August 21, 2103
The Perfect Groom
For your Maker is your husband—the Lord Almighty is his name—the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth (Isaiah 54:5).
Friend to Friend
I was five years old; just a wisp of a girl living in a dream world all my own. On one particular afternoon, I gathered my supplies and prepared for the big day. First, I wrapped a long white sheet around my slender body and tossed the excess over my shoulder and down my back. Then I draped a bath-sized towel over the crown of my head like a veil and clutched a bouquet of plastic flowers to my chest. I stood at the end of my home’s long hallway, and the processional began. I could almost hear the organ playing “Here Comes the Bride,” as I sashayed down the “aisle” with imaginary friends and family looking on.
Little girls and big girls dream about the day they will become brides. And for many, that dream doesn’t turn out the way they had hoped. But here is some good news—some great news, actually: no matter what your marital status this side of heaven—never married, once married, happily married, not-so-happily married, widowed, or divorced—God is your holy Husband who longs to protect you, provide for you, and cherish you through all the ups and downs of life.
We first see God’s name as Ish, or Husband, in the book of Isaiah: “For your Maker is your husband—the Lord Almighty is his name—the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth” (54:5).
We see it again in the book of Hosea, as God speaks about drawing the unfaithful Israel back into His arms: “‘In that day,’ declares the Lord, ‘you will call me “my husband”;… I will betroth you to me forever; I will betroth you in righteousness and justice, in love and compassion. I will betroth you in faithfulness, and you will acknowledge the Lord’” (Hosea 2:16,19-20).
In the New Testament, Jesus is also referred to as the husband of His bride, the Church. The Greek word is aner, and it is translated “husband” or “bridegroom.”
When Jesus was questioned about why His disciples did not fast, He replied, “How can the guests of the bridegroom mourn while he is with them? The time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; then they will fast” (Matthew 9:15).
And in the book of Revelation, Jesus’ return is referred to as the “wedding of the Lamb” (Revelation 19:6-9).
I asked my husband what visual image forms in his mind when he reads that he is part of the “bride of Christ.”
“Nothing really,” he replied.
Granted, I can’t picture Steve walking down the aisle in a pearl-studded wedding gown. But oh, sister, I can see myself waltzing down the aisle to meet my Jesus. Can’t you? What a blessing God has given His female image-bearers as the bride of Christ, our Husband!
Heavenly Father, thank You for choosing me to be the bride for Your Son. Help me to always be alert and ready for the day He comes to take me to my heavenly home. In Jesus’s name, amen.
Now It’s Your Turn
In ancient Jewish tradition, the father chose a bride for his son. If the girl’s father accepted the proposal of marriage, the groom paid her family a “bride price” of a few cows, a couple of sheep, or perhaps some gold trinkets. The couple drank from a cup of wine to seal the marriage covenant between them, and would not drink of it again until the day of the wedding ceremony. Then the groom left his betrothed and went back to his father’s house to build a home for her. Once the home was completed to the satisfaction of the groom’s father, the young man returned to whisk away his bride. Usually this took place in the middle of the night, with torch-toting groomsmen whooping and hollering to let her know they were on their way. The bride’s responsibility was to be prepared, to be ready at all times.
And so it is with you and your Groom. Look up the following verses and note the similarities:
Who chose the bride for Jesus? (Ephesians 1:4)
What was the bride price? (1 Corinthians 6:20)
When did Jesus say he would drink of the fruit of the vine again? (Matthew 26:29)
Where is Jesus right now and what is he doing? (John 14:2-3)
When will Jesus come back and get his bride? (1 Thessalonians 5:2)
More from the Girlfriends
Today’s devotion was taken from our new GiG book titled Knowing God by Name. The book is an eight-week devotional study of 40 names of God written by Mary, Gwen, and I. To learn more, click over to our Knowing God by Name page to download a free sample chapter and watch free videos. We’ll see you there!
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