I wrote this several years ago but would like to share in bits. Today is a letter from God to the church as well as the introduction. From there we will look at Proverbs 31 as a Bible Study of who the church is in Christ. I hope you will follow along with the study and comment as you feel led. God bless you.
The Church – Christ’s Virtuous Wife By: Tanya R. Dooley
To My Lovely Bride,
I am waiting for you. I have watched you grow since you were formed. I sent leaders to guide you, teach you My ways. I gave you My Holy Spirit to empower you. I gave you scriptures to study and learn from your forefathers. I even shared with you about my Son who gave up His life for you and in three days arose from the dead.
In your early years, you had great zeal! You had passion! You were on fire! You could care less about what the world thought of you. You loved Me as I commanded with all your heart, soul, and mind. You were even willing to die for me. You wanted others to hear about my love for them. Then just as your fathers, you twisted my words so they would make you comfortable. You wanted to please man, make them feel good. Yet in the process you left me, your First Love behind. You have become so busy with having the greatest house of worship, the greatest songs, the greatest programmes, raising money to attract people to hear feel good sermons. Be aware, you have left Me for the world, and because of this, you cannot recognize the enemy. Some of you don’t even know who the enemy is or because My Word has been twisted, you say there is no enemy. His name is Satan and he has a legion of demons with him. He is the prince of the air. He has brought you down. Yet, I have already won the victory! I have defeated him. His time is short. I am here to rescue you if you will let me. Reject his lies, submit to me, draw close to me and I will draw close to you.
Where am I in your worship? I don’t want feel good music, I want you. I want your life to be a daily sacrifice of worship. I want your praise and adoration. If you seek Me, the blessings will follow. If you seek Me and My heart, My Spirit will dwell in you and your house of worship. If you seek Me first and foremost, You will not need anything else. You are my temple. You are my dwelling place. I want to be welcomed but you have pushed me out with busyness and pride. I am a jealous God. I want your full devotion. I am not interested in your buildings, programs, and songs. I am interested in You. The rest will fall into perfect harmony out of your love for Me.
Come back to Me. I miss you. I want to clothe you with My righteousness. I want to lavish you with my love. I want to be in you and you in Me. Dine with Me. Abide with Me. I love you! You are precious to Me. I have wept over you. I have rejoiced with you. I want to hold you in My arms forever. Please don’t reject Me again. Leave the world behind and follow Me. I am waiting for you. Come to Me.
Love, Your Loving Husband, GOD
Introduction: Who is the Church?
With so many denominations and religious sects, it can be quite confusing as to who the church is and should be. Catholics, Episcopalians, Baptists, Presbyterians, Methodists, and Pentecostals are just a few denominations that we hear about on a daily basis. Then there are Buddhists, Muslims, New Agers, Wiccans, and many other “religions.” Today the main focus is on self and being your own god. God is no longer the focus of our nation or world.
The church is not just the place that we go and worship. It is not a denomination or religion nor just a place for weddings, funerals, baptisms, masses, confessions, Easter, Mother’s Day, or Christmas. When all is said and done, the building is just rubble and dust.
The church is “Christ’s bride.” “Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb” (Revelation 21:9b). When a sinner comes to the Lord, repents of his sin, is saved and baptized with the Holy Spirit, he becomes an heir to the kingdom. He becomes a part of the church, the body of believers, who love the Lord and is loyal to Him. “Theologically, we have been discovering anew that the Church is not an appendage to the Gospel: it is itself a part of the Gospel. The Gospel cannot be separated from that new people of God in which its nature is to be made manifest” (Stephen Neill).
From the beginning of time, God shows His love to His people time and time again. He gave Adam a mate. He gave Noah and his family a chance to live. He gave Moses the ability to set the people free from the Pharaoh’s captivity. He gave Joshua the courage and strength to possess the Promised Land. He gave Solomon wisdom, David friendship, Daniel favour, Isaiah His presence. He made Israel His chosen people. When they went against Him and worshipped idols, He still loved them, and out of discipline, He allowed them to wander in the wilderness for 40 years and be taken into captivity. Through the prophets, God told Israel of His love. How, He was there from the time they were conceived to the time they died. He loved them so much that He gave His only Son. Yet they rejected Christ and the door was then opened for the whosoever, Jew and Gentile alike to have this gift of love, Jesus Christ, for free. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
After Christ ascended into heaven, He sent His promised Holy Spirit as recorded in the book of Acts. This was the beginning of what we call the church today. Yet once again, just as our forefathers have done, we have become so in love with the world, we have lost sight of what we should be. Programs, money, doctrines, and self gratification have become idols. “The chief danger of the Church today is that it is trying to get on the same side as the world, instead of turning the world upside down. Our Master expects us to accomplish results, even if they bring opposition and conflict. Anything is better than compromise, apathy, and paralysis. God give to us an intense cry for the old time power of the Gospel and the Holy Ghost!” (A B Simpson). We need to regain our focus and be a force to be reckoned with. We need to be prepared to meet our Groom as the bride of Christ. Let us explore His Word and with His help see what He called the church to be: Christ’s virtuous wife.