Christopher Love preached a series of sermons on Genesis 6:3. Sermon four was preached on November 10, 1650.
Christopher Love posing a question:
QUESTION 1. How far may the Spirit of God be withheld or withdrawn even from a godly man, both before and after the commission of sins?
And now here is an excerpt of an answer to that question:
“The Spirit of God in a fivefold respect may be said to be withdrawn from a godly man before the commission of sin.
1. He shall not enlighten you to make you know it is a sin you are tempted to, and thus we read of the patriarchs who married divers wives. The Spirit of God, in that dark age of the world known as the patriarchs, was so withheld that He did not enlighten them. Not till their dying day do we read that polygamy was a sin, and therefore they lived in it.” (Christopher Love, The Works of Christopher Love, Volume 1 (Morgan, PA.: Soli Deo Gloria, 1995), p. 41)
Christopher Love posing another question and then answering it:
“QUESTION 2. How far may the Spirit of God leave a man after the commission of sin?
The Spirit may not convince you that it is a sin you have done after you have committed it. And thus it was with the patriarchs in the first age of the world. They were given to marry many wives, and it was so, no doubt, because it crossed the first institution of marriage which was between one man and one woman. Now the Spirit of God was so withheld from them that, after they fell into that sin, they were not convinced of it, and therefore they lived and died in it.” (Christopher Love, The Works of Christopher Love, Volume 1 (Morgan, PA.: Soli Deo Gloria, 1995), pp. 44-45; underlining mine–CD)
Christopher Love’s false premise is that polygamy was a sin in the Old Testament. And his conclusion from this false premise is that the patriarchs in the Old Testament ignorantly lived and died in sin. Christopher Love says that the Spirit of God did not convince the patriarchs that polygamy was a sin. But does the Bible actually teach that polygamy was sin in Old Testament times? The short answer is, No. A bit longer answer:
“And I gave you the house of your master, and your master’s wives into your bosom. And I gave you the house of Israel and of Judah. And if [that were] too little, then I would have added to you these and those [things].” (2 Samuel 12:8)
This is God speaking to David. God said that He gave David his multiple wives. But God didn’t stop there. He said that if that weren’t enough, He would have given MORE. Look at this in context. God is saying that David should not have taken Bathsheba, because if David wanted more wives, God would have given David MORE wives.
And for what I believe is a compendious answer that uses Scripture and logic to explain how the patriarchs (e.g., David) were NOT living in sin (whether knowingly or ignorantly), click on the following link here below: