Sunday, December 13
The king will long for your beauty, for he is your lord, so bow down to him.
Over the centuries, Christ has been preparing his future bride for their heavenly wedding. The apostle Paul explained that Christ “loved the congregation and gave himself up for it, in order that he might sanctify it, cleansing it with the bath of water by means of the word, so that he might present the congregation to himself in its splendor, without a spot or a wrinkle or any of such things, but holy and without blemish.” Paul told the anointed Christians in ancient Corinth: “I am jealous over you with a godly jealousy, for I personally promised you in marriage to one husband that I might present you as a chaste virgin to the Christ.” The Bridegroom-King Jesus Christ appreciates the spiritual “beauty” of his future bride. And the bride recognizes him as her “lord” and ‘bows down to him’ as her future husband.
There was obviously very little “preparation” required during the intervening centuries when the truth did not exist, having been completely subsumed by the Roman Empire. There were brief flickers of the truth in Europe during the long Dark Ages and Middle Ages, when groups such as the Waldenses and the Lollards sprang up. Although not without an impact, they were ultimately persecuted into submission and their light was snuffed out. It simply wasn’t Jehovah’s time.
The appearance of the International Bible Students and the Watchtower Society in the latter 1880’s marked a significant point of location in modern history where God renewed the calling and choosing and preparation of the final members of the so-called bride class.
As in the first century, so too in the present period, Christ does not oversee a conglomeration of competing sects. The evidence abounds that the Christian Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses has served as the temporary gathering point for those who are the prospective members of the future bride of Christ. As one evidence of that, Revelation depicts the 144,000 standing upon Mount Zion having the name of both the Lamb and the Father written upon their foreheads. That indicates that all of the 144,000 give witness to being owned by Jehovah and Christ. They are not ashamed of the name Jehovah. They do not refrain from using it, preferring instead to use a Hebrew abbreviation (YHWH). Nor do they refuse to use the common expression in their own language because of issues regarding the correct Hebrew spelling.
But as regards the Watchtower, it shall not always act as the owner of those who belong to Jehovah. My work these past 13 years has been to point forward to the culmination of God’s work in connection with the so-called “earthly organization.” It will be in the aftermath of the judgment to come that the bride and the spirit say to all: “Come!” and let anyone thirsting come; let anyone who wishes take life’s water free.”