Jehovah did not institute them in the beginning. But they do exist and it is not yet God’s time for removing them. So he gives his servants directions as to how they should conduct themselves in relation to this arrangement that he is allowing for a time.—Rom. 13:1-7.
Just what is the Christian stand on polygamy? Is it permitted, or has God’s period of tolerating it passed?
Before making the comments quoted above, Jesus drew on Genesis 2:24, saying: “A man will leave his father and his mother and will stick to his wife, and the two will be one flesh.” (Matt. 19:5) God gave Adam just one wife. The pattern was that the TWO, not three or four, would be one flesh. Plainly Jesus was directing his followers to return to God’s original way for human marriage, a man’s having only one living wife. Under inspiration the apostle Paul showed that this is the correct understanding. In 1 Corinthians 7:2, he wrote: “Let each man have his own wife and each woman have her own husband.” And he directed that an appointed servant in the congregation was to be “a husband of one wife,” demonstrating the standard for Christians.—Titus 1:6; 1 Tim. 3:2, 12.
God thus brought to a close the period of concession as to the marital arrangement. He simply returned matters to what he instituted in the beginning. There was, then, no change in God’s morality—it remained perfect. And Jehovah continued to oppose sexual immorality. He consistently viewed it as despicable and deserving of severe punishment.—Gal. 5:19-21; 1 Cor. 5:9-13; 6:9, 10.
As we have seen, under both arrangements—when he temporarily permitted polygamy and under the Christian system, when he requires monogamy—Jehovah has opposed looseness and sexual immorality, and has encouraged restraint, love and respect in marriage. Moses had spoken of Jehovah as “righteous and upright.” Christ and Paul also referred to Jehovah as righteous. (John 17:25; Rom. 3:26) And we today have good reason to concur with them, knowing that God has been consistent and perfect in morality.
Would you be willing to sacrifice something that is precious to you in behalf of a friend? Likely you would. But what about those who are strangers? One of the most precious assets, time, is being sacrificed by over one million of Jehovah’s witnesses largely in behalf of those they have not previously known. They delight to do this, for it enables them to offer public declaration to God and his name, bringing praise to Him and blessings to those who listen to the Bible’s comforting message. During November they will not only spend time offering the Bible-study-aid book, The Truth That Leads to Eternal Life, on a contribution of 25c, but they will also conduct a free home Bible study with anyone who desires to learn about God and his provisions for salvation.
FOR A NEW UNDERSTANDING
The Psalms say of the Bible: “Your word is a lamp to my foot, and a light to my roadway.” (Ps. 119:105) Do you know enough about the Bible for it to serve you in this way? You can. You should. Because the apostle Paul wrote to a young Christian: “All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching, for reproving, for setting things straight, for disciplining in righteousness, that the man of God may be fully competent, completely equipped for every good work.” (2 Tim. 3:16, 17) Now, with the book The Truth That Leads to Eternal Life, you can open your Bible with a new understanding. This book of 192 pages takes you in logical order through the basic teachings of the Bible and gives you a real hope for the future. Get your copy at once. Send only 25c.
“WATCHTOWER” STUDIES FOR THE WEEKS
November 9: Acquaint Yourself with God and Keep Peace, ¶1-22. Page 649. Songs to Be Used: 72, 22.
November 16: Acquaint Yourself with God and Keep Peace, ¶23-44. Page 653. Songs to Be Used: 2, 8.
November 23: Acquaintance with God Leads to Eternal Peace, ¶1-19. Page 658. Songs to Be Used: 21, 81.