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Didn’t all the Bible characters have more than one wife?

Not as many as you may think.

Abraham married Sarah, but when she could not conceive, Sarah convinced Abraham to have sex with Hagar, her servant. Hagar acted as a surrogate mother. It was wrong for Sarah to suggest such an act and it produced Ishmael. Abraham never considered Hagar his wife.

Isaac, Abraham and Sarah’s son, married only one wife, Rebekah, and had twins, Jacob and Esau.

Jacob was tricked into marrying Leah, but really wanted to marry her sister Rachel. Eventually he married her too. When those wives could not conceive, he was given their servants, Bilhad and Zilpah, making the same mistake as his grandfather.

As for the others, Noah had one wife. Joseph, one of Jacob’s sons, had one wife. Moses had one wife.

It’s when you get to the rich kings that you see multiple wives—David and Solomon. The number of wives is ridiculous and indicates a sinful abundance. While they had a relationship with God, they had an unhealthy appetite for women. It caused their downfall and God did not bless their relationships.

When God made the first man and woman, He brought them together and said this:

For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. Genesis 2:24

God made woman from the DNA of a man then united them back together, creating a single relationship unit. How can you add a third, fourth or fifth person to that relationship and make you more than one flesh? Marriage is two halves making a whole. The formula doesn’t work any other way and only becomes complicated.

Everyone who had more than one wife in the Bible faced strife, jealousy and long term legacy problems (warring families, etc.). God never instructed anyone to take another wife.