Jesus: The Royal Bridegroom

Tender love stories and royal weddings have universal appeal. 

No romance in human history compares to the breadth, length, height, and depth of Jesus’ love and commitment to His bride, the church. No royal wedding (ancient or modern) rivals the glory of Jesus’ upcoming nuptials. 

Because Jesus’ unfolding love story has been recorded in the culture of the first century A. D., it is easy for a twenty-first century reader to miss several of its precious and pertinent details. 

Among the Jewish people of Jesus’ day, a marriage was usually arranged by the fathers of the future bride and groom. To finalize this arrangement, a dowry or earnest was given to the bride’s family. This gift was considered tangible evidence from the groom’s family of its solemn commitment to the future marriage. 

Once the dowry had been given and received, the couple was viewed as being in a legally binding covenant. The only way for the upcoming wedding to be called off would be through a written divorce decree. 

Although the betrothal was completed, rarely was a wedding date designated. Instead, the future bride and groom lived with their respective families and began focused preparation for their upcoming wedding day. 

The betrothed husband engaged in preparing a place for he and his bride to live. When the groom’s father believes his son had made sufficient preparation and provisions, he instructed him to go get his bride and bring her back. Until his father gave the word, the groom’s wedding day remained a future event. 

Meanwhile, the betrothed wife began preparing herself for her wedding day. If the dowry was lavish enough, some of it was used to purchase perfumes and oils as she sought to beautify herself for the unknown day her bridegroom would come.

Her preparation, therefore, was intensive and continuous. Every morning she arose had the potential of being her wedding day, and she needed to be ready. 

When the groom’s father gave the word, a wedding party accompanied the betrothed husband to his bride’s home. If prepared, she and her attendants would return to the place her groom had prepared, enjoy a marriage feast, and live together as husband and wife in the honorable state of matrimony. 

With this backdrop, it ought to be plain for all to see the great value
Jesus has placed upon His bride, the church. The Royal Bridegroom’s betrothal is a colossal monument of inexhaustible commitment. Jesus’ prearranged betrothal is an essential component of God’s eternal purpose (Ephesians 3:10-11). Jesus is fully
committed to the marriage of His bride. 

The Royal Bridegroom’s dowry is inestimable in value. Unlike Adam whose dowry for Eve was a rib from his side, Jesus’ dowry required the sacrificial love of His own blood. No earnest in history can match the preciousness of Jesus’ dowry. 

The extravagance of His love for His betrothed is unquestionable. The fact that the Royal Bridegroom has given all spiritual blessings to the church (Ephesians 1:3) so that on their wedding day she can present herself to Him as a glorious bride who is holy and without blemish, having no spot or wrinkle (Ephesians 5:27) demonstrates His lavish love.

The glory of the Royal Bridegroom’s wedding day is unimaginable. What a wedding planner the King of kings and the Lord of lords is! Astride a white horse, clothed with a robe dipped in the blood of his dowry, and on His head many crowns (Revelation 19:11-13), the Father will send His Son for His bride and the marriage supper will occur (Revelation 19:9). 

The venue will be heaven itself. The groom’s wedding party will include millions of holy angels (Revelation 5:11). No one in heaven or earth will be able to delay or prevent this holy wedding. 

Jesus not only invites you to His regal wedding, He wants you to be His royal bride.

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Author: jchowning

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