Nathan Jones: To help us learn how seven Old Testament brides portray the Church, we are joined by Dawn and Dennis Morris (watch the episode of Christ in Prophecy). Dawn is a Christian novelist and Dennis is a successful businessman. Both share a passion for equipping the Church for the soon return of Jesus Christ.
In the first segment, we looked at how Eve is a pattern of the Church and how we relate to Jesus, the Bridegroom. Now we will hear the stories of the brides Rebekah and Rachel.
2. The Bride Rebekah
Tim Moore: Let’s turn to the next Old Testament bride who portrays a type of the Church. How is Rebekah a picture of our participation in becoming the Bride of Jesus Christ?
Dawn Morris: Rebekah is a wonderful type because she’s the first bride who shows participation in the whole marriage process. Abraham sends out his servant to choose a wife for his son, Isaac. In the same way, the Lord sends the Holy Spirit to obtain a wife for His Son.
Rebekah made a free choice. And, we the Church also have a free choice. God does not impose His salvation upon us. He offers it to us as a free gift. We have the right to say yes or no, which Rebekah also had.
And, just like Rebekah, we don’t know the details of our journey to meet our Bridegroom. She had Abraham’s servant to guide her, and we have the Holy Spirit given to us to guide us along our way.
And, just as the servant gave Rebekah gifts, so the Holy Spirit gives each of us gifts to whom He will. It’s that just wonderful?
When Rebekah first met Isaac, she bowed down before him. Concerning her behavior, you read about these nuances in Scripture all of the time, but then one day you realize you’ve never seen this or that point before. When I read that while I was preparing this study, I realized just what a picture of the Church these brides made. And so, likewise, we Christians certainly are going to bow down before our Lord once we see Him face-to-face.
Tim Moore: Dennis, paint the picture of Isaac anticipating his bride. As we read, Abraham’s servant had gone to find a bride for Isaac. We find the servant waiting a long while for a potential bride for his master to arrive at a well. What does a bridegroom think as he is anticipating unity with his bride?
Dennis Morris: We grooms wait in great anticipation because we know what good will come from that covenant relationship. We are excited about the life that’s being prepared for the two of us. Weddings are a really unique experience, particularly because of such great anticipation. You’re waiting expectantly for what seems a long time, but then at last you behold your bride walking down the aisle — such a buildup of anticipation and emotion that comes with a wedding! This experience becomes yet another example of our anticipation for Christ’s return.
Nathan Jones: In thinking back to my own wedding, I remember it being held in an old church dating from the 1800s. The church was going to be condemned just after our ceremony. My bride, Heather, comes into the sanctuary in her white dress with her father in his police attire by her side. The stained glass behind her emanated with so many colorful lights it was as if she appeared as an angel coming down from Heaven. I never loved her more than I did at that moment, though, of course, I love her even more now. It’s amazing how colorfully the bridegroom perceives his bride.
3. The Bride Rachel
Nathan Jones: How is Rachel a picture of the love the Bridegroom has for the Bride?
Dawn Morris: Jacob loved Rachel so much so that he was willing to work for her father for 14 years just to marry her. That act shows the great love that Jesus has for the Church. For the joy set before Him, Jesus endured the cross, and that joy was so His Bride could be by His side one day.
In the third segment of our study into the seven Old Testament brides who portray the Bride of Christ, we will read the stories of the brides Ruth and Abigail.