Marriage Laws – Council of Trent on Matrimony

By Laurom – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=8465486

When Martin Luther nailed his list of 95 theses to a church door in Germany in 1517, he ignited a debate that led to the Protestant Reformation. Reading over the list of 95 theses, nothing there was said about marriage.

Yet, the Protestant Reformation over the next 30 years generated enough theological pressure that the Roman Catholic prelates convened the Council of Trent to create the Catholic Counter-Reformation. This Council met from 1545 to 1563 over 25 sessions.

In the 24th session, in the year 1563, the prelates considered matrimony. The text is available at this location: Council of Trent, 1563, Session XXIV. I quote from the preamble and the first three canons issued by this session below.

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Martin Madan Explains Ruth 4:6

When the Reverend Martin Madan wrote the first volume of his seminal work, Thelypthora, he took the time to consider the case of Boaz and the kinsman who was nearer to Ruth than he was. This is recorded in Ruth chapter four. He offers a succinct and common-sense analysis of why the kinsman refused. Let’s read Ruth 4:1-12 (NASB).

Now Boaz went up to the gate and sat down there, and behold, the close relative of whom Boaz spoke was passing by, so he said, “Turn aside, friend, sit down here.” And he turned aside and sat down. He took ten men of the elders of the city and said, “Sit down here.” So they sat down. Then he said to the closest relative, “Naomi, who has come back from the land of Moab, has to sell the piece of land which belonged to our brother Elimelech. So I thought to inform you, saying, ‘Buy it before those who are sitting here, and before the elders of my people. If you will redeem it, redeem it; but if not, tell me that I may know; for there is no one but you to redeem it, and I am after you.’” And he said, “I will redeem it.” Then Boaz said, “On the day you buy the field from the hand of Naomi, you must also acquire Ruth the Moabitess, the widow of the deceased, in order to raise up the name of the deceased on his inheritance.” The closest relative said, “I cannot redeem it for myself, because I would jeopardize my own inheritance. Redeem it for yourself; you may have my right of redemption, for I cannot redeem it.” Now this was the custom in former times in Israel concerning the redemption and the exchange of land to confirm any matter: a man removed his sandal and gave it to another; and this was the manner of attestation in Israel. So the closest relative said to Boaz, “Buy it for yourself.” And he removed his sandal. Then Boaz said to the elders and all the people, “You are witnesses today that I have bought from the hand of Naomi all that belonged to Elimelech and all that belonged to Chilion and Mahlon. 10 Moreover, I have acquired Ruth the Moabitess, the widow of Mahlon, to be my wife in order to raise up the name of the deceased on his inheritance, so that the name of the deceased will not be cut off from his brothers or from the court of his birth place; you are witnesses today.” 11 All the people who were in the court, and the elders, said, “We are witnesses. May the Lord make the woman who is coming into your home like Rachel and Leah, both of whom built the house of Israel; and may you achieve wealth in Ephrathah and become famous in Bethlehem. 12 Moreover, may your house be like the house of Perez whom Tamar bore to Judah, through the offspring which the Lord will give you by this young woman.”

Ruth 4:1-12 NASB
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The “Thlibo” Path of Polygyny Marriage as a Positive

A common objection thrown up by those who argue against Biblical polygyny is the fact that in Biblical polygynous families, we see a lot of family difficulties and sometimes, outright pain. Setting aside the equally common rebuttal that in monogamous families, we see the same kind of pain, there’s something about the difficulties that polygynous families experience that naysayers are not considering, and quite possibly that’s due to a monogamy-only translator bias, as well as the all-too-human reflexive avoidance of pain.

Before we go into the weeds with the Greek-to-English translations, I want to note that a recent story broke about when a Tanzanian miner became an overnight millionaire when he sold two of the largest chunks of Tanzanite ever found in that African country. The BBC article that reported the find also mentioned that the miner had 4 wives and 30 children. The Fox News article that reported the same story linked to the same BBC article mentioned the 30 children but was silent on the 4 wives. This is an excellent current example of how discomfort with polygyny will lead to suppression of relevant facts.

Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

Matthew 7:13-14 KJV
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Marriage and Sanctification

While I have long understood that one reason God created marriage was to image His relationship with His people (Eph. 5:22-33), to a much lesser degree, I understood that a purpose for marriage is sanctification. It was not, however, until the last couple years of understanding Biblical marriage, that I began to understand how very significant the aspect of sanctification is.

Sanctification, by definition, is the process of ‘making holy.’ Holy means ‘set apart’ or ‘consecrate,’ so ‘sanctification’ means ‘the process of setting apart, or making holy.’ See the following snip from an online dictionary:

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Marriage Laws – God or Caesar?

When people put forth arguments against the polygyny laws of the Old Testament, one of them is that if there are laws on the books that make polygyny illegal, then even if it’s legal in the Old Testament, it’s not legal in the present day, and the secular law is the controlling authority and should be obeyed.

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Letters to my Sister Wife: Letting go

April 10th, 2020 Friday

Dearest sister wife,

I wanted to start this journal/letter about a week ago. Writing things down helps me think more clearly. I have not always been this way; it is something I just recently started doing, and I wonder if it is my age. Almost being 40 causes a lot of change in one’s character, I suppose. I am currently in the back seat of our Toyota taking my mind off of Matthew teaching Jamie to drive. I have earbuds in listening to Pandora and writing to you, so I can’t hear what’s going on. I’m too busy writing to look up and see how I might end up dying! My life these days feels like I have no control of anything.


I guess the point is, I NEED TO LET GO. Let life happen. Walk in faith and truth. God and Matthew are leading me to be the strong woman I am meant to be. Oh great! I just freaked out as I felt the car slowing down behind an Amish family in a horse and buggy, Jamie had to pass up. Oh, my soul! Sigh, we didn’t hit them. Thank you, Lord!  I did end up speaking out in freak out mode though. I did what I said I wouldn’t do before we started the driving lesson. I freaked out. I can’t turn up the music loud enough, can’t keep my head down in writing long enough, to do what I set my mind to do. To submit myself in silent stillness and allow Matthew to be the one leading Jamie in her driving lesson. I guess she is not the only one taking a life lesson. Boy, I still have to work on me, I see, but I knew that, I always know that—another reason for these letters.

Love, Jessie

Click here to see all entries in Jessie’s Journal.

The Journey Begins, Pathway to Sisterhood

Introduction 

About me: I am a 1st wife who is about to embark on opening up my heart to plural marriage. I am fully submitted to God’s leading in my husband’s life as we move towards our search for a second wife. I was not brought up embracing this kind of lifestyle. I was not exposed to it even in the church. Imagine that.  Those stories are never told. I grew up as an Independent Fundamental Baptist and my family and I still currently attend the same kind of church. Only 2 years ago God opened the door to polygyny in my heart and mind; He hasn’t closed it since. Full disclosure – I have tried to close it many times with everything I can muster.

It wasn’t until the beginning of this year 2020, God had really placed this upon my Husband, Matthew’s heart and oh boy, I was NOT ready for this kind of news, nor was I even on the same page anymore. I didn’t realize what a traumatic toll it was going to take on me. Where before it was nice, happy thoughts we “joked” about often, especially, when I could have used an extra hand. I mentally CHECKED OUT! In reality it was my worst nightmare. Freddy Krueger’s Nightmare on Elm Street had nothing on this. I’d have willingly checked into one of the hotels there and could have had a semi decent life running from deaths door at this point. I could even go as far as to say I think I wanted to be done with religion all together, maybe become atheist, try my best to avoid God and avoid this topic all together. It got real and it got really scary, pretty quick. 

It wasn’t until I had many purposeful, tearful, sometimes angry talks with God that He told me this was His will, not Matthew’s. Matthew was just following what his purpose was, as he walks in faith daily and seeks out the truths in scripture. He told me to learn to temper myself and even though anger and fear was a normal human reaction of the flesh He wanted me to “Be still and know that I am God.” In time many scriptures continued to flood my soul. What are you wanting Lord? Why this? Why NOW? I have only had monogamous relationships, grew up learning monogamy was the only and correct way. I am almost 40 and Lord this seems silly for ME. Why me? And the only answer I ever get to these questions are the fact that we are His Elite. Let that sink in. How beautiful that is. 

 I had no one to lean on and no community to help me embrace this journey. I felt so alone. I just wanted a friend that I could connect with so badly. I needed prayer, I needed encouragement. There were times I needed a shoulder to cry on and even more times that I needed another Godly individual to tell me I wasn’t crazy to go through with this. 

God eventually allowed me to find the friends many of which have come to my aid through divine appointments. But before that came about, he purposefully had me alone for a short season while he spent a lot of one on one time with me. Teaching me to trust him, trust the truth, and trust his will. During my solo journey I dug deeper into scriptures and questioned my own reasoning. I always returned to a place of spiritual grounding. Each time, I had to fight my flesh, fight the enemy, and walk through fire. I eventually came to a place of peace. I’m calling this time in my life “1st wife in training”. I have not received my diploma just yet. I am still in my season of training.  

God put it in my heart to start writing. This is my journey. God’s will be done. Not my own.  

I aim to write down my training and my journey to help more women just like myself. Are you in your own season of struggling to accept Polygyny as God’s will for your own life? I couldn’t imagine what mental anguish 1st wives are putting themselves through without a friend in the world to lean on. A Godly friend that won’t steer them away from the truth. God continues to bring what I need. I believe it is for the purpose of helping out other 1st wives on their journeys. I hope it blesses and encourages and to God be all the glory. 

Battling lawlessness and cold love with polygyny

In sober tones, Messiah Yeshua warned His disciples that “Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold” (Matthew 24:12). This warning is in the passage about the end times. We know from I John 3:4 that “everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness”. In other words, sin increases and love grows cold.

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Our Polygynous Fathers

*not an ‘accurate’ representation of the persons or events depicted…. 😉

A central thread that runs through the whole of Scripture that both Christendom and Judaism try to hide, minimize, or ignore is polygyny. So, to expose that thread and demonstrate how very central the subject is, let’s take a gander at it by considering various angles.

Characters:

  • Hebrews 11 names many of the following as ‘men approved by God’…
  • Abraham had at least two concubines besides Sarah. (Genesis 25:6)
  • Jacob had four wives, therefore, all who are descended from or grafted into Israel have a father who is polygynous.
  • Moses married the Zipporah and the Cushite woman. The latter incurred Miriam’s displeasure and we see God’s response…. (Numbers 12)
  • Caleb, Joshua’s righteous companion who entered the land, had …wives.
  • Gideon had 70 sons, plus. (Judges 8:30-31)
  • Elkanah, father of Samuel, had two wives.
  • David, man after God’s own heart, had eight wives and ten concubines (1 Chronicles 3:1-9).
  • Solomon, greatest king of Israel.
  • Joash was given two wives by the High Priest and ‘did what was right in the sight of the Lord…’ (2 Chronicles 24:2-3, 15-16)
  • Oh, God, by His own Word testifies to (allegorically) having two brides. (Ezekiel 23:2, 4; Jeremiah 3:8; 31:32)
  • Others…

Authors of Scripture:

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