“Hound of Heaven” Meditations: 30. God’s Goal
Rev 19:7 For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.
To where is ‘the Hound’ pursuing us, what is His goal that He seeks to take us towards? To catch the ultimate goal we have to move into an uncertain area of Scripture that has many questions over it – the book of Revelation. Much of it is clear if not repetitive but as it nears the end it seems to vary between that which is in sharp focus and that which, although it is in focus, leaves you wondering. What about that thousand year reign of a world run by Christians but obviously with others as well? But put aside what you struggle with and take that which is more clear.
Chapter 19 starts with four Hallelujahs the last of which is for, “for the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of God’s holy people.)” Jesus had used bridegroom language when he was on earth (Jn 3:29, Lk 5:34,35) and clearly he was the bridegroom. He even told a parable about a wedding (Mt 25). So his bride? The Church, all believers together. So what does this picture convey, of a wedding between Christ the bridegroom and the Church his bride? Several things come to mind.
First, it is the public uniting of a couple. It is public, it is seen out in the open and everyone knows they are now a couple. When Christ returns (Rev 19:11-19) it is first to deal with his enemies and second to draw his people to himself. The word ‘public’ is an understatement of his return (Lk 17:24, Mt 24:27) for “we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.” (1 Thess 4:17)
So second, it is the start of a new beginning, a legitimate coming together of this ‘couple’ in the eyes of the world, to start a new life, a new experience together, a new closeness, intimacy, and harmony of experience together with no limitations on this experience.
But third, and the Thessalonians verse says it, it is ‘forever’! There is nothing else to be done, nothing more to be achieved, no more goals to be set, because this is the ultimate goal but, be careful, don’t try to be too clever in envisaging it: “Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.” (1 Cor 15:51-53) Perhaps all we can say is that the ultimate goal is that we will be united with Christ in a most incredible, unimaginable way. Wow!