A Hebrew wedding – this was a blessed event with an End Times message for the Church encapsulated in every detail of the festivities. There is no more poignant picture of love anywhere than a bridegroom standing at the altar, looking lovingly at his bride as she approaches. That’s the way Jesus looks and longs for His bride, the Church.
As we study the End Times, let’s be sure to remember that we are getting ready for a wedding – our wedding – as we become the Bride of Christ that He longs for, that He died for, that He now lives for.
It’s time for the Bride to get ready NOW.
In Jim’s book, “Time Has Come,” he talks about the wedding supper of the Lamb from the Apostle John’s perspective. Here’s an excerpt I know you will enjoy:
The Wedding You Don’t Want to Miss!
John saw and heard the announcement of the marriage supper of the Lamb, the full and final uniting of Christ and His church. The relationship of God and His people throughout the Bible is often portrayed as a marriage (see Hosea 2:19–20; Isaiah 54:5–7; Jeremiah 3:14). In the New Testament, the bride, of course, is the church, the universal group of believers from every nation, every denomination, every century.
I think that is why God is so interested in the marriage relationship, because it is meant to be a symbol of our relationship with Him. The relationship between a husband and a wife is intended to be characterized by love, intimate communion, the sheer joy of loving and being loved unconditionally, and fidelity and faithfulness between the partners. These same qualities should describe our relationship to Christ as well, only on a much deeper level.
There are all sorts of theories regarding when this wedding will occur and how long the celebration will go on. Some think it will begin at the Rapture and carry on for a thousand years. Others think it may begin after that. All of these theories are guesses, because the Bible does not tell us the time of the wedding. Instead, it tells us who is involved! The Bridegroom at this celebration is Jesus. The bride is the church, individual believers, clothed in fine white linen, bright and clean, symbolizing the righteous acts of the saints (Revelation 19:7–8).
An angel instructed John, “Write, ‘Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb’” (19:9). Whether this marriage supper is real or figurative, don’t miss the point. An invitation is involved, and anyone who refuses or ignores this most important invitation will be excluded from the celebration—forever.
Near the close of His Second Coming discourse, Jesus told a story about ten virgins, five of whom were prudent and prepared to meet the bridegroom, and five who were foolish. They all were expecting the bridegroom to come at any time, but when He didn’t come exactly on their timetable and according to their plan, they began to get drowsy. By midnight, they had all fallen asleep. Suddenly there was a shout, “Behold the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.”
The virgins quickly began trimming their lamps, getting ready to receive the bridegroom they had been awaiting so long. It was then that the foolish virgins realized the folly of their mistaken priorities. They were out of oil. They begged the prudent virgins, “Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.”
But the prudent answered, “No, there will not be enough for us and you too; go instead to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.”
So the foolish virgins ran to find a dealer who was open after midnight, where they could purchase some last-minute oil.
But they were too late.
While they were gone, the bridegroom came. The virgins who were ready, who had planned ahead and had diligently maintained their watchful attitude, went in with him to the wedding feast.
That would be bad enough, but once those who were prepared for the bridegroom’s coming had gone in with him, the door was shut. When the other virgins returned, they said, “Lord, lord, open up for us.”
But he answered, “Truly I say to you, I do not know you.”
Jesus then drove home the point: “Be on the alert then, for you do not know the day nor the hour” (Matthew 25:1–13).
I believe that is the message of the hour. Be on the alert! Be prepared!