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What is the Divine Romance?

Throughout the centuries, God has had a romance with man. God created man with the purpose of having a counterpart (Gen. 1:26). His intention in creating man was not mainly to have servants. If we read the Bible in a pure way, without any preoccupations, we shall realize that God’s purpose in creating man was to gain a counterpart. God is not a fighter; He is a lover. He created man in the image of Himself as a lover. This means that He created man so that man would love Him. In eternity God was alone; we may even say that He was lonely. His desire for love could not be fulfilled by angels. Therefore, God created man according to His own being. God is loving, and He wants man to love Him. In this way there will be a mutual relationship of love between God and mankind, those created to be His counterpart.

The Old Testament indicates clearly that God came in to choose Israel to be His spouse. In Jeremiah 31:3 the Lord says, “Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.” When God appeared to His people, He “dated” them and later even courted them. According to Ezekiel 16, God loved Israel when He saw her in the wilderness. Verse 8 describes this love: “Now when I passed by thee, and looked upon thee, behold, thy time was the time of love; and I spread my skirt over thee, and covered thy nakedness: yea I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee, saith the Lord God, and thou becamest mine.” By entering into a covenant with Israel, God betrothed her to Himself....

When the Lord Jesus came, He came as the Bridegroom for the bride. Many Christians are familiar with John the Baptist’s declaration: “Behold, the Lamb of God” (John 1:29). However, not so many realize that John also referred to the Lord Jesus as the Bridegroom. In John 3:29 he says, “He who has the bride is the bridegroom.” This word is included in a chapter on regeneration (John 3:3-6). The goal of regeneration is to produce and prepare the bride for the Bridegroom....As God incarnate, Christ came not only to be our Redeemer and Savior; He also came to be our Bridegroom....

The Lord Jesus regenerates the church so that the church may be His bride (John 3:3, 5, 29-30). The Lord is the Bridegroom with the divine life and the divine nature. If we would become His bride, we must also have the divine life and the divine nature....In John 3 we see that regeneration qualifies us to be Christ’s bride. Only after we have been regenerated with the divine life and have thereby received the divine nature can we, sinners, be taken by Christ to be His love....

At the end of this age, Christ will come to marry His redeemed and to take her as His wife (Rev. 19:7). The present age is an age of “dating,” courtship, and engagement between God and His people. At the end of this dispensation, there will be a glorious wedding day, at which time Christ will marry His redeemed ones. This revelation of the marriage between Christ and His redeemed ones is a major revelation in the Bible.

At the very end of the Bible we see that God will enjoy a married life with His people in eternity and for eternity. For eternity in the new heaven and new earth, the New Jerusalem will be the wife of the Lamb (Rev. 21:9). This is the fulfillment of God’s romance revealed in the Scriptures.

From Life-study of Exodus, Message 55, pp. 645-648.

For further reading on this subject, please see Life-study of Romans, Message 1; Life-study of Song of Songs; and Crystallization-study of Song of Songs, published by Living Stream Ministry.

From Issue No. 13, May 1999

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