So how do we respond to those steps that He took as the Bridegroom? How do we respond? Who are we? How do we accept this offer of marriage? Well, as you might guess, because He loved us first and because we would not have known how to love Him without that, our steps are a little bit different than His. The same, but a little varied.
The first one, of course, is that we must accept His pursuit. Remember, there was a pursuit set in motion. We must accept that pursuit. In other words, sooner or later, it’s got to grab our attention. We must accept the fact that He is pursuing us. John 6:44 says, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day.”(NIV) The Father makes the arrangements, the Father calls the Bride to the Son.
We also see that in Isaiah 54:5&10; 55:1-8 scripture says, “For your Maker is your husband–the LORD Almighty is his name–the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth. The LORD will call you back as if you were a wife deserted and distressed in spirit–a wife who married young, only to be rejected,” says your God. “For a brief moment I abandoned you, but with deep compassion I will bring you back. In a surge of anger I hid my face from you for a moment, but with everlasting kindness I will have compassion on you,” says the LORD your Redeemer. “To me this is like the days of Noah, when I swore that the waters of Noah would never again cover the earth. So now I have sworn not to be angry with you, never to rebuke you again. Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you….”Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare. Give ear and come to me; hear me, that your soul may live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David. See, I have made him a witness to the peoples, a leader and commander of the peoples. Surely you will summon nations you know not, and nations that do not know you will hasten to you, because of the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has endowed you with splendor.” Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.”(NIV)
Do you see the pursuit? The invitation and the pursuit. God pursued the nation of Israel, His people, after they had abandoned Him and made them a Light to the nations. His Son, the Son of David, is His ultimate Light. He is in pursuit of a people, a people to call His own. He is in pursuit. In pursuit of a Bride for His Son. We have to recognize His pursuit and follow. Come to me while I may be found.
And, of course, we know that when Jesus went to His disciples in pursuit He said, “Come follow me.” Come you who are thirsty, come drink from the waters of life, come follow me. There is a pursuit set in motion. Therefore, our first step is to accept His pursuit when He calls us to follow Him. For today is the day of salvation. (2 Cor. 6:2)
As we know Yeshua went to be with His Father as the disciples looked on and were told He would return in the same manner that they saw Him leave. And yes, we also know that Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father and intercedes for us. As Hebrews 7:25 puts it, “Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.”(NIV)
Jesus paid the price in full, the full bridal price with His death on the cross. But did you know He lives for you. He lives for you. Think about that. Do you live for Him? I hope so. I try to. He lives for us and He is constantly thinking about us. He is thinking about us so much that He can’t stop talking to His Father about us. That’s what He’s doing. He’s talking to His Daddy about you and me.
But what exactly are they talking about? John 17 tells us what they talked about while He was here with us, it says in verse 24, “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.”(NIV) I want them to be with me.
In other words, “When can I go get them? Is it done yet? Am I done yet? When can I go get them? I want them to be with me.” He’s talking! He and His Daddy are talking, and apparently Daddy’s still saying, “Not yet, Son, not yet.”
Oh, what a day that will be. The great passion of Jesus is to have His bride, His wife, with Him where He is, in the place He prepared for Her, in His Father’s house.
Not just any house, His Father’s house. It was the responsibility of a Jewish Bridegroom to leave His beloved Bride after the Kiddushin to literally go and prepare a place for her in His Father’s house. We see this again with Isaac and Rebekah. Isaac brings Rebekah into his mother’s tent, a part of His father’s estate. That was their home together.
Yes, while Yeshua and His Father are talking, He’s working. Yes, He’s gone to prepare a place for you and me. I can not end this section any other way than with John 14:1-3 “”Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”(NIV)
I am going to come back and we are going to have a wedding. We’re going to have a wedding. And as the precious Ketubah ends, “The Spirit and the Bride say, Come.”