What Does the Bible Say About “Ethical Non-Monogamy”?

“Ask Amy” is a syndicated advice column by Amy Dickinson that is published in major newspapers across the country, including the Washington Post and the Chicago Tribune

Recently Amy expressed her approval of a polyamorous relationship in response to parents whose son and daughter-in-law informed them that each has a “lover” with whom they spend time outside of their marriage.

In response to the signed “Bewildered Parents,” Amy offered this advice.

“As people explore their freedom to redefine the boundaries of what it means to be married, they may choose ‘ethical non-monogamy,’ which is where they remain lovingly married, but are free to engage in other romantic relationships in a way that they believe is open and honest.

“In my opinion,” Amy opined, “the important question is how these polyamorous relationships will affect children growing up in families with three or four adults who all identify as parents and partners. If all the adults are stable, loving, and committed to the children, then I imagine the kids will be fine.”

“Take a breath, do some reading about polyamory, and understand that you define marriage one way, while they define it differently,” Dickinson added. “Unless you and they are religious, this doesn’t make it ‘wrong.’ It just makes it ‘what is.’”

“Ethical non-monogamy.” What a contradiction in terms. At least from a Biblical perspective.

This worldview, sanctioned by Dickinson, has been promoted by Humanists educators, philosophers, and entertainers for years. It seems, however, in this era of “no absolutes” (another contradiction in terms) we’re hearing more and more about redefining the boundaries of marriage.

Same-sex relationships, throuples, polyandry, polygamy, open marriage, beta-marriage, and cohabitating couples, are all condemned by Jesus’ simple statement in Matthew 19:4-6.

“Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.”

One man and one woman for life. This is God’s definition of marriage.

The Bible condemns all other sexual arrangements as fornication, adultery, homosexuality, and sexual impurity (Gal. 5:19, Col. 3:5, 1Cor. 6:9-11, Rom. 1:20-32).

The Bible teaches that God ordained “Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge” (Heb. 13:4).

While most, if not all, of our readers may agree with the Biblical definition of marriage, it’s important to be reminded that forces are at work in our society to “redefine the boundaries,” and indoctrinate our children and grandchildren with ideas that contradict God’s Word.  Thus, we must educate our children to define morals and marriage Biblically and not culturally.

Furthermore, it’s important for Christians to do more than oppose what is wrong, but to preach, teach, and define by our lifestyle what is right. To demonstrate in our homes the love of God as defined by the apostle Paul (I Cor. 13). To respect one another. To treat each other with kindness. And to follow the divine order and arrangement as set forth in Scripture (Eph. 5:22-32).

Too often when we encounter problems in our relationships, we seek advice from worldly counselors who lead us away from divine Truth. “Ask Amy” is not the answer. Seek guidance from preachers, pastors, and Christian counselors who will instruct you “in the way of righteousness.”

Finally, as we live in changing and challenging times, let us hold fast to and “contend for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.” Forget about redefining what God has already defined and decided.

May God bless each of us to be a beacon of light and bastion of marital fidelity in a morally dark world.

–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman


Filed under Marriage

5 responses to “What Does the Bible Say About “Ethical Non-Monogamy”?

  1. Ranger

    Very good and timely Preacher man as this issue continues to grow and the tap dancing around it gets louder.

    Just today they herald the first transgender swimmer medalist in women’s college swimming. Boys have been faster than girls for a long time.


  2. Pingback: Weekly Recap: March 13-18 | ThePreachersWord

  3. Ryan

    I have a recently recurring issue whereby my wife says she “needs” to experience intimate sexual relations with another woman while remaining married to me. She and I have been Christians for over a decade. We have both seen the Lord move in healings, miracles, signs and wonders. This desire has been “suppressed” in her mind and has recently raised itself up to the maximum. Although she has at least communicated it to me, she will not accept “no” for an answer. She has told me that my denying her this will cause an inevitable end to our marriage. She recently went through a miscarriage and so she feels God has failed her. She has hardened her heart towards Him and still wants me to be open to this “non-monogamy.” I have gone with her to marriage counseling and it was viewed as ineffective to her. The counselor was “friendly” towards lgtbq people, so that she could remain open to the counsel of how I still don’t agree with it whatsoever. This has become a recurring problem and we are only 5 years into our marriage. I would appreciate insight into how this can be dealt with at all. Thank you.


    • I apologize for being so slow in responding. I have been away for two weeks on vacation and got behind on my correspondence

      I feel badly for you and your wife. This is not a good situation. To say the least. Help for this problem requires more time and effort and connection than I can give you in a written response

      If you will send me a private message to my email and give me the location of where you live. I will see if I know of a counselor in your area or a church leader who can help. preacherman@weliever.net


  4. Reblogged this on ThePreachersWord and commented:

    Today, we resume our countdown of the top 10 posts from 2022 while on our holiday blogging break. We’re down to the final four. This March post placed #4.


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