The Bride of Christ
Do you still believe women should not be pastors or leaders in the church? Do you still believe healing was for the early church? Do you still believe the Baptism of the Holy Spirit was for the early church and not for the body of Christ today also?
Many of the church's views on these doctrinal pillars have been revised in recent years. With a spirit of honest examination, the church has realized that they were not quite right. With that said, I believe its time to take a closer look at the "Bride of Christ" doctrine as well.
Here are the reasons why:
1. While there is a "lamb's wife, the bride of Christ", it is not the church—Revelation 21:9-10 clearly states that the "the bride, the Lamb's wife" is the Holy Jerusalem.
2. Revelation 19:7 says, "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready." Again, this lamb's wife, the bride of Christ cannot be refering to the church! If the church is "the bride of Christ," then the Christian has to do something to get "herself ready." This requires "works" to be done by the Christian to get ready. The Word says that we are already made righteous and are already sanctified. So then, the church, in God's eyes, is already ready. The bride of Christ has to be something else!
3. If the Church were "the bride, the Lamb's wife," then the angel in Revelation 21:9-10 would have shown "the Church," not the Holy Jerusalem.
4. Jesus did not teach that his body is also his bride. Paul didn't teach it either.
5. Christians are repeatedly called "sons of God," "the body of Christ," and "the church" throughout the New Testament but are never called "the bride of Christ."
Currently, the main teaching regarding the "Bride of Christ" is that she is the church and must make herself ready. This teaching is inconsistent with the entire Pauline Revelation of the Gospel of Grace.
Because of the free gift of grace, we are already righteous and without spot nor blemish in the Lord's sight. We are already ready! Therefore, it stands to reason that the church can't be the one "getting herself ready." The "Bride of Christ" then must refer to something or someone else! The "bride" must refer, not to the church, but to the Holy Jerusalem, just as the Word of God says in Revelations 21:9-12.
The Unfortunate "Bride of Christ" Doctrine: Readying Ourselves Lies in God's Hands
The "Bride of Christ" teaching says the church has to do something to make "herself ready," to be perfect. If this is true, then there is absolutely no way Jesus will ever return and get us. We can't get "ready" ourselves or achieve perfection by our own doing. It'll never happen. We are not perfect, and we can never be perfect outside of his gift of righteousness. It is just not possible. It will never be possible!
Can't Ignore the Comparison of Worship and Marriage
Though I do not believe that the "Bride of Christ" refers to the church, I do think that the comparison of our relationship to God with the covenants, promises, or vows made in marriage is helpful. The Word does make those comparisons. I don't refute that. God has made a lot of promises to us similar to those we make to each other when we get married.
But as far as my personal relationship with God? I am a friend of God. He is my Dad, and I am His son, too. In the Scripture, it reads "...whereby we cry Abba (literally: "daddy"), Father." The closeness and intimate nature of our relationship with Him has the quality of the relationship between a father and a son, not a relationship between spouses. He is a Dad who has promised me an inheritance and the ability to come boldy to His throne of grace.
Neither Jesus Nor Paul Ever Preached That the Body of Christ is a Bride
They did not tell us the body of Christ is a bride of any kind. Perhaps Israel is the bride, but the body of Christ certainly isn't.
Jesus never told His disciples He would someday be their bride. Paul didn't say we are the bride. In fact, nowhere in scriptures does it ever say Christians are the bride of Christ. Not only that, it just seems strange.
The Term "Bride of Christ" Never Appears in the Bible
While a "Lambs' Wife" is mentioned in Revelations, the term "Bride of Christ" is never used in the Bible. I searched the Bible for the term "Bride of Christ". I couldn't find it. It surprised me when I did that search and came up with no results! And to think, after all these years of hearing how we are the bride of Christ and He will come get us once we have made ourselves ready.
What Does the Bible Say about the "Bride of Christ"?
What does the word say about the "Bride of Christ"? Nothing really. The term "Bride of Christ" is nowhere in the Bible. Aside from being first coined by the Roman Catholic Church, this term has been invented out of perceived inferences of certain passages that says God's relationship to us is "as a bride". These passages are all parables or similes. They are simply making a comparison of our relationship to Him. He loves us and has made covenant promises to us, similar to how a husband loves and upholds promises to his wife.
Again, the passage that comes closest to mentioning a bride from Revelation:
And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife. And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal; And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel...
This passage does not say the body of Christ is the the Lamb's wife. It does not say Israel is the Lamb's wife. It clearly states however that "that great city, the Holy Jerusalem" is the Lamb's wife. In verse 10, it also says that John the Revelator saw that great city descending down from heaven adorned as a bride. He doesn't even refer to it as the bride but that it is adorned as a bride.
Read This Parable from Matthew Again
Matthew 22:1-14 And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said, The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them. But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy. Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests. And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, but few are chosen.
The bride is not the subject of this story—the guests are. The commonly accepted interpretation of this parable is that the guests represent the church—how can the guests be considered the bride?
Taking the leap from the guests representing "the bride of Christ" can't be done, but the proponents of the "bride of Christ" concept do it with this passage all of the time!
Read This Parable from Matthew Again, Too
Matt 25:1-13 Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.
It goes without saying that the ten virgins are not this groom's wife. They are only guests trying to get into the wedding.
Once again, taking the leap from the ten virgins being guests to them being the bride and representing "the Bride of Christ" can't be done. This story is about being ready to be accepted into the kingdom of heaven. How is that done? By accepting Jesus as our Lord.
That story is as simple as that!
Another Argument Lies in Isaiah 62
Some have said the Lord would not marry a city, but here the Lord is married to the land. It is not a stretch that He could be married to a city if He wants, as has been indicated in Revelation 21:9-10. God can do what He wants, whether we understand it or not. After all, when did God ever do anything that really made sense to us?
In Jeremiah, God Is Already Married to Israel
In the Old Testament, the church of Christ had not yet been established. Therefore, there was no church yet; furthermore, the prophet says God is already married to Israel! There is never any mention of a wedding for Jesus, simply one to the lamb's wife.
Why Do We Always Read Things into the Word?
So, how did some miss that passage and turn the church or even Israel into the "bride of Christ"? Israel makes more sense, but still, I'm not sure why people draw conclusions like these without clear evidence. The very human desire to understand everything has led to people reading into things that aren't really there in order to make some sort of sense out of it.
Preachers Aren't Always Right
Just because it was said by somebody in the pulpit doesn't make it true. The only thing you know must be true is the Word of God. So instead of putting unwavering faith in preachers, examine stories that seem clear to you.
Why the "Bride of Christ" Doctrine Is Important: Christianity Becomes Like All the Other Religions of the World
I used to think the "Bride of Christ" doctrine was an issue of secondary importance. However, with further consideration, I have concluded it is a fundamental concern. What the doctrine teaches causes to do works to become "without spot or wrinkle." Our Christianity becomes just like all the rest of the religions of the world. It becomes a religion of works and not one founded in God's grace. The "Bride of Christ" teaching takes away from us God's grace and gift of riaghteousness. We then become all about works. The Galations were all about works. What did Paul call those Galations? He called them fools.
Other Problems with the "Bride of Church" Doctrine
In addition to devaluing His gift of righteousness, the "Bride of Christ" doctrine also devalues our authority and position in Christ. Being in his body is much more powerful than simply being his bride.
For example, when it comes right down to it, my wife is limited in her authority over me because she is a separate person. It's not that way with the body of Christ. He gave us all of His authority as kings and priests in the earth. We are his body. We have His authority in the earth. That authority is the Word of God He gave us to hear, believe, speak, and live by.
Don't Believe Anything You Hear (Including What I Write) Unless It Can Be Clearly Backed up by the Word
I can clearly backup, with scripture, the fact that the Lamb's wife is the holy city of Jerusalem. But the ones who believe the church is the bride of Christ cannot back it up with obvious scripture.
Its good to question everything we are being taught. I have always been puzzled by the "Bride of Christ" doctrine. After all, the Word says that we don't marry in heaven in Luke 20:35. I originally didn't think this verse had much to do with the "Bride of Christ" doctrine, yet, on second thought, maybe it does. There is no limiting language in this scripture—if we won't be given in marriage in heaven, then can it even be possible to be married to Jesus, or anyone else for that matter, in the hereafter? My questioning began with the Scripture.
Origins of the "Bride of Christ" Doctrine
The term "Bride of Christ" has it roots in the Roman Catholic Church. You probably know the clergy or priests of the Roman Catholic Church "marries" their church, taking an oath to celebacy. As a result, the term "Bride of Christ" was eventually coined in relation to this practice. Today, this concept and terminology has spilled over into our own fundamental Christian doctrines.
The Play "The Bride"
Several years ago (early '90s), there was a play called The Bride. This play told a story of how the church is the "Bride of Christ." This play was performed in many cities in the US. It was a nice little drama, but it is unscriptural. However, the play helped engrain the "Bride of Christ" doctrine in the public consciousness.
It just sounds nice. But just because the doctrine sounds good doesn't mean its God. Don't believe a thing just because it makes sense at first glance. If its not clearly in the Word, it is not so.
Inferences Don't Establish Truth
As we have established, the notion that we are the "Bride of Christ" is an inference. Building doctrines on inferences will mess us up and get us off the truth. This is the reason the Jones followers got off and drank the kool-aid. I don't know about you, but I'm not going with any doctrine that is inferred.
For example, it can be inferred that the baptism of the Holy Spirit was for the early church only, and that God doesn't operate that way today. For centuries the church, by and large, had been robbed of the comfort, revelation, ability, and power found in the baptism of the Holy Spirit. I'm glad we don't believe that's true anymore.
Also consider that "the church" once believed women shouldn't be in ministry or pastoring or in any leadership positions. That misconception came from inferences as well.
I take the Word literally for what it says unless it specifically says otherwise. For instance, Jesus told many stories that had meanings and were similes. Before He told His stories, He always led the listeners know He was about to tell a parable.
We don't accept those inferences about baptism or women in the ministry as truth anymore, and we shouldn't. Neither should we accept inferences in regards to the "Bride of Christ" teaching.
© 2008 cdacoffee
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on March 29, 2013:
I absolutely believe that is what those passages mean. Thanks for that comment.
eddieb97830 on March 29, 2013:
THE BRIDE OF CHRIST
JESUS has prerared the Holy City, the New Jerusalem, the bride, the Lamb's Wife.
REV 19:7 "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him : for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready."
JN 14: 2 & 3
JN 2 In My Father's House are many mansions if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
JN 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and recieve you unto Myself ; that where I am , there you may be also.
eddieb97830 on March 26, 2013:
Could it be ?
Jesus himself has prepaired the bride, the Lambs wife. The Holy City.
JN14:2 & 3
In My Father's House are many mansions if it were not so, I would have told you, I go to prepare a place for you.
And if I go and prepare a place for you. I will come, and recieve you unto Myself that where I am, there you may be also.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on January 31, 2013:
I agree with you 100%.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on January 31, 2013:
Clarifying the two definitions we can ascribe to "sin willfully".
1. "Sin willfully" in Hebrews 10; Rejecting Jesus as the final and last sacrifice of "once and for all". This leads to rejecting grace under the New Covenant and what Jesus accomplished on the cross for all of us.
2. "Sinning willfully"; a person who has NOT rejected Jesus, the New Covenant grace and who is fully persuaded of the truth of it yet commits a sin such as drunkenness, fornication, etc.
Adding to definition number 2 I would point out there are many Christians who have accepted Jesus and at the same time struggle with drunkenness, smoking, drugs, lusts of the flesh etc., etc.
Lets just say for a minute that smoking is a sin. Christian smokers willfully smoke. The very fact that a person lifts their arm to their mouth with a cigarette is an act of their will. They have to "will" their arm to move it there. Am I right? Does this mean they can't be forgiven? Of course not! Don't be ridiculous! That is just plain stupid!
Or what about the Christian who is struggling with certain addictions? They commit those sins deliberately. Does that mean they can't be forgiven either? Of course not. Its a foolish thing to think that God's grace is not sufficient enough to forgive in any of these cases. God is El Shaddai, the God who is MORE than enough.
I would also like to add that almost any sin committed after becoming a Christian is an act of one's will. If this is the case then not one person who is a Christian can be forgiven under the idea that there is no longer a sacrifice available to us to be forgiven if we "sin willfully" as some have so stated in their comments here.
So then, in Hebrews 10, Paul meant "sin willfully" is to reject the truth of Jesus being the ultimate and final "for once and for all" sacrifice.
The OT sacrifices of those priests are null and void now. Theirs "no longer" work to cover sins. Only Jesus' sacrifice works and works and keeps on working, to forever and ever and ever wash away all sins.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on January 31, 2013:
CDACOFFEE- What you are saying is the very point I was trying to make when I quoted John 16: 8 and 9 above. If one does not believe in Christ Jesus, then that is thee SIN. Of cource if one does not believe in Christ how would they understand they have His grace. The key point is Grace through faith is what wash away our SIN of not believing in Him. This is the foundation of Christ's church that He built. It's Grace. Understanding that Jesus did what we could never do, and that means being perfect. But the blind will never understand this.
There are far to many churches out there that overlap the Old and New Covenants and build a doctrine that the bride of Christ is the Church. They are to blinded to understand that the death on the cross of Jesus Christ ended the Old Covenant (Law) and began the New Covenant (Grace). This is a alian concept to them. When overlaping the two Covenants it fogs the CONTEXT of the two covenants. And because of this people will cotinue to use verses in both the Old and New Testament to TRY and support their bride of Christ is the Church doctrine. Trying to get them to understand God's grace is like trying to lead a tree to water.
Gad Bless you CDACOFFEE.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on January 29, 2013:
I say to all of us that we have to read the entire letter Paul wrote to see what it is that he is talking about. We can't just jump on one passage and think we know what its really saying. Notice in Chapter 9 that he is discussing the sacrifices of the Old Covenant vs the New Covenant Sacrifice Jesus made. Also continue on through the end of chapter 10 and chapter 11. This entire discussion is about the Old Covenant vs the New, living by works vs Faith.
Paul's discussion to Hebrews on this topic is attempting to explain that under the New Covenant Jesus was the sacrifice "once and for all". He was telling the people that we have to think in a new way, times have changed, there is ”a new and better covenant”.
The term in Hebrews 10, “willfully sin” refers to people sinning by rejecting the New Covenant. They were having trouble believing it. So, they rejected the New Covenant and went back to the Old Covenant. They were willfully sinning by rejecting the New Covenant of grace.
Before Jesus was sacrificed, the sacrifices the priests made under Mosaic law happened once a year. Those sacrifices covered all the sins of the people for the year only. This had to be done once a year. But since Jesus had been sacrificed there was no need for the priest to perform their sacrifices annually anymore. “There no longer remains a sacrifice for sin”. It was a new day, a New Covenant had been born! Things don't work the same anymore. Jesus had been the last sacrifice. The age and dispensation of grace had arrived! Praise God! So then if we sin willfully, we are forgiven of that too under the New Covenant. But trying to obey the law now (by doing some kind of a work to get a response), under the mechanisms of the Old Covenant, if a person sinned and/or willfully sinned there was no longer the annual preistly sacrifice that would work to "cover" those sins. The sacrifices of the preists were no longer effective as Jesus had made the real and pure sacrifice of Himself to not just "cover" sins but to wash them all away “for once and for all”. He was saying its all different now. Its not the sacrifice of the priests that take care of covering sins but the sacrifice of Jesus washing away all your sins “once and for all”. Annual sacrifices of the preists were “no longer”.
Galations 3 tells us that if we do a works we put ourselves back under the Mosaic law and requirements. That is; we partake in the Old Covenant so we will need the old annual sacrifice of the preists to cover the sins according to the Mosaic Covenant. He is saying that if we sin, being under that covenant then there is no more sacrifice being done now that will work to forgive sins (including willful sins since there is only one sin that cannot be forgiven; that is; rejecting God) according to the Mosaic Covenant's requirements. Those requirements (the annual sacrifice in particular) were dispensed and “no longer” when Jesus' sacrifice took care of all sins forever.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on January 29, 2013:
I think rdwray and ericbowk both need to read John 16: 8 and 9 (NKJV) which states: 8 And when He has come, He will convict the world of SIN, and of righteousness, and of Judgement; 9 of SIN, because they do not believe in ME,
You see folks , the ONLY SIN we will be convicted of is not believing in Jesus. And that is the ONLY sin. The He, that Jesus was refering to in verse 8 is the Holy Spirit. You both need to UNDERSTAND what this means in it's CONTEXT. And that's the problem with you two when you're too wrapped up in religion. You end up blinded. Learn the bible for yourself and try to understand the CONTEXT. Through Christ Jesus we have received GRACE.
CDACOFFEE, I think this bride of Christ is not the church is a issue that should continue to be supported. There are to many religions out there that continue to shove bad doctrine down peoples throats. And I also believe there are far far less people in Christ Church than people who call themselves christians realize. You continue to have my 100% support.
rdwray on January 29, 2013:
This is far off the subject of the blog, but my greater concern is that no one ever reads the Bible, they always quote someone else.
"Sinning willfully" means "intentional sin"; in other words, you know you are doing wrong when you do it such as lie. " Hebrews 10:26 (NKJV) For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,"
People seem to think that "all I have to do is recognize Jesus and I have it made; the greatest and most false teaching by anyone. "Luke 9:62 (NKJV) But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”"
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on January 28, 2013:
"Sinning willfully" means that if I willfully do works to achieve no spot or blemish, salvation, blessings, holiness, sanctification, righteousness, and etc., etc. then I fail. Doing works to achieve anything is the willful sin that is being discussed in that passage of scripture. This is doing a work to get a result from God. It don't work that way bro! There is nothing I can do, good OR bad that will get me through those Pearly Gates or keep me out if I believe His grace is more that abounding towards me. If we don't believe that, then whats the point of believing Christianity is the true way?
Everything under grace is free no matter what I do EXCEPT for deciding that God does not exist and neither does His grace towards me. That is the definition of "blasphemy of the Holy Spirit". It is, according to the Word the ONLY unforgivable sin.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on January 28, 2013:
False doctrine of grace? Seriously? Maybe you oughta read Romans and listen to what Joseph Prince's teachings are saying about grace and how it really works...
God is even gonna overlook the fact that either one of us could be sinning by willfully preaching a false doctrine. Either mine is a false doctrine or yours is.
The word says that all we have to do to be saved is call on the name of the Lord.
I'm right about this dude. If we have to do something to become without spot and blemish then we are putting ourselves back under the law.
We all sin daily boht inadvertently and deliberately. So then according to your position none of us will make it.
Maybe you need to go back and research what is really meant about "willfully sinning".
That passage means that there is no more forgiveness of sin because I tried to become without spot and blemish out of my own doing something (that is willfully trying to become without spot and blemish by doing something to become that way and all the while ignoring that we were given the gift of righteousness and are already are without spot and blemish).
The truth is, is that is already done by the work that Jesus did and not by some work that I might do. That is grace and that message is not a false doctrine of Grace. So then, I say that you are an idiot. Oh crap... I said that willfully... Guess I'm not gonna be forgiven... Geez!
Evangelist Anita Fuentes from California on January 27, 2013:
@cdacoffee - my brother you are a breath of Holy Spirit fresh air! Jesus bless you my friend, Amen! First I want to say you made me laugh when you stated in much earlier comments that a lady stated in all seriousness that she was the Holy Spirit. Wow. What audacity and ungodly deception.
I, by God's Grace have been preaching on this extensively and have gotten ALOT of resistance from many in the Body of Christ, it is amazing to say the least. I just posted this link on both my personal FB page and ministry FB page. I believe you would be interested in listening to our end-time ministry broadcast titled 'Open Your Eyes People 'where we bring Breaking News headlines Matching Bible Prophecy on Youtube. I will post a link to it. Please check it out.
I have spent the last hour going over practically evey comment written concerning this blessed article of Truth and praise Jesus for His Grace upon you to not grow weary while doing good and telling the same Truth over and over. With so many who oppose this view and DESPERATELY try and refute it it can make one wonder what caused them to stumble onto this page in the first place. Perhaps a Holy Spirit conviction that the Church is not the Bride of Christ but in Truth is New Jerusalem and saying otherwise is REPLACEMENT THEOLOGY another doctrine among many from the pit of hell.
CDA I pray Jesus' richest and purest blessings be upon you and your entire household and very important ministry in this final lap. Jesus is coming soon....Amen
Your honored sister in Christ,
ericbowk on January 08, 2013:
I love your boldness and truth, but unfortunately the church today has believed in this false doctrine cda is believing, we know it clearly says Jesus will not return to a bride that is blemished, we know the parable of the lamps and oil, this false message of grace is preventing the return of Jesus, Jesus told us we must be righteous and holy. People forget it is written that whoever willfully sins after receiving the knowledge of truth there will remain no more forgiveness of sin, but only a fiery expectation of judgment. That should put a stop to all this fakes grace . It is s ickening how people spit on grace and Gods son. As me me I PLEDGE MY ALLEGIANCE TO JESUS and to everything He s
rdwray on November 27, 2012:
1. Israel is God's wife (Jeremiah 3:14)
2. First resurrection is martyrs only who were killed for Word of God (Revelation 20:4-6).
3. Second resurrection is those who are written in the Lamb's book of and and those who are not (Revelation 20:11-13).
4. The Bride of Christ is New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:2).
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on November 26, 2012:
Great list! and really helpful in additionally establishing the fact that the church is NOT the bride...
brianvt on November 13, 2012:
Great conversation! My take:
1. Church is a mystery to the Prophets and can't be seen in the Tanakh(OT).
2. Mt Sinai is Israel's betrothal (kiddushin).
3. 2nd Coming is Israel's Marriage (nissiun).
4. Then there is the resurrection of the Just (all saints, except for the Church which was resurrected as first fruits at the Rapture).
5. Sukkot is the marriage feast of the Lamb, celebrating the marriage to Israel. Great Joy!
6. Jesus destroys all armies at armageddon
6. Then there is the 1000 year Sabbath, during which, mortal saints continue to die.
7. Then the Great White Throne judgment which includes the resurrection of the millenial saints.
8. The new Jerusalem comes down which is all of Israel, OT-Trib-Mill.
9. Church is in heaven and stays there, the last time you see the Church in scripture is Rev 3.22
10. Church is the body of Christ and rules over the angels in heaven.
Vladimir Uhri from HubPages, FB on October 15, 2012:
All we know there will be wedding celebration. There will be wedding supper. I believe it is unification of all believers and it includes the 1. Church, 2. 144,000 Jewish believers and 3. Martyrs of Great Tribulation period.
My question is, Lamb is going to marry city or people of New Jerusalem?
Agape to all.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on October 13, 2012:
It is amazing how we christians can see things in the bible that isn't there and then turn around and fail to see the things that are.
I believe this is the difference between interpertation and clear understanding of God's word.
As cdacoffee mentioned so many times the Bride of Christ is the New Jerusalem which is clearly stated in Rev: 21: 10. When one mentions the Body of Christ, then this is something which can be found throughout the New Testament.
In this case many christian clearly interpert and/or assume the Bride of Christ is the chruch doctrine, due the the fact that much of the Bride of Christ is the church doctrine come from those who stand at the pulpits.
When ministers and others who teach do not understand the word of God themselves, then we as christian end up believing their err.
For example of what we see and don't see in God's word, I have heard so many times from different ministers and preasts over time regarding the Old Covenant, that God gave only one covenant to Moses on Mt Sinai for the Nation of Isreal (it is refered to now days as the Old Covenant). I have NEVER heard it tought that God actually gave Moses TWO covenants. As I later learned in time, on my owen, it was revealed that God in fact gave Moses TWO Covenants in all. For proof of this I draw your attention to the (OT) Book of Deuteronomy 29:1 which states:
These our the words of the COVENANT which God commanded Moses to make with the children of Isreal in the land of Moab, BESIDES the COVENANT which He made with them in Horeb.
(Horeb is the location in which Mt. Sinai sits)
So how did we as christians miss this important fact regarding the TWO Old Covenants which is never tought. But those who stand in front of a pulpit will teach the Bride of Christ is the Church doctrine.
We christians depend far to much on ministers and preasts for our understanding of God's word. So when we listen to doctrine like the Bride of Christ is the Church, then we allow others to see for us. We allow others to misunderstand, the Covenants of God, for us. So no doubt if they (ministers) see what is not in the word of God and teach it as doctrine, then that is the way most christians will learn err.
The point I am trying to make is this. The Bride of Christ is the Church is a doctrine that one can not prove. We allow many preasts and ministers to mislead us into false or wrong doctrine. Why is it that one would teach something that is not in God's word ( the Bride of Christis the Church issue), but have no problem in failing to mention something as important as TWO Old Covenants. Which is clearly writen but nobody teaches. Why.
rdwray on September 07, 2012:
God is a spirit, why would He marry an individual - Mormon theology.
jenchristopherson from maricopa, az on September 04, 2012:
You are right. The Bride is one individual being and a secret and a mystery to all. Just as Jesus Christ is a secret and mystery about his second comming and how he is here now on earth for his Bride. He is not here to be famous and neither does he want his Bride to be famous either. We like our privacy but he is still omnipresent and here with all spiritually and Loving us all the way he does best. I feel like my life is a dream come true and it is really real and you don't have to pinch me to wake me up from this fantastic dream because I am awake and this life withmy husband is real and really happening. Praise God forever I love him so much. God Bless Jennifer Christopherson
EbRoy on September 02, 2012:
This is a subject that never settled in my spirit. All I have is a question. Revelation 22:17 was mentioned sometime last year. "The Spirit and the Bride say come," But the person left off there. It's not only the Spirit and the Bride that say come. If the person would have continued you would have read, "and let him who hears say come." So, in Rev. 22:17 you have three seperate entities saying "come." You have the "Spirit." Doesn't take a genuis to figure out that's the Holy Spirit who is always wooing us and calling us unto repentence. Then there's the "Bride." Many believe that is the church. But it doesn't fit the description. However, the third entity, those who hear, or have heard definitely does. And what are they doing? Bidding people to come, because they have heard. Heard what? Could it be the good news? The way I see it, the identity of the Bride is a mystery. When the angel tells John that he is going to show John the Bride, John only describes a city that is decorated for the wedding. Sorry, no leaked photos or paparazzi allowed....the Holy Spirit doesn't allow John to describe her, only a city decked out for a celebration. I believe the Bride of Christ is an individual being....a secret and a mystery to us.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on September 01, 2012:
...then explain why it says in the Old Testament that God says He is married to the Land?
Furthermore, explain why John is shown the Holy City of Jerusalem by the angel that showed him the "bride, the Lamb's wife"?
I beleive that such concepts are a part of the "mystery of the gospel". We may not really understand how the "bride" could be the Holy City of Jerusalem or how God could say in the book of Hosea that He is married to the land but nevertheless that is what the word says so the bride, the Lamb's wife is the Holy City of Jerusalem.
tru10000 on August 28, 2012:
Peace and grace to all who have written on this hub, including the OP.
God is omnipotent, all knowing, eternal and holy, holy, holy. He is love. Only by love does anything we know really matter. Can you imagine Almighty God, full of love and justice, marrying an inanimate object? I can't.
jimmydelr on August 13, 2012:
richprickitt on August 10, 2012:
Dear Bro. Coffee,
In Genesis 2:22, God, the Father of Adam, presents Adam with his bride. In Revelation 21:2, 9-11, The Lamb's wife comes down, from God (Jesus' Father) out of heaven. Once God establishes a pattern, He will NEVER alter it. I.e. Nowhere in Scripture is it recorded for us that a man ever presented his bride to himself.
And as far as 2 Corinthians 11:2 is concerned, the only thing the apostle Paul presents to Jesus is himself a living sacrifice - just as you and I, and every Christian is supposed to do or be doing.
(In that verse, Paul is 'speaking' in the middle voice - wishing he could, but lamenting he cannot present the rebellious faction in the church at Corinth as a chaste virgin to Christ. In the chapter's opening verse, Paul asks his 'audience' to bear with him in his folly.)
Therefore, Jesus does NOT present His bride to Himself, but His Body in Ephesians 5:27.
Beginning in Ephesians 5:18, the apostle Paul commences his 'seminar' on relationships. The first is each individual's relationship with and to his Lord. The second is a husband and wife's relationship to each other, which should mirror Christ's relationship with and to His Church, Which is His Body (verses 28-30). (Christ's relationship to His Church demonstates the highest standard of love [agape].) The third relationship is that between parents and children (Ephesians 6:1-4). And the fourth and final relationship is that of servants and masters (Ephesians 6:5-9).
And it must be remembered that those that attend the Marriage Supper of the Lamb (Revelation 19:7-8) are comprised of ALL the saints of ALL the ages that have arrived in heaven by the occasion of the 'Wedding Feast' of the Lamb, at which the Lamb is not even present! (Jesus does not arrive until verse eleven.
Question: Would Jesus lead the armies in heaven - clothed in fine linen, white & clean (v. 8 fine linen, clean & white) - to go forth to judge and make war after He had just acquired them as His bride? No, He would not. The events in Revelation 21 occur AFTER Christ's millennial reign, AFTER the Great White Throne Judgment, and AFTER the first heaven and the first earth were passed away. (Cf. 2 Peter 3:10-13.)
And if the "saints" in Revelation 19:8 are only Church saints, which are to be Christ's bride, then God is a respecter of persons - which we know He is not.
Blessings, peace, and love in the joy and privilege of serving Jesus & testifying of Him!
Prophet/Evangelist/Teacher - Founder/Director of Body Building Ministries, Inc. - Building the Body of Christ SOULdier by SOULdier
godlovejoy on August 07, 2012:
Sometimes I do a search on a subject and I searched "Bride of Christ" and came up with this article. Very good, and true. Cdacoffee has wisdom. There are many things being taught today that are not discerned by the Holy Spirit and are interpreted by our flesh, so we are off on a lot of things. This is one of them. There is a chosen group, Jesus says in the parable of the wedding feast that many are called but few are chosen. The Spirit draws many and calls many, but you must make yourself worthy and chosen by your own choosing to follow Christ and give up your life to him. Whatever He asks, whether you have to leave family, houses, lands, whatever. Then He will put you through a time of testing with many trials, and sufferings that you must endure to be made worthy of this calling and to be chosen. You do the will of the Father, and He gives you the grace to do it. So in essence, you choose to be chosen. You can't fail, if you keep following. This is the new covenant made with Christ. They are the Bride because they will be at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb and become One with Christ. Those that are chosen are described in Rom. 8:29,30
For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate [to be] conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
These chosen are the firstborn among many brothers/Sisters, and will be glorified, they are from every race and tongue, Gentile, or Jew, Male or Female. These chosen are the chosen "Israel." They will be taken to the Marriage Supper of the Lamb and become one with Christ in the First Resurrection, and receive their spiritual body, just as Christ did when He rose from the dead. They will rule and reign with Christ for the 1,000 years as Priests, Kings, Judges and judge the people who were not chosen. It's a high calling that when followed will produce an inheritance of great honor and authority. They will be as the Angels of God. This is the Bride.
rdwray on August 04, 2012:
I have not see where Paul said that the Church is the bride; he did say that the saved Christian was espoused to Christ as a virgin which has absolutely nothing to do with being a bride. Here a few verses to put context on what God says about the subject - a few are spelled out and the rest are listed below:
Jeremiah 3 (NKJV)
12 "Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say: 'Return, backsliding Israel,' says the LORD; 'I will not cause My anger to fall on you. For I am merciful,' says the LORD; 'I will not remain angry forever.
13 Only acknowledge your iniquity, That you have transgressed against the LORD your God, And have scattered your charms To alien deities under every green tree, And you have not obeyed My voice,' says the LORD.
14"Return, O backsliding children," says the LORD; "for I am married to you. I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion.
Hosea 2 (NKJV)
14 "Therefore, behold, I will allure her, Will bring her into the wilderness, And speak comfort to her.
15 I will give her her vineyards from there, And the Valley of Achor as a door of hope; She shall sing there, As in the days of her youth, As in the day when she came up from the land of Egypt.
16 "And it shall be, in that day," Says the LORD, "That you will call Me 'My Husband,' And no longer call Me 'My Master,'
Lamb's wife - Jerusalem represents Israel (See God's wife): Rev 21:9-10; Rev 19:7-9. (Description of the bride: Rev 19:10-21)
(God compares Israel to a "woman": Jer 3:6.)
Guests invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb: Matt 22:1-14.
Virgins invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb: Matt 25:1-13.
God is betroted to Israel: Jer 3:14; Hos 2:18-19
Can Christ marry His brothers: John 20:17; 1John 3:1.
Christians are sons of God: John 1:12; Rom 8:14 and joint heirs with Christ: Rom 8:16-17.
Jews invitation to supper and refuse it: Luke 14:16-20.
Gentiles invitated to the supper because of the Jews rejection of Christ: Luke 14:21-23.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on August 03, 2012:
I really didn't expect that my tack on this topic would be so controversial. I only wanted to refute it because the "bride of Christ" doctrine denies the Pauline revelation of the "Gospel of Grace" since, essentially, the "bride of Christ" doctrine tells us that we have to "get ourselves ready"!
So then Christianity becomes just another religion that requires some kind of a work to off-set the commision of the sins that we all make on a daily basis
ARisingSon on August 03, 2012:
The only place I find the Bride identified(sort of) is Rev.21:9-11 where one of the seven messengers(angels) says,"Hither! I shall be showing you the bride,the wife of the Lambkin. ....And he carries me away,in spirit,......and shows me the holy city,Jerusalem,....having the glory of God." Verse 2 previously called this "the holy city,new Jerusalem,...made "ready" as a bride adorned for her husband."(Concordant NT)
So,to know who is the Bride we must know who constitutes the New Jerusalem. Unless someone believes this is a literal city.
Revelation is a book of signs and symbols. Little of it can be taken literally. However, the "Jewishness" of this book is very apparent when you read all the terms taken from Judaism/Old Testament. This has lead some to teach that the Bride will be those early Jewish and Gentile converts before the Dispensation of Grace was ushered in by Paul's prison epistles(not just this,of course,but many other proofs as well).
Some have written on the possibility that the Bride is taken out of the Body just as Eve was taken out of the body of Adam. If that be the case then how is this "part" of the Body distinguished from the rest of the Body? I believe Jewish/OT tradition was that the father of the groom was instrumental in choosing a bride for his son. Thus the Father will choose from out of the Body the Bride for His Son. This bride will likely be manifest just before the Son returns to rule during the Kingdom Age. Bottom line, only Father knows who makes up the Bride. Not even the Son knows at this point.
Yownah from Washington on July 30, 2012:
In the same way that Israel is both a man (Jacob) and a kingdom, so the New Jerusalem is a woman and also a kingdom. At the wedding feast, all the church members are guests but one, the bride, she is the Lamb's wife. She is the capital and representative of the kingdom. She has made herself ready through faith - which itself is a gift - she has done nothing of herself to 'earn' this - it is all for, by, and because of the glory of God. The Lord shows mercy to whom He will and does what He deems best. As you have said, can we really begin to comprehend the ways of God?! I believe for all eternity we will continue to discover more and more of His excellent greatness and will ever be amazed at the ways in which He chooses to do His work. May His holy and blessed name be ever praised. The Lord will return to the earth from the wedding to bring the guests home. Lo, He is coming very soon - He is even at the door. 'The Spirit and the bride say "Come."'
Golden Oldie on July 15, 2012:
A lot of words written here but no one has shown that the Scripture ever
says that the Church is the Bride of Christ. No one has shown that the Bible anywhere mentions those words "the Bride of Christ" Tell me if the Bible doesn't talk about "the Bride of Christ" why teach it? There is plenty for us to feed on in the Bible without going outside it and bringing something in that it never talks about.
I am an old man now, some would tell me so, but my advice is feed on the Word of God, live by it's principles and don't get to bogged down in
things that it never even mentions. The start of this is a fair enough question but get past it, Christianity is CHRIST not ourselves. If He can't satisfy us nothing will. Come up with your questions but after all it is not what man says which counts but what the Bible says. This is what is important. God bless you all. ISN
graceinus on July 08, 2012:
To be a citizen in the Kingdom of God , you have to be chosen.
To be a member in the Body of Christ , you have to choose
rdwray on July 07, 2012:
I was reading this article which I agree with, but I ran into something rather interesting "Jesus can return now if God tells Him to. He can return at anytime." which says all prophecy has been fulfilled and that the pre-tribulation rapture is next and this is false:
Matt 24:29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.
30 “Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on July 06, 2012:
Perhaps this is not a splinter group... Perhaps its time the church wakes eup and realizes that we are not the bride of Christ but that the chuch is the glory of Christ of the bridal gown and that that glory is His righteousness...
Fisher on July 06, 2012:
Once again a splinter group makes up another teaching to satisfy its own subjective interpretation of Scripture. Good for you. I dont agree with you at all. So Im going to make my own "church" and teach what I want. You have no authority to interpret scripture the way you "feel". Wake up.
Rockerid on June 27, 2012:
Id just like to point out that there is nothing more we can do to be ready for our Messiah, Yeshua! His sacrifice and out acceptance of Him as Lord and Savior made us ready. In James he writes how good works follow grace, a manifestation of the grace God had for us. I used to believe in the "bride" doctrine until I learned to stop making scripture fit a doctrine. And I used to debate for a church bride, but there was one thing I could never answer. If we are already righteous in His sight, and our good works are our way of showing our love for Him, how much love or how many good works or how much bible study or time spent in prayer does it take to be "bride-ready"? It's the same question I ask when witnessing to other "works" religions. When is enough a enough. A Christian is a Christian, saved by grace. There are many "Christians" today who I don't feel are saved as their lives don't mirror it at all but who am I to judge? What I want to know is what separates Christians into regulars and "bride-readies"? Cause I feel like I'm beginning to surrender all to Him, and its been a process. So when is enough enough? How many good works to outweigh my bad ones? Love and Shalom!
felicia on June 27, 2012:
the bride of christ is a female. Psalm 42:10. Is a female. Not the church.
Scott in Texas on June 26, 2012:
First, I am not so sure we can conclude that the holy city Jerusalem is the Lamb's wife, but where to look to see her. It never really makes the connection that the city is the lamb's wife; rather, it transitions from one reference to a description of the next, suggesting to some that they are the same. If you think about it though, the city would not be a wife, but the beings who inhabit it might. This leads us to answer just who will inhabit the holy city Jerusalem at that time.
Second, we are saved by grace through faith, no question about that. But, then to suggest righteousness and earning salvation through works, is confusing two doctrines, one of salvation and one of obedience. The importance of obedience is found throughout the Scriptures, both old and renewed covenants. Salvation is a gift, which if genuine, produces a changed heart. For what? To be Christ-like, or obedient! Christ was our ultimate sacrifice AND perfectly obedient. He was our atonement and our example of how to live AFTER we have been saved by faith. How do we know this? Because we cannot be perfectly obedient, so we cannot earn salvation; so the purpose of His example, is for after we are saved and how we should then live. The Bible is also full of passages about consequences. The consequences of a Believers bad behavior have been resolved (or absolved), but the consequences of a Believer's good behavior is the NEXT STEP. For example, we are rewarded with crowns. Why not rewards for obedience in other ways.
Just something to think about.
full gospel on June 19, 2012:
Good day, dear Brother,
Thank you for your response to my comment. This is a good exercise, like friends playing tennis.
The metaphors and similes that the Word of God uses are entry points for the reader to connect with the gospel message. As one goes through the Hermeneutical cycle from Meaning (Historical, Literal, Theological Harmony), Principle (Timeless Truths), Insight, Significance (Personal Experiences) and Application, there will be some things that will grip a certain kind of people, but not the other. In fact, we often find that some verses leap at us after we have experienced something that will open up that verse - it isn't always logic or logos; but it is an inner revelation that brings about a deep spiritual response or rhema. As such, we have learned to be open to God's new inventory of wineskins and teaching tools. If some respond to the Bridal Paradigm, let them enjoy that discovery because the Holy Spirit let them experience that significance.
One may have some Paradigms from the array of God's Word that speaks to that person more. That could be the theme and calling where he operates best. Others like the Warrior theme, others the Kingdom theme, others the Passover Lamb theme, others the Family theme. This is also the reason why The Father and The Son have so many Names. They can't just be reduced to one.
The gospel was first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. The LORD used Israel as His first showcase with a clear intention of letting other nations experience. The Father's bridal experience with Israel is projected in Christ's bridal experience with the Church. Israel has its place, and so do the Gentiles. No one is replaced. (Rom 11)
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on June 19, 2012:
Thank you for you comment.
It is true that there is something to said about he bridal paradigm but I liken that paradigm to the covenant that I have made to my wife just as the New Covenant that, through Jesus sacrifce, God made to us. God made promises to us just as I have made promises to my wife. But just because God made promises to us in the New Covenant, does not make me a bride to Christ. Anything beyond that in our position to Christ in Him (as son of God and a member of Christ's body) is a stretch... Particularly in light of the scripture showing us EXACTLY who the lamb's wife is.
Let me add that an understanding of the bridal paradigm is not necessary for all Christians to be able to live decent lives that manifest who He is in our lives.
full gospel on June 17, 2012:
Behold, we come in peace, just sharing perspectives, and trying to put together the Body of Christ so that Jesus comes home to a united and fully mature Bride.
CDACoffee started a very interesting discussion, almost as hot a polemic as the "once saved, always saved (OSAS)" issue and difficult to resolve if people hold to extreme views.
The Bridal Paradigm is not against the teaching of salvation by grace through faith in Christ alone (Eph 2.8, 9) but extends to doing to good works which God prepared in advanced for us to do (Eph 2.10).
During the Reformation Period, against the extreme of salvation by works and indulgences, it was necessary for the Holy Spirit to bring out the teaching of salvation by grace. Fast forward to 21st Century, salvation by grace alone has brought about a whole breed of Christians who have abused the grace and love of Christ to their own detriment. BALANCE is important (Ecc 7.18 - it is grasp the one and not let go of the other. The man who fears God will avoid all 'extremes'.)
The Bridal Paradigm is a very helpful perspective in keeping the body of Christ pure and holy till the Groom comes. A pure and holy Bride would certainly please the LORD JESUS.
As to the term "Bride of Christ", its absence is similar to the absence of such terms as "Trinity" or even "computer". The absence of the term doesn't mean that it is absent in principle.
All in all, it would be best if we accommodate differences in perspectives of thinking and processing. It would be best to add up all these beautiful experiences, which could still never amount to the whole of Christ who is infinite. Paul even recognized that there would be differences among the Corinthians (1 Cor 11.19) to show which among them would have God's approval. Paul was expecting that resulting fruit of the Christians would prove the points made. And even that could not be formulated in concrete because the Holy Spirit is ever so fluid. We don't want to end up becoming Pharisees of the New Testament.
There are many churches who are responding well to the Bridal Paradigm....so let them do what is good until Jesus comes. Their focus is on bridal preparation, good works empowered by the Holy Spirit. Other churches might be onto doing other things which Jesus Himself will evaluate upon His return. So let each one serve according to his calling and serve well. Let us add up all the good things which Jesus said we would be doing for His glory alone. This is one way of demonstrating unity in the Body of Christ.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on June 14, 2012:
"If we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins." Heb 10:26
The book of Hebrews was written to the Jews who had been preached to by Paul that Jesus is their Messiah. They rejected Jesus. Therefore the sacrifice that Jesus was for them cannot not be a sacrifice for their sins. This also is true for anyone who hears (receives the knowlede of the truth) the gospel and rejects it.
This scripture is not talking to the those of us who have received the knowledge of the truth and have accepted Jesus as our Lord and savior.
As I recall there are NO conditions for people to have salvation except to call upon the name of the Lord and/or to believe on Him (John 3:16 and Romans 10:13).
So then can someone willfully and with premeditation sin be saved? Yes. Grace does not stop working even if we willfully sin. If it did then how can we account for the scripture that tells us there is only one unforgivable sin; that of blasphemey of the Holy Spirit? Blasphemey of the Holy Spirit is receiving the knowledge of the truth and rejecting it.
But PLEASE understand that I am NOT advocating willfully sinning in any way... but for those of us who stuggle with sin and sin willfully, God still loves us and we still have our salvation and we stil have His righteousness!
We are the church!. We are the body of Christ! We are already without spot and blemish! We are already ready so there is no way that the church is the bride of Christ. The Holy Jerusalem is! Because the Bible says so! Rev 21:9-10
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on May 23, 2012:
You are correct that I believe the church is already ready through His gift of righteousness and santification. As a result, the church does not have to do anything to "be ready". The church is already ready.
BUT... I never said we can just go live the old life.
These are two different issues in Christianity.
graceinus on May 04, 2012:
jb, I hope the following will hope answer your question relating to "We are made perfect because we have been given the gift of righteousness" and yet you wonder why we still sin and at the same time we are the body of Christ( not the bride of Christ).
I draw your attention to 1 Thessalonions 2:23 NKJV which states: 23 Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you COMPLETLY; and may your Spirit, Soul and Body be preserved blamless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
In this verse above it clearly indicates there our three parts to each and every one of us. Spirit, Soul and Body. It is wrong to think that the Spirit and Soul is or means the same thing, it is not. The Soul part of us is are mind, emotions and will. The Soul and body is the carnal part of each of us. Carnal means what we can identfy through our 5 sences. What we see, hear, touch, smell and tast.
When we received Christ as our Savior, it is the spirit part of us that receives the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and it's the Spirit part of us that receives the richtiousness of Christ. And in our heart is where the spirit dwells. This is why God looks at our heart. The change in us does not come from outside in but from the inside out. As we study the word of God, the Holy Spirit reveals within us Knowledge and Wisdom of God and what He wants revealed to us.
The Carnal part of us is in constant conflict with the Spirit. Our mind and body will sin, but our Spirit is sealed with the baptism of the Holy Spirit and can not be corrupted. As our faith grows our soul begins to identify with the spirit part of us, the things we learn in the spirit part of us begins to draw our spirital to the physical. Our mind (Soul) wants to react to our spirit part of us within our heart. Our physical body will never on it own react or respone to our Spirit.
This is why we our a new creature or a new being. We becaome part of the body of Christ. We become a creature that never existed before.
This does not mean we will not commit acts of sin, because again the carnal mind (Soul) will alway be in conflict with the spirit part of us. The evil one still has power to influence our thoughs and our will. Yet our faith comes from the spirit part of us which is given to us from God which allow us to resist sin.
It is the Spirit part of us that is in the body of Christ,yet it is our body that remain carnal. But our Soul can act on what was learn from our spirit to influence our body. This is why we can not make ourself righteous based on our own efforts. This is why our Soul knows right and wrong.
Jesus Christ is the best example of this. His Spirit was in perfect harmony with his Soul and Body. The Holy Spirit dwelled in the heart of Jesus. This is why he never sin, this is why He never doubted, this is why He raised people from the dead, this is way He was able to heal the sick, this is why He could walk on water, this is why he was able to preach the Kingdom of God and Rightiousness. This is why He was perfect. And this is why He could not be conceived though a human father.
This is why we are perfect and righteous through our savior Jesus Christ. His Grace on us and our faith in him allows us to understand in our heart Spirit, Soul and Body. The Holy Spirit will guide our hearts. As we open our hearts (Spirit) to the Holy Spirit we will begin to see and hear.
The Body of Christ are those (our Spirits) who are the
citizens of the Kingdom of God. This should never be confused with the issue of the bride of Christ is the Church or is not the church. As CDACOFFEE has stated many times "We are already made Righteous through Jesus". If one understands that it's our Spirit part of us that is righteous, then it allows us to understand who we are in the BODY OF CHRIST.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on April 30, 2012:
I don't think that I am making too big a deal about all of this as the bride of Christ teaching states that the bride has to get herself ready. If that is true then I had to do some kind of a work to get ready. Paul said that the Galations were fools because they went back to "works" and that those that do go back to "works" put themselves back under the curse of the law. But Jesus died to give us the GIFT of righteousness. As far as God is concerned, we are perfect, righteous, sanctified and etc., as His gift to us. So then, the Bride has to be somebody else and NOT the church. We don't have to get ready. We are already ready.
Ixthus12 on April 29, 2012:
One thing I want to point out to you all is that The LORD did't die to save a city but a people for His name sake. Ou are making too big a deal out of this. We ate saved by God's grace through the person and work of Jesus Christ. Read 1Corinthians 1:30 and you will see that Jesus has become hat we could not; Jesus has become o us wisdom, righteousness, notification and redemption. So how could we, who are born again through Jesus, still sin and be born again? When we walk by the flesh and not by the Spirit. John says in his first Epistle, "I write these things unto you that you may not sin but if anyone does we have an advocate with the Father who is Jesus Christ the Righteous. We who are born again learn not to sin as we are taught not to by learning the word of God. Jesus says in Matthew 28, " make disciples and teach them to obey everything I say."
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on April 29, 2012:
As far as God is concerned we are perfect.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on April 29, 2012:
You need to judge yourself and not me. As I recall, Paul called the Galations fools. So, what do you do with that?
jb on April 26, 2012:
im a little confused about a different doctrin after
reading your post.
"I agree. We shouldn't continue to be "of the world" once we get saved. But still we can't be perfect."
this is your quote and then later
"We are perfect because we have been given the gift of righteousness. "
I think i agree that we are the body of christ.
and i know there is no sin in him so how can we be
his body and be sinfull at the same time?
Does Jesus righteousness make us perfect or not?
graceinus on April 22, 2012:
I think it would be note worthy to review Rev 22:17 which states:
17 And the Spirit and the BRIDE say; Come. And let him who hear say; Come. And let him who thrist come. Whoever desires, let him take water of life freely.
John wrote Revelation around 90 AD which was revealed to him by the Spirit. In the verse above it would indicate the New Jerusalem (Bride) is in heaven at the time of the writing of Revelation.
This would seem to me to rule out the bride of Christ is the church doctrine.
CDACOFFEE, I am very greatful for your Hub. God Bless.
Guest on April 17, 2012:
Bible also says anyone who calls someone a "fool" is in danger of hell fire and "fool" means one who is now a believer of the word of God. Jesus said go ye into all the world and preach ye the gospel. He never said to call people fools. You are in danger of hell fire and puffed up and you need to repent
boyet on April 12, 2012:
Body of Christ is HE - Bride of Christ is she. Two different Gender.
Jana@JalySa47@aol.com on April 10, 2012:
You are totally right,the church is not the Bride of Christ..we are the BODY of Christ..anyone with a little research,as you have done will see we can't be the Bride and the Body..God doesn't work like that.Thanks for your post.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on April 05, 2012:
I believe there is a lot of confusion in the Body of Christ regarding the Bride of Christ issue. As CDACOFFEE has mentioned time and again, the issue we do not need to "Making ourselves ready" as it relates to WORKS.
I believe one of the big problems we have in the Body of Christ is the understanding of the word WORKS as it relates in the OT and the NT. The word Works has a diffferent context in the OT than it does in the NT.
Works in the OT was focused more on the individual own effort and more self serving and through it have right standings with God. As opposed to the Works in the NT which is an individual who is more focused on the needs of others and gives of himself because of his love for God and his neighbor.
Many in the Body of Christ believe that OT Works still applies in the NT which is where the problem lies.
We can not get ourselves ready through OT works. Because we are already ready through the NT Works of Jesus Christ.
It is because of Grace through Faith that we demostraight our NT Works towards our fellow man and God throught love.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on March 22, 2012:
My concern with the "bride of Christ" doctrine is that those who subscribe to it must, by default, also believe that he must do something (works) to get "herself" ready therefore putting that person back under the curse of the law.
According to the gospel of Grace, we are already righteous under the New Covenant. And if I'm righteous in the sight of God under the New Covenant, then I am already ready.
Furthermore if we, as the church have to ALL make ourselves "ready" then there is no way we will ever be ready since all of our own righteousness is as filthy rags. Therefore, we have to believe that we, as a gift of salvation, are already ready through His righteousness.
Please note that the bride's garment shines with the righteousness of the saints. It is not the saint's that are the bride but rather the light that causes the Bride to to shine.
We are the body of Christ and not His bride.
Thanks for you comment.
luvdemstillers on March 16, 2012:
As a rookie, I'll say this: there is scripture to support both views, though I have my own which I won't get into. I see Satan getting involved with all the arguments and I don't see enough "false doctrine" for anyone here to go to hell for. I will ask this: is there anyone in the new Jerusalem right now other than God and Jesus? Are they even in it now or not until it comes down? We will see the true meaning in time and no one will care who is right or wrong. Let's all pray for the Apostate Church and for those who will may be susceptible. Let us all see the righteousness and love in our True God and Prince Jesus. In Jesus name, Amen.
Gary Archibald on February 27, 2012:
1.The Bible is the Word of God
2. The fact that Jerusalem is both the Great City, the Woman, the Harlot, and the Bride testifies to the essence and supreme beauty of. . . Grace.
3. The prophecies simply tell us that Jerusalem would be as though the Lord had not rejected her. See Isaiah 54 and Zechariah 10:6.
4. the focus is not with the Bride is not, but who she is: She obviously is Jerusalem! How does she play into God's unfolding plan/prophecy for grace and world dominance, both in the Great Tribulation and in the Thousand year reign of Christ.
5. What is God's Plan for Jerusalem and Israel from Deuteronomy 32(also chapter 28-31).
I am telling you, this is great stuff, full of grace and the affirmation that the word of God is authoritative and and pivotal.
gary archibald on February 27, 2012:
The bride of Christ is Jerusalem, as John Says. Note also that the Bride in 19, is also the Harlot in chapters 17, 18; which is the great city from chapter 11, 16, 17, and of course 18. And you will note that Jerusalem is the bride, literally and figuratively in the Old Testament. This also makes the best prophetic and Gospel sense.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on February 23, 2012:
I find it amusing that I have repeatedly directed all of us to the fact that Rev. 21 CLEARLY states that the Lamb's wife is the Holy Jerusalem but yet people still have to argue.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on February 22, 2012:
The issue here is not about nothing it is about a doctrine that leads people to believe that we have to do works in order to be perfect ("...when the bride hath made herself ready."). So then the Christian would have to do something to get "...herself reaady." if the church is the "bride of Christ."
Brent McBain on February 22, 2012:
and to LES,
The Bible IS the WORD of God. The LOGOS. It is the Testimony of Christ. God is greater than a piece of flesh. He became man as the Word. The Bible is the testimony of all Christ is and why He came. To say that the "good news" is not also the Word is to have no basis for belief in Jesus or an authoritative document to stand firm in our faith. No one ever said the physical pages are the Word or Jesus. You can burn a Bible and it does nothing. The Word lives. The Holy Spirit testifies to us through the written word. Don't make an issue out of nothing. Believe in Christ. wait, how....by hearing His Word.
graceinus on February 15, 2012:
I just want to make a brief statement to toddtt comment.
There is no confirmed evidence in the Bible that states or supports the bride of Christ is the church doctrine. Over time religion has created this doctrine to support their idea that they are the select few "the Elect" to seperate themselves from other churches or Religions.
I firmly believe that the church are those who Christ has identified a citizens (elect) of the Kingdom of God. I also firmly believe that the word church, as mentioned in Matt. 16:18 (KJV) that is stated by Jesus in taken out of context by 99% of christian religion today.
Many out their wrongly identify the OT Isreal as the church or a least assocate church with the 144,000. And that they are the bride of Christ. And I should mention their is nothing in the bible to support that doctrine either.
As clearly stated in the Book of Reveltion, the Bride of Lamb (Jesus) is the New Jerusalem, which is clearly stated.(Which is the first time the word church is mention in the bible) How any religion can come up with something different is beyond me. Only false doctrine can slip in the idea that it is anything else.
It is evident to me that religion has and will continue to interpret the bible the way they see fit. And not take the time to understand God's meaning of his Word.
Many times cdacoffee has clearly stated Rev. 21:9 for all to see and yet the arguments contnues.
We should not allow any religion to interpret the bible for us. We should allow the Holy Spirit reveal understanding to us as we study God's word for ourselves.
Many blessing to you.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on February 06, 2012:
Manly E Slough,
I don't know Jean Sheaphard
Manly E Slough on February 04, 2012:
Do you Know Jean Shephard? I agree with you and have for many years. Was shown this teaching by Jean Shephard in Boise, Idaho.
Sonja on February 02, 2012:
This message is something that I have been in search of. I have been hearing for so long we are to get ready to be His bride and then that He had made us His son's and thought, this is just not clicking in my mind . Thank you for making this very clear and I am so glad to have run across this message. God bless you.
Rich Prickitt on January 25, 2012:
NO! Israel is NOT the Bride of Christ. Israel was the people of God, the children of Israel. There are NO types of the Church in the OT.
In the NT, we are both the teknon AND huios sons of God. Jesus is our Brother: We have the same Father. We are heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ. I do not intend to give up my son-ship to become my Father's daughter-in-law.
Moreover, Jesus enlisted (chose) me to be a good soldier, enduring hardness. And, Jesus makes me a king and a priest.
Blessings, peace, and love in the joy and privilege of serving Jesus AND testifying of Him!
Rich Prickitt on January 21, 2012:
Are you Brother cdacoffee?
Thank you for your scholarship on this matter.
In the O.T., God's people were the CHILDREN of Israel. In the N.T. we are SONS of God. (I capiitalized "SONS" for emphasis.)
In 2 Corinthians 11:2, the Apostle Paul wishes he could, but laments he cannot espouse the rebellious faction in the church at Corinth AS a chaste virgin to Christ. But Paul does not present anything to Christ - except himself a living sacrifice, just as any Christian should.
In Ephesians 5:27, "...that He might present to Himself a glorious Church, Which is His Body. NOWHERE, in Scripture does a man present his wife to himself. This goes all the way back to Genesis 2:22.
In Revelation 19:8, the bride is arrayed in fine linen clean & white, which is the righteouness of the saints. Which saints? ALL the saints of ALL the ages that are in heaven by the occasion of the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. And what are we told time after time? God is No Respecter of persons! So what makes anyone think that it's the Church that is the bride?
Jesus does not attend the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. He arrives in 19:11. In 19:14, the armies in heaven FOLLOWED Jesus upon white horses, "clothed in fine linen, white and clean" to go forth to judge and make war. Sound like a bride to you?
I have four Scripture passages that state the Church is Christ's Body of Which He is the Head: 1 Cor. 12:27; Ephesians 1:22-23; Colossians 1:18; & Colossians 1:24.
In Revelation 21:2, Christ's Bride comes down OUT of heaven FROM God - Jesus' Father (and my Father, too), prepared AS a bride adorned for HER husband. 21:9 "...Come hither, I will shew thee the Bride, the Lamb's wife." 21:10 "...and shewed me that great CITY, the HOLY JERUSALEM, descending OUT of heaven FROM God. 21:11 "Having the glory of God: and HER light was like..."
ALSO, the Apostle Paul assigned feminine gender to the "Jerusalem that is above" as being the mother of us all (Galatians 4:26).
Moreover, Jesus enlisted me to be a good soldier enduring hardness (2 Timothy 2:3-4). In Ephesians 6:11-17, Paul lists the armor and the weaponry, with which we are to "put on."
Jesus is my Brother: We have the same Father. Further, Jesus makes me a king and a priest.
I have written 60,000 words on this very topic - the point being to free the "traditional" thinking Christian, so he or she can be all he/she can be in Christ and for Him. Too many Christians are confused about being militant - but walking in love and in the Spirit - or about being bride-like.
Want to get more men active in churches, i.e. the Church? Stop telling them they will become brides, and will someday marry Jesus! Anyway, most men are sick and tired of hearing their wives, or women in the church, tell the men that they (the women) can't wait to be married to Jesus. It's sickening!
And always remember Paul's caveat in Colossians 2:8. Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of this world, AND NOT AFTER CHRIST!!!
I've written enough for now.
Blessings, peace, and love in the joy and privilege of serving Jesus & testifying of Him!
Founder/Director - Body Building Ministries - Building the Body of Christ, SOULdier by SOULdier
BJade on January 17, 2012:
Good Morning! I did a personal study a few months ago on this subject..and I came up with the same conclusion as you...I was glad to come across your article this morning because "The Bride of Christ" doctrine has been taught greatly in the ministry I am associated with.. And I was looking to see if others had done the same study as I did, and if so what did they come up with...your article confirmed to me what was revealed to me in my study...what made me do this study was I question all things and I take nothing that man says at face value...only the word of God in context which is revealed by His Spirit...Thank You for sharing...Blessings!
Buck Cronkite on January 04, 2012:
This was real good, brother. Thank you for the time/effort that undoubtedly went into this piece. I derived much from it, and it has only made me more appreciative of the grace in which I, we, stand. Peace.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on December 06, 2011:
First of all, I don't believe that those who believe that the church is the bride of Christ believe they are saved by works. I believe they do understand grace and have applied it to their lives for salvation.
Nevertheless, in Galations Paul confronts them about their works. That is the issuse I have with the bride of Christ doctrine. I think that it leaves many with the impression that we, as Christians have to do something to be ready.
And as for your discussion about the oil, I'll address that when I have more time.
Ixthus on December 05, 2011:
I didn't say they had to be saved but that they could only know and speak the truth by the Holy Spirit. John chapter 14 and chapter 16. But even though they were not born again as we are in the New Testament time Abraham rejoiced to see Jesus' day and saw it and was glad. When Abraham died he went to paradise not torment. So did he belong to God? Yes! Was he saved in the future expectation of the Christ? Yes! Jesus said it as stated above. And you are still rationalizing and not listening to Scripture. A natural man recieves not the things of God because they are Spiritually appraised. As far as the Church not being the bride of Christ because you believe those who hold to that interpretation believe we are saved by good works is bogus as well. I believe we are born again only by the grace of God through faith in the person and work of Jesus our God and Savior and I believe the Church is the bride of Christ. The passage in Revelation that says the Bride must make herself ready is not referring to the Church earning her salvation but exercising faith in Jesus. The passage about the ten virgins is in reference to those being ready by being filled with the Spirit of God. It is common knowledge that oil is symbolic to the anointing of God's Spirit upon a person. Even in the Old Testament people were indwelt by the Spirit of God. That is how David could pray, "take not thy Spirit from me O' God" I have to go but I would very much like to discuss this with you further. If you would care to because I believe iron does sharpen iron and two brothers in the Lord could help each other grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus!
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on November 26, 2011:
I hope the following will be understood by those who will take the time to read it with an open heart.
I believe this will help others to understand what you have tried so hard to explain that the Bride of Christ is not the church. I hope this will also re-enforce the understanding that there is nothing we can do to earn our way into God's Kingdon, but it's only by Grace through Faith. And that the parable of the Ten Virgins has nothing to do with the "Bride of Christ is the Church doctrine" many religions teach.
As you have mentioned in your Hub that many religion have used the parable of the Ten Virgins in Matthew 25:1 thru 13 to explain or that it is related to the Bride of Chirst is the Church. You explain that this parable is taken out of context, which I believe you are correct. I believe the following will explain this parable of the Ten Virgins that Jesus Christ used.
First , it is important to undersatnd that all mankind is under God's Grace which was given to us by Jesus through his death on the cross, which is clearly explained in Titus 2:11 which states: For the Grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.
This verse above clearly states that Grace has been offered to all mankind. However to obtained salvation through Grace we must receive it by Faith. In other words Faith is the oil and Grace is the Lamp. One is not good without the other. They are the Lamp and Oil of our salvation.
Jesus used this parable of the Ten Virgins to explain this point of Grace through Faith.
Matthew 25: 1thru 13 states: Then the Kingdom of God shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the Bridegroom. 2 Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish.3 Those who were foolish took their lamp and took no oil with them.,4 but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.5 But while the Bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept.6 And at midnight a cry was heard; Behold, the Bridegroom is coming; go out and meet him! 7 Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. 8 And the foolish said to the wise, 'Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.' 9 But the wise answered and said,'No, list these shall not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sale,and buy for yourselves.10 And while they went to buy, the Bridegroom came, and those who where ready went in with him to the wedding, and the door was shut.11 Afterward the other virgins came also, saying Lord, Lord, open to us.12 But he answered and said,'Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.' 13 Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.
What Jesus is saying is this:
There are ten virgins who have the knowledge of Grace which is represented by the Lamps, five of these virgins have Grace through Faith, which is represented by the extra oil vessels they brought with the Lamps.
The five foolish virgins have not the understanding of Faith (oil vessels) and it's relatioship with Grace (lamp). So they had only their lamps.
Jesus Christ is represented by the Bridegroom and the ten virgin knows his arrival is soon but the exact time is not known.
Suddenly, in the middle of the night the Bridegroom is returning, which represent Christ return to earth. Realizing there lamps (Grace was ending) were going out, the five foolish virgins learned from the five wise virgins they need more oil (faith) for their Lamps (Grace.)So they departed to find more oil. And all who were ready, already having Grace through Faith, were then received by Jesus Christ and leave. Those virgins who remained behind who had went and bought more oil missed their chance to go to the wedding and are now left behind. They allowed their lamps to go out. They had there chance of Grace through Faith and lost it.
When the five foolish virgins knocked on the door to be let in, Jesus told them " I don't know you" . Basicly He's saying it's to late. You had the chance to understand: In other words if you didn't understand Grace through Faith before I came, you won't get the chance after.
Had these five foolish virgins brought oil vessels with their lamps, then there would have been Ten wise Virgins at the wedding.
This is why Jesus said in Matthew 25:13 Watch therefore, for you know neither the day or the hour, in which the Son of Man is coming.
There has been so much arguing and debate relating to the Bride of Christ doctrine. If one reads and understand the minestry of Jesus they will see that most parables relate to the Kingdom of God. Nothing in the above parable relates to the Bride of Christ.
As cdacoffee has explained many times, there is nothing we can do to get ourselves ready. It through the blood of Christ that we are cleansed of our sins. His loving Grace (Lamp) has been given to us and if we are wise virgins we will have Faith (Oil).
Please read Ephesians 2:8 which states:
For by Grace you have been saved through Faith, and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God, not of works, least anyone should boast.
To all who read this many blessing to you.
Thank you cdacoffee for your blessing.
graceinus on November 04, 2011:
I have read Galatians 4:26 as you had mentioned in your comment. I believe it's refering to the heavenly Jerusalem above as being the mother of us all. I don't think this supports the idea that the Church is the Bride of Christ or that the New Jerusalem is the church.
As cdacoffee has mentioned many times the Bride is the New Jerusalem as mentioned in Rev: 21: 9-10. There are many who imply that the church is or will become the New Jerusalem, but no where in the bible will you find this.
I believe that the word church is what it causing us most of our problems in th body of Christ. And in doing so we (christians) have built doctrines and many different religions as a result.
If one reads Matt. 16:18 thru 19 ,where Jesus is speaking, which states:
18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades will not pervail agains it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
With these words I believe what Jesus was explaining to Peter that from that point on Christ Jesus would begin identifing those who are citizen in the Kingdom of God.
If you will note in Phillippians 3: 20-21 it states:
For our citizenship IS IN HEAVEN, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Ctrist,21 who will transform our lowly body, according to the workings by which He is anble even to subdue all things to Himself.
In these words you will note that it states: For our citizenship is in heaven. Those who are the church are citizen of the heavenly Kingdom.
Based on these words I believe those who are citizen are the Church. And have the Keys to the Kingdom of God as Jesus stated in Matthew. These Keys unlock the the mysteries of Grace through Faith, receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit, understanding of God's Kingdom along with many other mysteries.
If we come to understand that the church as a whole are those who are citizens,it will allow us to understand that the church are those who are citizen that will be in the new Jerusalem when it comes down from heaven.
Based on this I believe the body of Christ (church/citizens) will be with Christ and his bride the New Jerusalem once it comes down from heaven.
It must be understood that Christ Church is not a religion. And Jesus did not establish a religion. He establish His Church, which is not religion.
Even in the OT times, the nation of Isreal was not religion. They where a Kindom, the High Preist were those who were to enforce God's Law (Covenant). The Priest were not enforcing a religion, the were to enforce the Kingdom of Isreal's Laws given to them by God.
And still many believe that the Church (as a religion) is the Nation of Israel and the Bride of Christ.
The was a time in the OT (Covenant) when God was the Husband to Nation of Isreal. However it also explains in the OT the God divorced himself from Isreal due to her becoming a Harlot.
I am not implying that the Nation of Isreal will have no part in the New Jerusalem. As a matter of fact it is evident that a least (and more likely even more) who are the 144,000 will have a part in the New Jerusalem. But this does not mean they (church) are the Bride of Christ? No, I don't see anything in scriptrue that say they are.
I will close by asking this one question to anyone who can answer it. If the twevle Tribe's of Isreal is the Bride of Christ, then why is the tribe of Dan not part of the 144,000? Read Rev 7: 5 thru 9 and you will see the Tribe of Dan IS NOT listed.
DaveNJ on November 02, 2011:
Isn't the spiritual Jerusalem or new Jerusalem often a reference to the church?
A verse that may add support to the "Jerusalem is the Bride" point of view is Galatians 4:26.
Neither position seems totally convincing to me.
Pastor Rick on November 01, 2011:
Thank you very much. I have been holding to this as the teaching that the Church is the bride of Christ keeps us from accomplishing what we need to accomplish as the Body of Christ and it diminishes the power and authority we have been given in Christ, by Christ. Again, thanks!!
David on October 09, 2011:
CDA, I want to say thank you so much for posting this. It helps me bring light to those who are being taught that we are "the new Jerusalem,or the bride" It states clearly several times we are the body. To me the body is a saved person, a christian. The bride is Israel. Along side of this is the teachings that we have to preach the word to all nations to prepare them for the return of Jesus. How can we do that now. From my understanding in Revelations when it speaks of the word being spread to all nations it is done near the end of the tribulation. After the rapture. The rapture is the spiritual return of Jesus to take the saved to Heaven. After this has happened some 3 and a half to 4 years into the tribulation the anti-christ will be shown and everyone will follow him until the end of the 7 yrs. when Jesus will return in flesh and that shall be the day of judgement for all. That is the shortened version, but in general thats what i understand and take from the bible. Alot of people bypass the rapture completely and say that the physical return of Jesus is the real rapture. Once again I would like to say thank you for posting this.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on September 06, 2011:
Thank you for your clarification of your heart in the matter.
Nevertheless the word says that no one can know what is in the heart of a man except for God and the man himself.
Take Daved for instance. He murdered but God also said he had a heart after Himself. Go figure... (Just an example to make us think).
Anyway, the saints who lived during the dispensation of the law (The Old Testament; Abraham, etc.) were not born again (no one could be born again until Jesus was raised from the dead, not even the disciples.) but they were able to understand the word of God. So, your position that no one can understand the word of God unless they are saved is bogus.
I prefer to believe that the word is quite understandable by whoever decides to read it whether born again or not.
But all of this is really irrelevent to my article about the church not being the Bride of Christ. I am born again and I can easily understand that Reveletaion is quite clear that it states that the Holy Jerusalem is the "bride, the lamb's wife". That passage in Revelation can be understood by the saved or the lost. So then your argument that a person has to be born again to understand that that passage doesen't mean what it says is irrational. Seriously? I have the strongest evidence that the church is not the "bride of Christ" in Revelation but most of the born again can't discern that the word of God means what it says and it says what it means.
Ixthus on August 25, 2011:
No i don't believe i only have discernment. And it os the ability to ne able to distinguish what kind of spirit redides within a person. Whether it be evil or not. Resd 1Cor 2:14 and it tells us that a natural man, an unsaved person who doesn't have the Holy Spirit, can't understand God's word. He needs to hear the gospel and believe and be born again and recieve God's Spirit then he will be able to comprehend the Bible and grow. The word of God is a dtumbling block to the Jew, foolishness to the gentile, but to us who are saved it is the power of God.
I apologize if i worded things in an offensive way before, and will try, by the grace of God, to speak the truth in love.
Saved in Christ alone,
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on August 24, 2011:
Oh! So let me get this straight Ixthus... You have the corner on the spiritual gift of discernment...
There actually is no such thing as "The Spiritual Gift of Discernment". But there is a "gift of the discerning of spirits". The "gift of the discerning of spirits" is the gift administered by the Holy Spirit to allow, as necessary, a Christian to actually see, with the naked eye, a spirit such as an angle or a demon or Jesus etc.
The Bible was not just given to the Christian but mostly to the lost in order that they may be saved and grow in the word. The lost have no ability to understand the things of God in a spiritual way so, the Bible was written to speak clearly to the lost so that they might be sable to understand. If we think that God had it written in some sort of a mystical code that only the saved could understand then that kind of a God would be especially cruel.
That is why the Bible has to be taken literally unless it specifically indicates otherwise such as when it says, "here is a parable".
So then, once again, I have to point out that Revelations clearly says that "The Holy Jerusalem" is the Lamb's WIFE! And Yes, God can marry the land and/or a city. You just gotta understand what "marry" means dude.
Ixthus on August 17, 2011:
It is easy to take things out of context when you don't know the context. And not eveyone has been given the Spiritual gift of discernment, knowlege and teaching. Just read Romans 12 and 1Corinthians 12
Ixthus on August 17, 2011:
First of all revelation has been given to the people thst God called to write the Bible. If you have been given revelation then it needs to be included in the Bible. We, the Church, have been given illumination to understand God's word. Only prophets and revelators have been given revelation. No scripture is of private interpretation. We have been given God's Spirit to help us understand the revelation that has already been given among many other things according to John 16.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on August 17, 2011:
First, I do not try and interpretate God word. A person will receive revelation and understandingGod through the Holy Spirit of God's word or he/she won't.
Second, regarding the Church as the "Called Out Ones. These "called out ones" ARE THOSE WHO ARE CITIZIANS OF GOD'S KINGDOM in case that wasn't clear to you.
Third, if revelation is given to someone through the Holy Spirit, how then can it be out of context.
Fourth, there are many revelations in the Book of Revelation. So peardon me for placing a S at the end.
This entire Bride of Christ is/is not the Church is a very good example of enterpretation vs. understanding. If people would just allow the Holy Spirit to truely guide them through God's word, then there would be nothing to argue or debate. There is no doubt that some are wrong and some are right on this issue and many others. The understanding of God's word will always be found in our hearts, because it's through our hearts that God speaks to us. And it's through the heart we receive understanding, not enterpretation.
God does use people like cdacoffe, who I believe is guided by the Holy Spirit, to bring to light true teachings and understanding, however it is also the responsibility of each of us who hear the word, and allow the Holy Spirit to determine if the teaching from cdacoffee (or anyone else) is right or wrong. If cdacoffe is wrong, the Holy Spirit will tell you. If cdacoffee is right, then the Holy Spirit will tell you. In my case I meditated on the word for a week or so after reading this HUB and asked for guidence from God on the Bride of Christ issue as cdacoffee explained through scriptrue. Once I received the answer in my heart, then I had no doubt that cdacoffee is right. So what it boils down to is this, that if God said it, then that settles it.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on August 13, 2011:
I think the Bride of Christ is not the Church a subject that will continue to be argued or debated until we are all blue in the face. But it is a subject that seems to be a major issue for many of us. I believe where we have a problem is not so much the Bride of Christ so much, but more of the idea what we define as CHURCH. I believe this word (Church) is very misused and is one of our greatest problems in the word of God.
The very first time the word church is mentioned in the bible is when Jesus is talking to Peter in Matthew 16:18 (NKJV) where Jesus states: And I also say to youPeter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it.
Then Jesus continues in verse 19 where Jesus states: And I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and what ever you loose on earth will be losed in heaven.
I think for many, this is where the problem lies. The way christians associate the word CHURCH with the word KINGDOM. The last time the word Churches is used is again spoken by Jesus Christ in Revelations 22:16. (Read it for youself).
The word Kingdom has nothing to do with the word Church by definition. But it is based on the Church that Christ built, that those persons are and will be part of the Kingdom of God.
I believe the Kingdom of God needs to be more clearly understood. Because it does have an impact on the Bride of Christ issue.
God being the creater of all things seen and unseen without doubt makes Him king. Nothing is above God. Therefore His rulership as King is without question. What many don't realize or understand is that whatever God commands becomes LAW. A command from God should never be violated. In other words a Kings statement is a Command. If one does not follow through with a command from God, he/she voilates a LAW. Again, a Kings word is LAW. If we read Genesis 2:16,17 you will note that it says: And the Lord God COMMANDED the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat; for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die. Mankind has been living and dying ever since because is LAW.
Because God is King of all things he may and can establish LAW where and to whom He whats too. Which brings me to the Old Covenants which God established with the Nation of Isreal through Moses. The Old Covenant was CONDITIONAL which many fail to understand. I direct your attention to Exodus 19:5,6 where it states: Now therefore, IF (notice the word IF)you will indeed obey my voice (command)and keep my covenant, THEN you will be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is mine. 6) And you shall be to me a KINGDOM of priests and a holy nation.
What most don't understand is that the ENTIRE covenat became LAW. Not just the 10 Commandments, but the ENTIRE covenant. Because they were or became a KINGDOM and a KINGDOM must have LAWS. The Nation of Isreal did not become a CHURCH then and they are not a CHURCH now.
You will note that only LAW can enforce any covenant (Testament). Through time the nation of Isreal broke the Covenant God had with them (they broke the LAW). As a result of breaking God covenant, God divorced Mimself from the Nation of Isreal. Note: when one has a divorce it involves LAW.
God said he would make a new Covenant with the House of Isreal.This new Covenant (LAW) was established when our Lord Jesus Christ died on the cross.
Note the following passage in Matthew 28:18, 19, 20 which states:
And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying," And ALL AUTHORITY has been given to me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I HAVE COMMANDED you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age".
In these verses Jesus informed the disciples that all authority (power) has been given to him. This makes Him King. (But not above God) Based on his kingship He is able to speake commands. Based on His death and resurrection the New Covenant (LAW) has been established. (Which is a new LAW)
Understanding that both the Old and New Covenants are both Laws, it helps to undersand God's Kingdom to have a better understanding of the Book of Revelations. And to understand that ANY command or commandment spoken by God and Jesus Christ is a LAW.
This is why mankind fall short if we want to enter God's Kingdom based on our own merits and without Christ as our saviour.
The Church that Jesus talked to Peter about, are those who Christ has identified as citizians of the Kingdom of God. That is what define church. The Church is not religion. Jesus never built a religion. Jesus built (identified)His citizians for the Kingdom of God.
To state that the 144,000 of the twelve tribes of Isreal are or make up the Church is not scriptual. And to say that they are the Bride of Christ is also not scriptual. The 144,000 are and always will be a part of God's Kingdom and never a or part of a church if the word church indicates or implies religion.
Most most of the comments noted before mine implies that the Bride of Chirst is the Church as a religion and it's their religion who are the elect or chosen ones. There doctrine then implies that their Church is the Bride of Christ. If this is the case then the why does Jesus state in Matthew 6:33 Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and all his righteosness... In His ministry Jesus never mentioned that His Church is or would be any religion.
One final point: The women described in Rev. 12 and Rev. 17 and 18 are not CHURCHES. They are KINGDOMS
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on August 11, 2011:
I believe that in many of your comments you have made it very clear that the Bride of Christ doctrine is in error. And you have provided strong evidence in the New Testament scriptrues that support the argument that the Bride of Christ is not the church. Reqardless of your strong evidence supported by NT scriptrues, it seems to me that others will continue to use OT scriptrues in support of the Bride of Christ is the Church doctrine. What makes this most difficult is that the Book of Revelation does not make direct differances in Old Testament and New Testament prophecy. In order to understand both would require guidence from the Holy Spirit. Where the problem continues in the Book of Revelations is how people interprete this book as a whole. Many allow religon to(unknowingly) misguide them and interprete the Book of Revelations for them. And therefore you have doctrine that is in error. I myself do not have a 100% understanding of this book,but I will not allow religon to enterprete the bible for me.
Clearly, the old and new Testament should be treated seperate as we should the two Covenants.
As I'm sure you are aware there is a big difference between the old and new covenant. And there lies the problem for many people how they tend to over lap or combind these two covenants. I see no evidence within the Old Testament (Old Covenant)on how the Bride of Christ doctrine can be supported. I believe that you will continue to receive arguments for and against the Bride of Christ is not the Church for as long as people continue to combind the two Covenants and leave the bible for enterpretation. I have made my point in earlier comments that the bible was never intened to be enterpretated, but clearly we must receive understanding. And I believe there is a big difference between to two. When we enterprete scriptrue we leave room for mistakes. And this is why I believe that the Bride of Christ is the Church doctrine in in error. What many may believe to be understanding is in fact enterpretation. What also does not help is when religon enforces or provides this wrong doctrine to begin with.
I do support your points you've made in all of your comments on this issue, but I do wonder how long are you willing to repeat yourself to those who just don't seem to want to UNDERSTAND.
My best to you.
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on August 10, 2011:
Seriously? He can't marry a city? In Hosea God says that he is married to the land so why not a city?
Just because we can't understand, that doesn't mean He can't do it...
His ways are not our ways... His ways are higher than our ways... That means we probably won't understand a few things of what God does. That is the mystery of the Gospel pal.
Felipe Rios on August 02, 2011:
Thank you Brother! My brethren struggle with this doctrine all the time because they do not yield to the teaching that the bride is the City and not a people. Not only that but when you compared the Great Harlot of Revelation 17 you find out in verse 18 that the Harlot (woman) is the great city (prob. Rome). Grammatically, the bride can only be the New Jerusalem because of the context and the grammar in ch.19 and 21.
grafted-in on July 25, 2011:
Chapter 19 talks about a marriage: And after these things (woo-hoo)Babylon getting the heck beat our of her-that fake city that tried to be Jerusalem)I heard a great Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honor, and power, unto the Lord our God.:
They continue to say that true and righteous are His judgments for He had judged the great whore. . .
Then is heard a voice from the throne (v. 5) and then a voice of a great multitude praising God (v. 6)
Then the voices say, Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife hath mader herself ready.
And to her it was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of the saints.
v. 9, And he saith unto me, Write, blessed are they which are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he said unto me, These are the true sayings of God.
Who is the her in verse 8? The bride or they that were invited to the marriage supper?
I am thinking that the she is the bride and she is righteous, but she is Jerusalem, and versie 9 are those that are blessed to come to the marriage supper of the Lamb.
grafted-in on July 25, 2011:
Ms Dee, just looking at the Hebrews text 8:9. I have the Aramic English New Testament and it doesn't say that it was broken, it just says He rejected them, because they had not continued in His covenant.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on July 21, 2011:
I will mention thhis only once in this Hub, not just for your benifit but for any one who may read this. People can do what they want with it, so I will try to make it as clear as I can. Most Christions do not understand Rev 20:5-10 and how much impact it will have on the Nation of Isreal and the complete resurrection of Isreal. So I would ask that you read Ezekiel 37:38:39: and see how it fits into Rev 20:5-10 And it fits also in Daniel 9:10:11:12. The problem is most people are blinded by religion to see what I am talking about. There is a resurrection of the Saints before the so called millininum and another right after the millinimum for Isreal. The second resurrection will involve the entire nation of Isreal. Once this has taken it's course, Then there will be two more resurrections as noted in Rev: 20:12,13. I don't expect you to take my word for it, so I would encourge you and any reader of this comment to take the time to read it carefully. But before you do I would hope that you open you heart to the Lord and ask him for wisdom understanding each time before you start to read. This is something I do before my three hours of study EVERY DAY for the past 10 years. And I don't let religion get in my way. The Holy Spirit will guide you through it. There is far more involved regarding these resurrections than most christian seem to understand. For example there was a large resurrection of Saints immedately after Jesus Christ resurrection as mentioned in Matthew 27:52,25. No one seem to teach on that one. (I don't think you have any comment on that one do you? If you do I would like to hear it.) This is just a few of the reason why this bride of Christ doctrine is in error. And cdacoffee has spent so much time and effort trying to bring this to light. He has the courage to stand up against those who push a doctrine that is in error. He has my total support.
Christions need to understand God's word and not just interpretate it. Jesus Christ states in Matthew 13:14,15
And in them the prophecy is fulfiled which says: Hearing you will hear and shall not UNDERSTAND. And seeing you will see and not perceive; For the HEARTS of the people have grown dull. Their ears are hard of hearing, And their eyes they have closed, lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, Lest they should UNDERSTAND with their HEARTS and turn, so that I may heal them.
In the verses I mention above Jesus was refering to a parable in which he was describs the Kingdom of God. Which is what the ENTIRE bible is all about.
Christions today are blinded and to focused by religion and the doctrine they teach. Christion today are spoon fed the bible by someone else and in doing so they have forgotton how to read and study the word of God for themselves. After stairing at the man (woman) behind the pulpit for an hour they go home feeling good that they've completed their christian duty for the week. I hope you are not one of these. And that you(and others) will take the time to study the references I made above.
I want you to know lxthus12 that I do not question your faith and love for the Lord. I'm sure you have much knowledge of God's word. But I can see just by your comments that you are member of some religion out there. And that fine with with me, your have that right.
One other thing, the part where the Nation of Isreal is cut off and the Gentiels are grafted on. The UNDERSTANDING of that is; The end of the old covenant and Christ death on the cross started the new covenant. The Nation of Isreal being cut off goes far deeper than you realise, Because Isreal will no longer be cut off when you understand Rev 20: 5-10. (Their resurrection)
In any case lxthus12, I do wish you the best.
Ixthus12 on July 21, 2011:
When Jesus says in Matthew 11:21 "Woe to you, Chorazin ! Woe to you, Bethsaida ! For if the miracles had occurred in Tyre and Sidon which occurred in you, they would have repented long ago in ? sackcloth and ashes . Was He speaking to cities or the people who live in them? Of course He was speaking to people. He was not pronouncing judgment on buildings, and stones and trees for not recognizing the coming of the Messiah, but against the people who live in those cities. Just like the new Jerusalem, Jesus is bringing down the city of His new bride. He is not marrying a city, but the people who will dwell in that city. For as you can see from Scripture that a reference to certain cities and towns were references to the people who live in the cities themselves.
To Ms. Dee I believe there is one resurrection of the just and one of the unjust. Acts 24:15. So I believe the Bible teaches that all Saints, Old Testament and New shall be resurrected. Whether this will be in one part or two the Scriptures do not tell us. But we do know from Romans 9-11. Israel, at least it's spiritual leaders and the nation as a whole, were cut off so the Gentiles could be grafted in by our God so that salvation would not be offered to Israel only but to the whole world, of which the Church is comprised of both Jew and Gentile.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on July 19, 2011:
Thank you for your comment, but I have no interest of writing my own Hub. However, I will give you my best answer on the 144,000.
The 144,000 are only mentioned twice in the entire bible, both reference about them are located in the book of Revelations. The first time is in Rev 7:5-8 and the second time in Rev 14:1.
No where in the entire bible is there a direct statement that the 144,000 are saints. Where there is no doubt, God has identified them as special group of people from the twelve tribs of Isreal. And no doubt they will be in God's Kingdom.
Jesus Christ states in John 10:16, And other sheep I have who are not of this fold; them also I must bring and they will hear my voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.
I have no doubt that Jesus was tell the diciples that the 144,000 will be joined together with the saints. What Jesus does not reveal in the above verse is when this will accure. But this I do know, both Saints and the 144,000 will be in the New Jerusalem.
Many doctrines have built on who is the 144,000 and the simple fact is only God knows who each one are and when they are reserrected.
I would like to make one more off comment. If you take a very close look at something that most people pay no attention too. In Rev 20:12 God raises a group people from the dead and passes judgement. Then in Rev 20:13 God raises another group of people from the dead and passes judgement on them. These are two seperate resurrections and judgements. Most christians don't see this. But it's there.
It is for these and other reason why I believe cdscoffee is on the right track when he says The bride of Christ is not the Church. As I had mentioned in another comment in this Hub, then word of God goes far deeper than most christians realize.
My best wish to you MS Dee.
Deidre Shelden from Texas, USA on July 18, 2011:
Dear gracinus, I would like to see you write a hub on what you say is so clear. What I see as clear is just before God's wrath is poured out, 144,000 from the tribes of Israel will be sealed so not to be harmed and be redeemed from the earth and kept pure, to follow the Lamb wherever he goes. So maybe you can do write a hub about how this fits in?
Yes, there is Satan's final deception of the nations who are burnt before he is then thrown into the Lake of Fire all happening before the dead are judged and the new Jerusalem comes down from God. I do see that :). Thanks for your best wishes on my studies!
cdacoffee (author) from Idaho on July 17, 2011:
You are forgetting one thing. The SIMPLE truth. You guys can go look at all the marriage covenants etc., etc., in the Old Testament and New but the SIMPLE truth is that the Holy Jerusalem is the Lamb's wife. Rev 21:9. This is not out of context. If the Church were the Lamb's wife then that angel would have show him "the Church", not the Holy Jerusalem.
And the clothing of righteousness is that of the Saints. And THAT righteousness is a gift given to the Body of Christ through the NEW COVENANT. This covenant is not a marriage covenant but a covenent to His sons, the body of Christ.
The Church is not the "bride of Christ" and we cannot get OURSELVES ready as we are ALREADY ready.
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on July 06, 2011:
I am sure you will find some that will disagree with me, but the nation of Isreal will be resurrected. However not according to what most people think. If you read the book of Ezkiel Chapters 37, 38 and 39 you will see how it line up with Rev, 20: 5-10. Most believe that the Nation of Isreal will somehow be part of or related in some way with the first resurrection but that is not the case. The so called bride of Christ doctrine don't apply. After the so-called millinimum. In the second resurrection is where Ezkiel 37,38, 39 will take place. If you study it carefully you will see how it falls into place.
This also fits in with the Book of Daniel Chapters 9, 10, 11, and 12.
If you study also the parables in Matthew 19:30 and 20:1-16 where it states in verse 16: So the last will be frist and the frist last.
Jesus was refering to the Old Covenant (Nation of Isreal) and the New Covenant (Saints). This applies to the first and second resurrection.
Most mainstream christians believe the New Jerusalem will come down from heaven right after the Millinum. But that is not the case. Frist God will raise up the Nation of Isreal, they will live in peace for a time,but it will not last.
Following these events as noted in Rev 20:9-10 then God will set up his Throne to pass final judgement. Then after will the New Jerusalem come down from heaven in all it's glory as it is explained in Chapter 21 of Rev.
I wish you the best is your studies
Many may disagree with this, and I'm not her to argue the point. But I hope this will help you in you in your staudies of the book of Revelations.
Deidre Shelden from Texas, USA on July 05, 2011:
Right, and what, ixthus12, is to become of Israel? It too are brought to repentance, in the end, right? Do you think there scriptures say there is a separate, specific resurrection for newly repentant Israel? I've read that recently and am trying to find where in the scriptures they get that from.
ixthus12 on July 05, 2011:
in Revelation 18:16 it is not the city that is clothed in fine linen but it is in reference to the people of the city whom God is charging with idolatry and every kind of immorality. And yes Ms Dee isaiah 54 says that God was a husband to Israel and in Jeremiah 3 God divorced Israel and took a new Bride and that is the Church. The city of New Jerusalem is the home of the new bride.
Deidre Shelden from Texas, USA on July 05, 2011:
I'm glad to see these further posts after mine above. I found out some more about the Jewish traditional customs which has now reversed my thoughts on who the bride of Christ actually is in Rev 19, and am glad to see these other posts countering my first one, and lxthus12's comments confirm this further with some excellent points. I was forgetting the first marriage covenant with God was broken (Heb 8:9), and the new covenant is one of the Spirit (Jer 31:31), which includes both Jew and Gentile believers who become the bride of the new covenant.
Debradoo from Cocoa, Florida on July 05, 2011:
Rev. 18:16 And saying, Alas, alas that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls!
A city can put on the fine linen, as this verse clearly has shown.
And acts of righteousness can be legal or moral obligation that is fulfilled and it brings about social stability and peace.
CDA took nothing out of context. As a matter of fact, he has one of the most in-depth coverages of the Bible, concerning the Bride of Christ doctrine. And he has certainly done his best to 'rightly divide the Word of God', which is something absent from the bride of Christ doctrine that is being taught today.
Deidre Shelden from Texas, USA on July 04, 2011:
I'm so grateful to have found this hub article! I'm preparing to lead a study on the book of Revelation and have concluded a key to understanding it is knowing the Jewish marriage customs and who/what is Christ's bride in Rev 21:9. It clearly does not look to be the Church. When you remind us here of many passages and, in particular, Is. 62:1-4, this nails it for me that Zion/Jerusalem is God/Christ's bride. He is jealous over Jerusalem. Christ wept for her. So many things come together. Countries are punished with natural disasters even when they push to divide the city. It is the apple of God's eye. Clarifying this is what I think will clarify for me who the actual players are in the book of Revelation. Thanks *so* much for posting this!
graceinus from those of the Ekklesia on June 19, 2011:
God's holy Word, the bible, this one of the greates gift's that mankind has ever received. And yet, of all the books printed by man, it is the bible that is the least understood. And yet it has been sold more than any other book on earth. The bible tell mankind our history and our future. It is God's revelation to mankind of his Kingdom.
If we see and hear with our heart it will reveal to us the main subject of this book is His Kingdom from the beginning of Genesis to the last words of Revelations. And between it's pages it also contains some of the greates mysteries on earth. Mysteries that many of us try to explain or understand.
Because this book has been passed on to us through God's Holy Spirit, it is safe to assume that it will take true spiritual wisdom to understand what God wants revealed to us.
What is clear to me is that for whatever reason humanity plays an important role in God's Kingdom. For reasons only He knows, we will share that Kingdom.
Those of us who read the pages of His Word are searching for asnwers to questions that can not be found anywhere else. In many case's God's Word seems to causes more questions than they seem to answers. As a result we lose focus of the main subject of the bible which is God's Kingdom. And we begin to focus on the questions that we seek answers too.
I beleive the main purpose of Juses Christ's ministery on earth was and is to re-adjust our focus back to the Kingdom of God. Not to argue over issues like the Bride of Christ, 144,000, the Antichrist, the Two Witnesses, the Raptrue or anything else. That is not to say that we should not seek answers to these questions. But in doing so we should not lose focus on His Kingdom. And it is possible to do both.
In the ministery of Juses Christ, his primary focus at that time was the Kingdom of God and His Righteouness.... as we find in Matthew 6:33. He wants mankind to shift our sights back to the Kingdom which is the main subject of God's Word.
What I have discovered during my studies and revelations received through the Holy Spirit, is that as you begin to understand the Kingdom of God and His Grace, you will begin to understand why there is a Old and New Testiment. And the part each plays in God's Kingdom. And the book of Revelation becomes much more clear to us.
The bible has made it very clear the importants God has placed on the human heart. And how much understanding of God's Word is depended on it. Without it we will never know the Kingdom of God.
Once a person opens his heart to the Word of God he or she will receive understanding.
For those of us who our new in the Word, I believe the best way to explain bible understanding or revelation through the Holy Spirit is to put it this way:
To know, without knowing how or why.