Almost everyone thinks about getting married at some point in time. The wedding may be simple, with just two people and a magistrate, or elaborate, with an entire village celebrating over several days. It may involve ancient customs or follow new fashions. The couple may jump over a broom or wear “something old and something new, something borrowed and something blue.” The couple may repeat vows suggested by the pastor or marriage officer, or recite vows unique and specific that they have composed themselves.
In the annals of biblical history, one of the most romantic and idyllic love stories captures the experience of Isaac and Rebekah. In Genesis 24 we learn how Isaac obtained a wife. Eliezer, Abraham’s intelligent, obedient, and praying servant, journeyed to find a wife for Abraham’s son. Eliezer sought a sign from God to direct his choice, and this signal was confirmed in Rebekah, who came to draw water, affording Eliezer with the answer to his prayer and request.
Genesis 24:16 describes Rebekah as “fair to look upon” (KJV). There was no trace of depravity in her. Her best qualities came out in the simple yet heartwarming narrative describing her interaction with Eliezer, her service to him, and her willingness to believe and act upon all he had told her. She proved to be modest, meek, transparent, open, kind, energetic, faithful, gracious, and physically charming. When the gifts and the good things Eliezer said of his master secured the favor of Rebekah’s family, they gave their consent to the proposed marriage. And Rebekah responded to the question “Wilt thou go with this man?” with a firm and prompt “I will go” (Genesis 24:58, KJV).
Rebekah’s eager reply to meet her future bridegroom with “I will go” serves as a beneficial example for each of us today. When our Lord and Savior, Jesus, extends the invitation “Will you follow Me?” and when our hearts respond to such an appeal, “Yes, Lord I will go. I will follow Thee whithersoever Thou goest,” we receive a rich blessing indeed.
God’s true church is described as a woman, a pure woman, the bride of Christ (see Jeremiah 6:2; Ephesians 5:22-35). Just as Isaac desired to unite with his bride, Rebekah, God desires to unite with His bride, His true church. Like Rebekah, our response should be “Yes, I will go.”
When you said “I do” to Him, Bride did you really mean it? Seven question s to ask yourself.
Yet with so many diverse churches and denominations today, who is God’s true bride (church) in these final days of earth’s history? The Bible outlines seven characteristics of God’s true bride, His church, and they are as follows:
1. Its teachings are in full harmony with the Bible. (Isaiah 8:20).
2. It came into existence after 1798 and began to form in the early 1840s (Revelation 12:6, 14).
3. It keeps the Ten Commandments, including the fourth—God’s holy seventh-day Sabbath (Saturday) (Revelation 12:17).
4. It has the testimony of Jesus, which is the Spirit of prophecy (Revelation 12:17; 19:10).
5. It is a worldwide missionary church, taking the gospel to the entire world (Mark 16:15).
6. It teaches Jesus’ final three-point message of Revelation 14:6-12: (1) “fear God and worship Him”; (2) Babylon is fallen”; and (3) do not receive the mark of the beast.
7. It teaches that salvation comes only through Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12).
With so many diverse churches and denominations today, who is God’s true bride (church) in these final days of earth’s history?
When the aforementioned characteristics are met in a church, Christ’s true followers should unite with Him through His church (bride). We become a member of Christ’s true church (bride) through baptism. “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit” (1 Corinthians 12:13, KJV).
Ultimately, God desires to be in covenant relationship with His people here on earth, and in the coming “earth made new.” In fact, God uses the model of a bride adorned for her husband to describe the beauty and joy of the imminent endless relationship between God and His people (Revelation 21:1-4). May we all be a part of this grand union receiving abundant blessings throughout eternity.