Revelations from the Word

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The Friends of the Bridegroom

by Jean-Louis Coraboeuf

"The disciples of John and of the Pharisees were fasting. Then they came and said to Him, Why do the disciples of John and of the Pharisees fast, but Your disciples do not fast? And Jesus said to them, Can the friends of the bridegroom fast while the bridegroom is with them? As long as they have the bridegroom with them they cannot fast. But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast in those days" (Mark 2:18-20).

The 'friends of the bridegroom' literally 'the sons of the wedding chamber', are his closest friends. They go before the future bridegroom when he comes to make his request for marriage to his future in-laws with a written marriage contract and a dowry. If the parents accept the dowry and the young girl the contract, she drinks an entire goblet of wine sealing the covenant, and the future marriage partners are then engaged. During the period of the engagement, the bridegroom prepares a wedding chamber for his bride in his father's house just as in his future dwelling, while the bride prepares her marriage trousseau and makes herself beautiful for her husband.

At the appointed time, the father decides the day of the wedding, and the bridegroom then goes to fetch his bride, preceded by 'his friends' who will shout to the bride "Behold the husband!" in order for her to finish her final preparations. The bridegroom takes his bride away and they leave again together for the father's dwelling for the marriage ceremony. The couple then meet in the wedding chamber and take part in the wedding feast, which lasts 7 days. Finally the newly wedded couple will leave to live in the dwelling prepared during the engagement period.

John the Baptist, the last prophet of the First Covenant (Luke 7:26), was the Friend of the Bridegroom when Jesus came to establish His renewed Covenant with His future Bride. He prepared the people of God to accept this Covenant and experienced great joy in hearing the voice of the Bridegroom (John 3:29), Jesus, who had begun His earthly ministry.

Since, Jesus has gone back to His Father's House to prepare a dwelling place for His Bride (John 14:2-3). And the Bride too is preparing Herself to be pure, without spot (Ephesians 5:26-27) and dressed in the most beautiful garments (Revelation 19:7-8). God, who does nothing without speaking of it to His prophets (Amos 3:7) will therefore use the 'Friends of the Bridegroom', the John the Baptists, who have the spirit of Elijah, to warn the Bride about Her final preparation before the Rapture. At the appointed time by God the Father, the Bridegroom, Jesus Christ, will come to pick up the Bride. The Bridegroom and the Bride will depart together for the Marriage of the Lamb (Revelation 19:9) and will remain together forever. The Bride will then discover her wonderful and incorruptible inheritance, reserved in heaven for her and that will be revealed at this very time (1 Peter 1:3-4).