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Jesus’ Source for the Wedding Motif

18 Oct
Marriage Covenant

from Google Images

I have been studying of late the eschatology of Jesus’ Parable of the Wedding, found in Matthew 22:1-14. In it a king extends his invitation to attend his son’s wedding to certain people, but they refuse his offer to be his guests at the wedding. I have demonstrated in my previous study that this parable points to the Lord’s judgment upon the Jewish nation in 70 AD when Jerusalem was conquered by the Roman armies, who also destroyed the Temple (Matthew 22:7). The wedding feast was then to occur afterward.

Contrary to this motif presented in the scriptures, futurists have put the coming of the Lord and the subsequent judgment and wedding far into the future from when it was supposed to have taken place. Many Biblical scholars will agree that the judgment in Matthew 22 points to 70 AD, but the coming of the Lord and the subsequent wedding had to have been delayed and is to be fulfilled in our future. For example:

[The Lord sent] the Roman armies …to invade the land and destroy Jerusalem. The final destruction of that city was the fulfillment of the words of the Lord Jesus, “There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down” (Matthew 24:2).

Now we see the gospel going out to the Gentiles… “Go out into the hedges and the highways; go out among all classes everywhere… no matter how vile and sinful, bid them to the marriage feast; invite them to come in!” And so we read “… and the wedding was furnished with guests.”

It is a graphic picture of what has gone on for the last nineteen hundred years. God’s servants have been going from land to land, from city to city, and out into the uttermost parts of the earth. They have been going everywhere inviting poor, lost men to come to the marriage feast which God has prepared for His Son. [Matthew 22:7-10; emphasis mine][1]

Had the Jews accepted the invitation, the implication is that the Wedding Feast would have taken place immediately, because “all things were ready” (Matthew 22:4). The question then needs to be asked: if everything was ready in the first century AD (Matthew 22:4), and they were still ready when judgment was administered (Matthew 22:8), why wait another 1900 to 2000 years to celebrate the marriage? If all things were prepared at that time and ready, what is the purpose of waiting nearly two millennia to celebrate the wedding? It seems to me that the context of the parable should dictate its interpretation. There is an element of imminence in the parable that is lost and even contradicted by “a graphic picture of what has gone on for the last nineteen hundred years.”

Paul tells us in Romans 15:8 that Jesus was the Servant of the Jews for the sake of the truth in order to fulfill all the promises God made to them through the fathers. In Jeremiah 31:31-33 not only do we find a New Covenant promised, but we understand that God’s covenant with the Jews at Sinai was a marriage covenant. In other words, if the New Covenant is valid at all, today, the wedding had to have taken place. The Wedding Feast **is** the formalizing of the New Covenant!

As I claimed in my previous study,[2] according to Hosea, God divorced Israel by destroying that nation and sending them into captivity (cf. Hosea 1:9; 2:2). Nevertheless, in the latter days (Hosea 3:5) the Lord promised to come again to remarry his people (Hosea 1:10; 2:23). This second invitation is given by Jesus in The Parable of the Wedding (Matthew 22:1-14), and is the object of the Gospel he gave to the Apostles to preach throughout the world. They were not sent to the gentiles (Paul was). They were sent to the lost tribes of Israel (Matthew 10:5-7, 23). The New Covenant, in other words, is not a gentile covenant. It was between the Lord, Jesus, and the righteous remnant of Israel (12 tribes) and gentiles who believed.

_________________________________________

[1] Ironside, Notes on Selected Books, Matthew 22.

[2] See my previous study, The Wedding Feast.

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6 Comments

Posted by on October 18, 2018 in 70 AD Eschatology

 

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6 responses to “Jesus’ Source for the Wedding Motif

  1. tiptopsaidhe

    October 18, 2018 at 17:00

    Thanks Eddie. That’s the way I had always understood it. Yet, the wedding comes in Matt 25, following the destruction of the temple as outlined in Matt 24. I might not be following properly, but it seems the one covenant cannot be entered until the other is terminated, which would seem to be at the end of the old covenant age in 70, as you suggest. That would make it seem that she died…

    Rev 19:2  For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. 
    Rev 19:3  And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke rose up for ever and ever. 
    Rev 19:4  And the four and twenty elders and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat on the throne, saying, Amen; Alleluia. 
    Rev 19:5  And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great. 
    The Marriage Supper of the Lamb
    Rev 19:6  And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. 
    Rev 19:7  Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. 

    This language in Rev is harsh and difficult to read in this context. But, does this speak of this topic?

     
    • Eddie

      October 18, 2018 at 17:18

      That was quick! :-)

      I guess I caught you at your computer. As I understand it, the Marriage Supper of the Lamb occurs about the time the Harlot of Revelation 17 is destroyed, and I believe the harlot is Jerusalem. This is about the time of Revelation 19 as well. I agree that the language of Revelation is difficult. However, I’m having a great time going through it, but I had to take a hiatus in order to study the Epistle to the Hebrews for my Sunday school class. I’m up to Hebrews 9 at present, and Revelation 15 is where I broke off. Anyway, I mention this, because I hope to begin posting my studies in the Apocalypse sometime in December of this year. Lord willing, I’ll be posting three days a week, and as of what I have at present, it will take me to December of 2019 before I have to add to my study (Revelation 16 and following). Maybe you will be interested in following it. I hope you do. I would be interested in any comments and or disagreements you may have — not that I’m looking for an argument, but two extra eyes can be helpful in seeing what one misses.

      Lord bless you, Bill.

       
      • tiptopsaidhe

        October 18, 2018 at 18:04

        I wish I could be in your Sunday school class. I, too, am in Hebrews in my men’s study.

        I will look forward to the upcoming studies with you. This marriage language, somehow, needs to work alongside the rest. It’s just piecing it together that is difficult. It seems it has to go along with the transition from the 4th kingdom of Daniel to the kingdom of the saints, and include Jesus telling the Pharisees that their kingdom would be taken from them and given to another that bears fruit. This would seem to be the end of one covenant (marriage) and the transition to the new covenant (marriage). The difficulty is that Jesus would have died long before that transition.

        Anyway, thank you for your diligence. Blessings over you as you study!

        Bill

         
        • Eddie

          October 18, 2018 at 20:48

          There seems to be a gap between the fulfillment of the first 3 1/2 years of the 70th week and the second half. I didn’t believe this at first, but there is reason to believe there was such a gap, just as there was a 37-40 year gap between the time Israel was supposed to inherit the Land. There was unbelief then and unbelief in the 1st century AD. I’ll be speaking about this in my first study to set the stage between Daniel and the Apocalypse.

          Lord bless you, Bill

          Eddie

           
  2. tiptopsaidhe

    October 18, 2018 at 14:11

    Greetings Eddie,

    Jer 3:8 does, indeed, tell us that God divorced Israel because of her adultery (idolatry). v.14 in the KJV, however, says “but return, for I am married to you.” Though He divorced her, He still regarded them as married, which would follow since the one-flesh covenant relationship only ends at the death of one of the parties (Gen 2:24, Rom 7:2,3). With regard to the old covenant and the “marriage” and “divorce” of Israel, how, and when, did Israel “die” in order that a new covenant “marriage” could be entered into?

    p.s. If I’m thinking about this wrongly, please help set me straight. ;-)

    Bill

     
    • Eddie

      October 18, 2018 at 16:30

      Greetings Bill, and thanks for reading and for your comment. According to how I understand it, it was Jesus who died (Hebrews 9:14-16). Only one party needs to die to end a marriage. In the case of Jesus, however, he rose again to marry the righteous remnant (which is what Jeremiah 3:14 refers to — one of a city, two of a family etc.) and the gentiles who believed. I believe this occurred in 70 AD or thereabouts. Hope this helps.

      Lord bless you, Bill,

      Eddie

       

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