Beatitudes of Revelation: Accept the Invitation

“‘Alleluia!  For the Lord God omnipotent reigns!  Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.’  And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.  Then he said to me, ‘Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’  And he said to Me, ‘These are the true sayings of God‘” (Revelation 19:6-9).

The book of Revelation contains seven beatitudes (Revelation 1:3; 14:12-13; 16:15; 19:6-9; 20:6; 22:7, 12; 22:14). These seven passages tell us how to find true, lasting happiness with God.

The Lamb and His bride are mentioned.  The Lamb is Jesus (cf. John 1:29; 35-36; 1 Peter 1:18-20; The book of Revelation refers to Him as The Lamb 29 times).  His bride is the church (cf. 2 Corinthians 11:2; Romans 7:4; Ephesians 5:22-32).  She is clothed in white fine linen (Revelation 19:8 cf. 3:4-5).  White represents purity (cf. Isaiah 1:18).  She is regarded as pure because she has been washed in the blood of the Lamb (cf. Revelation 7:13-14), and has proven herself faithful to the Lamb (Revelation 19:8 cf. 3:4-5; 12:11).  Wayne Jackson comments, “The reader is informed that the church ‘was given’ the opportunity to clothe herself. The passive form of the verb indicates that salvation is ultimately a ‘gift’ from God (cf. Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8). Be that as it is, it is nonetheless still true that she must exercise the initiative to ‘array herself’ with ‘righteous acts’ of obedience cf. Matthew 22:11-ff” (Jackson, Revelation: Jesus Christ’s Final Message of Hope, p. 214).

This is their wedding day.  Some are confused by this.  Sometimes the New Testament depicts the church as currently married to Christ (cf. Romans 7:4; Ephesians 5:22-32).  However, the New Testament also depicts the church as currently betrothed (or espouse) to Christ, currently living prior to the wedding day (cf. 2 Corinthians 11:2; Revelation 19:6-9).  How can this be resolved?  The solution seems to be found in the Jewish customs of the day.  A woman betrothed (espoused) to a man was in a sense, legally considered married (Exodus 21:9; Deuteronomy 22:23-29).  Infidelity was punishable by death (Deuteronomy 22:23-29). However, They did not yet dwell together.  The groom typically used this period of time to prepare a place for them (cf. John 14:1-3).  The wedding ceremony would occur at a later date.  Then, the bride would be taken home (cf. John 14:1-3).  The church is currently espoused to Christ (2 Corinthians 11:2).  We must remain faithful. We must be pure, and without spot, when He comes (2 Corinthians 11:2; Ephesians 5:25-27; James 1:27).

Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper. John Kachelman Jr. comments, “When Christ returns to claim His bride (the church), all the faithful would join the wedding procession and enjoy the wedding feast through eternity in heaven” (Kachelman, Studies in the Book of Revelation, pp. 99-100).  James Burton Coffman comments, “All men are bidden in the sense of being invited by the gospel of Christ to accept the salvation of God; but, in the New Testament, the ‘called’ (sometimes B.H.) means those who ‘have accepted and obeyed the call'” (Commentary on Revelation, p. 444; cf. 1 Corinthians 1:23-24; 2 Peter 1:10; Jude 1).  This is how the term “called” is being used in this passage.  The invitation must be accepted to receive the blessings (cf. Matthew 22:1-14).

“‘All things are ready,’ come to the feast!  Come for the table now is spread; ye famishing, ye weary come and thou shalt be richly fed.  Hear the invitation, come, whosoever will; praise God for full salvation for whosoever will” (Song: All Things Are Ready, by Charles H. Gabriel).

About Bryan Hodge

I am a minister and missionary to numerous countries around the world.
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