I was recently the best man in one of my good friends wedding. Hands down, it was one of my favorite weddings I’ve ever been apart of.
Because it shadowed the fullness of God and what He’s like more than I’ve ever seen.
Throughout the entire night they displayed two beautiful insights into the nature and character of our God in heaven.
First, they showed God is a God of covenant.
Second, they showed God is a God of celebration.
Have you ever noticed how beautiful the ceremony really is? Have you ever felt the weight of being involved in that special moment? Marriage isn’t a human invention. In it God Almighty is peeling back the curtain saying on His creation saying, “look! This is exactly like you and me!” For some reason unbeknownst to us He chose marriage above anything to uniquely display what it’s like for Him to interact and relate to us.
Everything from the vows, to the bride wearing white, are all but shadows of deeper realities. Like the bride, when we trust in Jesus, we are clothed in perfection. It’s not that we’re not dirty or not wicked, but Jesus’ righteousness has clothed us in white (free of charge), so the Groom sees us as beautiful, spotless, holy, and blameless.
One of my favorite things to do at weddings is watch the Groom’s face when the bride comes in. Everyone stands. People become silent. It’s a holy moment. What’s He do? He begins to beam with joy, tears, and love. He longs for her. He has waited for her. And finally she is here. That is Jesus with us! He longs for us, He waits for us, and He truly does rejoice and delight in us like a husband to his bride. Do you believe that?
And the most beautiful thing is it’s the beginning of a covenant relationship. There is no breaking it. There is no turning away. The promise is stronger than the will of the two individuals. Neither spouse is an employee to be fired, but a husband and wife to be loved. And that is love.
What typically happens after the ceremony?
I get so upset and grieved at the fact that some of the most boring weddings I’ve ever been to are Christian ones. Do we not know we are giving a false testimony to the character of God when we do that? God isn’t a buzzkill. Some receptions I’ve been to, if my eyes were closed, I wouldn’t be able to tell if I was at a funeral or a wedding.
That happens a lot because people have been fooled to think God is a righteous judge (which he is), but not a loving Father that delights in us and wants to lavish joy and gifts on us.
Here’s a newsflash: Jesus partied.
Here’s another newsflash: Religious people didn’t.
Which one are you?
Have you ever noticed that? Jesus actually got invited to parties. Religious people didn’t. Jesus was a God of celebration. He wanted to display the Kingdom as a place of feast, celebration, and partying. That’s why when asked about the Kingdom He responded multiple times by comparing it to a wedding feast and celebration!
Not to mention Jesus’ first miracle was at a party, and He was the one that supplied the alcohol (or for you Baptists, He supplied the grape juice). Whatever. Who cares what was in the cup, all we know is that there was something in the cup and people were getting it poppin’.
Disclaimer: Just because I know people can take this the wrong way I’m not saying to get drunk, go crazy, or any of that. I’m saying Jesus throws parties and His are way better than the ones you’re thinking of because they don’t make you sick the next day.
Sometimes I just laugh when I walk by those street preachers on the corner. They are going to be so awkward when they get to heaven when they realize it’s just one big party with the King. Who knows, they might even be so bold to tell Jesus to turn down the music.
So, next time you go to a wedding, look for these beautiful shadows, and walk away remembering these great truths. The ceremony is nothing but God showing He’s a God of covenant, and the reception is nothing but God showing He’s a God of celebration.
Forget neither, and revel in both.
What else have you noticed at a wedding that shows a deeper reality? What’s your favorite one?