My past several posts have shared my view of the marriage of God and mankind. They have dealt with:
– The promises of God;
– The engagement commitment between God and his bride;
– Perfect and mutual love;
– Mankind (the bride) readying herself for the marriage by making her thoughts, words and actions acceptable to God and acceptable to community;
– The desire of Jesus Christ to take away our sins and help mankind prepare for a new kind of existence.
The New Testament book of Revelation illustrates what lengths God will go to make ready his Bride for their new life together. While some people find something to fear within the pages of the book of Revelation, I see a God who is actively fighting evil for each and every individual and the community of earth. The plagues, pestilence, and torment are directed toward evil in general, not toward mankind. God is on our side in the fight, and He’s doing all the “heavy lifting.”
But to what end? What are we to expect as we look toward the future?
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had vanished, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready like a bride adorned for her husband. I heard a loud voice proclaiming from the throne: ‘Now at last God has his dwelling among men! He will dwell among them and they shall be his people, and God himself will be with them.’ He will wipe every tear from their eyes; there shall be an end to death, and to mourning and crying and pain; for the old order has passed away!” (Revelation 21:1-4)
Yes, my friends, as we prepare for our Bridegroom by turning away from sin, both to God and to each other, our Bridegroom is helping us prepare by cleansing us of our sins and stealing them away. Any Christian who is maturing and growing in Christ understands that they stand in a new place as they progress in their walk with Christ.
This maturity is the New Jerusalem, the holy city of God. Out with the old, and in with the new, a new and improved state of mind and heart, both individually and as a community. Upon making a commitment, or engagement, to God through the Grace of Jesus Christ, we have become new. We have grown! We are inhabitants of the New Jerusalem!