Thursday, March 29, 2012
Today’s Topic: Be the Bride
Today’s Text: Isaiah 62:4b (NIV) …for the LORD will take delight in you, and your land will be married.
Are you a bride?
There are several possible answers to that question, and if you give me some time, I will tell you how they apply to men as well.
- “Nope, and I never want to be.”
- “No, but I want to be.”
- “Not yet, but I’m going to be soon.”
- “I was once.”
The saddest answer that can be given to the question of “Are you a bride?” is the last one – “I was once.” The first answer sounds sad also, but in reality there are some people, according to God’s Holy Word, that are able to remain single all their life so as to serve the Lord wholeheartedly. But when a bride reaches the point of not considering herself a bride any longer, that is sad.
Sometimes that point is reached through the death of a husband, or through the God-hated practice of divorce. But the greatest tragedy is when a wife of any length of time, while married, loses the delight of being a bride.
Okay men, you’ve waited long enough: how does this apply to us? Well, according to the words of the angel in Revelation, all who come to Jesus Christ for salvation are considered the bride of Christ – male and female alike. God uses the picture of human marriage to depict our spiritual relationship with His Son Jesus. Even in this passage in Isaiah, in verse 5, the Lord God says, “So will your sons (as in the builder of the family name) marry you.” Jesus Christ, the son of Israel, the eternal Builder of the family name, will marry you. You are a bride.
Notice I said that you are a bride. If you are in Christ, saved by grace through faith, forgiven through the repentance of sin, you are the bride of Christ. The problem is that some of us give the saddest answer of all when asked if we are a bride – we say that we were once.
How tragic that the bride of Christ has lost the delight of being the bride. But you may wonder how you may know if that’s true of you. Here’s how, in Isaiah’s own words as he relates it from a national perspective for the people of Israel.
- You may have lost the desire to constantly talk about the coming of the Groom. I have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the LORD, give yourselves no rest, and give him no rest till he establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth. (verses 6-7) The Bride of Christ cannot help but look for the Groom and wait for His appearing.
- You may be distracted by the world and giving your heart away to sinful practices. “Never again will I give your grain as food for your enemies, and never again will foreigners drink the new wine for which you have toiled; (verse 8). Once a marriage has occurred, all the attention of the Bride is to be focused on the Groom. Wandering eyes are not permitted. Thoughts of cheating are never present. Attempts to serve self are blanketed by the unconditional love of God which produces attitudes and actions of service to the Groom.
What is true of marriage is true for us in our relationship with Jesus. It is the promise of restoration for the nation of Israel. It is the present reality for the Bride of Christ. May the Lord Jesus Christ, in the power and presence of the Holy Spirit of God the Father, restore unto each of us the delight of being the Bride of Christ!