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Who Married More Than One Wife In The New Testament?
In the New Testament, there is much mention of men who chose to marry more than one wife. While this practice is widely seen as taboo today, it was more accepted in the days of the New Testament, and these multiple marriages are sometimes highlighted as part of the teachings.
Perhaps the most well-known instance of multiple marriages in the New Testament is that of the patriarch Jacob. Not only did Jacob marry his first wife, Leah, but also her younger sister Rachel. Genesis 29:18-30 recounts the event in which Jacob works for seven years for the hands of his beloved Rachel, only to be tricked into marrying her elder sister Leah by their father, Laban. Genesis 29:31 notes that “when the Lord saw that Leah was hated, He opened her womb.” Indeed, the Bible records that Leah bore Jacob six sons and a daughter, while Rachel was barren for many years.
Another example of multiple marriages in the New Testament is that of King Solomon. In 1 Kings 11:1-3, it is noted that Solomon married hundreds of foreign women and had seven hundred wives, as well as three hundred concubines. The Bible suggests that Solomon’s many marriages were a sin that displeased God.
In addition to Jacob and Solomon, other men mentioned in the New Testament who had multiple wives include Rehoboam, David, and Abijah. Rehoboam had eighteen wives and sixty concubines (2 Chronicles 11:21), while 1 Chronicles 3:9 lists seven daughters of King David who, it is presumed, were each the result of a separate marriage. Finally, in 2 Chronicles 13:21, Abijah is noted to have fourteen wives and sixty concubines.
Though multiple marriages are widely frowned upon today, the New Testament clearly contains accounts of men who married more than one wife. From the examples of Jacob, Solomon, Rehoboam, David, and Abija, it is clear that this practice was more accepted in the days of the New Testament, even if it was sometimes seen as an affront to God.
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