The Glorious Bride

The Glorious Bride

Key Concepts

  1. The hidden glory of Jesus
  2. The revealed glory of Jesus
  3. The glory of the man is the woman (the Bride is the glory of Jesus), and the glory of the woman is from the man
  4. The hidden glory of the Bride
  5. The revealed glory of Jerusalem

 

1. The Hidden Glory of Jesus

Jesus did not openly reveal His glory, instead He purposefully chose to avoid such opportunities that presented themselves. In fact here as some figures about what Jesus actually said about Himself

He called God His Father (117 times recorded in the New Testament)

He only referred to Himself directly, four times as the Son of God (all in John’s Gospel) though He never denied it what confronted. (Luke 22:67-70)

He did however refer Himself directly more than fifty times as “the Son of Man”.

Additionally, He forbid anyone who had received revelation about His true identity to not tell anyone else. For example,

His disciples. “‘But what about you? Who do you say that I am?’ Simon Peter answered, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God!’ … Then he warned his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Christ.” (Matthew 16:15,16,20; see also Mark 8:29,30)

Demons. “… He also drove out many demons, but He would not let the demons speak because they knew who he was.” (Mark 1:34; see also verses 24,25)

“Whenever the evil spirits saw him, they fell down before him, and cried out, ‘You are the Son of God.’ But he gave them strict orders not to tell who he was.” (Mark 3:11,12)

“Moreover, demons came out of many people, shouting, ‘You are the Son of God!’ But He rebuked them and would not allow them to speak, because they knew He was the Christ.” (Luke 4:41)

Those He Healed. “… He also drove out many demons, but He would not let the demons speak because they knew who he was.” (Mark 1:34; see also verses 24,25)

“Whenever the evil spirits saw him, they fell down before him, and cried out, ‘You are the Son of God.’ But he gave them strict orders not to tell who he was.” (Mark 3:11,12)

“Moreover, demons came out of many people, shouting, ‘You are the Son of God!’ But He rebuked them and would not allow them to speak, because they knew He was the Christ.” (Luke 4:41)

The World Does Not Recognise the Glory of Jesus

The disciples came to him and asked, ‘Why do you speak to the people in parables?’ He replied, ‘The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them … This is why I speak to them in parables: “Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand.” In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah: “You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving. For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes …”’” (Matthew 13:10-11,13-15)

He [Jesus] was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him.  He came to that which was his own (Israel), but his own did not receive him.” (John 1:10,11)

The god of this world [Satan] has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the good news of the glory of Christ …” (2 Corinthians 4:4)

No, we speak of God’s secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began.  None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. (1 Corinthians 2:7,8)

 

2. The Revealed Glory of Jesus

Through the Holy Spirit‘No, we speak of God’s secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began.  None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.’ … no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him’ but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit … we have … received … the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us.” (1 Corinthians 2:7-13)

Through the Word “… these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.” (John 20:31; see also John 5:39,40; Romans 16:25,26; Ephesians 3:4,5)

By the Father Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. Matt 16:17

The Mystery of God Revealed

“The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.” (Deut. 29:29)

“… He brings hidden things to light.” (Job 28:11)

“It is the glory of God to conceal a matter.” (Proverbs 25:2)

“Truly you are a God who hides himself.” (Isaiah 45:15)

“From now on, I will teach you of new things, of hidden things unknown to you.” (Isaiah 48:6)

“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” (Jeremiah 33:3)

He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness, and light dwells with him.” (Daniel 2:22)

“It is written in the prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’” (John 6:45)

“When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence of superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified … My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words … not the wisdom of this age … we speak of God’s secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden …” (1 Corinthians 2:1-8)

“… that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge … the mystery of Christ …” (Colossians 2:2,3; 4:3; see also 1:26,27)

 

3. The Glory of the Man is the Woman

A man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. 1 Cor 11:7

All glorious is the princess within her chamber; her gown is interwoven with gold. 14 In embroidered garments she is led to the king; her virgin companions follow her— those brought to be with her. 15 Led in with joy and gladness, they enter the palace of the king. Ps 45:13-15

As we have already seen with Abraham and Sarah, the promise to Abraham could only be fulfilled through his wife Sarai (meaning princess, the royal bride). So also in the Divine Grace and Mystery of God, Father God has chosen to fulfil His promise to Jesus His Son, through the Royal Bride. Wow, what an incomprehensible thought! No wonder, the bride must be pure like a virgin, to not be tainted by the world, she must be perfect, absolutely pure and spotless without blemish. Eph 5. If the Royal Bride is the glory of Jesus the Bridegroom, then She is not inferior to Him in any way. He would never allow it, in that not because of our own worthiness or righteousness, but because of His great love, that we have been elevated to such a high position, to be considered a worthy suitor for the Son.

And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way. Eph 1:22,23

Although I am less than the least of all the Lord’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the boundless riches of Christ, and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, according to his eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Eph 3:8-11

The glory of the woman is from the man. The woman comes out from the man, as with Adam and Eve, in the same way, the Bride comes out of Jesus. She is who she is because He is who He is! She has nothing of herself, but she has received everything in Him. This is the bond of love. She knows the lover’s gaze, and that His desire is for Her. She is completely in love with Him, because of all that He is. She knows that she is “dark but lovely” SS 1:5 and her desire is only for Him. She seeks nothing for herself, her desire is to be in Him, knowing complete fulfilment in the Holy Union. She takes nothing for herself, and is only interested in what delights and glorifies her Bridegroom. She is overwhelmed by grace and love, there is no place for pride or demonstration. She is consumed with resolute intentionality, to make sure that her lover receives all the glory. Though it is given to her, she does not take the glory for herself lightly, but chooses to remain in the posture of surrender. Laying at the feet of Jesus, covered by the hem of His garment over her.

 

4. The Hidden Glory of the Bride

Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. 3 For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory. Col 3:1-4

This passage is very significant when it comes to understanding the Bridal relationship and the manifestation of Glory. Verse 1, begins with “Therefore”, which means it is connected to the previous instruction of Paul to the Colossians. In particular, Paul has been instructing them to not live according the rules or principles of this world. So here in verse 1, Paul is saying, because of the ability we have to be corrupted, or tempted or deceived into thinking there is some gain or benefit in the principles of this world, and therefore we can be focussed on the world’s ways more than on God’s, we must keep seeking the things above. The things above are glorious and mysterious, yet to those who seek Him diligently, they will be rewarded. There is a saying that says about another “They are so heavenly minded to be of no earthly good”. Or a reproach may be “They always have their head in the clouds”. But here, Paul says that we should have our head in the clouds. We should be focussed on the things above, the mysterious and glorious things of God, with our hopes set on things above, and things to come. And we may argue, that we must be heavenly minded to be of any earthly good. Then in verse 3, is the reason we should seek the things above and not things upon the earth, because we have died and our life is hidden with Christ in God. This word “hidden” also means “concealed”. That is to say, we together with Christ are hidden in God. We are not on display, we have not yet been revealed, not in the fullness of Glory that is to come. Verse 4 underlines that our life is of Christ, and that He has not yet been revealed. Paul is writing this after the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus, and yet he is saying that Jesus has not yet been revealed. We know that Jesus has been revealed to those whom the Father chooses, and so Paul isn’t referring to the revealing of Jesus in His first coming, but here is a reference to the unveiling of Jesus, the revealing of who He is when He returns again, in the fullness of Glory in His second coming.

“At that time people will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory.” Mark 13:26 (see also Rev 1:7)

The Bride is kept hidden from the world. The world cannot recognise the Bride, anymore than it can recognise Jesus as the Son of God. How is it that it recognises the church, but not the Bride? She is not on display, but for His eyes only. Not until she is fully dressed, will the Bridegroom let anyone see her. I believe the Bride is the most Glorious of all mysteries in Heaven. As Paul teaches

“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. Eph 5:31,32

John was taken to a great and high mountain where he was shown a vision of the Bride. You cannot see the Bride from the earth! You have to ascend the high mountain, to see what God sees.

One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, “Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.” And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. Rev 21:9-11

 

5. The Revealed Glory of Jerusalem

In the last verse we read in Rev 21:9-11 we have the direct connection between the “Bride, the wife of the Lamb” and “the Holy City, Jerusalem”. This also ties in with Rev 21:2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. The phrase here in v2 is “the new Jerusalem” meaning there is now both Jerusalem as in the ancient and Holy City of God, but also Jerusalem the new and glorious Bride. These two are somehow connected if not the same. In verse v10 John says he saw, Jerusalem the Holy City, and in v2 he saw the new Jerusalem, but both describing the Bride, the wife of the lamb.

This is a deep and profound mystery, and I do not profess to understand it fully, but here is what I have come to believe and accept. That the Father had a wife called Israel, and through Israel, brought forth His Son as Incarnate Jesus. He was pre-existent with the Father before Creation, but would become flesh in order to redeem those who would believe in His glory. He came for His bride and paid for her by His own blood!

But more than this, just as Father had initially redeemed Jerusalem the Holy City for His bride, so also through Jerusalem, (it would be just outside Jerusalem City walls), that the blood of His Son paid for the sins of His Father’s wife after she had been adulterous. In so doing, provision was made for Jerusalem and Israel to be restored back into the blessing of marriage covenant. Through this sacrificial act, Jesus not only paid for the sins of Jerusalem, but for the whole world (both Jew and Gentile) to create a New Jerusalem, that would become His, the wife of the lamb!!

In Ezekiel 16:6-13 , speaking of Jerusalem, Ezekiel prophesies

6 “When I passed by you and saw you squirming in your blood, I said to you while you were in your blood, ‘Live!’ Yes, I said to you while you were in your blood, ‘Live!’ 7 I made you numerous like plants of the field. Then you grew up, became tall and reached the age for fine ornaments; your breasts were formed and your hair had grown. Yet you were naked and bare.

8 “Then I passed by you and saw you, and behold, you were at the time for love; so I spread My skirt over you and covered your nakedness. I also swore to you and entered into a covenant with you so that you became Mine,” declares the Lord God. 9 “Then I bathed you with water, washed off your blood from you and anointed you with oil. 10 I also clothed you with embroidered cloth and put sandals of porpoise skin on your feet; and I wrapped you with fine linen and covered you with silk. 11 I adorned you with ornaments, put bracelets on your hands and a necklace around your neck. 12 I also put a ring in your nostril, earrings in your ears and a beautiful crown on your head. 13 Thus you were adorned with gold and silver, and your dress was of fine linen, silk and embroidered cloth. You ate fine flour, honey and oil; so you were exceedingly beautiful and advanced to royalty.

And in v32, Jerusalem is specifically mentioned as You adulteress wife, who takes strangers instead of her husband!”

The reference to Jerusalem in Rev 21 represents both the Old and the New Jerusalem. There is a profound mystery here. Something that brings all these things together in one new glorious revelation. I dare not speak in error, so please seek the Lord and His Word for yourself, and ask the Holy Spirit to guide you into all truth. My understanding is that as the Son is eternally begotten from the Father, so also the Bride is eternally begotten from Jerusalem! Yes, the Bride comes from within the Bridegroom himself as Eve was from within Adam, but there is also a woman in Heaven and her name is Jerusalem, and she is the mother of us all.

But the Jerusalem above is free, which is the mother of us all. Gal 4:26

1 A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars; 2 and she was with child; and she cried out, being in labour and in pain to give birth. 3 Then another sign appeared in heaven: and behold, a great red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads were seven diadems. 4 And his tail swept away a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she gave birth he might devour her child. 5 And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron; and her child was caught up to God and to His throne. Rev 12:1-5

17 So the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went off to make war with the rest of her children, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. Rev 12:17

The Bride is because Jerusalem is. Without Jerusalem, there could be no Bride. The Bride is Jerusalem in the same way that Jesus is “the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being”. Heb 1:3 The Father and the Son together with the Holy Spirit are One, so also the Jew and the Gentile shall be one, and that together shall become the New Jerusalem, the wife of the lamb. This abolishes any notion that Israel is replaced by the church. On the contrary, Israel and Jerusalem are not replaced any more than the Father is replaced by the Son! No, this is profound mystery but it is through the marriage of the Father and Israel (Jerusalem) that the marriage of the Son and the Royal Bride can happen. These things are all so wonderfully linked together.

As the reference to Jerusalem in Rev 21 represents the old and the new, I believe there is dual prophetic meaning and fulfilment with the prophecies of Isaiah that refer to Jerusalem. In other words, there is fulfilment for both the wife of the Father, and the wife of the Son!

Let’s take a look in Isa 62. A familiar passage, but instead of only seeing this as relating to only Old Jerusalem, let’s see this as relating to the New Jerusalem also, that is the Royal Bride.

1 For Zion’s (the One New Man’s) sake I will not keep silent,
And for Jerusalem’s (the Royal Bride of my Son’s) sake I will not keep quiet,
Until her righteousness goes forth like brightness,
And her salvation like a torch that is burning.

2 The nations will see your righteousness,
And all kings your glory;
And you will be called by a new name
Which the mouth of the Lord will designate.

3 You will also be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord,
And a royal diadem in the hand of your God.

4 It will no longer be said to you, “Forsaken,”
Nor to your land will it any longer be said, “Desolate”;
But you will be called, “My delight is in her,”
And your land, “Married”;
For the Lord delights in you,
And to Him your land will be married.

5 For as a young man marries a virgin,
So your sons will marry you;
And as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride,
So your God will rejoice over you.

6 On your walls, O Jerusalem (Royal Bride), I have appointed watchmen;
All day and all night they will never keep silent.
You who remind the Lord, take no rest for yourselves;

7 And give Him no rest until He establishes
And makes Jerusalem (the Royal Bride), a praise in the earth.

Isaiah 62:1-7 Additions (in brackets) mine

Conclusion

O that we would set our minds and hearts on things above, and not on earthly things. May we be caught up and consumed with a holy passion for the Bridegroom, longing for His return. Let us know, that He has hidden us away from the eyes of this world, we are His alone. Yet in the fullness of time we shall be revealed together with Him in the coming of His glory and reign. Let us heed the instruction of Isaiah 62:6,7 and never keep silent. To remind the Lord, and take no rest and give Him no rest until He establishes and makes Jerusalem and the Royal Bride a praise in the earth.

About the author: Dr Mike Pike

Live with my wife Jo in Cornwall UK, together we have raised five children and have served the Lord for over thirty years within the UK and in many other nations. My passion is for the coming of Jesus the Bridegroom King, and I long to see the Bride call upon Him to come.

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