Bride And Bridegroom

The bride, bridegroom and friend

Bride And Bridegroom
John 3:22-28 Judea

John 3:29-36 Bride and Bridegroom

John 4 Bible Study
JOHN 3:29-30  29 “He who has the bride is the bridegroom, and the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom’s voice. Therefore this joy of mine is fulfilled. 30 He must increase, and I must decrease.

What is John saying about the “bride,” “bridegroom,” and his “friend”?
Jewish weddings in those days worked as follows. Once the marriage has been agreed upon by the parents of the bride and the bridegroom and the bride-price has been paid to the bride's father, the bride and the bridegroom were deemed “betrothed” - i.e., legally married (a formal divorce was required to terminate a betrothal, so it wasn't just an “engagement” of today) - to each other, but continued to live with their respective parents. The bridegroom then began to build a house for himself and his bride, typically by adding three walls and a roof to one of the walls of his father’s house. Since he also had to farm or work his trade full time, this construction took up to a year. When the bridegroom has finished building the house, he came calling for his bride, hence the “voice” in John 3:29. A wedding feast then took place for up to seven days, during which the bride and the bridegroom consummated their marriage, and then moved into their newly built home. John is saying that Jesus is the bridegroom, those who believe in Him are His bride, and he is a friend of the bridegroom. When the bridegroom comes calling for his bride, any feelings of jealousy by his friend would be inappropriate. He should feel nothing but complete “joy” (John 3:29) for his friend and his friend’s bride.

Do all churches and Christian leaders today adhere to John 3:30?
Some elevate their doctrines and traditions above Jesus, the Word of God.

JOHN 3:31-33  31 “He who comes from above is above all; he who is from the earth is of the earth and speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all. 32 And what He has seen and heard, this He testifies, yet no one receives His testimony. 33 He who has received His testimony has set his seal that God is true.

What is John the Baptist doing in John 3:31?
Continuing to draw a sharp distinction between Jesus and himself.

What is the source of Jesus’ “testimony” (John 3:32)?
Not hearsay but what He personally experienced in heaven.

Who received Jesus’ testimony and “set his seal that God is true” (John 3:33)?
John the Baptist, and εσφραγισεν (esphragisen), the original Greek verb translated “has set his seal,” means to have certified, secured, confirmed or authenticated, which in those days involved, if a written document or another physical object is involved, pressing one’s signet into hot wax or wet clay to leave a hardened identifying impression.

Then why does he say “no one” receives (John 3:32) Jesus’ testimony?
He is using hyperbole to express that compared to the great number of people who should receive Jesus’ testimony, a very low number actually do. If you are catching your breathe doubled over after running a marathon and tell someone, “I have no energy left,” you are expressing that the level of energy in your body is very low, but not zero, in which case you would be dead.

JOHN 3:34-36  34  “For He whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for God gives the Spirit without measure. 35 The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand. 36 He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.”

What is meant by God giving the Spirit “without measure” (John 3:34)?
While all Christians have the Holy Spirit living within, we are not always “full” of the Holy Spirit, who fills us occasionally to empower us to perform certain tasks that He appoints us to perform. For example, the believers in Jerusalem at Pentecost after Jesus’ ascension were “filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:4) just before speaking with other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. Peter was “filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 4:8) just before testifying in front of the Sanhedrin, and Paul was “filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 13:9) just before blinding a sorcerer. In contrast, God the Father “has given all things” (John 3:35) to Jesus, who is God the “Son” (John 3:35) and remains full of the Holy Spirit “without measure.”

According to John 3:18 and John 3:36, what is the outcome of believing or not believing in Jesus?
He who believes “is not condemned” (John 3:18) and “has everlasting life” (John 3:36). He who does not believe “is condemned” (John 3:18) and “the wrath of God remains on him” (John 3:36). It's one or the other. There is no third option.

Which of the two options represents you today?