Rev Mar’s sermon in PDF can be downloaded from here:
The Marriage Supper of the Lamb
- A Review
- Sequence of Last Day Events.
- The last days began when God directly spoke to us through the Son Incarnate, the Lord Jesus Christ, when He came down to earth to seek the lost sheep of the house of Israel. He came unto His own but His own received Him not. The Lord then visited the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name (Acts 15:14) to provoke Israel to jealousy. Therefore, whosoever receives the Son and believes in Him shall be given the right to become the son of God and be saved from judgment because of sin.
- The essence of the last days is the coming of Jesus Christ into the world to bring about salvation to the whole world by His death on the cross and His resurrection form the dead, and eventually, the setting up of God’s kingdom, Basically, the last days would cover the Church Age (Age of Grace) when whosoever repents of his sin and turns to and believes in the Lord Jesus Christ in his heart and confess Him with his mouth shall not perish under judgment but have everlasting life; The Tribulation Period is when the Lord deals with the unbelieving world and prepares Israel for its restoration as the people of God; the setting up of the Millennial Kingdom where the Lord Jesus comes to earth, visibly and personally reign with the saints for a thousand year and finally destroy satan and all evil; unto the making of the New Heavens and the New Earth wherein dwelleth righteousness unto eternity.
- At the end of the Church Age, when the fullness, full count, of the Gentiles has come in, the Church, made up of the called out ones, is raptured, wherein the dead in Christ shall rise first then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up with them to meet the Lord in the air to be with the Lord forever. Both the resurrected dead and those alive at the Rapture shall be transformed into their glorified bodies in a twinkling of an eye, so that the mortal shall become immortal and the corruptible shall become incorruptible.
- On the other hand, all those who refuse to commit their lives to Jesus as their Lord and Savior shall remain on earth and go through the 7-year Tribulation Period. After the Rapture, the restraining influence of the Holy Spirit is taken out of the way and the antichrist, the man of wickedness, is revealed. The Rapture does not trigger the Tribulation Period. It is the confirmation of the peace covenant by the antichrist and Israel together with many nations that starts the Tribulation Period when the Lord’s judgment shall come upon the whole world, to try them that dwell upon the earth, them saying to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb.”
- First, we followed the path of those who are saved.
- Past Lesson. After the Rapture, all those who are saved must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad (2 Corinthians 5:10). The judgment is not for sin but deeds done in the body while the believer in Christ is still on earth shall be subject to fire. If deeds are burned, he suffers loss. But if it remains, he/she receives a reward, like the crowns laid up for those who are eagerly waiting and abiding in Christ ( 1 Corinthians 3:13-15 ). The only reason a deed survives the test of fire is because it was laid on the only foundation which has been laid, the Lord Jesus Christ. So whatever we do in word or in deed, we do it heartily in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and not as unto men, knowing that we shall receive the reward of inheritance for we serve the Lord Christ ( Colossians 3:23-24 ).
- Next, comes the Marriage Supper of the Lamb (Revelation 19:6-10) which precedes the coming of the Lord Jesus to earth to execute judgment and the wrath of Almighty God against the beast and the false prophet and throw them alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone and the remnant were slain with the sword which sword proceeded out of the mouth of the Lord Jesus Christ, the LORD of lords and the KING of kings. (Revelation 19:11-21)
- But for the next lesson, we will come back on earth to study the start of the 7-year Tribulation (Revelation Chapters 6-18) but I will give an introduction on the Book of Revelation. In the Tribulation chapters, we will study the 3 sets of 7 judgments upon this earth: first is the 7-seal judgments followed by the 7-trumpet judgments and finally the 7-bowls judgments, the destruction of the wicked Babylon called “the great harlot” that seduced the unbelieving world to believe the lies and great deception of satan and the antichrist. At the end of the Tribulation period comes the triumphant Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ with His Church on earth to set up His Kingdom, the Kingdom of God here on earth for a thousand years.
- LESSON: The Marriage Supper of the Lamb.
- What is the marriage supper or “the wedding feast” of the Lamb? During Biblical times, even when the Book of Revelation was written, tradition in marriage included three major aspect:
- Betrothal or engagement stage. Agreement of the parents of the bride and bridegroom which included a dowry paid. The agreement is legally binding and it could only be broken by divorce. ( When Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found to be with child. Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce Mary quietly. Joseph did not know that the child was of the Holy Spirit although it was revealed to him later by an angel of the Lord in a dream [Matthew 1:18-19].) During the period of betrothal, the groom prepares the dwelling place where he will bring home his bride.
The moment an individual commits himself/herself to the Lord in faith, hope and love, the betrothal or engagement is completed. The dowry has been paid by the blood of Jesus on the cross. His death paid the price. The dwelling place of the bride and the bridegroom has been prepared. Jesus said to His disciples, “ Let not your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also (John 14:1-3).
- Torchlight parade. The second part usually involved the groom coming to the home of the bride at midnight. He and his male friends would arrive with torches to come for his bride and her bridesmaids and take her to the ceremony. This is illustrated in the parable of the ten virgins found in Matthew 25:1-13.
The second phase, when the Bridegroom comes for His Bride which is the Church is symbolic of the Rapture. The Bridegroom comes like a thief in the night. No one knows when but it is imminent.
- The third part is the ceremony, which is followed by the marriage feast, which often took place over several days. What follows is the consummation of the marriage. The wedding at Cana where Jesus turned water into wine offers an example of this (John 2:1-2)
- “Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure”— for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints. And the angel said to me, ‘Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’ And he said to me, ‘These are the true words of God.’”( Revelation 19:7-10 ). In Revelation 19, the vision reveals the marriage supper of the Lamb. Who is the Bride and who is the Bridegroom. after the Rapture and after the saints of the Church has individually appeared before the bema judgment seat of Christ and their deeds in the body while on earth has been tested by fire. Both the Lamb (Christ) and His Bride are in heaven during the Tribulation Period. While those on earth are suffering the wrath of the Lamb, the Church (Bride) is being prepared for the wedding (Revelation 19:7)
- Who is the Bridegroom? The Lamb of God. Even from the eternal past, Jesus is already the Lamb that was slain from the foundation of the world. For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. Consequently, when Christ came into the world, he said, “Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired, but a body have you prepared for me; in burnt offerings and sin offerings you have taken no pleasure. Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come to do your will, O God, as it is written of me in the scroll of the book’… And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” ( Hebrews 10:4-10). Jesus replaced the bulls and the goats and lambs by sacrificing the body He took upon Himself, He offered the one and only acceptable sacrifice for sin, death of His body and the shedding of His precious blood. That is why John the Baptist introduced Jesus as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.
- Who is the Bride? The Church made up of individuals who have put their faith in the substitutionary sacrifice of the Lord Jesus to atone their sins. Because of that they have turned away from sin and heed the call of the Lord Jesus Christ to come to Jesus as their Chief Shepherd and hear Him and follow Him as His sheep. Everyone therefore who has committed himself/herself to the Lord Jesus Christ until the Rapture in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18. This is betrothal, Paul says to the church in Corinth, “I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:2). During this betrothal stage, the Lord wants His people to live holy lives that they may be presented to Him as chaste virgin.
For those who were unfaithful to Christ during the engagement period (during their years of serving the Lord on earth, they will be humiliated as every believer will be attired in the wedding garment made while on earth composed of their good deeds that remain after the judgment seat of Christ has taken place. Thus, Revelation 19:7-8 says, “Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure”— for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints.” The apostle John exhorts everyone saying, “And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.” (1 John 2:28)
- The Old Testament and Tribulation saints. The Church or Bride began to be formed on the Day of Pentecost and will be completed at the Rapture. Therefore, the OT saints are not members of the Bride. But the OT and Tribulation saints will be raised when Jesus returns to earth but though they are not yet resurrected, but their souls/spirits will be in heaven with us. They are the invited guests at the marriage supper of the Lamb. The angel told John to write, “Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb” (Revelation 19:9). These OT guests refer to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets who according to Matthew 8:11 and Luke 13:28 are in the kingdom of heaven or the kingdom of God.
For the invited guests, the angel with John pronounces for them one blessing of the 7 beatitudes in the Book of Revelation.
- “Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near.” ( Revelation 1:3 )
- Then I heard a voice from Heaven say, “Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.” “Yes,” says the Spirit, “they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them.”( Revelation 14:13 )
- “Look, I come like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake and remains clothed, so as not to go naked and be shamefully exposed.” ( Revelation 16:15 )
- Then the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!” And he added, “These are the true words of God.” ( Revelation 19:9 )
- “Blessed and holy are those who share in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.” ( Revelation 20:6 )
- “Look, I am coming soon! Blessed is the one who keeps the words of the prophecy written in this scroll.” Revelation 22:7
- “Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with Me, and I will give to each person according to what they have done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. “Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the City.” ( Revelation 22:12-14 )
- Application. As we come together and partake Holy Communion, let’s remind ourselves that:
- We are still at the betrothal stage. The Church is just engaged to be married to Jesus. He proposed to us during the Last Supper when he said:
“Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.” (Matthew 26:27-28)
This covenant was to be made possible by the shedding of Jesus’s blood as the sacrifice for sin. He paid the bride price with his life. Our acceptance of this covenant is dependent on our response to this act. In the act of betrothal, it is Jewish custom to share a cup of wine together. When we take Holy Communion, it is a reminder of our betrothal to Jesus. We are partakers in the longest engagement period in history!
- During the betrothal period, the couple is considered as husband and wife. This is why the apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians that he has espoused them to one husband. The Lord Jesus Christ wants His people to live holy lives so that the Church may be presented as a pure and chaste virgin to the Bridegroom, Jesus. (2 Corinthians 11:2)
- A bride is somebody comparable to her bridegroom. The apostle Peter wrote, “But as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct.” (1 Peter 1:15) The bride of Christ are those who will shine with a brightness and a purity and a holiness just as He who called her is holy. For those who were unfaithful to Christ during the engagement period, this will be a moment of humiliation as every believer will be attired in the wedding garment he or she made on earth. The material will be composed of their good deeds that remain after passing through the fire after the judgment seat has taken place.
- “And to her (the Bride of Christ) it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.”( Revelation 19:8 ) . The bride of Christ makes herself ready for Him. Every second she has on this earth is used to prepare herself for her bridegroom. Her fine linen is not something given to her during the marriage feast but it is something she has made herself during her time on earth by walking in righteousness.
- Ask yourself: Do I have any desire to go to that marriage feast? Do I look for Christ’s coming? Do I love His appearing and hasting the coming of the Son of God? Am I fighting the good fight of faith? Do I persevere to finish my Christian race? Have I kept the faith?
19 July 2020