Jesus: Our Loving Bridegroom
29 The one who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom's voice. Therefore this joy of mine is now complete. 30 He must increase, but I must decrease.” (John 3:29-30, ESV)
" The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom's voice."
"5 For your Maker is your husband, the Lord of hosts is His name; and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer, the God of the whole earth He is called. 6 For the Lord has called you like a wife deserted and grieved in spirit, like a wife of youth when she is cast off, says your God." (Isaiah 54:5-6, ESV)
10 I will greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall exult in my God, for He has clothed me with the garments of salvation; He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels." (Isaiah 61:10, ESV)
" 5 For as a young man marries a young woman, so shall your sons marry you, and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you." (Isaiah 62:5, ESV)
The Bridegroom Pursues His Bride!
The Bridegroom is gracious and kind toward His Bride!
" 3 For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. 4But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, 5 He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to His own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that being justified by His grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life." (Titus 3:3-7, ESV)
The Bridegroom Loves and Sanctifies His Bride!
" 25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her, " (Ephesians 5:25, ESV)
26 that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 so that He might present the church to Himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish." ((Ephesians 5:25, ESV)
The Bridegroom will Come to Marry His Bride!
"6 Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. 7 Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His Bride has made herself ready;" (Revelation 19:6-7, ESV)
"She had washed her robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb; and these her nuptial ornaments she did not purchase by any price of her own, but received them as the gift and grant of her blessed Lord. The marriage is declared to be such as would make all those happy who were called to it, so called as to accept the invitation..." - Matthew Henry
Week 6 - Our Loving Bridegroom
Sunday’s message was about Jesus as our bridegroom, but we also discussed John 3:30 and how Jesus must increase while we decrease and what our marriages would look like if they were characterized by Jesus increasing and our decreasing. Today’s study will also look at marriage and their main goal--To Bring GOD Glory!
1. Turn to Eph. 1:4-6, 11-12. v4-6 tell us that God desires us to holy and blameless and speaks of our adoption into GOD’s family, and v11-12 speaks of our inheritance and of our hope. But each of these two passages speak to the “end goal” that GOD has in mind. As a group, read these verses and identify GOD’s purpose for these things
2. As a group, turn to and read Col. 3:12-17. Identify how the characteristics described by Paul in this passage could be implemented into a marriage to seeks to allow Jesus to increase while decreasing self (the flesh)?
3. Now, read v 18-19 of Col. 3. What is the significance of Paul mentioning the relationship of husbands and wives directly after v12-17?
4. As a group, discuss the following quote from John Piper dealing with how these things can be implemented into a marriage.
“Since Christ’s new covenant with his church is created by and sustained by blood-bought grace, therefore, human marriages are meant to showcase that new covenant grace. And the way husbands and wives showcase it is by resting in the experience of God’s grace and bending it out from a vertical experience with God into a horizontal experience with their spouse.
In all relationships, Jesus must increase--especially within a marriage; and not just from one spouse to another, but also in the way that the married couple relates to the rest of the world. This practice is not something that comes natural--it take work...a lot of work! We must recognize the presence of GOD’s grace in our lives, which in and of itself can be difficult, but then we have to choose to give that same Grace to our spouses as well as the rest of the world. This is how JESUS increases while the flesh decreases, by our choosing to act as He would and not as the way that our flesh pulls.