The Bride is another title for the Church, the Royal Family of God, in resurrection body, John 3:29; Rom 7:4; 2 Cor 11:2; Eph 5:25-33; Rev 18:23; 19:7; 21:9; 22:17.
This is one of the Seven Figures of Christ and the Church, as we noted previously:
- He is the Vine and we are the branches.
- He is the Shepherd and we are the sheep.
- He is the Chief Cornerstone and we are the stones in the building.
- He is the High Priest and we are a kingdom of priests.
- He is the Last Adam, the Head of a new order of beings, and we are that New Creation.
- He is the Head of the Body and we are the members of His body.
- He is the Bridegroom and we are the Bride.
Of the first six of this series of figures, they represent the present affiliation between Christ and the Church; whereas, the seventh, that of the Bridegroom and the Bride, represents that between Christ and the Church, which is wholly future. Therefore, based on our Positional Sanctification, we are guaranteed in Ultimate Sanctification the Bridegroom and Bride relationship.
The body or Bride of Christ is formed on earth during the Church Age, Eph 1:22-23; 2:16; 4:4-5; 5:23; Col 1:18, 24; 2:19.
When the body of Christ is completed, the union occurs in heaven after Christ has come again to receive His body to Himself, called the Rapture of the Church, 1 Thes 4:16-18; 1 Cor 15:51-57. By comparing Col 2:15 with Rev 12:4; 19:6-8; Zech 13:2; 1 Thes 3:13, it is concluded that the number of believers in the body of Christ will equal the number of demons operating under Satan’s command at this stage of the Angelic Conflict.
During the Tribulation on earth, the bride is prepared in heaven in three ways:
- She receives a resurrection body exactly like that of the Son of God, 1 Cor 15:51-57; Phil 3:21; 1 John 3:1-2.
- The bride’s old clothing, the human body with its Old Sin Nature, is removed and she no longer has the Sin Nature.
- The bride is cleansed from all human good at the BEMA seat of Jesus Christ, 1 Cor 3:12, 15.
The coronation of the groom, Rev 19:6.
The bride is given a gloriously splendid wedding gown to adorn herself with, which are her acts of righteousness, Rev 19:8, performed during the Church Age that are rewarded at the BEMA seat of Jesus Christ.
The wedding feast / supper of the Lamb, Rev 19:6-9, which is to take place on earth, Mat 25:1-13; the Millennial reign. There are four categories involved:
- The groom, the Lord Jesus Christ.
- The friends of the groom, the Old Testament saints and the Tribulational martyrs who receive their resurrection bodies at the Second Advent. They are the friends of the groom. John the Baptist, John 3:29, is called friend of the groom.
- The Bride, the Church.
- The friends of the bride, the Tribulational believers alive at the Second Advent, who go into the Millennium. They will not receive their resurrection bodies until the end of the Millennium. The Groom, Bride, and friends of the groom have their resurrection bodies.
The bride returns with Christ at the Second Advent, Rev 19:8, 14, cf. 21:9. This is the manifestation of the Bride.
Our return is related to “Operation Footstool,” which immediately follows, Psa 110:1. In operation footstool we have a picture of:
- The triumphal procession in which all demons are disarmed and publicly displayed in the triumphal procession, Col 2:15.
- Satan being imprisoned for 1000 years, Rev 20:1-3.
- Church Age believers, the Bride, cast demons into prison, Zech 13:2; Col 2:15; 1 Cor 15:24-25.
The present age will thus witness the inception, development, and completion of God’s purpose in, “taking out… a people for His name,” Acts 15:14.