Monday, May 5, 2014

"I do!"

For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, ... love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself ...  Ephesians 5: 22

Two most important words, those.

I attended a wonderful wedding this past weekend. As is often the case, things went well in spite of all the worrisome preparation, and all was meaningful and fun. Yet, it took a message
that Alistair Begg gave at a conference in my home town, Columbus, Ohio, to finally help me
understand and visualize the scripture above. I believe the conference was about rekindling
the romance in marriage, and it seems that Alistair may have been one of the first, if not the
first, to talk.

To be honest, I just had never really been able to wrap my brain around the whole concept
that likened, from scripture, the wedding covenant to the relationship between Jesus and
His church. Plus, and this is probably weird, I just never felt particularly comfortable being
thought of as a ' bride.' So what was that all about? How did Christ's love for the church 
mirror the love of two people being married?

After speaking eloquently, as always, about the phenomenal love expressed in God's
great exchange for salvation, Alistair used the following scenario, which I can only paraphrase. here....

Picture the pastor standing in front of the wedding couple. After preliminary comments
he turns to the groom and asks if he loves this woman who it to be his wife. His answer,
hopefully, is to be, 'I do.' Then the pastor turns to the woman and asks the same
question as to the love she feels entering into the marriage, and she answers, 'I do."

Now picture God standing in front of you at a most important instant of your life. He, God,
turns to His right and asks Jesus, 'Do you love this man?' Jesus responds, 'Yes, I love Him
and I died for him. Then God turns to you and says, 'Do you love Jesus?'

Now we are at the defining moment of ones life. There can be nothing much more sacred
and meaningful than the ceremony of marriage, a direct creation of God, Himself. Yet,
it pales in significance when compared to the salvation and eventual resurrection of
all who are sought, wooed and chosen by God to be adopted children in His eternal
family. 

So, what is the correct answer to God's question? Two simple, short but incomprehensibly
crucial words... "I DO!"

I pray that you have said them and accepted Christ as Savior and King.

Praise God!