Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Jesus loves the church

I enjoy looking at this picture of my son David and his wife Lindsay on their wedding day a couple years ago. It's a stunning human illustration of Jesus' love for His bride. You can't really tell, but David is crying his eyes out he's so happy. Lindsay looks as if she's just thrown herself into his arms with abandon. I picture Jesus, on the day He receives us into heaven, weeping with joy...and each of us throwing ourselves into His arms with laughter and wonder. It's the moment all of history has been yearning for, the moment we who love Jesus have been aching for. It's the moment Thomas Watson (d. 1689) described in these amazing words from his Body of Divinity:

"This is the felicity of heaven, to be in the sweet embraces of God's love; to be the delight of the King of Glory; to be sunning ourselves in the light of God's countenance. Then the saints shall know that love of Christ which passes knowledge. From this glorious manifestation of God's love will flow infinite joy into the souls of the blessed; therefore heaven is called 'entering into the joy of our Lord' (Matt. 25:21). Seeing God, loving God, and being beloved of God will cause a jubilation of spirit, and create such holy raptures of joy in the saints, that are unspeakable and full of glory. Now the saints spend their years with sighing; they weep over their sins and afflictions: then their water shall be turned into wine -- the vessels of mercy shall be filled and run over with joy; they shall have their palm-branches and harps in their hand, in token of their triumphs and rejoicing."

What a day that will be!

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