This verse reminds me of the tradition of which the Lord refers to in some of his parables. It was custom that when a Jewish man got engaged to his fiancée, that he would at some time later leave her to go and build their home, and not come back until it was ready for them to marry, and then move in. She was to remain in a state of readiness for his imminent return. What a powerful picture of love and anticipation today’s verse gives us.
Jesus used the theme of betrothals and marriage to compare and relate to the Kingdom of God, as in Matthew 22: 2: Jesus says, “The Kingdom of Heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding feast for his son. And in Matthew 25: 1 + 6: He says, “Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be comparable to ten virgins, who took their lamps, and went out to meet the bridegroom (Who had been away preparing their home). But at midnight there was a shout, “Behold the bridegroom! Come out to meet Him.” One can only imagine what it must have been like for both the one waiting, and the one returning; I’m sure not unlike couples reunited today, after being separated for any length of time.
Jesus brings it to a very personal level for each of us in John 14: 1 – 3: saying, “Let not your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me (Jesus). In My Father’s House (Heaven) are many dwelling places (homes); if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again (as the bridegroom), and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”
The Book of Revelations gives us a mere glance of the Glory that is to come, when Jesus returns for those who are waiting for Him. Chapter 21: 2 – 4 + 11: says, “And I saw the Holy City, New Jerusalem, coming down out of Heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the Throne, saying, “Behold the Tabernacle of God is among men, and He shall dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be among them, and He shall wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there shall no longer be any death; there shall no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away. And He Who sits on the Throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new. And He said, “Write, for these words are faithful and true. (The holy City Jerusalem) having the Glory of God. Her brilliance was like a costly stone, as a stone of crystal clear jasper.”
Revelations 22: 7 + 12 + 14: reiterates the words of Jesus in line with today’s Scripture saying, “And behold, I am coming quickly. Blessed is he who heeds the words of the prophecy of this Book. Behold I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done.”
Dearest Holy Lord Jesus: thank You so much for Your faithfulness in all that You have been preparing all these years. Come by Your Holy Spirit, and quicken us afresh to realize that You are coming back for a people preparing and anticipating for Your return. Fill us with wisdom, and the reality of the truth of Your Words that we may not be of those unprepared, and of those who chose other interests rather than to answer the invitation to dine with You at Your prepared Wedding feast. May we be found faithful in singing for joy at the thought of seeing You soon Face to face. Glory to You alone!