I want to share with you something that will help you grow in your spiritual life. Indeed, if you comprehend and apply this simple truth, you’ll grow in faith, willing submission, and obedience to the Lord. It will make your spiritual life skyrocket. I learned this from Martin Luther’s book Faith and Freedom. Here is the excerpt:
The third incomparable benefit of faith is that it unites the soul with Christ as a bride is united with her bridegroom. By this mystery, as the apostle teaches, Christ and the soul become one flesh (Eph. 5:31-32). And if they are one flesh and there is between them a true marriage – indeed the most perfect of all marriages, since human marriages are but poor examples of this one true marriage – it follows that everything they have they hold in common, the good as well as the evil. Accordingly the believing soul can boast of and glory in whatever Christ has as though it were its own, and whatever the soul has, Christ claims as His own. Christ is full of grace, life and salvation. The soul is full of sins, death, and damnation. Now let faith come between them and sins, death and damnation will be Christ’s, while grace, life and salvation will be the soul’s; for if Christ is a bridegroom, He must take upon Himself the things which are His bride’s and bestow upon her the things that are His.
This single paragraph has many applications, all of them precious and beneficial to us. This is the one with which the Lord touched my heart and made me understand His will.
If Ephesians 5: 31-32 is true, and Luther’s interpretation of it is correct, (and they are); then Jesus Christ is the husband of His Church. He is the head of that marriage. Being myself part of the Church, I am (in a way) the spiritual bride of Jesus (or at least part of it). Proven that you are a true believer, who repented, asked forgiveness, trusted in Jesus and now lives according to His Word, you are part of His Church as well. Every true believer forms part of Jesus’ bride, regardless if you are a woman or a man, YOU ARE HIS BRIDE.
Submission is almost an offense for many people. Women don’t want to submit to their husbands, even some Christian women hate this wordsubmission, but believe me, it is a good thing, especially when it is associated with Christ as the husband. This was my experience:
Somebody had wronged my husband and I, and I was contemplating the possible ways to respond to it. The Lord brought to my mind his teachings about dealing with our enemies and I realized nothing of what I’d choose to do was according to His will, but I was still struggling to obey Him. It was at this very moment that He reminded me this: He is the husband, I am the wife. He is the head and I need to follow His lead. Because of our union, He is the one who decides, and I am the one who submits. I was resisting His authority over me, in the same way that I sometimes resist to submit to my husband’s authority. Once He showed me this, I experienced a change of mind, heart, and will that I’d never experienced before! I willingly submitted to His authority over me.
The Lord has established hierarchies in the life of His children for a reason. If a woman is unable to submit to her husband, she will also struggle in submitting to Jesus (her spiritual husband). If a man struggles in submitting to his authorities at work or church, how will he be willing to submit himself to Christ?
The order of things that God established has a purpose, an eternal one. We, His Church, are the bride. Our Savior is the bridegroom. He is the head, and we are the helpers. Submission becomes a natural thing to do when we recognize that we are under our Bridegroom’s authority.
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