I see marriage as the central concept of relationships and our classroom for what is to come. In Genesis God gave us the concept of marriage and in Revelation John was given a glimpse of the future fulfillment: “the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife has made herself ready.”
What does the marriage of the Lamb (Jesus) with the Bride (those whose names are written in the Book of Life) mean for eternity? I believe God has given us the concept and training ground of marriage to teach us just that.
I am puzzled as to what the Bride’s marriage to Jesus for eternity means physically. But I am not puzzled in the areas of spirit and soul. Our relationship with our spouse in spirit and soul, with sin eliminated and true holiness increased, is the same mode and content as our relationship with Jesus. The best relationship skills we learn in earthly marriage with our spouse have direct application to the coming eternal marriage with Jesus.
Here is what I mean: In spirit and soul, in the midst of loving, intimate vulnerability the Bride surrenders to the Groom’s ministrations which produce joy and delight at times building to ecstasy, and in the right times the Groom plants the seed of a new work in the Bride.
The fruit of the commitment to live together as one and of loving intimacy, this new work, grows and changes the Bride and Groom’s life. Anticipation of what the new work will be like produces wonderful changes. When the new work has gestated long enough it is brought forth which is itself an amazing process which ends in extreme, deep joy!
Bride and Groom nurture this new work, pouring themselves into it, reveling in the joy of the journey with all the new developments.
This is the spirit and soul of marriage. The physical pictures this description bring to mind merely shows how the spirit, soul, and physical are intertwined.
So what can we learn about eternity from marriage? It is good! It is the epitome of what you are practicing now: getting to know Jesus, eliminating sin, and increasing in true holiness.
Unless of course you are not getting to know Jesus, are not eliminating sin, are not increasing true holiness, then eternity will be the epitome of what you are practicing in your marriage now: eternal suffering in the lake of fire.
How are you improving your marriage? How are you eliminating sin? How are you increasing in true holiness? How are you preparing for eternity with Jesus? Or are you?