Question / Comment - The church is not the bride of Christ. The New
Christians are not the bride of Christ, that is the New Jerusalem;
Christians are invited to the marriage supper of the lamb.
Israel is the "woman" of the Bible:
Jer 3:6 The LORD said also to me in the days of Josiah the king: “Have
you seen what backsliding Israel has done? She has gone up on every
high mountain and under every green tree, and there played the harlot.
Can Christ marry His brothers: John 20:17Jesus said to her, “Do
not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father; but go to
My brethren and say to them, ‘I am ascending to My Father and your
Father, and to My God and your God.’ ”
1John 3:1 Behold what manner
of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called
children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did
not know Him.
The Bride of Christ is Jerusalem: Rev 21:9
Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the
seven last plagues came to me and talked with me, saying, “Come, I
will show you the bride, the Lamb’s wife.”
10 And he carried me
away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the
great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God,
11 having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone,
like a jasper stone, clear as crystal.
Christians are sons of God: John 1:12
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become
children of God, to those who believe in His name:
Rom 8:14 For as
many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
Joint heirs with Christ making them His brothers and sisters:
Rom 8:16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are
children of God,
17 and if children, then heirs–heirs of God and
joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may
also be glorified together.
Jews invitation to supper and refuse it: Luke 14:16
Then He said to him,“A
certain man gave a great supper and invited many,
17 “and sent his servant at supper time to say to those who were
invited, ‘Come, for all things are now ready.’
18 “But they all
with one accord began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have
bought a piece of ground, and I must go and see it. I ask you to have
19 “And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of
oxen, and I am going to test them. I ask you to have me excused.’
20 “Still another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot
Gentiles invited to the supper because of the Jews rejection of
Christ: Luke 14:21
“So that servant came and reported these things to his master. Then
the master of the house, being angry, said to his servant, ‘Go out
quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in here the
poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind.’
22 “And the
servant said, ‘Master, it is done as you commanded, and still there is
23 “Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the
highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be
Christians are invited to the "supper of the Lamb": Rev 19:9 Then
he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the
marriage supper of the Lamb!’ ” And he said to me, “These are the true
sayings of God.”
Thanks for the email although clearly we have some different
beliefs here! Do you believe that we will get to marriage of the Lamb,
the culmination of the redemptive purposes of God throughout all the
ages, and find that the Bride, the one above all others, the greatest
love of the Lord Jesus, is... a city that He built?!? While those that
He died for are merely guests at the wedding to see Him finally united
with a city??? No. I don't.
Let's take the most well-known
scripture in the New Testament:
John 3:16 "For God so loved the
world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in
Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
When you read that
do you think that the love of God is for the physical world (dirt,
trees, rocks etc) or for the human beings that dwell in the world?
Obviously the human beings. In like manner when John is shown the New
Jerusalem as the bride and/or wife you should realise that it is
showing the home of the bride and it is the PEOPLE that dwell in the
city that are the bride, the greatest love of Bridegroom.
bride/wife has always been PEOPLE, whether it was the nation of Israel
as the wife of Jehovah in the Old Testament or the Church as the bride
of Christ in the New. Paul said it clearly (writing to the church):
2 Corinthians 11:2 For I am jealous for you with godly jealousy.
For I have
you to one
husband, that I
may present you as a
chaste virgin to Christ.
Or, as an easy read version says:
2 Corinthians 11:2 I am
jealous for you with a jealousy that comes from God. I promised to
give you to Christ.
He must be
your only husband. I want to give you to Christ to be his pure bride.
Macarthur comments on this verse:
"I have betrothed you to one husband.
As their spiritual father (2Co_12:14;
2Co_9:1-2), Paul portrayed the Corinthians like
a daughter, whom he betrothed to Jesus Christ (at their conversion).
The OT pictures Israel as the wife of the Lord (cf.
Hos_2:19-20), while the NT pictures the church as
the bride of Christ (Eph_5:22-32;
Having betrothed or pledged the
Corinthians to Christ, Paul wanted them to be pure until the marriage
day finally arrived (cf.
Rev_19:7). It was that passionate concern which provoked Paul's jealousy (see
2Co_11:1) and prompted him to set forth his apostolic credentials."
Other verses in
Revelation show that the bride cannot be an actual city.
Revelation 19:7-8 "Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to
Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and
His bride has made herself
(8) It was given to her to
clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean;
for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.
The above verse
makes no sense if the bride is an actual city! The bride is made up of
the saints whose corporate acts of righteousness form her clothing in
preparation for the wedding. You will see also that the bride, still
dressed in fine linen, bright and clean, follows Christ out of Heaven
later in Rev 19:14, riding on horses. Again makes no sense if the
bride is a city!
John the Baptist said the same thing when the
people were going to Jesus and not him. He knew that PEOPLE make up
John 3:26-30 They came to John and said to him,
"Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan--the
one you testified about--well, he is baptizing, and everyone is going
to him." (27) To this John replied, "A man can receive only what is
given him from heaven. (28) You yourselves can testify that I said, 'I
am not the Christ but am sent ahead of him.' (29)
bride belongs to the bridegroom.
The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is
full of joy when he hears the bridegroom's voice. That joy is mine,
and it is now complete. (30) He must become greater; I must become less. (
He clearly said
that the people that were going to Jesus were the bride, going to
their bridegroom. He, as the last of the Old Testament saints, was not
the bride but the friend of the bridegroom (like a best man). J Vernon
"One cannot escape the tremendous force of this, friend. John the Baptist
is the last of the Old Testament prophets. He is actually not in the
church. He makes it clear here: "He that hath the bride…." Who is the
bride? The church. "He that hath the bride is the bridegroom." Then
who is John? He is the friend of the Bridegroom. He will be present at
the marriage supper of the Lamb, but he is not a part of the church by
any means. He is the last of the Old Testament prophets who walks out
of the Old Testament onto pages of the New Testament to announce the
coming of the Messiah."
Also I don't believe
it is valid to say that the church can't be the bride because we are
also portrayed as Jesus' brothers and sisters or sons of God. Each
simply portrays different aspects of spiritual truth as a whole. I
could say that we can't be Jesus' brethren because we are actually His
body and He is the head. So how can we, as His body, also be His
brothers? But it's pointless. It is all true and expresses a different
aspect of spiritual reality.
Well, I have written more
than I expected. I hope it helps,
All the best.