Things to Come, Lesson 6, The Marriage and Marriage Supper of the Lamb, Revelation 19:7-9
There are two great events that await the believer in Christ and both are mentioned in Revelation 19:7-9.
Revelation 19:7-9, 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. 8And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. 9And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb.
So in this passage we are given a glimpse of what is to come to the believer in Christ, a glimpse of a marriage and a marriage supper.
There are many passages in the New Testament concerning marriage and most of them focus on this marriage that takes place in Heaven following the Rapture of the Church.
John the Baptist told us of a marriage in John 3:29, He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroomís voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled.
John the Baptist was sent by God to announce that the bridegroom cometh and he cometh to take a bride for his name.
Again in Romans 7:4 the marriage connection is mentioned
Romans 7:4, Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.
This tells us of a bride that should be married to another for her former spouse, the law, is dead.
And that other to whom she should be married was raised from the dead, and that can be no other than our Lord Jesus Christ.
To the believers in Corinth Paul said in chapter 11 verse 2,
For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.
And in Ephesians 5:23-32 Paul again brings marriage to mind relative to our relationship with Christ.
3For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. 25Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: 30For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. 31For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
In that last sentence Paul tells us that when he spoke of marriage on earth it was simply for the purpose of pointing out what our eternal purpose is.
So we are given in our earthly relationship of marriage, which is a time connected relationship, until death do us part, a picture of an eternal marriage between Christ and his church.
This is a pattern of scripture, for that which we experience on earth, is simply a seed that sprouts to full flower in eternity.
We have shown in our last lesson that Jesus Christ comes as a Bridegroom for his bride at the Rapture.
In our passage in Revelation 19 we read for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.
The emphasis here is that this is the marriage of the Lamb.
The important personage here is not the bride as we so emphasize in our earthly marriages but the one upon whom we are to focus is identified as the Lamb.
He is not called the King, He is not called the God-man but he is simply called the Lamb.
The bride has been made ready by being arrayed in fine linen, clean and white, for this is the righteousness of saints, the righteousness of Christ.
She has appeared before the judgment seat of Christ, her works have been examined and only those works that have survived the testing fires of the judge she has with her.
They are gold, silver and precious stone but they are presented in the form of fine linen, clean and white.
Could it be that the bridal saintís apparel reflects what took place at the judgment seat?
Will there be degrees of righteousness expressed by what is worn?
Think about this in relation to the bridal dress on earth.
Not every part of the dress is as prominent as other parts of the dress.
The bride of Christ will be composed of millions of saints and each saint will be part of the bridal dress.
Perhaps which part you participate in will be in direct proportion to what takes place at the judgment seat of Christ.
Since the marriage follows after the judgment seat of Christ, it will take place in Heaven.
When Christ returns to the earth at the second coming he will bring his bride with him.
Last week we told of the Jewish wedding customs which include friends of the groom coming with him to receive the bride.
John the Baptist said he was a friend of the Bridegroom so he will of course be at the marriage.
The inference is that all resurrected believers will be at the wedding either as part of the bride or as a friend.
Now when the Old Testament saints are resurrected I do not know and there are various opinions about.
Opinions range from a resurrection at the time of Christ, a hint of that is given in Matthew 27, to the Old Testament saints being included in the resurrection at the Rapture.
But they will be at the wedding, not part of the bride, but friends of the Bridegroom.
They do not know the bride, for they preceded the assembling of the bride, but they know the Bridegroom and that is why they are called his friends.
If we took this to the way we do things on earth the bridegroomís side of the church would be filled and there will be no one on the brideís side.
This is the way it should be for this is the marriage of the Lamb.
The use of this title, the Lamb, is a good thing to ponder for out of more than seven hundred titles given to Jesus Christ why did the Holy Spirit chose to use The Lamb in the marriage announcement?
What awesome and powerful titles could have been chosen, such as King of Kings or Lord of Lords, Alpha and Omega, the Holy One, the Light of the World, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Creator of all things.
This is the one who was present at the beginning, this is the one who spoke and it was done, this is the one who flung the worlds into existence and put the seas in their place.
But in using this title, the Lamb, we are reminded of that ultimate thing he did for his bride, that ultimate thing of shedding all glory and honor and praise so that he could lay down his life for his bride.
And to do this he had to take upon Himself the form of man, a man in whom blood flowed which was required by Godís degree for without the shedding of blood there is no remission.
He came to this earth to become a Lamb, a lamb appointed to sacrifice himself for the benefit of the bride.
He is the Lamb who suffered, the Lamb who had to die to bring about his new creation, his body, the New Testament Church.
The church who will assemble before him in heaven clothed with fine linen, clean and white, totally righteous, totally prepared to be his bride.
She is His blood washed bride, made pure for the bridegroom.
He could have come as Lord, for Christ is Lord, he could have come as King, for Christ is King, but he came simply as the Lamb of God, a title befitting the bride for whom He gave himself.
Coming as Lord, coming as King would have been wonderful and grand but what good would a Lord and what good would a King have done to gather for himself a bride whose nature was alien to the Holy halls of heaven.
What good would a king or lord do for a bride whose righteousness was as filthy rags and whose heart was desperately wicked?
They could do nothing for without the shedding of blood there is no remission.
A lamb must be found to bring purity to the bride of Christ and that lamb was Christ himself.
What a proper title to use to announce such a marriage!
He shed the title of king, he shed the title of Lord and took the title of Lamb who was willing to give himself that his bride would be pure and holy and prepared for the marriage.
I Peter 1:18-20, Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; 19But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: 20Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,
Jesus Christ was the Lamb of God before the creation, before the foundation of the world.
The Old Testament is filled with types of the Lamb of God.
God provided covering to the nakedness of Adam and Eve after they had sinned.
The Lamb of God was there when God took animal skins to cover their nakedness.
Abraham said to Isaac on the way to his sacrifice that God would provide himself a lamb.
Before the Exodus what was slain so that its blood would be put on the door posts to turn away the angel of death?
It was a lamb.
Look to Isaiah 53 and see the Lamb upon whom God laid the iniquity of us all.
But the Lamb had come on our behalf for he took our sins and nailed them to the cross.
God has been satisfied, for His Lamb has laid down his life for the sheep.
John the Baptist knew this clearly when he said in:
John 1:29, ÖÖ.Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
In the book of Revelation, Jesus Christ is called the Lamb of God more times than in any other Bible book.
In Revelation chapter five, the Apostle John wept much because no one was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look upon.
Then one of the elders said to him, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof.
So John looked, and he looked for the lion of the tribe of Judah but there was no lion, but John instead saw in the midst of the elders a Lamb as it had been slain
In Revelation 6:15-17 the kings of the earth, the great men, the mighty men, the rich men, the chief captains, were hiding in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains, begging them to fall upon them and hide them from the wrath of the Lamb.
Revelation chapter 21 tells us of the new heaven, the new earth, the Holy city where the saints will dwell.
In verses 22 and 23 we are told that there is no temple there, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.
And the city had no need of the sun, neither the moon, to shine in it for the glory of God did lighten it and the Lamb is the light thereof.
Christ will come to His wedding as a Lamb.
It is the Lamb of God to whom believers owe allegiance.
Yes, Christ is the creator, he is the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords but it is he as the Lamb to whom we owe our redemption.
Anyone who is saved can remember their need when faced with their condition.
Anyone who reads that: all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, weeps for someone to come and help them in their hopeless condition.
Anyone who finds out the truth that the wages of sin is death pleads for someone to come and help, for within themselves they find no help.
Anyone who hears God saying "only those without sin" can enter my kingdom" begs for someone to come who can release them from this load of sin.
And God himself enters in and provides a lamb who will die and bear the sin of the world.
This is the lamb that was slain that all who trust in him will be at the marriage of the Lamb.
One of the absolutes for marriage is the marriage proposal.
We have never heard of a bride who was not asked to give her hand in marriage.
Marriage does not happen without the groom receiving affirmation to the marriage proposal.
Jesus has proposed to the world, He has said, Come unto me, all ye that are heavy laden and I will give you rest.
But to be a bride one must come, one must accept the proposal.
This is what salvation is all about. Salvation is saying "I do" to Christ.
Saved from sin, and then preparation for the Heavenly wedding.
And that preparation is fully provided for, for the bridegroom sends his Spirit to gift the bride with all she needs to come to the wedding in fine linen, clean and white, pure and without sin.
One day the Lamb is coming to gather his bride to himself.
I will be part of that gathering in the sky for over forty years ago I said "I do" to the Bridegroom.
The Bridegroom has been preparing me for the wedding ever since and some day I will know true comfort and peace for I will have completed the salvation journey to the marriage of the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ.
He said 2In my Fatherís house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
And I know that Jesus Christ will deliver, I know that the Lamb will come for his sheep.
And I know that Godís book tells us of the mansions in the fatherís house for in Revelation 21:1, God reveals unto us a new heaven, and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
And in verse 9 the bride is revealed unto us as John was told to Come hither, I will show thee the bride, the Lambís wife. 10And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, 11Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;
Here we see that the city itself claims the title of bride.
This is the bride of the Lamb adorned for her husband forever and ever to project the beauty of the Lord.
And John saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. 23And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. 24And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it. 25And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there. 26And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it. 27And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lambís book of life.
The Lambís book of life contains the names of those who compose the bride of Christ and the friends of the groom.
All are without whose names are not written in the book.
The one thing of your life that is paramount is to insure that you RSVP the invitation to Godís wedding.
John 3:36, He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
God has sent out his wedding invitation to the whole world.
He desires all to respond and is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to the marriage.