Thursday, July 27, 2023

The Bride of Christ (Proverbs 31:10–31)

"Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies" (Prov. 31:10).

As Christians continue to put on the righteous robe of the Lord Jesus Christ and grow in wisdom, their inward beauty and honor will pierce through to shine more brightly in a dark and sinful world. It is fitting that we conclude our study of Proverbs by examining the qualities of a noble wife delineated in Proverbs 31. While this passage is a picture of matronly virtue, we will apply this portrait more broadly to that of the bride of Christ.

Like the noble wife of Proverbs 31, the church of Christ is worth far more than rubies. The nobility of her new birth, the glory of her adoption, and the honor of her marriage to the Son of God adorn her with a beauty that exceeds anything of this world. Like Rebekah, she is more lovely than all the foreign women of Canaan. Abraham did not choose a wife for his son from the foreigners who lived nearby, but sent for a wife in a distant land, a wife selected from among his own. Likewise, Christ has passed over many to choose you to be His bride, to bring you into His inheritance, to lavish upon you the delicacies of Canaan, to make you a part of the family of promise, and to love you with an everlasting love.

Those who are promised by the Father to Christ have been elevated from a world of shame to a kingdom of glory. God looks upon His chosen people as they are in Christ—worthy of His kingdom and of more value than all the riches of this world. So great is His love for the church, that Christ gave up His life for her. He humbled Himself, put Himself under the law, suffered the sorrows of this life, and died on a cross. Who, then, can spurn such a great love? In light of the sacrifice and the love of Christ, what Christian can continue to live as a harlot? If you are a Christian, you are the bride of Christ, worth far more than rubies. Live, then, not like a slave but like one who is blessed with all the honor and dignity of Christ. If you are a follower of Christ, live not like a pauper but like a queen who is crowned with glory and dressed in the righteousness of her King.

Read Isaiah 62. Does God value the Christian highly? What has He promised to do for His people? If you are a Christian, do you base your value and esteem on what God thinks of you? If not, if you are burdened by your own self-perceptions, or that of others, consider this passage and receive your worthiness from Him.