Saturday, September 29, 2012

Because I Love You

That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.  ~Genesis 2:24 
Exchanging vows
      A few weeks ago, Pat and I attended the marriage of our nephew, Michael, and his bride, Tina.   It was wonderful to celebrate their day with them.  It was a day filled with touching moments, special memories, and joyful hearts.
      A marriage is a beginning of a new life.  More than a few of us present reflected on our own wedding days and the days and years that have followed.
Hands clasped in love

      Michael and Tina exchanged vows they had written.  Whispers of love and declarations of togetherness.  Do not fear.  In sickness and in health.  I will be with you.  For richer and for poorer.  I am yours.  I love you.
    As we listened to the vows being exchanged I thought about how the church is called to be the bride of Christ; about Christ being the perfect Bridegroom.  We are His church.  Love has built a bridge between us and God so that we might share a special relationship with Him.
     When Paul wrote this in Ephesians, he was quoting Genesis 2:24
“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”  ~ Ephesians 5:31


Exchanging rings.
     From the very creation of this earth, it was intended that the church should become the Bride.  When you've been married a while, you understand a bit about the marriage covenant and being one flesh.  You are always aware of your spouse.  You consider them as you make decisions.  You want to please them.  You cherish them.  You complete each other.  Still,  Paul was saying in the same way that a man and a wife become one, Christ is one with the church.  We are bone of His bones and flesh of His flesh.  As Adam complimented Eve, so are we the counterpart, the Bride of Jesus.
First kiss as husband and wife.
But now, this is what the Lord says-
He who created you, Jacob,
He who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When You pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
For I am the Lord your God, 
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;...
You are precious and honored in my sight,
and because I love you.
Isaiah 43:1-4



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