Blessings Lavender. You answered the question about the link between Christ and Church being His Bride. Here's one more puzzle piece. Just a side note: I think God loves to play hide and seek with us. He hides mysteries for us to find. Because it's not obvious and because it takes seeking Him, many people will not believe. However, I believe that at this stage of the Church, this tie-in is really obvious.
Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord, 5:23 because the husband is the head of the wife as also Christ is the head of the church – he himself being the savior of the body. 5:24 But as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. 5:25 Husbands, love your wives just as Christ loved the church and gave himself for her 5:26 to sanctify her by cleansing her with the washing of the water by the word, 5:27 so that he may present the church to himself as glorious – not having a stain or wrinkle, or any such blemish, but holy and blameless. 5:28 In the same way husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 5:29 For no one has ever hated his own body but he feeds it and takes care of it, just as Christ also does the church, 5:30 for we are members of his body. 5:31 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and will be joined to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. 5:32 This mystery is great – but I am actually speaking with reference to Christ and the church. NET Bible Ephesians
Wives submit to husbands
Husbands submit to Lord
Husband head of wife two become one flesh
Jesus head of Church
Jesus GAVE HIMSELF for Church to sanctify her
Jesus presents Church to Himself
Husbands love own wives as Christ [who died for Church]
The Word then ends all the comparisons with this telling statement: This mystery is great, but I am actually speaking with reference to CHRIST and the CHURCH. I set the above up similarly to a math problem--interesting.
All the time we were reading this we thought it was just Jesus telling husbands and wives how to be in a union that was pleasing to God. BUT when we get to the very end, there is a twist, a hook as we would say in business. This is on one level instruction to men and women, but on an even greater level, it is Christ revealing His relationship with the Church.
What is that relationship? He has prepared a perfect, spotless Bride for Himself.
There is a parallel between Adam and Jesus.
Adam's wife was taken from his side; she was perfect.
Jesus' side was pierced as He made the ultimate sacrifice for His Perfect Bride.
God told Adam and Eve that they were one.
Jesus tells us that we are One Body--He is us and us in Him and all in the Father.
Lavender, the men may not appreciate this, but I want to tell you a quick story. When I was a really young Christian, I could not see how I could appear before the Father. Because of His Blood--yes. But I still couldn't accept how this worked. Then one day God gave me a vision. I saw Jesus in His glorious robe with this humongous stomach. God then told me this is how it was. When I came boldly to the Throne of Grace, Jesus was not only my Righteousness, but He is my Covering. It was no longer I, but Christ. There was also a tie to Jesus being pregnant with His Bride.
Later on as I was reading about sitting IN/WITH Christ at the right hand of the Throne of God, I was trying to envision the millions of us sharing the Throne Room--all crammed onto the right-hand side of the Father. God said to me, "Have you forgotten what I showed you so quickly?" Then I realized that as One Body, we sit covered by Christ--with Christ--IN Christ.
I know He gave me this picture so that I could begin to comprehend some difficult Scriptures. I was a baby, and He was giving me a picture-book version of the Word! This vision has given me a great deal of comfort over the years, though. For one thing, just think about the safety factor. There is NO WAY Satan can get to us. Even if (and this would be totally impossible) Satan might be able to cut off one of Jesus' fingers, I'm not in just His finger. I'm in His Blood. More than that, I'm in His cells. More than that, I'M IN HIS DNA!
Sometime I would like to talk about how the men see themselves filling this role as a part of the Bride of Christ. Has God given you any revelation on it?
Blessings in the Lord to all whose names are in the Lamb's Book of Life
We preach Christ, and Him Lifted Up!