though I don't think many acknowledge polygamy.
As discussed elsewhere, men can enter polygamy for many wrong reasons, some of which can be 'worked on' and disposed of fairly quickly, but others may require deliverance ministry to get sorted out. For some it may just be a question of status. There are some Christian/Messianic Patriarchs who, infected with the fundamentalist Mormon notion that breeding as many children as possible will determine their glory in the next world, put impossible economic and discipling strains on their families and then bewail the fact that most of their children end up marrying unbelievers or those (like Mormons) of other religious persuasions.
Others may enter the lifestyle because of other compulsions and perversions. There are some men who like big families because they have Hitler and Mussolini megalomaniac and psychopathic complexes and simply want to rule, dominate, control and oppress as many people as possible, and all for perversion's sake. Others are infected by priestcraft of one sort of another, as obtains in some fundamentalist Mormon polygamous families and communities, believing that they are somehow God's divine representatives and immune from moral and ethical contraints.
By far one of most amazing abuses of polygamy for the justification of sin that I have come across concerns addiction to pornography. What would you say to the man who says: 'I believe in polygamy, and so there can't be anything wrong with pornography!'? The fact that pornography is spiritual fornication and/or adultery (depending whether you are single or married) - lusting after women who are not yours (and thus breaking the commandments), quite apart from women who are involved in an immoral, degrading and demonised profession under the control of evil persons, cannot be denied by any but those who are in complete bondage and blindness. Were any patriarch to try and make such a justification to me and not repent, I would unhesitatingly disfellowship him as a fornicator and adulterer in the spirit, and without question pronounce him to be under demonic bondage.
Sin Compacts and Fellowships
'Birds of a feather flock together' and when patriarchs and their wives - or anyone naming the Name of Christ (or even unbelievers) are walking in rebellion, the next step is always to seek fellowship with either those (a) sinning in the same or similar areas, or (b) those sinning in different areas. The other day a woman marched into my chat room advertising a website called 'Liberated Christians' which justifies any and all sexual behaviour patterns. I am sure it had many sympathisers. Though the woman claimed to be a 'Christian' and named the name of 'Christ', she not only dismissed those parts of the Bible she didn't believe in but behaved like a pagan in her speech and mannerisms. The bottom line was, as ever, self-justification.
The existence of different kinds of Christian polygamy ministry is reflective of this 'flocking together'. I've noticed that some polygamy-accepting Messianic ministries that tolerate bisexuality have already formed 'alliances' ... I know, because they tried to recruit me when they sounded me out on this issue. When I pointed out Paul's teaching on lesbianism, it was the last I heard from them. Sinners rarely nail perverse colours on the masts of their ships - it's the absense of the banners of truth that are the tell-tale sign. We are not only found guilty by Yahweh for sins of commission but by sins of ommission - clear statements on what sin is is typically a symptom of the latter.
When sinners of the same feather don't flock together, the alternative gathering is usually a 'back-scratching' one. 'I'll keep quiet about your perversion if you'll keep quiet about mine' and on that basis they fellowship together. These conspiratorial 'sin compacts' are common everywhere, of course, both in the political and religious arenas. Look at the most unlikely alliances that have been made in history: The Nazi-Bolshevik Rippentropp-Molotov Pact of 1939 (for the purpose of dividing Poland and swallowing the Baltic States), the Western Democratic-Stalinist Pact of 1941 against Nazi Germany, the shortlived Chinese Nationalist-Communist Pact between Chiang Kai-Shek and Mao Tse-Tung against Japan in the 1930's, and many others. In the Christian/Messianic world similar things happen, just as they are bound to occur (and already are occurring) in the Patriarchy Movement. Sin knows no boundaries, hell no discretion.
If we are to be true followers of Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) we must utterly reject all Sin Compacts, all false friendships and fellowships that might lead to the justification of any kind of unrighteousness. Seeking alliances of self-interest is one of the most noticable traits of the sinful man and must must be avoided at all costs. Standing alone if needs be, without compromise, must be the hallmark of all who claim to be Christians/Messianics.
It would be truthful to say, I think, that this is not a popular ministry amongst fellow Christian/Messianic polygamists because of the stand we take. We have lost many friends and will probably lose even more over time because we will not acquiesce to sinful behaviour. But on the other hand we have won friends amongst the honourable who have understood that our war is not against flesh and blood, but against our common foe, the devil and his legions. They have understood - or are beginning to understand - that compromise with truth just isn't worth it. The long-term losers are always themselves.
It therefore grieves me deeply when I see some patriarchs and their wives building their positions and defences on the sandy soil of untruth and unreason. When the next storm comes along, their fortifications, and maybe even theur lives, will all be washed away. And because we are talking about human lives and not things like businesses, jobs or material-temporal concerns generally, we are talking about real people getting hurt:
The bottom-line in all of this is, of course, to whom we actually belong. Willfull, habitual sin is a declaration of independence from Yahweh which ipso facto makes us the property of the Adversary. From then on we are labouring either for ourselves of the kingdom of darkness, and not for Elohim (God).
"We know that whoever is born of Elohim (God) does not [willfully or habitually] sin; but he who has been born of Elohim (God) keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him" (1 John 5:18, NKJV).
These phenomena do not, of course, uniquely belong to Christian/Messianic polygamy, but are a general human phenomenon no matter what spiritual badge or denominational labels we may wear. The issue is one of integrity and trustworthiness. And if you can't trust your brother or sister in the faith, who can you trust? I share these things so "that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of Elohim (God), which is the church (assembly/fellowship) of the living Elohim (God), the pillar and ground of the truth" (1 Timothy 3:15, NKJV). If the fellowship is corrupt, then we are not in the truth. Accordingly, we must keep our fellowship in the light always and be careful with whom we associate.
There are those who would compromise for the sake of 'peace' and 'unity' but such is a false and illusiory peace and unity. The standards we are supposed to follow are plainly stated: "if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) His Son cleanses us from all sin" (1 John 1:7, NKJV). What fellowship do you want? Fellowship in Christ, or fellowship in sin? "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us" (1 John 1:8-10, NKJV).
Have you heard the latest whitewashing of adultery that is now in vogue in many of the churches? François Carr writes in Revival Congress South Africa, Bulletin 83-1:
That 'Christians' of such a genre are finding their way into the Christian/Messianic Polygamy Movement is hardly suprising. We are attracting all sorts. And because of this problem, our ministries must not forget that they have a responsibility not only to reveal the truth about polygamy but the truth about sin, repentance, forgiveness, faith, purity, and every other facet of the Gospel. You cannot deal with a Gospel principle like polygamy and examine it in isolation - it is part of a whole.
"In many churches ... sinful practices are being renamed and reclassified. Yet when a church member commits adultery, it is often said euphemistically that he or she 'fell into an affair'. The sinner may be portrayed as the victim of an overwhelming schedule, or an unsympathetic spouse. Terminology, such as 'falling into' and 'affair' subtly shifts the blame away from the sinner. Rather than hiding behind less offensive terms, Christians must be encouraged to confess their sins and accept responsibility for them. Another adjustment in terminology is to reclassify sin as a 'weakness,' 'bad habit,' or an 'addiction.' Rather than committing the sin of lust, the sinner is said to have an 'addiction' to pornography. However addictive and enslaving habitual sin can become, its roots still lie in sin. Society commiserates with an addict; God judges sin. An addict engenders sympathy for his or her condition, whereas the Christian community knows that sin is not to be tolerated. Society encourages addicts to seek therapy, but not necessarily to repent of sin. By allowing worldly definitions for sin to creep into the church's vocabulary, churches inadvertently desensitize their people to the heinous reality of sin in their midst and the crucial need for repentance. If churches do not clearly identify sin for what it is, their people cannot properly respond to their condition."
In looking therefore at the downside of human nature - sin, perversion, and the like - I am only seeking to place polygamy, as with marriage in general, into its proper context. As a minister I cannot allow polygamy to become a Gospel hobby horse. This ministry is not a fellowship of polygamists and those sympathetic to polygamy but of CHRISTIAN/MESSIANIC polygamists, with the emphasis on 'Christian/Messianic'. Polygamy taken out of the context of the Gospel message is therefore, I would suggest, a very dangerous article indeed.
Let us also not confuse repentance with rededication. François Carr writes again:
Recent conflicts between patriarchs have also also highlighed another problem area that Christian/Messianics polygamists must face, and that is confusing compassion with a justification to continue sinning. François Carr rightly observes:
"Churches can also unwittingly challenge people in an unbiblical manner. Churches often extend altar calls wherein people who have not been walking in obedient fellowship with God are invited to 'rededicate' their lives to God and to His will. In this process, people may come before the church and acknowledge that they have disobeyed God's will. They will affirm their desire to dedicate themselves afresh to obey God. Often, members of the congregation will be invited to come and encourage the one who has expressed his intent to try harder to obey God. The problem with this is that it is not biblical. The crux of the gospel message is not a call to rededication, but a call to repentance. John the Baptist preached repentance (Matthew 3:2). Jesus preached repentance, both in His earthly ministry and as the resurrected Lord (Matthew 4:17; Revelation 3:19). If one's previous commitment did not keep him walking in obedience, a re-commitment is no more likely to make him faithful. The proper response to disobedience is not a commitment to try harder, but brokenness and repentance for rejecting the will of Almighty God. God looks for surrender to His will, not commitment to carry it out. Rather than asking church members to repeatedly promise to try harder, churches must call their people to repent before Holy God."
Reconcilliation between estranged brethren and sisters does not mean whitewashing sin. It means dealing with the root problems and getting Elohim (God) to make things right through bitter tears of regret if necessary. There can never be reconcilliation if sinful behaviour is just swept under the carpet, because the spirit that results from such false repentance is not the Holy Spirit! It is another spirit - the spirit of the flesh. A wordly spirit. And this ministry can never walk in that. Without a cleansing of hearts and an increased sensitisation to Yahweh we can never make progress, let alone start a work of Yahweh. No amount of preaching or scriptural education can change an unrepentant lethargic soul unless the need for repentance is first of all acknowledged. The trouble is, many coming to this movement have never been taught what repentance is. François Carr comes to the point:
"Many church members are uncomfortable with spiritual brokenness and repentance. When the Holy Spirit works in peoples' lives, convicting them of their sin, churches often do not know how to respond. We are uncomfortable with the tears and anguish of a sinner under conviction by the Spirit. Rather than allowing people to respond to what God is telling them, we often seek to immediately intervene. We try to comfort one whom God is making uncomfortable!"
Dealing with the modern secular concept of behaviourism he continues:
"The term 'repentance' is also greatly misunderstood. It is often seen as a negative term in an age where everything is expected to appear positive. Yet repentance is one of the most positive words in the Christian vocabulary! It refers to turning from a destructive path and moving instead into God's abundant life. Too often, churches spurn the terminology of repentance, preferring instead to speak of God's love and forgiveness. God's love and forgiveness, however, can only be fully experienced on the basis of the sinner's repentance. Churches that misuse these terms may hinder their people from experiencing true forgiveness and true revival."
There are, tradically, many feuds in the Christian/Messianic Patriarchy Movement but with few willing to do anything about it, preferring to let the status quo remain in order to promote themselves. Carr declares:
"The temptation for churches is to deal with symptoms rather than causes. Instead of addressing the condition of people's hearts, churches attempt to change their behavior. If members are not attending particular programs or services, churches try to make these programs and services more appealing. If members are not sharing their faith with unbelievers, classes in evangelism are offered. If needs are going unmet in the church, ministerial staff is hired to meet these needs. Yes, it is important that services and programs be carefully designed, but we must look past people's behavior to the heart condition behind it. Rather than focusing on symptoms, God's people must be challenged to examine their love for God. People who truly love God will willingly serve Him, excitedly tell others about Him, and long to worship Him" (John 14:15).
May Yahweh bless us all to seriously examine our consciences in the light of the Word so that we may have a right standing before the Most High and at a time where spiritual anointing may well be the only key to survival in an increasingly hostile and violent world. Amen.
"Matthew 5:23-24 indicates that Christians are obligated to be reconciled to anyone with whom they have a conflict. Yet in many churches this is not practiced. Church leaders are allowed to feud with one another and yet continue in ecclesiastical leadership. Entire churches refuse to forgive splinter groups, mission churches, or former pastors and yet they presume God will bless them. Churches have a corporate responsibility to seek reconciliation, just as individuals have been commanded to do so. If the church as a whole refuses to forgive, its members will also find it excusable to harbor bitterness toward others. If a church will corporately repent of unforgiveness toward another church or toward another person, it's members will be freed to be wholly reconciled with God in revival. There are many subtle attitudes, practices, and theological presuppositions which can hinder a church from experiencing revival. If these are properly dealt with, a church will be in a position to experience the mighty moving of God". (www.revivalcsa.co.za)