Qur'án 4:3 states:
'And if ye are apprehensive that ye shall not deal fairly with orphans, then, of other women who seem good in your eyes, marry but two, or three, or four; and if ye still fear that ye shall not act equitably, then one only; or the slaves whom ye have acquired: this will make justice on your part easier.'
'And if ye fear that ye will not deal fairly by the orphans, marry of the women, who seem good to you, two or three or four; and if ye fear that ye cannot do justice (to so many) then one (only) or (the captives) that your right hands possess. Thus it is more likely that ye will not do injustice.'
Qur'án 4:129 states:
'And ye will not have it at all in your power to treat your wives alike, even though you fain would do so; but yield not wholly to disinclination, so that ye leave one of them as it were in suspense; if ye come to an understanding, and fear God, then, verily, God is Forgiving, Merciful;'
'Ye will not be able to deal equally between (your) wives, however much ye wish (to do so). But turn not altogether away (from one), leaving her as in suspense. If ye do good and keep from evil, lo! Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful.'
I read Qur'án 4:3 as making acting 'equitably' (Rodwell) or doing 'justice' (Pickthall) a prerequisite for taking more than one wife.
Yet I read Qur'án 4:129 as making that prerequisite impossible to fulfil.
It appears to enjoin monogamy while favouring the preservation of an already-established polygamous family.
While I have read some Muslim scholars understand these verses similarly to how I understand them, most seem to downplay Qur'án 4:129 by claiming that fulfilling the prerequisite for polygamy is impossible but just difficult and that consequently the Qur'án does not enjoin monogamy but merely encourages it.
I don't profess Islám myself, but I can still read. And the way I read it, Qu'án 4:129 presents the prerequisite not as difficult to fulfil but as impossible to fulfil.
How can Muslim scholars misunderstand such a simple statement?