Since I commenced writing my articles in support of polygamy, many Christian leaders have argued that polygamy is an Old Testament, not a New Testament, practice; therefore, I should not use Old Testament passages to prove the Biblicalness of polygamy.
While some express their views via emails and text messages, others, such as pastors and preachers, use the pulpit not only to attack me, but also to state that polygamy was only an Old Testament practice, that we are no longer under the Old Testament and that, since we are no longer under the Old Testament, we should not bring or force Old Testament practices under the New testament.
Some of them do it civilly, while others do it uncivilly, but I welcome all. One Jimmy Pailey, after reading one of my articles, sent me the following message in an email:
“Hello Paul Yeenie Harry,
“I read your argument to polygamy.
“You lie and you are a sinner. We are in the Christian age; we should live like Christ. It is wrong to marry more than 1 wife because we are in the Christian age. Secondly, if you want to drink, do it. It is wrong to drink because drinking leads you to drunkenness & drunkenness leads you to sin. You sinner read Matthew 19:4-7 &proverb 20:1. I’ll email you more & I’ll address Your Greatness of God article.”
To Jimmy Pailey I replied: “Thank you, non-sinner and truth-teller.Your faithfulness in the things of God is even highly graded by your conscience!”
For those who write, whether via email or text message, I respond for two main reasons. First of all, I do it out of respect. If a person reads an article and, after reading it, takes some time out of their busy schedule to write me, I feel that I am under obligation to respond. Second, I do it because I enjoy the exchange of ideas. Because the issue of “individual differences” is a reality and because it is said that no one has monopoly over ideas, I like to interact with others and discover or know what they think or know.
For the pastors and preachers who use their Sunday morning pulpits to respond to my articles about polygamy, I think the exercise is somehow sad and painful because I lack the chance to respond to them in front of the same audience. And I think it is unfair to me, too. If they were to challenge me to a debate in front of their members, I would gladly accept it. I would like for the same audience to hear me, too, not only to hear them.
If such people don’t want us to engage in a face-to-face debate, let them write some articles based on the anti-polygamy sermons and send them to the Dew Dawn newspaper. We will publish them free of charge. We hope a preacher will send one or two articles this week, next week or some other time.
Now, let’s focus on the argument about us not being under the Old Testament. Differently stated, some say that the New testament, not the Old Testament, is now in force or relevant in discussing or considering topics and issues and doctrines about Christianity. That means, we should not cite Old Testament scriptures to talk about things that the church should engage in or teach.
Frankly, considering many passages – including Galatians 3:19-25, Colossians 2:14-17, Hebrews 8:7-13 and other passages – it may be reasonable to conclude that we are no longer under the Old Testament, just as those challenging my use of Old Testament passages to prove polygamy are doing.
But here is the problem – or, rather, the inconsistency. The preachers and pastors and other Christians arguing that I should not use Old Testament passages to prove polygamy are the very ones fond of using Old Testament passages to defend their churches’ doctrines and practices. I consider this inconsistency beyond belief.
In this article, permit me to pinpoint three of the most popular doctrines or practices nearly all of the pastors and preachers and other Christians lambasting me for using Old Testament scriptures to prove polygamy are engaged in based on Old Testament passages. I am purposefully indulging in this so that many of you the readers can know the open inconsistencies and religious shenanigans those forbidding me to use Old Testament verses to discuss church-related issues enjoy using Old Testament passages to prove their doctrines and practices. They want to eat their cake and have it.
The One-Man-One-Wife Argument Deduced from Genesis 2
Most Christians, including pastors and preachers, teach that monogamy is the way to go; in other words, Christians should practice monogamy because according to the creation account of Genesis, God made one man and one woman; meaning, they argue, each man is to have one wife, and each woman is to have one husband. Then they crown it by quoting Genesis 2:24, an Old Testament passage, which says that a MAN shall leave his father and mother and shall cleave to his WIFE, and they both shall become ONE FLESH.
Here is the inconsistency. If Christians are required to practice monogamy because of an Old Testament passage, why is it wrong to use Old Testament passages to prove the practice of polygamy? We are either under the Old Testament or not under it. We cannot have one leg in it and have the other leg in the New Testament. We cannot have it both ways.
The Payment of Tithe in the Church
The payment of tithe is not a New Testament teaching. I repeat. The payment of tithe that most churches and Christians are involved in is not done because of some New Testament scripture.
There is not a single New Testament scripture that instructs Christians to pay tithe, yet church leaders and other Christians believe that tithe paying is a Christian practice. I know of a lot of people, including family members and friends, who commit themselves to the payment of tithe in this Christian Age because they say it is a Christian obligation.
Now, this is the interesting part. The pastors and preachers and other Christians who say that I should not use Old Testament passages to talk about polygamy are the very people using Old Testament passages to talk about the paying of tithe. They quote such Old Testament passages as Genesis 14:18-20, Leviticus 27:30-34, Malachi 3:8-11 to prove their case. Don’t they realize that these are all Old Testament passages? Why are they using them to prove what they are doing in the church? Inconsistency!
It is important to restate the argument. The payment of tithe is a Jewish, Old Testament teaching and practice. It is not a New Testament doctrine or practice. How Christians are required to give to God is clearly written in such New Testament passages as I Corinthians 16:1-2, II Corinthians 9:7 and others. No Christians are required to pay tithe as far as New Testament teachings and practices are concerned.
Now, if a preacher or pastor or Christian thinks that is it right to pay tithe because of some Old Testament doctrine or practice, then why should it be wrong to practice polygamy based on the same Old Testament? They cannot have their left foot in the Old Testament and have their right foot in the New Testament. They have to learn to be consistent.
The Use of Instrumental Music in the Church
Almost all congregations in Christendom use instrumental music in their worship services. Even right here in Liberia, it is almost impossible to visit a church on Sunday morning and not hear some kind of instrument—whether piano, guitar, drum or some other instrument.
Here is the absorbing aspect in all this. There is nowhere in the New Testament where it is stated or commanded that people in the Christian Age should use instrumental music in the church. I challenge any pastor or preacher – or just any Christian – that uses instrument in worship to show where in the New Testament such a teaching or practice is commanded or found.
But here is the inconsistency about all this. When all the pastors and preachers using or allowing instrumental music in their churches are asked to prove why they use instruments in their worship services, the quickly run to a series of Old testament passages, including Psalms 150, and are apt to talk about King David using instruments, forgetting to know that David did it in Old Testament time and that David also had at least six wives.
If it is right for Christians to use instrumental music all because David used it or all because it was used in the Old Testament, why is it wrong for the same Christians to practice polygamy since the same David practiced it in the same Old Testament? To be consistent, those heralding with the we-are-no-longer-under-the-Old-testament argument should not have one foot in the Old Testament and the other foot in the New Testament. Both feet need to be in the same place.
To be continued…
Believe me, my people. We will never stop following the issues.