My father used to tell me we don’t know where we are going until we know where we’ve been. In the same way, when we figure out where we are going, it is easier to decide how we should live now. The Bride’s final destination is described in the book of Revelation: “Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready” (Revelation 19:7). This is our future as beloved of the Lord, and this is an image that keeps us faithful.
Many a groom’s heart has missed a beat when his bride entered the sanctuary. Mine did. My wife appeared with her father, wearing white, holding a bouquet of white daisies matched with a crown atop her veil. As she marched up the aisle my knees shook, I broke out in a sweat, and I wondered at that moment how I could possibly have been the recipient of such good fortune.
How do you suppose Jesus will feel when we walk toward Him in eternity? It is different, of course. When it comes to our relationship with the Lamb of God, we are the fortunate ones. His love for us is complete and uncorrupted. Our love for Him is imperfect and indecisive. We have done our best to remain unstained by sin, but in reality He is the One who has made us holy.
Yet, we want Him to be pleased with us on that day. John writes, “I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband” (Revelation 21:2). The church victorious will be the cause of great rejoicing in heaven, for “The Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come!’ And let him who hears say, ‘Come!’ Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life” (Revelation 22:17).
On that day we will take part in a magnificent feast the book of Revelation calls the “wedding supper of the Lamb”. In Jewish culture, weddings were followed by several days of feasting when family and friends showered the newlywed couple with congratulations and blessings.
The celebration on our wedding day in heaven will be greater than anything witnessed or imagined on earth. Christ’s Bride will be cherished and affirmed. Those whose blood has been poured out for the sake of the gospel will be comforted. Everyone will join with the angels in praise to the Lamb, with the exception of Satan and his followers who will be dispatched to their eternal doom.
This is the future. While death stands in our way now, on that day everything else will fade in light of Christ’s glory. In the meantime, we want to be faithful in everything. But how?