Paul's One Mate Scriptures
                                                   Only One Marriage? One Mate? Or What?  
                                                                           Article dC

                                                         Article cR and article cT relate to this article.

     In old times in Israel, not only were women whose husbands had died allowed to remarry, but divorced women also were
allowed to quite freely remarry.  The divorce and remarriage permission or leniency as in the law of Moses is considered quite
extensively in paragraphs 1-7 of article cT, paragraphs 12-13 of article bY, and in chapter 4 of article aW.  Although Apostle
Paul would have had this particular leniency in his background, yet it appears he in the Christian era did not allow divorced
women to so freely remarry.  Yet even so, Paul still clearly allowed women to remarry if their husbands had died.  Following
are two of Paul's teachings which clearly reveal this;      dC-1

     (Rom 7:2-4)  "For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the
husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another
man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though
she be married to another man."      dC-2

     (1 Cor 7:39)  "The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to
be married to whom she will; only in the Lord."      dC-3

                                                                 1 Tim 5:9-10
     Although Paul in the above paragraphs very clearly allowed widow women to remarry, yet  Paul in 1 Timothy 5:9-14
(according to our KJV) made some statements which could very much be understood otherwise.  Firstly we will consider 1
Tim 5:9-10 which verses are significantly opposed to widows remarrying, and later on we will consider verses 11-12 which are
very opposed to widows remarrying.  Note, the subject of polygamy will also be considered as these Scriptures are examined.  
In verses 9-10 of this Scripture Paul speaking about widows who were eligible to enter their Church aid program said,  "Let not
a widow be taken into the number under threescore years old, having been the wife of one man, Well reported of for good
works..." (1Tim 5:9-10).  Note how Paul here appears to restrict this special church aid to widows having had only one
husband.  Does Paul here really mean that a Godly widow who had remarried and unfortunately became a widow a second
time should be refused this special aid, while those who only had this unfortunate thing happen once be granted it?  Is this
Scripture translated correctly?  Paul in other Scriptures clearly taught that widows could remarry, so why would he here
advocate that the unfortunate woman whose second husband also died, should be refused this aid and which aid first time
widows were granted?  This issue is clarified more later.      dC-4

     Further it also seems quite unlikely that Paul here in restricting this church aid to "one husband wives" would have been
addressing feminine polygamy (a polygamy wherein women had two husbands simultaneously), as such very much would have
been a very irrelevant issue to address or focus upon.  Note, feminine polygamy never was practiced throughout all Jewish
history, and does not appear was practiced among any cultures.  Thus if Paul here in restricting this special aid to one husband
wives, was not disallowing women who had married twice and had become widows a second time, nor was particularly
addressing feminine polygamy, what was he then speaking of?  Is it possible that Paul in restricting this aid to "one husband
wives" was simply refusing those women who earlier had been involved with loose knit and erroneous companionships, rather
than having had a stable and appropriate companionship?  Paul throughout this chapter clearly advocated he wanted this aid
given only to those who were widows indeed (1 Tim 5:3&5&16).  Paul also in this Scripture advocated these widows were to
be destitute (needy), and widows who were contributive to the church, and that the church should not be burdened with others
(1 Tim 5:10&16).  Note, in the Greek, Paul simply used three words, to define his one mate requirement, which he required of
these widows, as in the term "one husband wife".       dC-5

     In further considering the term one husband wife and what Paul might have meant by it, one should consider similar terms
and consider what they might pertain to.  For example a one occupation wife could be a wife that consistently stays with her
occupation rather than jumping from one occupation to another.  A one food wife could be a wife who most often seems to
make one kind of food.  A one color wife could be a wife that would seem to have most everything one color, and a one tract
mind wife would be a wife that seems to stick with one line of thoughts.  Yet just because these wives could be counted one as
such does not mean they must strictly have had only one job, or ate one food, or had one color, or thought one thought.  In
this manner the word one can very much be used in a way wherein it does not need to absolutely mean one.  Considering these
things it appears that any upright widow, who had a stable and appropriate companionship, and to which she had been faithful
(rather than having had loose and erroneous companionships), could have been counted as a one husband wife, eligible for
church aid, and even if she had been married more than once.  In considering these things it appears Paul could very much
have used the term "one husband wife" without having any particular focus on polygamy or on disqualifying widows who had
been married twice.  Note, as Paul in this Scripture in requiring "one husband wives", likely was not particularly addressing
feminine polygamy, but likely was rather rejecting loose knit and erroneous companionships, so also it is possible that Paul in
requesting that those men who are chosen to be church elders be "one wife husbands", was neither particularly addressing the
issue of polygamy.  This issue is considered more later.      dC-6

                                     1 Tim 5:11-12 (A Very Difficult Scripture)
After Paul (in 1 Tim 5:9) had advocated only one husband wives should be granted special church aid, he further in verses 11-
12 also advocated young widows should not be taken into the aid plan as they might remarry saying, "But the younger widows
refuse: for when they have begun to wax wanton against Christ, they will marry; Having damnation [krima Greek], because
they have cast off their first faith."  Please read those verses carefully.  What ever does Paul mean by such words?  Are those
verses translated correctly?       dC-7

     Although according to the KJV Paul here very much makes it sound like widow women dare not remarry and even are
damned if they do so, yet Paul here likely rather was simply saying, "But don't take the younger widows into the church aid
program, because such widows sooner or later likely will desire to remarry, and thus will fall from their special priority and
faith of being especially committed to Christ's work (as those widows need to be who are aided by the church), and these will
be particularly judged because they will miss a special blessing."  Note, the word damnation as in above verse 12 derives from
the Greek word "krima" which can simply mean to judge and is used in some other Scriptures in a quite mild sense as a certain
judgment coming upon a person rather than a total rejection from God and damnation.  James 3:1 using the Greek word
"krima" reads, "My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation [krima]."  
Galatians 5:10 also uses the word "krima" in a quite mild sense reading, "I have confidence in you through the Lord, that ye
will be none otherwise minded: but he that troubleth you shall bear his judgment [krima]".       dC-8

     Although 1 Tim 5:11-12 according to the KJV very much could be understood to mean widows dare not remarry, one
must remember that Paul in other Scriptures distinctly and clearly allowed widow women to remarry (1 Cor 7:39, Rom 7:2-4).  
One should also be aware that Paul even in this same letter and in the previous chapter had advocated it was the doctrine of
devils that disallowed marriage (1 Tim 4:1-3).  Yet it is also true that Paul in 1 Corinthians chapter 7 encouraged or challenged
both men and women to volunteer to be unmarried like he was, to thus labor without distraction in the Gospel, and further
advocated that widow women would be happier if they remained single like he was, which emphasis significantly fits with
Paul's single life emphasis of 1 Timothy 5:11-12.       dC-9

     If Paul in this Scripture actually meant widow women dare not remarry and meant that a widow woman who remarries is
turning against Christ and is damned to hell, he not only was going against his own teachings, but against the true religious
standards of God's people of all times prior to this, and was starting a new and false doctrine.      dC-10

     One should here consider that even though Paul (in verses 11-12) advocated he didn't want young widows to be taken into
the aid program because they might remarry rather than continue to give themselves to special service in the Gospel, that
restriction by no means proves that Paul in verses 9-10 meant that upright and Godly elderly women who had married twice
and become widows a second time should be refused this aid simply because of having been married twice.       dC-11

                                     Paul's Three "One Wife For Elders" Scriptures
     One should here consider that Paul not only requested that widows eligible for church aid be "one husband wives", but also
with regards to men eligible to be church elders requested they be "one wife husbands".  Was Paul possibly then speaking of
the same requirement for both these men and women?  Paul who only wanted upright and destitute widows (widows indeed)
to be granted special church aid, rather than those who had had loose and erroneous companionships, so much the more would
have wanted men with solid and appropriate companionships to be chosen as church elders, rather than men with loose and
erroneous companionships.  In carefully examining Paul's three teachings about only, "one wife husbands" being qualified for
church elders, one should notice that his one wife husband requirement was the first thing he requested in two of these three
Scriptures, and as if the one wife husband issue was a very basic and important issue.  Following are those three Scriptures;      

(1 Tim 3:2)  "A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife [a one wife husband, not a loose man], vigilant, sober,
of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;"      dC-14

(1 Tim 3:12)  "Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife [one wife husbands], ruling their children and their own houses
well."      dC-15

(Tit 1:5-6)  "...and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:  If any be blameless, the husband of one wife [one wife
husband], having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly."       dC-16

     Just what did Paul mean by this one wife emphasis?  Many Christians have went as far as to even conclude Paul was
strictly allowing only one marriage for elders, and just like these Christians also believe only one marriage was allowed those
widows eligible for church aid.  The NRSV and NSB Bible translations even distinctly translate Paul's one mate teachings as a
one marriage allowance and use the term "married only once".  Yet it appears the NRSV and NSB translations are the only
translations which use the term "married only once", and it is very likely that Paul did not mean such in these Scriptures at all.  
Further the Contemporary English Version and the New Living Version translations of these Scriptures don't say anything
about one mate or one marriage at all, but simply demand faithfulness in marriage and to one's mate, and which translations
might best reveal what Paul really meant.       dC-17

     One should here consider that if an employer would say he only hires "one job men", he very much could simply mean
men who are constant and faithful in their job and who are not jumping from job to job, and thus he still would not reject
upright men who had several jobs in their past life or who held down two different jobs at the same time.  So also Paul in
requesting one wife husbands as elders, need not have been particularly disqualifying those widowers who now had a second
wife, nor particularly have been rebuking polygamy.  Paul very much wanted only those chosen as elders who had solid and
appropriate companionships and who were consistent and faithful in them.  One should again remember how Paul demanded
the very same thing of widows (eligible for church aid), as he did of these elders, and it appears without particularly addressing
polygamy or disallowing Godly remarriages.  Oh may God help us rightly divide His Word as Bible translations even give such
different interpretations of it!  The Scriptures obviously give both man and woman liberty to remarry if their mate dies.            

     If Paul in his one wife for elders teachings, although not disallowing second marriages, yet perchance was still disallowing
polygamy, why did he then make such a strong and priority issue out of such, while yet never rebuking polygamy with regards
to non elders or in any of his other teachings?  If polygamy was the basic and vital issue that Paul here was rebuking rather
than loose and erroneous sexual companionships (which he might rather have been rebuking), why is not polygamy reproved
or rebuked in any other Scriptures in the Bible?  One should here be aware that Jesus and the other Apostles never said any
distinct thing against polygamy, even though according to history it was still practiced among the Jews in Christ's day.  Yet here
as Paul gave his requirements for elders, the one wife husband issue was the first thing he requested in two of these three
Scriptures, as if this issue was a basic and very important issue.   Thus was Paul here, with regards to men and elders,
requesting the same thing he requested of widows (eligible for church aid), and thus simply requesting that elders have solid
and established companionships, and faithfulness in them rather than loose and erroneous sexual companionships?  It also is
possible that these non Jewish Gentile Churches which Paul instructed about "one wife husbands and one husband wives (and
which churches Paul had initiated some time before), in their previous culture were accustomed to quite loose and irregular
sexual companionships, making Paul's one mate teaching additionally fitting for the situation, without polygamy or second
marriages being addressed.  Oh may God help us understand these things.     dC-20  

     Although numerous issues indicate that Paul was not addressing polygamy in his "one wife husband" and "one husband
wife" teachings, yet it appears their still is some possibility that Paul might have demanded one wife husbands for elders as he
did to refute the popular old tradition which expected that leaders and kings should have many wives or more wives than
others.  Obviously according to Jesus' teaching about leaders among His people being servants of all (rather than being great in
man's way), elders should not expect to have more wives than others (Matt 20:25-28).  Yet it is very possible that Paul in these
Scriptures was not particularly addressing the issue of polygamy at all, and while these Scriptures are often thought to be the
most clear Scriptures opposing polygamy.  Note, the subject of polygamy is quite extensively considered in article cR.      dC-21

                                                                 1 Tim 5:11-14
     In these verses one should notice how Paul after seemingly having said widows who remarry are turning against Christ and
are damned, then continued on and said, "I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house..." (1
Tim 5:14).  Thus this Scripture (according to the KJV) very much could be understood to mean that only younger women
should marry, and further to mean that the sexual relations of these young should only be had for the sake of bearing children.  
Yet other Scriptures clearly show very differently.  Note, if Paul actually meant sexual intercourse and fulfillment in marriage
was only permissible a few times in life to plant seed to create offspring, he rather than saying it is better to marry than to burn
very much should have said it is better to stay away from the marriage environment than to burn!!  Further he should never
have wrote 1 Cor 7:1-4, nor should Solomon ever have written Proverbs 5:18-19, and many other Scriptures should never
have been written.  Oh may God help us understand these things.       dC-22

     Their obviously was a very erroneous emphasis against woman, beauty, and sex that arose in the early centuries of
Christianity and which emphasis likely very much took advantage of 1 Timothy 5:9-14 as it went about totally forbidding
marriage among church elders, and advocating that sex in marriage was strictly for creating offspring.  The faulty negative
attitude towards marriage and sex as entered Christendom in the early centuries might even be some of the reason 1 Tim 5:9-
14 is translated so negatively towards marriage as it is in our Bibles today.       dC-23

     The Scriptures considered in this short article obviously are difficult Scriptures and can make one wonder what is really
truth.  In concluding may Christians be careful to not too quickly conclude on any matter and even rather be in neutral about a
issue than to strongly conclude in error about it.  May God teach and bless us.  Farewell.      dC-24

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