Marriage and the Church

The scripture makes much of the connection between the marriage of a man and woman and the relationship of Christ and His Church.  References to weddings in scripture include a very special parable (Matt 22:1-14), the first recorded miracle of Jesus in the wedding of Cana (John 2:1-11).  Some Baptists struggle to accept this miracle that involved turning water into wine that would aid the celebration (party) and enhance the fun of a wedding reception.  In Rev 21:9 we see the picture of the Bride and waiting bridegroom.

I admit that it is difficult not to write pages of reflections on the marriage of my only daughter.  She was a radiant bride last Saturday as she made covenant with her new husband.  I have to say, though, that reflection upon the events of Saturday do not only bring tears to this daddy’s eyes because of the sentimental connections with my precious little girl, or the joy of knowing she is now married to a fine young man who knows Christ as Lord and intends to build their home on Him.  My joy also stems from the snapshots that are in my mind’s eye as I think about the bride and groom exchanging loving glances before, during, and following the ceremony.  I am moved by the mental picture of the groomsmen and bridesmaids all standing at the altar, looking on as the bride and groom exchanged vows, spoke words of final covenant, and looked longingly on the marriage event itself that unfolded before them.  This picture is that of Christ and His Church!  This picture is worship in the midst of rite.  As union is spoken into reality in the Name of Father, Spirit, and Son, so promise is invisioned that one day the Church (bride) will come as called to her husband (God).

I have been doubly blessed to observe a service of worship that saw my family made more complete as my daughter (youngest child) was wedded to a fine Christian young man.  I have also been freshly reminded that we, the Church, are the bride adorned for her husband.  We must live as Victors, knowing our husband, the Christ, will continue redemption and win ultimate victory.  The picture of the marriage feast should enliven and inform our song. 

Considering my daughter’s wedding Saturday night, my focus has been up close and full of detail.  I have seen my “little girl” looking beautiful, tears in her eyes indicating her full emotion, and I see her beautiful smile that lets me know she is embarking on happiness for which she longs.  When I back up a bit and allow the focus to be blurred a bit to where I do not so much see my daughter, I instead see a bride robed in white and a groom dressed in tuxedo, each adorned with flowers and surrounded by stained glass and a full compliment of wedding party members.  I see a wedding feast that lacks for nothing.  When I consider the ultimate wedding feast I am overwhelmed.

Christ, our Lord to Thee we raise;

This our hymn of grateful praise!”

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One Comment on “Marriage and the Church”

  1. JERRY BROWN Says:

    Paul…

    Thanks for sharing your significant moment of your daughter’s wedding. (I don’t recall reading her name in your reflections!)I had the privilege and blessing of marrying (performing the ceremony)of all three of my children…each different,but producing the same tears you shed last Saturday.

    Thanks again for sharing your heart, Paul.

    Your friend…Jerry Brown


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