2740. Genuine conjugial love is not possible except between two consorts, that is, in the marriage of one man with one wife, and by no means with more than one at the same time; for the reason that conjugial love is mutual and reciprocal, and is the alternate life of the one in the other, so that they are as it were a one. Such a union is possible between two, but not among more: more tear that love asunder. The men of the Most Ancient Church, who were celestial and in the perception of good and truth, like the angels, had but one wife. They said that with one wife they perceived heavenly delights and happiness, and that when marriage with more was merely mentioned, they were filled with horror; for as before said the marriage of one husband and one wife comes down from the marriage of good and truth, or from the heavenly marriage, which is of this nature, as is very evident from the Lord's words in Matthew:
Jesus said, Have ye not read that He who made them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh; what therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. Moses, for the hardness of your heart, permitted you to put away your wives; but from the beginning it was not so. All cannot receive this word, save they to whom it is given (Matt. 19:3-12).