“I hope you will put up with a little of my foolishness; but you are already doing that. I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him. But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ.” (2nd Corinthians11:1–3)
This is a Paul that many who don’t like Paul have never read, because he is being a little satirical in his wording. Each of the disciples gave their own twist of their experiences with Jesus, and as Paul has written so much of the New Testament, it might just be worthy, to look a little closer at what he is saying. He addresses the Corinthian congregation and makes the comment that he promised the bride of Christ, the church (that’s you and me, everyone) must serve Him with sincere and pure devotion.
Symbolizing the church as the body of Christ is found in Paul’s writings as well as in Revelations, where the New Jerusalem represents the body of believers in Christ. Beloved, whether you knew it or not; whether you wanted it or not; each of us has been freely given a gift and we must decide if we will accept it or not. You see, if we are the ‘Bride of Christ,’ we must accept that role and live into it with pure and sincere devotion to our Lord and Savior. Understand?
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Precious Abba, all of us have been blessed by You and have been given the gift of eternal life. If we accept this gift and commit ourselves to you through Your Son, our Lord, then we must do so with the same commitment as those who walked with Jesus 2,000 years ago. You will not make us accept this gift, as You desire to live in the covenant relationship with us for all eternity. For those who refuse to accept, we offer them up to You, that they would have a change of heart and accept this gift. This we pray in Jesus’ precious name. Amen
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Be strong in the faith you have and more will be added.”
“Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of he Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Ind linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of the saints). Then the angel said to me, ‘Write; Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!’ And he added, ‘These are the words of God.’” (Revelation19:7–9)
The marital relationship is sharply focused to describe the church. The Bride makes herself ready for the coming of the Lamb (Christ) for the marriage.
The church prepares for the wedding by witnessing, by right living, and by those actions which please the Lamb. The church must remain morally pure as it waits for the bridegroom’s appearance.
“One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, ‘Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.’” (Revelation21:9)
Several New Testament writers use the marital relationship as a figure of the relationship between Christ and His church. Most of these occurrences appear in Revelation (19:7-9; 1:9; 22:17). Ephesians appear in5:24-33 and 2nd Corinthians 11:1-6 also refer to the image of the church as the bride of Christ. John the Baptist identified the Messiah with the bridegroom (John 3:29). The Book of Revelation contains the highest conception of the church as the bride. The Bride is associated with the new Jerusalem which comes from heaven. Th imagery of the bride suggests purity and faithfulness, as well as eager longing for he wedding day.
Second Thought of the Day:
“The Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come!’ And let him who hears day, ‘Come!’ Whoever is thirsty let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of he water of life.” (Revelation22:17)
The church lives in expectancy, Jesus is coming soon. The Spirit joins the church (the bride) in praying to Jesus to come. It is a remarkable form of the Spirit’s constantly reminding the church of Jesus that He prays and helps the church to pray for the return of the Lord.
“Come” has been called God’s favorite word. All in the Godhead—-Father, Son,and Holy Spirit—-urge people o come to salvation through Jesus Christ. We who have responded and have become Christians join in he divine invitation and cry out to all, “Come.” The bride invites those who thirst to the water of life. Come!”