Summary: from the Jewish wedding in the selection of the bride, we see aspects of the Christian life as well.
YOU MAKE A BEAUTIFUL BRIDE
Dorn Ridge May 16, 2010
1.) We have all been to many weddings.
2.) Perhaps even this year there are weddings planned on your calendar.
A.) One of the statements I have heard at every wedding I have ever attended is “Look at the Bride!” – Isn’t she beautiful
B.) There is something about a bride in her long white gown that we look at as a picture of beauty.
C.) The Bible speaks of the Church meeting Christ prepared as a bride beautifully adorned for her husband.
3.) Beginning this morning, I want us to start looking at many aspects of our Walk with Christ in light of the Jewish wedding Ceremony and customs.
A.) I have never before had a series of messages like this one, but hope that many things in our Christian faith will gain a new insight from this approach into the Word.
I. GOD HAS CHOSEN THE BRIDE FOR HIS SON BEFORE THE WORLD WAS FORMED.
1.) God has chosen all of mankind to be the bride of Christ.
A.) A few weeks ago our Mid-week group studied on election and predestination.
B.) One of our conclusions was that God has called all to salvation, and that those who accept that call are the elect, the Chosen, or what is also referred to in Scripture as the Bride Of Christ.
2.) In the Jewish wedding usually the Father (or parents) of the groom would choose the bride.
A.) To our society and culture, the thought of having your parents choose your marriage partner is very foreign, and we might even say an idea that we would not be very receptive to.
B.) Even today there are cultures and religions where this is the standard practice.
ba.) Certainly there are both good and bad aspects to this type of system.
ba-1.) On the negative side it is a very difficult thing to have feelings for or to be close to somebody who you may meet for the first time on your wedding day.
ba-2.) at the same time, on a positive note there would be nobody who would normally love you or seek your best interest than your parents.
ba-2i.) They would have your best interests at heart, and seek the best for you in a marriage partner.
ba-2ii.) Another advantage of this type of approach is that they would be able to be more objective about a partner, and less likely to be moved by infatuations that blind the eyes to potential flaws in a partner.
3.) Abraham serves as an example of this selection process.
A.) Abraham felt the decision was too important to be left to his son.
aa.) Isaac was not to be taken along for this decision.
ab.) Gen. 24: 5-6, 8
4.) The decision was important enough that God had to be part of the decision process.
A.) Gen. 24:7
5.) The importance of the decision can be seen by the measures that were taken. (Gen. 24:10)
A.) Ten camels.
aa.) This many camels suggested it would be a very long journey.
aa-1.) Journey of about 500 miles.
aa-2.) Many feel it would have been a round trip journey of about one year.
B.) All kinds of good things.
ba.) Supplies for the journey.
bb.)Gifts For The Bride (Bride Price/Dowry)
C.) Special Instructions to His servant.
ca.) The woman could not be a Canaanite. (verse 3)
cb.) Canaan represented people whose gods, religion, customs, and values not only differed from Abraham’s, but conflicted with the God He worshipped.
cc.) Several centuries after this, Abraham’s descendants would inherit and overtake the land of Canaan.
cd.) When that day would come, the Israelites were not to intermingle with the Canaanites.
ce.) When Abraham made that decision for the choice of his future daughter-in-law ,he was not being racist or anything else other than selective.
ce-1.) Abraham wanted the best bride for his son he could select.
II. GOD ESTABLISHED CRITERIA TO DETERMINE WHO WOULD BE THE BRIDE OF CHRIST.
-- In our study on Election and Predestination in Mid- week bible Study, we said that it is not so much that God has predestined some to salvation, and others to reprobation, but rather, that god has established criteria for man to follow. Those who choose to follow those criteria choose to become God’s elect, and also he Bride of Christ.
1.) The Bride of Christ must be holy and blameless.
A.) Eph. 1:3-4
B.) we must consciously make the choice to be holy and blameless.
C.) God has chosen that all would be holy and blameless, but He allows the final decision on that to be made by each person who lives on this earth.
D.) Those who make that choice become the Bride of Christ.