I treasure so much the Lord’s prayer before His crucifixion. His prayer confirms His love towards us. He mentioned seven times that we are those whom the Father has given to Him. In the last sentence of His prayer, He mentioned that He is in us, which is the deepest union with us. This prayer explains to us why He went up to the cross. He was crucified in order to fulfill His desire for us. He wants us to enjoy the Father’s love, and to have the deepest relationship with the Father. The Lord also longs for us to have the deepest love relationship with Him. He disclosed His love desire in His prayer. What is His love desire? The Lord told the Father, “Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am.” (John 17:24)
There are two apostles whom I find very special. One of them is Paul. The revelations to Paul were so great that he even said that a thorn was given to him in the flesh, lest he became arrogant. The other apostle is John, who leaned on the bosom of Jesus. Among the twelve apostles, I think John understood the Lord the most. God gave him a long life on earth. He experienced much, and was very close to the Lord.
John wrote the book of Revelation, the last book in the Bible. It clearly shows what God wants to accomplish. It draws a conclusion of God’s most important work, that is the New Jerusalem. Revelation chapter 19 speaks about the wedding feast of the Lamb. Though it did not mention who the bride is during the wedding feast, you should know clearly that you (the church) are the bride. Certainly, you will not be the invited guests. Moreover, He has prepared for us the most beautiful and eternal dwelling place, our new home. Before the crucifixion, the Lord said, “… I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. ” (John 14:2-3) The Bride will live in the holy city. This most beautiful city, the New Jerusalem is also called the Bride, the wife of the Lamb. This is the ending of the Bible. It tells us that God is our Father, and we are His sons. We are God’s family. We partake in this family and all things. Our relationship with the Lord is also made very clear: we are the Bride, the wife of the Lamb. We are partakers with the Father and the Lord!
With much evidence, not only does God want you to believe, He yearns for you to enjoy this love. He desires for you to love Him with a heart of gladness and fulfill His eternal love dream.
Ephesians chapter 5 reads:
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.
For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. (Ephesians 5:25-27, 29-32 NKJV)
This passage reminds me of another Bible verse in 1 Timothy 3:16: “Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh…” This mystery of godliness is for the fulfillment of the great mystery in Ephesians 5:32, “This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church.”
1 Corinthians chapter 6 reads, “But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him.” (1 Corin 6:17) A man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. This speaks about the earthly relationship between husband and wife, just as it was for Adam and Eve. However, when we are joined to the Lord, we become one spirit with Him. We are His bone and His flesh. In Genesis chapter 2, when God created man, He wasted no time to show how much He treasures this relationship. This is His love dream from eternity past. It’s so precious that this love dream took a long time to fulfill. It wasn’t known to us until the day when Paul explained the great mystery.
“Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.’ ” (Genesis 2:18) How did the helper come into being? “The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam, there was not found a helper fit for him. So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man…” (Genesis 2:20-21) It is so precious! The Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man. This foreshadowed that the Lord died for us and God struck and crushed Him. He was wounded, carved by men. “…and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. Then the man said, ‘This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh;…” Ephesians also mentions bone and flesh. “…she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.’ Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” (Genesis 2:21-24)