The Bridegroom – Gospel in Life

The Bridegroom

Tim Keller |  September 24, 1995

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  • Marriage
Matthew 9:9-17
RS 265-03


We are looking at how Jesus defines what it means to be a Christian. In this message, we are exploring the idea of Jesus as a Bridegroom. We know from reading the Old Testament that God defines himself as the Bridegroom and his people as the bride.

What does this mean for Christianity? It means that: 1) Christianity is a bond that consists both of duty and love; 2) Christianity is a bond of completing love; 3) Christianity is a bond of absolutely permanent love; 4) Christianity is a bond of utter exclusiveness; 5) Christianity is a bond of ravishing love.

Matthew 9:14–17

Jesus tells people who ask him about fasting that it’s a time of happiness, not sadness, because he’s with his friends. He says he’s like a groom at a wedding, which helps us see that he’s God, just like in the old Bible stories where God is the husband and his people are his wife. This reminds us that God doesn’t change, and we shouldn’t try to change what he says to fit what’s popular at the moment.

1. Christianity is about doing what’s right and loving God

For a marriage to work, you need both responsibility and love. The same goes for being a Christian. We’re drawn to the good things in our faith and the way it helps us be better people. Just like in a marriage, our faith gets stronger when we do our Christian responsibilities, like praying, obeying God, and worshipping, with happiness.

2. Christianity is about love that makes us complete

Marriage, according to the Christian faith, shows the deep unity between Jesus and the church. Like how a husband and wife grow to know each other really well, Jesus knows us and helps us grow. If we reject Jesus, it’s as if we’re rejecting who we truly are. Marriage and love aren’t just about having someone by your side, but about becoming whole.

3. Christianity is about love that lasts forever

The love between Jesus and us is forever, just like how a groom promises to love his bride. Even when people might let us down, Jesus never will. The love between a husband and wife shows the deep connection between Jesus and the church. As Christians, we’re bound to Jesus both with our duties and love, and he’s dedicated to us reaching our best selves and eternal happiness.

4. Christianity is about a love that’s exclusive

In a marriage or in our relationship with God, exclusive love is when you give your all. This kind of love is shown in how Jesus died on the cross for us. He’s completely committed to helping us be holy, happy, and saved, and he wants us to dedicate our lives to him. Our love for Christ doesn’t change, it makes us complete, and it’s exclusive. This kind of love protects us from hurt and sadness, and shows us why it’s important to be faithful in marriage and to make God our number one.

5. Christianity is about a love that’s breathtaking

God sees us as beautiful because Jesus died for us. We’re not valuable because of what other people think, but because of what God thinks. This understanding leads us to live freely and change for the better. Knowing how much God loves us, we can feel joy, safety, and fulfillment, because he’s not just our King and Savior, but also our Groom.



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