26. From Eden to the New Jerusalem
Another argument of the anti-polygamist is that we should be trying to return to the ideal state of paradise that was once in the Garden of Eden. As the first humans were a monogamist couple, we should therefore have monogamy as our ideal for marriage, they say.
However ideal the Garden of Eden was in some respects, it was not ideal in others. Our first parents went naked because they were innocent. Should we go round naked too? (I suppose in a sin-free, innocent world it would not matter). Also, Adam and Eve's children married each other contrary to the laws Yahweh later gave in Leviticus 18. It wasn't a sin then because that was the only way to multiply the human family - there wasn't anyone else to marry - but it is a sin now because there are others who are not close relatives to marry. If we are to imitate our first parents, then it should be all right for brothers and sisters to marry too. And we should offer animal sacrifices as well.
The point is we don't live in Eden, we aren't allowed to be nudists, and we are forbidden to marry brothers or sisters, and animal sacrifices have been done away with. We can never return to the simple innocence of Eden, and never will. As Christians our eyes are on the New Jerusalem (Rev.3:12; 21.2) which is polygamous both in our allegorical relationship as the Church (Messianic Community) to Christ, and in our own personal marriages (Isa.4:1).
All marriage begins with one man and one woman, and that is precisely how earth life began in Eden. Later, men took more wives and Yahweh wrote laws protecting multiple marriages. We are supposed to be looking forwards, not backwards:
"And Yah'shua (Jesus) said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of Eloah (God)" (Luke 9:62, KJV).
We can none of us retreat to our childhood. We have to grow up and become mature:
"When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things" (1 Cor.13:11, NKJV).
Plural marriage is "grown-up" marriage for the spiritually mature. Not everyone is called into it because not everyone can manage it. But under no circumstances should those who are called, and who are mature, be bound to the cradle by the false doctrines of the immature and be forced to remain as infants because they can't manage such a lifestyle themselves or because they choose to be wilfully blind to what the Bible clearly teaches.
We are not supposed to be looking at the first Adam for our spiritual guidance but to the second one, the Lord Yah'shua (Jesus):
"And so it is written, "The first man Adam became a living being." The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual. The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven. As was the man of dust, so also are those who are made of dust; and as is the heavenly Man, so also are those who are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man" (1 Cor.15:45-49, NKJV).
And what is the allegorical marriage lifestyle of the second Man? Plural marriage!
This page was first created on 1 March 2003
Last updated on 26 February 2009
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