Let Each Woman

Have you ever considered the following command?

1 Corinthians 7:2 "Nevertheless, because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband."

The Greek word for "own" (heautou) in the phrase "have his own wife" indicates that the man's wife was a personal exclusive possession to the extent that a man possesses a wife. The Greek word for "own" (idios) in the phrase "have her own husband" is not exclusive. Apparently idios carries the idea of a communal or shared ownership. Strong and Thayer are a bit difficult to obtain this meaning. Notice for idios the phrase "Of uncertain affinity" in Strong's. The Koine Greek was unknown at the time of Strong's work. A good way to discover the meaning of a word is to look at how it is used elsewhere in scripture. Heatou, even in the plural, indicates something that is exclusive in a person. An example is something that a person says in their own mind. Many may think the same, but the thought is in one's own mind. An example for idios is in Matthew 9:1 where the phrase "his own city" is found. Obviously one does not have exclusive ownership of a city. One shares their home city with many other people.

One other aspect to be considered in the language is that a husband will refer to his wife as his. A wife would refer to herself as "I am his wife".

Although there are others this one verse alone is Paul pretty much stating that polygyny is sanctioned by scripture. If Paul had wanted to make sure that there was no possible way a person would draw that conclusion he would have used the Greek heautou in both phrases. If he had done that this web site might not exist.

If there are more women in the world than men, or even more important a shortage of good men, how can a Christian woman "have her own husband"? Because of our society today, the only way for some women to get a husband is to take someone else's. That does not solve the problem as there is then still a woman who wants a husband, but is without a husband. I guess that I could add that there are certain types of women that men would not normally choose first because of the idea that they can only take one wife. In later years they may find that kind of woman is many times the kind that makes for a good stable home.

When God had Paul write the verse above the grammar makes it obvious that he was not thinking that women would have to take turns being married or just give up hope altogether. There is only one Godly way for each woman to "have her own husband" based on the Greek. That is for women to realize that just as they can love all of their children at the same time, God made men to be able to love all of their wives at the same time as well.

1 Corinthians 7:2 "Nevertheless, because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own (exclusive) wife, and let each woman have her own (shared) husband."

Regular Version

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Christian Polygyny