The Wondrous Image
Isaiah 61:10-11; Revelation 21:1-4
"I will greatly rejoice in the Lord;
my soul shall exult in my God,
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation;
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the earth brings forth its sprouts,
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to sprout up,
so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise
to sprout up before all the nations."
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ''Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.''
E and M, you have chosen two passages that express the hope which this very wedding ceremony signifies. And the two of you have depicted the greatest event to come, indeed, the event that all of history is building towards. Let's look at the passage in Revelation.
Then I saw ??a new heaven and a new earth; for ??the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea.
What we know will change. What we see is but a shadow of what is to come. That longing for something of real permanence, of beauty that will not fade, and joy that will not cease, that longing that mankind cannot shake itself of points to something that will some day appear. Some day there will be a new heaven and a new earth.
What will this change be like? And I saw ??the holy city, ??new ...
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