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Can a Christian Take a Second Wife If His First Wife Refuses to Stay with Him?

The question of whether a Christian can take a second wife if the first refuses to stay with him is a complex and debated issue within Christianity. It is important to note that Christian beliefs and practices vary among denominations and individuals. There is no one-size-fits-all answer, but I can provide some general perspectives.

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Monogamy: Many Christian denominations strongly advocate for monogamy based on specific biblical passages. For example, in the New Testament, Jesus affirms the principle of monogamy in Matthew 19:4-6 (NIV):

“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason, a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

Between Woman and Man

This passage is often cited as support for the idea that marriage is intended to be a lifelong union between one man and one woman.

Divorce and Remarriage: In some Christian traditions, divorce and remarriage are permitted under certain circumstances, such as adultery or abandonment by a spouse. For example, Matthew 19:9 (NIV) states:

“I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.”

In these cases, remarriage is typically seen as acceptable within the bounds of Christian ethics.

Cultural and Denominational Differences

Widowhood: In cases where a spouse has passed away, remarriage is generally considered acceptable in Christianity, and this is supported by various biblical passages.

Cultural and Denominational Variations: It’s important to note that different Christian denominations and cultural contexts may have varying interpretations and practices regarding marriage and divorce. Some denominations may be more permissive of divorce and remarriage, while others may have stricter interpretations.

Ultimately, the decision to take a second spouse should be guided by one’s own faith tradition, beliefs, and convictions. Consulting with a trusted religious leader or clergy member within one’s denomination can provide specific guidance based on that tradition’s teachings and interpretations of Scripture.

But What Do the Scriptures Say?

The Word of the Eternal Father teaches men to love their wives and wives to honor and respect their husbands all their days. Nevertheless, if a woman leaves her husband in divorce and marries another, he can find another wife. If she leaves via separation and remains unmarried, she must communicate the specified time she requires or desires separation.

And if the separation is stated to be egregious, such as ten years or indefinite, she should not abandon the duties of a wife. If she won’t perform the duties she vowed or agreed to perform, she should make provisions for those things to be done. Remember, marriage is a covenant agreement of the most sacred and holy order. What we agree to perform, we must perform it until the dismissal of either party.

Paul addressed this issue in 1st Corinthians Chapter 7

The apostle stated it is okay for a man not to get married and engage with women, but if he does this, he should not become a single man who is sleeping with women randomly discretionally, or publically. Instead, he is commanded to take his own wife and vice versa, a woman should have her own husband. These were written singular, not plural as in wives or husbands (verses 1-3).

Once married, they are a partnership; the woman no longer can say, it’s my body I can do what I want, and neither can the husband with his body. It is interesting how when a woman is taking a cooperate job, the HR will say this position cannot sustain someone who will become with child while in office.

If the woman takes the position, she is agreeing during that time not to become pregnant or she will breach the contract. Why is this? It was stated before they agreed on what the terms of the work were, that she has no power over her own body during this agreement period. This same would take place if the job told a woman or man, that the position requires they work from 3 am to 3 pm every day. If this time schedule is breached, the man or woman would be dismissed from the position.

Marriage, a Social Institution

This is the case with all institutions that tell students how to dress, and how to behave as a member of this university, sorority, fraternity, business, company, or team. We tend to follow these easily in these situations but find it terribly difficult to follow them in the first institution given to humanity.

The marriage institution; In this institution, husband and wife do not respect the institution or each other perhaps because familiarity breeds resentment. There are also other factors, however, in a marriage, in a partnership, the husband and wife no longer have power of their own body, but joint power. As I have displayed in other institutions that husbands and wives respect, the same respect should be brought home. That was verse four.

In verse five, Paul states not to defraud one another in what we agreed on and more than that, what we physically need from each other. This is not only intimacy, but spouses should be there for each other spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and any other way to help each other sustain the challenges of life. Bringing home the “bacon” or money alone is not enough; giving up the loving “intimacy” is not enough. We as individuals have other needs that need fulfilling and we should trust our spouse to fulfill those needs.

Fulfill Your Spousal Duties and Responsibilities

If not, they should be present in assisting the fulfillment of those needs. This can be from anything such as taking walks together, engaging in healthy conversations, allowing me to get things off my chest verbally, advice for work situations, or other platonic relationships. The idea is spouses have to be there to fulfill spousal duties. If they are unable, let it be with consent for a time.

The previous example was with a job. A normal person like you would not irresponsibly be a no show for a month with your job. You wouldn’t do that without making your company aware of the time off you need. Likewise with your spouse, if you are not going to have intimacy or have issues with it, your spouse should know how long this will be.

If you are not going to have dinner with the family or provide meals for the family, your spouse should know how long your timeout will be. Typically, these timeouts are for fasting and prayer, but occasionally, we may need to get our minds together. Communicate it with your spouse. If not, Satan can use this to tempt the spouse who is without their needs. That was verse five

The Order of Levi and Melchizedek Agree

Paul appears to speak common law from both Levitical Law and Melchizedek Law in the first five verses. In verse six, he requests to speak with his own permission and not the commandment of the Eternal Father.

Paul would like if all men were as he were; Paul was an unmarried man. However, Paul also knew each man has his own gift from the Creator. Therefore he states that the widowed and unmarried, if they can do it, they should do it. However, if they cannot, it is better to get married than to burn with lustful desires that they may eventually act upon to their detriment.

To the married, Paul commanded, not the Anointed One (the Christ), Paul commands a wife not to depart from her husband (verse 10). If she does depart, she should remain unmarried and become reconciled to her husband and a set time. As for the husband, he should not put away or divorce his wife (verse 11).

Immature Marriages

There are brothers and sisters who got married immaturely. They did not consider things beyond the honeymoon phase. Couples like this did not go deeply into the complex belief systems and networks of their spouse. They find out a year or two into the marriage being a Christian to them only was surface level.

The husband’s wife stops attending church, but she is happy to stay with him in the marriage. He should not divorce her because she is pleased to dwell with him; she just does not like church. She married her husband because he was a good man and she knew to tie the knot, the church was a make or break for him. Although deceitful to an extent, she did the church thing during the honeymoon phase but stopped after a while. Paul says, stay with her; this is vice versa for the man who did and does this also.

However, if they stop going to church and stop coming home, they are ideally considered missing. Place a summons on them. Communications of their ideas and plans for the remainder of the marriage should be outlined and communicated. Paul commands to let them leave. If a wife or husband cannot get their spouse to come back after a period of time, let them leave. Or if she or he simply divorces and leaves, let them leave.

Treat Marriage As You Would Your Job or Business…

Remember the example with the other institutions. On a job, a no-call no no-show is grounds for termination in most jobs.

However, your spouse is not your employee, they are your business partner. An ownership group has to help the other group through mental illness. This is if it comes upon them, they have to help through physical illness, through all hardships.

They cannot simply throw out a partner because the partner begins to miss meetings because they are going through issues. Sure, a partner is supposed to carry their weight. But sometimes people are going through stuff they can’t understand, let alone you. The stronger of the partners needs to carry the infirmities of the weaker until the ship is back sailing smoothly.

What Do We Say, How Do We Judge?

So, can a Christian take on a second wife if the first wife refuses to stay with him? This question is wide. Does he want a second wife in addition to the absent first wife? Or does he want to divorce the first and marry the second? Is she not staying with him as in staying in his house or staying with him as in being married?

This question needs to be tightened up for a better reply. On the surface of how it was asked, if the first wife divorced and moved on, yes. A Christian can remarry. Husbands should talk to their wives and renegotiate the marriage contract. This is especially so if a wife is still married but chooses to live on her own. 

Perhaps she would permit him a second wife to fulfill what she is unable or unwilling to fulfill for her husband. That is a conversation between husband and wife, and she needs to sign off on it.

Be strong and very courageous, and stay focused because the time is at hand.

Repent for the Kingdom of Heaven is near.

Minister Koko

BSM-AKOPPI and Abantu Kingdom of Priest Preparatory Institute

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  1. Vera Vera

    Very interesting article on marriage. I am an 80 year old widow with no intentions of remarriage

    • Hey Sis Vera, praise the Almighty. Sorry for your loss though I celebrate when saints make the transitions.

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