Is the following an OT statement against polygamy? "Then Laban said, 'This mound is a witness between me and you today.' Therefore the place was called Galeed, and Mizpah, for he said, "May the LORD watch between you and me when we are out of each other's sight. If you mistreat my daughters or take other wives, though no one is with us, understand that God will be a witness between you and me'" (Gen 31:48-50, HCSB). Obviously not absolutely, since Jacob did have two wives, and while Laban was not 100% to be trusted, yet he did call on the Lord to be witness of this agreement. So the implication is that it's a righteous requirement, esp. since Jacob seems to have accepted it. I wonder, because I've often heard that while the OT does demonstrate polygamy as problematic, it doesn't directly condemn it. Of course, Laban may have been more self-seeking than God-seeking in this expectation. After all, it was Jacob's attention to Laban's daughters that would be protected. But it's still worth asking. -- Fred

I understand your thinking. But no, I don’t think this passage speaks against, or even implies anything against, polygamy. The issue here is the division of the estate — inheritance — the legacy of the clan. Further, ancient Israelites especially strove to keep the wealth in the nation; exogamy (marriage outside the group) jeopardized that.

This is not to say that the OT endorses polygamy. It doesn't. If anything, it emphasizes the emotional pain and chaos of the departure from the one man/one woman plan of Genesis 2.