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News on Plural Marriage


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1 hour ago, marineland said:

That was applicable to Adam when he was alone in the garden.  The New Testament makes
clear that singleness is a gift of God too.

Great, yet another wonderful blessing I get to endure. I wish I got more of the enjoyable ones.

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On 8/1/2020 at 4:54 PM, juliann said:

 He obviously never envisioned a day when women didn't need men to survive.  

“A women needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle...”

-U2

My wife is firmly against polygamy. As am I. The thought of more than one wife seems more like a nightmare then a blessing. 

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On 11/4/2020 at 4:35 PM, sweetpotatoh said:

“A women needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle...”

-U2

My wife is firmly against polygamy. As am I. The thought of more than one wife seems more like a nightmare then a blessing. 

One can dislike something that one has to do. For example, I'd prefer to stay monogamous. But if the Lord reintroduced plural marriage, I'd accept it. Though at my age I'm unlikely to be asked to practice it, both my late and current wives were of the same mind.  If others chose to leave the church over its reintroduction, well, that's a personal choice.

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On 11/23/2020 at 11:42 AM, Stargazer said:

One can dislike something that one has to do. For example, I'd prefer to stay monogamous. But if the Lord reintroduced plural marriage, I'd accept it. Though at my age I'm unlikely to be asked to practice it, both my late and current wives were of the same mind.  If others chose to leave the church over its reintroduction, well, that's a personal choice.

I guess I should clarify, I’m not against polygamy in the Church. I’m against personally practicing it. I don’t want another wife. My wife might leave if it was restored. 

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14 hours ago, sweetpotatoh said:

I guess I should clarify, I’m not against polygamy in the Church. I’m against personally practicing it. I don’t want another wife. My wife might leave if it was restored. 

Would Joseph Smith be threatened with destruction if he refused to practice polygamy like Emma was
threatened with if she did not abide it (D&C 132:54)?

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6 hours ago, TheTanakas said:

Would Joseph Smith be threatened with destruction if he refused to practice polygamy like Emma was
threatened with if she did not abide it (D&C 132:54)?

I seem to recall that he was threatened by an angel holding a sword.

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20 hours ago, sweetpotatoh said:

I guess I should clarify, I’m not against polygamy in the Church. I’m against personally practicing it. I don’t want another wife. My wife might leave if it was restored. 

That would be her test, wouldn't it? 

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I've always wondered why an angel with a drawn sword would command Joseph to live polygamy, if Joseph is the one who first asked God if he should live it, what if he'd never asked?

And why was Joseph trying to restore polygamy in the old testament when Jesus came to fulfill the laws. 

Romans 10:4 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

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3 hours ago, Tacenda said:

if Joseph is the one who first asked God if he should live it,

My reading of D&C 132:1 suggests that Joseph wondered how the OT prophets were justified by God to have many wives when the Law forbid adultery . 

This is a prime example of " be careful what you ask about"  🤐

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14 hours ago, strappinglad said:

My reading of D&C 132:1 suggests that Joseph wondered how the OT prophets were justified by God to have many wives when the Law forbid adultery . 

This is a prime example of " be careful what you ask about"  🤐

Which reminds me of this: "Sometimes, the only thing more dangerous than a question, is an answer." - Ferengi Rule of Acquisition #208

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18 hours ago, Tacenda said:

I've always wondered why an angel with a drawn sword would command Joseph to live polygamy, if Joseph is the one who first asked God if he should live it, what if he'd never asked?

And why was Joseph trying to restore polygamy in the old testament when Jesus came to fulfill the laws. 

Romans 10:4 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

I am glad you brought this up, because it's something to study up on. I thought I understood the subject of the fulfillment of the Law of Moses, but it turns out that I don't. I love finding ignorance or mistaken belief or knowledge in myself, for the opportunity of learning that it becomes!

But without getting into details that I am unsure of, broadly speaking, the law that Jesus fulfilled was the Law of Moses. Aside from regulating certain aspects of it, plural marriage / polygamy was not part of the Law, having pre-existed it. And not having been created by the Law, the Law's fulfillment by Christ could not do away with it.

Plural marriage appears to be an eternal principle, although one that is regulated as to when it is permitted or mandated. 

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4 hours ago, Stargazer said:

Plural marriage appears to be an eternal principle, although one that is regulated as to when it is permitted or mandated. 

Plural marriage appears to be a fully cultural practice with no spiritual dimension to it outside of what those involved assign to it. It is not the preferred form of marriage for women except when few men occupy all of the resources. The patriarchs “extra” wives were usually slave girls of their legal wives and functioned as surrogates for their mistresses. Polygamy benefits the reproductive fitness of the man involved at a cost to the wives’ fitness. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6430215/#ABS1title

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6 hours ago, Stargazer said:

I am glad you brought this up, because it's something to study up on. I thought I understood the subject of the fulfillment of the Law of Moses, but it turns out that I don't. I love finding ignorance or mistaken belief or knowledge in myself, for the opportunity of learning that it becomes!

But without getting into details that I am unsure of, broadly speaking, the law that Jesus fulfilled was the Law of Moses. Aside from regulating certain aspects of it, plural marriage / polygamy was not part of the Law, having pre-existed it. And not having been created by the Law, the Law's fulfillment by Christ could not do away with it.

Plural marriage appears to be an eternal principle, although one that is regulated as to when it is permitted or mandated. 

Thanks for your post, it also caused me to look into Jesus's fulfillment of the law. I'm not saying Jesus fulfilled the polygamy law, I'm saying why would Joseph want to restore things in the Old Testament if we have the New Testament. What exactly did Joseph need to restore? I'd love a reference as to why Joseph needed to restore things that Jesus was able to do away with. Even things like sacrificing animals that Joseph tried to restore or may have even done. I've read a few articles about the restoration, but there aren't specifics as to what in the ancient church needed restoration. Maybe it's mainly a new priesthood? Something apart from the Catholic priesthood I guess. Why would he restore polygamy from reading the bible about it? But that's okay if you don't feel like giving a response. From my readings, there were many reasons. But I'm not so sure it came from God yet. 

 

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2 hours ago, katherine the great said:

Plural marriage appears to be a fully cultural practice with no spiritual dimension to it outside of what those involved assign to it. It is not the preferred form of marriage for women except when few men occupy all of the resources. The patriarchs “extra” wives were usually slave girls of their legal wives and functioned as surrogates for their mistresses. Polygamy benefits the reproductive fitness of the man involved at a cost to the wives’ fitness. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6430215/#ABS1title

Yes, I'm well aware of your disapproval of plural marriage. And of course you're not alone on this board in that "camp", as it were. I'm not all that in favor of it, come to that. Being married to one woman is, to me, rather more restful than if I were married to more than one. And I am also well aware of the objections you've given here, and your supporting document. I'm happy to grant you almost all your points. It's plain that living the principle of plural marriage righteously is darned difficult.

However, I disagree with your assessment of it being a fully cultural practice with no spiritual dimension to it. I disagree because of the 132nd section of the Doctrine and Covenants. Regardless of whether one likes plural marriage or not, or whether it is an ideal configuration of marriage in mortality, there is the inconvenient fact that the Lord has commanded it from time to time. And I feel the need to point out that if one rejects DC 132 because one does not like plural marriage, then one must also reject the principle of eternal marriage as well, because that's where that is found as well. And in that case, we're back to "until do us part." 

 

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3 hours ago, Tacenda said:

Thanks for your post, it also caused me to look into Jesus's fulfillment of the law. I'm not saying Jesus fulfilled the polygamy law, I'm saying why would Joseph want to restore things in the Old Testament if we have the New Testament. What exactly did Joseph need to restore? I'd love a reference as to why Joseph needed to restore things that Jesus was able to do away with. Even things like sacrificing animals that Joseph tried to restore or may have even done.

Joseph didn't want to restore things that Jesus was "able to do away with". And he didn't. It was not a matter of him wanting to do anything -- it was a matter of him being commanded to do this and that. Including the restoration of the authority which had been lost from the earth, as well as the restoration of the commandments of God which had been lost in the Great Apostasy.

Fulfilling the law of Moses meant, among other things, that the animal and other sacrifices were fulfilled and discontinued. Joseph did not restore these because their purpose was fulfilled and they were no longer needed. There were other carnal commandments in the law of Moses that were likewise discontinued. These were not restored, because they were part of the law of Moses, which was fulfilled and discontinued. For example, the law of Moses says that you can't plant more than one type of seed in your field. The American Indian practice of planting corn (maize) together with beans -- because the beans could use the the corn stalk as a support -- would have been forbidden by the law of Moses. Most of our houses are built in violation of the law of Moses, because that law mandates that there be a "battlement" on the roof to help prevent people falling off and killing themselves. If a farmer had a hen for eggs, once the hen could no longer produce eggs, the hen could not be cooked for dinner. 

3 hours ago, Tacenda said:

I've read a few articles about the restoration, but there aren't specifics as to what in the ancient church needed restoration. Maybe it's mainly a new priesthood? Something apart from the Catholic priesthood I guess. Why would he restore polygamy from reading the bible about it? But that's okay if you don't feel like giving a response. From my readings, there were many reasons. But I'm not so sure it came from God yet. 

What needed restoration was the priesthood, which had been lost. And following that, the restoration of the ordinances which had either been lost or been corrupted. For example, baptism for the dead had been lost. The corruptions relating to baptism had to be corrected: baptism of babies; and sprinkling in lieu of immersion. 

It doesn't seem to me that Joseph restored polygamy from reading the Bible about it. He would have been well familiar with the idea amongst Christianity that polygamy was not on the table as an acceptable practice. If Joseph thought he was restoring the original Church of Jesus Christ as described in the New Testament, it seems to me that the lack of mention of polygamy in the New Testament would have governed. When Joseph was told in the First Vision that things were going to be restored through him, why would he decide on his own initiative to bring back polygamy, when it wasn't part of the practice of the Christian church as described in the New Testament? I don't see it as likely at all that he would have brought it back without a direct command from God to do so. He grew up in a very conservative society as far as marriage rules were concerned. 

There might be some reason to think that the New Testament church was against polygamy because we have no evidence of it being practiced in those days, but without a direct prohibition from Jesus or the apostles that's an argument from silence, and as such is on very shaky ground. Further, civil law forbade it in any case; both Rome and Greece were against it. I speculate that God felt that the survival of the New Testament church was doubtful enough not to add a further source of danger.

As for it coming from God or not, I've read any number of non-LDS explanations for why polygamy is against God's laws, despite there being no explicit or even implicit prohibition of it in the very detailed and exhaustive books of Deuteronomy and Leviticus. And those arguments all seem to be grasping at straws. You'd think that if it were really against God's will, He would have put a very plain prohibition in there somewhere. For example, the law of Moses lets a man divorce his wife, but if she marries someone else and then gets divorced by the second man, the first husband may not take her back. How often does this kind of thing happen, even in modern times? And yet there we have a rule about this exceedingly rare event. If the law of Moses gets down and detailed about things like whether or not you're allowed to plant two different kinds of seeds in the same field (see Deuteronomy 22:9), why doesn't it come right out and say a man may not be married to more than one woman at a time? Again, there's a rule saying a man may not have intercourse with his wife if it's that time of the month, but there's not one peep saying he can't have more than one wife. The silence is deafening.

I don't know why a man may have more than one wife in the eternities. But for whatever reason, all the evidence points to this being an eternal principle. All the arguments against it seem to come down to "I don't like it." Which to my mind is insufficient. 

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1 hour ago, Stargazer said:

Joseph didn't want to restore things that Jesus was "able to do away with". And he didn't. It was not a matter of him wanting to do anything -- it was a matter of him being commanded to do this and that. Including the restoration of the authority which had been lost from the earth, as well as the restoration of the commandments of God which had been lost in the Great Apostasy.

Fulfilling the law of Moses meant, among other things, that the animal and other sacrifices were fulfilled and discontinued. Joseph did not restore these because their purpose was fulfilled and they were no longer needed. There were other carnal commandments in the law of Moses that were likewise discontinued. These were not restored, because they were part of the law of Moses, which was fulfilled and discontinued. For example, the law of Moses says that you can't plant more than one type of seed in your field. The American Indian practice of planting corn (maize) together with beans -- because the beans could use the the corn stalk as a support -- would have been forbidden by the law of Moses. Most of our houses are built in violation of the law of Moses, because that law mandates that there be a "battlement" on the roof to help prevent people falling off and killing themselves. If a farmer had a hen for eggs, once the hen could no longer produce eggs, the hen could not be cooked for dinner. 

What needed restoration was the priesthood, which had been lost. And following that, the restoration of the ordinances which had either been lost or been corrupted. For example, baptism for the dead had been lost. The corruptions relating to baptism had to be corrected: baptism of babies; and sprinkling in lieu of immersion. 

It doesn't seem to me that Joseph restored polygamy from reading the Bible about it. He would have been well familiar with the idea amongst Christianity that polygamy was not on the table as an acceptable practice. If Joseph thought he was restoring the original Church of Jesus Christ as described in the New Testament, it seems to me that the lack of mention of polygamy in the New Testament would have governed. When Joseph was told in the First Vision that things were going to be restored through him, why would he decide on his own initiative to bring back polygamy, when it wasn't part of the practice of the Christian church as described in the New Testament? I don't see it as likely at all that he would have brought it back without a direct command from God to do so. He grew up in a very conservative society as far as marriage rules were concerned. 

There might be some reason to think that the New Testament church was against polygamy because we have no evidence of it being practiced in those days, but without a direct prohibition from Jesus or the apostles that's an argument from silence, and as such is on very shaky ground. Further, civil law forbade it in any case; both Rome and Greece were against it. I speculate that God felt that the survival of the New Testament church was doubtful enough not to add a further source of danger.

As for it coming from God or not, I've read any number of non-LDS explanations for why polygamy is against God's laws, despite there being no explicit or even implicit prohibition of it in the very detailed and exhaustive books of Deuteronomy and Leviticus. And those arguments all seem to be grasping at straws. You'd think that if it were really against God's will, He would have put a very plain prohibition in there somewhere. For example, the law of Moses lets a man divorce his wife, but if she marries someone else and then gets divorced by the second man, the first husband may not take her back. How often does this kind of thing happen, even in modern times? And yet there we have a rule about this exceedingly rare event. If the law of Moses gets down and detailed about things like whether or not you're allowed to plant two different kinds of seeds in the same field (see Deuteronomy 22:9), why doesn't it come right out and say a man may not be married to more than one woman at a time? Again, there's a rule saying a man may not have intercourse with his wife if it's that time of the month, but there's not one peep saying he can't have more than one wife. The silence is deafening.

I don't know why a man may have more than one wife in the eternities. But for whatever reason, all the evidence points to this being an eternal principle. All the arguments against it seem to come down to "I don't like it." Which to my mind is insufficient. 

I have no issues whatsoever with polygamy when a spouse dies and then re-marries such as your case and President Nelson and Oaks and many others. I do however have a huge problem with Joseph's particular polygamy. But enough of that, in the essays about polygamy in Nauvoo I believe it says that Joseph read about the prophets in the bible that lived polygamy and then took it to the Lord and asked if it needed to be restored. 

Also, apparently Joseph did sacrifice a dog and maybe a lamb if remembering right for a sacrifice. There was a thread about it about 5 years ago on MDDB. I'll have to find it and then edit this. I found it, saw it earlier when googling about this subject. I even posted on it back then. https://www.mormondialogue.org/topic/66529-dog-sacrifice-and-joseph-smith/

 

Edited by Tacenda
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22 hours ago, Tacenda said:

Thanks for your post, it also caused me to look into Jesus's fulfillment of the law. I'm not saying Jesus fulfilled the polygamy law, I'm saying why would Joseph want to restore things in the Old Testament if we have the New Testament. What exactly did Joseph need to restore? I'd love a reference as to why Joseph needed to restore things that Jesus was able to do away with. Even things like sacrificing animals that Joseph tried to restore or may have even done. I've read a few articles about the restoration, but there aren't specifics as to what in the ancient church needed restoration. Maybe it's mainly a new priesthood? Something apart from the Catholic priesthood I guess. Why would he restore polygamy from reading the bible about it? But that's okay if you don't feel like giving a response. From my readings, there were many reasons. But I'm not so sure it came from God yet. 

 

"It is not to be understood that the law of Moses will be established again with all its rites and variety of ceremonies; this has never been spoken of by the prophets; but those things which existed prior to Moses’ day, namely, sacrifice, will be continued. It may be asked by some, what necessity for sacrifice, since the Great Sacrifice was offered? In answer to which, if repentance, baptism and faith existed prior to the days of Christ, what necessity for them since that time?"  Joseph Smith

Those things that existed from the beginning, not the Law of Moses, are those that would be restored.
IE, those laws of God as practiced by the Patriarchs - Adam, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Jacob etc.  Those men who held the fulness of the Melchizedek priesthood, not the Levitical priesthood.

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7 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

"It is not to be understood that the law of Moses will be established again with all its rites and variety of ceremonies; this has never been spoken of by the prophets; but those things which existed prior to Moses’ day, namely, sacrifice, will be continued. It may be asked by some, what necessity for sacrifice, since the Great Sacrifice was offered? In answer to which, if repentance, baptism and faith existed prior to the days of Christ, what necessity for them since that time?"  Joseph Smith

Those things that existed from the beginning, not the Law of Moses, are those that would be restored.
IE, those laws of God as practiced by the Patriarchs - Adam, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Jacob etc.  Those men who held the fulness of the Melchizedek priesthood, not the Levitical priesthood.

Thanks for some context!

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22 hours ago, Tacenda said:

I have no issues whatsoever with polygamy when a spouse dies and then re-marries such as your case and President Nelson and Oaks and many others. I do however have a huge problem with Joseph's particular polygamy. But enough of that, in the essays about polygamy in Nauvoo I believe it says that Joseph read about the prophets in the bible that lived polygamy and then took it to the Lord and asked if it needed to be restored. 

Also, apparently Joseph did sacrifice a dog and maybe a lamb if remembering right for a sacrifice. There was a thread about it about 5 years ago on MDDB. I'll have to find it and then edit this. I found it, saw it earlier when googling about this subject. I even posted on it back then. https://www.mormondialogue.org/topic/66529-dog-sacrifice-and-joseph-smith/

 

I had a look at the thread about the dog sacrifice. The upshot was that it was highly unlikely to be true, and most likely to be just one more tall tale.

As I understand it, the Word of Wisdom came about because Joseph asked the Lord about tobacco and such. It does appear that the Lord sometimes waits for a question before revealing new things. As you recall, Joseph didn't get a surprise visit from the Father and the Son about restoring the fullness of the gospel; the initiative was with Joseph. He went and asked.  And got an answer.  If this was the case about plural marriage, that's no surprise. Par for the course.

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11 minutes ago, Stargazer said:

I had a look at the thread about the dog sacrifice. The upshot was that it was highly unlikely to be true, and most likely to be just one more tall tale

And iirc those killings were about alleged magic rituals, not about religious animal sacrifices as described in scriptures and took place in the ancient Israelite temple or on altars as occurred with Adam and Eve and others.   Those were not about “restoration” of gospel practices. 

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25 minutes ago, Calm said:
 

And iirc those killings were about alleged magic rituals, not about religious animal sacrifices as described in scriptures and took place in the ancient Israelite temple or on altars as occurred with Adam and Eve and others.   Those were not about “restoration” of gospel practices. 

I seem to recall reading in one of Mark Twain's novels about how the Tom or Huck used a dead animal (dog?) to charm off a wart. Or something like that.

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On 12/28/2020 at 1:48 PM, Stargazer said:

Yes, I'm well aware of your disapproval of plural marriage

It’s not about disapproval. I don’t think plural marriage is always an unhealthy or immoral arrangement and historically certainly has been practiced. It’s about holding it up as somehow superior or preferable to monogamy in some way. It annoys me when it’s spoken of as some holy thing. Gorillas and baboons are polygynists. Monogamy is one of the things that separates us from most of the primates.

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On 12/30/2020 at 9:10 PM, katherine the great said:

It’s not about disapproval. I don’t think plural marriage is always an unhealthy or immoral arrangement and historically certainly has been practiced. It’s about holding it up as somehow superior or preferable to monogamy in some way. It annoys me when it’s spoken of as some holy thing. 

Well that is what many prophets and apostles stated.  You can't be surprised that viewing it as a higher law still lingers in the Church.

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On 12/30/2020 at 11:10 PM, katherine the great said:

It’s not about disapproval. I don’t think plural marriage is always an unhealthy or immoral arrangement and historically certainly has been practiced. It’s about holding it up as somehow superior or preferable to monogamy in some way

That's why it's highly touted in an LDS revelation.

Doctrine and Covenants 132 is about plural marriage (verses 1-3).  Several of the benefits of 
are innumerable seed (verse 30) and enhanced glorification (verse 31). Heavenly Father glorified 
himself in the same way (verse 31). Emma (and by extension any wife) would be destroyed if she 
did not abide in this covenant that Joseph Smith (and by extension other husbands) was said to 
have received (verse 54).

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1 hour ago, TheTanakas said:

That's why it's highly touted in an LDS revelation.

Doctrine and Covenants 132 is about plural marriage (verses 1-3).  Several of the benefits of 
are innumerable seed (verse 30) and enhanced glorification (verse 31). Heavenly Father glorified 
himself in the same way (verse 31). Emma (and by extension any wife) would be destroyed if she 
did not abide in this covenant that Joseph Smith (and by extension other husbands) was said to 
have received (verse 54).

Innumerable seed for who? The more sexual partners a male has, the more likely he is to have more offspring. That’s a natural law, not a spiritual one. No one disputes that polygyny usually increases a man’s reproductive fitness (duh). As far as Emma being destroyed well... that didn’t seem to happen.

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