THE WEEK OF TRINITY XX – WEDNESDAY

LESSON: MATTHEW 19:1‒6

Husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no man ever hates his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as Christ does the church, because we are members of His body. Ephesians 5:28‒30

The love of a man and woman in marriage is a parable or a picture of the great, hidden, but wonderful union of Christ with His Church. All believers are members of that Church, and, as St. Paul says, they are members of Christ’s body (Ephesians 5:30), of His flesh and bones, as in the beginning, at the creation, the woman was taken from the man.

What a great, unfathomable, and unspeakable love God must have for us for the divine nature thus to become united with us and merged with our flesh and blood, for God’s Son truly to become one flesh and one body with us and to receive us into such a lofty status! He is not merely content to become our brother; He also becomes our bridegroom, turns to us and gives us as our very own possession all His divine blessings, wisdom, righteousness, life, strength, and power. Yes, we are even destined to become “partakers of the divine nature,” as St. Peter declares (2 Peter 1:4). All this He wants us to believe.

We have had this great honor and many blessings conferred upon us so that we should joyfully and in all confidence take comfort in this Lord like a bride in her bridegroom’s property and honor. Christ’s Christendom is, therefore, wife and queen in heaven and on earth; for she is called the bride of God who is Lord of all the creatures. In the highest manner possible, He gives authority and power over sin, death, the devil, and hell.

SL.XI.1750,8
AE. 79:213-223

PRAYER: Thanks and praise be Yours, O Lord, for the wonderful love You have shown to us and bestowed upon us in the gift of Your Son. May we ever maintain the tie of love which unites us with Him, and experience all the joys of full and free salvation in His name. Amen.