The Bride of Christ

Revelations 19:7 & 9 KJV 7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. 9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.

     The Bride of Christ. That just sounds beautiful and elicits wondrous thoughts of beauty. Today, I would like to examine the Word and discuss the Bride of Christ. There is an important message for all believers here, and even more so if you happen to be reading this and are a non-believer or maybe “on the fence”. Who is the Bride? What is the marriage supper of the Lamb? And how can we prepare ourselves to be a part of it all? Revelations in the Word tells us they are true sayings of God. I will attempt to explain that, and more.

     As believer’s in Christ, to varying degrees, we all share similar qualities and foundational beliefs. We are His people, and we strive to live every day pleasing to Him. We pray and read our Bibles daily and nightly. A very important core belief shared is accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, and that is a great place to put our minds as we begin discussing the Bride of Christ and the message for us all here.

     We know that the Lamb is Christ, but who is the Bride? As we study Revelations 17-19, we see a great celebration taking place. 17-18 discusses the fall and burning of a great city that was against God and His commands so much that utter destruction of it completely within an hour is deemed necessary. Revelation 17:9 “Here is the mind which has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits.” It is widely understood as this evil city being the Roman Empire, as they vehemently rejected Christianity, Jesus, and His followers, among other things. Rome geographically features seven hills: Esquiline, Palatine, Aventine, Capitoline, Quirinal, Viminal, and Caelian Hill. Perhaps another day I will write and go deeper in this subject, but the purpose of this message and The Jesus Movement will always be to lead people to Christ, so the easiest thing to pull from Revelations 17-18 is that the people of Christ were celebrating the destruction of not only a great city, but also in a sense the city of this world, which is a cipher for the arbitrary ways of evil. The evil of this world was destroyed.

     The consequence of evil is shown in Revelations 18: 23 And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived. Simply put, this defines the exclusion from being in the presence and fellowship of Christ, and His Bride, and that no more warnings or chances will be given to go away from your evil ways, the fate of the truly wicked.

     This leads us to the answer to our first question - WE, the Church, us believers, the ones who accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, are the Bride! How amazing of a thought is that? It makes me feel whole just thinking about the honor of being that. Revelations 21:9 9 And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, “Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife”. After this conversation, John is shown the Holy City, the New Jerusalem. The angel did not make a mistake. As I interpret it, as we would refer to all the students who go to a School as “the school”, so are all the people who will be in this new, perfect Holy City, referred to as the Bride.

     We are the Bride of Christ, and it is currently our duty to actively seek and live by Jesus, and to invite others to do the same, for the day will come when it is too late for the wicked, as depicted in the Word. We need to look out for our fellow brothers and sisters, and try our best to be shining examples of Christ. Understand, though, that none of us can save anyone else, not even the church or your pastor or bishop. ONLY Jesus Christ can save you. But it is our duty to be the best examples and preachers of Christ so that others might see Him in us, and then make the decision to go to Jesus. Think about how, as customary in marriage, there was a betrothal period in biblical times, where the bride and groom were separated until the wedding, so are we currently separated from Christ physically on earth during this Church age, and our responsibility during this betrothal period is to be faithful to Him.

     This circles us back to the second question proposed - what is the marriage supper of the Lamb? As we will study, I believe this is the rapture taking place and the event to follow. It helps if we continue to examine customary marriage during Biblical times, as we are discussing the marriage of Christ and His Bride, after all. These weddings had 3 major parts. The first was a marriage contract signed by the parents of the bride and the bridegroom. This should ring a bell for all of us. The contract was written and signed with the death of Jesus Christ for our sins, God’s only begotten son, then followed by our faith in Him and confessing by tongue that Jesus is our Lord and Savior. This would then begin, as customary, the betrothal period as we discussed earlier. This is the first step.

     The next phase, as customary, was a torchlight parade through the streets. This usually happened around a year later, more or less. The custom states that the bridegroom, along with his male friends, would go to the bride’s house at midnight, and the bride would know in advance so that she could have her maiden’s ready, and they would all take part in a big torchlight parade that would end back at the bridegroom’s house. This leads us to a connecting point in Revelations and the Book of Matthew: The Parable of the Ten Virgins.

Matthew 25:1–13

The Parable of the Ten Virgins

Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. 2 And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. 3 They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: 4 But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. 5 While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. 6 And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. 7 Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. 8 And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are ||gone out. 9 But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. 10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. 11 Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, O Lord, Lord, open to us. 12 But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. 13 Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.

     This in Matthew is connected to Revelations, which is the last book in the Bible, and for good reason. It depicts that generally half of us are wise, and half are foolish. The foolish forgot to fill their lamps with oil before going to see the bridegroom, while the wise were full and ready to go at a moments notice. We can apply this warning to our faith in Christ and how we live our life. Are you still on the fence? Or will you be completely ready for the day Jesus returns? Because as scripture says once again here in Matthew as well as Revelations, once Jesus arrives it will be too late for those who are not ready, and the door will be shut, and He will say “I know you not”. You can’t go out and “buy your oil” after the fact of realizing you needed it all along. You need to realize that you needed it in the first place, as no one knows the day or hour that He will return.

     As we discussed the first phase being our commitment to Christ and the blood He shed for us, this second phase we just discussed is the rapture taking place, when Jesus comes to claim His bride and take her to the Father’s house. The marriage supper, as customary, then follows as the third and final step. Revelations 19:9 …Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.

     So, this leads to the third and final part - the marriage supper. The marriage supper of the Lamb will be an amazing celebration of all who are in Christ! This is the rapture concluding. This is the return of Christ to earth concluding. This is the destruction of all evil in the world, and a new, perfect world being born, with all the followers of Christ together in joy with God. Remember all reading this, there is not time to waste on Jesus. We must accept Him as our Lord and Savior and live by His commands. I will end today on the last sentences of the Bible:

He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen.

Even so, come, Lord Jesus.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.