Bride of Christ

Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out, Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure”— for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints. 9 And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” And he said to me, “These are the true words of God.” Rev. 19:6-9

In April of 2011, tens of millions of people tuned in to watch the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. If you happened to see the ceremony, it was an impressive scene filled with all of the pomp and circumstance the British royal family could muster. It looked like a scene from Cinderella. There were horse drawn carriages, flowers, choirs, and of course Kate’s dress with the mile-long train. As the ceremony unfolded on TV, it was hard to not be caught up in the majesty of the moment.

But, as impressive as the British royal wedding was, it is nothing compared to the marriage described in this passage. There’s an angelic choir, a dress so white you can barely look at it, and a great feast that follows the ceremony. As a minister, one of my favorite parts of a wedding is watching the groom when he sees his bride for the first time. His eyes sparkle and his knees buckle when he sees the bride come down the aisle wearing her special dress.

Throughout the Bible the church is referred to as the “bride of Christ” (see Ephesians 5) and in the book of Revelation John describes the vision of their future marriage. The church is a mess today because it is full of messed up people but what makes this passage so hopeful for Christians is the fact that one day Jesus will restore the beauty of the church and unite Himself to her forever. If you are a Christian, Jesus loves you this much. This is the good news of the Gospel: Jesus has loved and redeemed a bunch of unlovely people and will make them lovely again. No marriage on Earth will ever come close to the future marriage between Christ and his church.