Baptist Bride Refutation (Part 3)Submitted by Pastor Chad Wagner on Sunday, November 26, 2017.
Watch the video of this sermon on YouTube: Baptist Bride Refutation (Part 3) For the outline and the rest of the sermons in this series, click here: Baptist Bride Refutation To listen to or watch the previous sermon in the series, click here: (Part 2) V. The parable of the marriage feast (Mat 22:1-14). 1. The parable of the marriage feast shows that God's elect manifest themselves to be the bride of Christ by responding in faith to the call of the gospel. A. In the parable, the guests who are called to the wedding are distinct from the bride, but those of them who accept the call show themselves to be the bride. i. This is the nature of parables. ii. A lesson is taught by way of an allegory, but there is not a 100% correlation between the events in the parable and the reality that it seeks to explain. iii. The parable of the pearl of great price is a good example. a. In the parable, the pearl is the kingdom of God for which the man is searching (Mat 13:45). b. When he is searching for the pearl (the kingdom of God), he is not the pearl. c. When he finds it and sells all he has to buy it, be becomes part of the kingdom of God (the pearl) (Mat 13:46). d. Therefore, he started off being distinct from the pearl and ended up being part of the pearl. iv. A similar interpretation of the parable of the marriage feast holds true, which is explained well in the following quote. v. "The reason is that scriptures elsewhere represent believers as being the very bride of Christ, not as mere spectators to His wedding. The reason for the different approach in the parable of the wedding feast is that it considers the initial stages of the gospel call where there has not yet been a profession of faith in the hearers. At this stage, the gospel is not a marriage to the hearers, nor is it a proposal of marriage to them. There is no presumption at this stage that the hearers are part of the bride, and therefore no presumption they are ones for whom Jesus died. It is rather a proclamation of a marriage to which all are bidden. Only upon conversion are the bidden guests transferred to the role of bride. Hence, the gospel declares to the unconverted a marriage between Christ and His bride, for whom He specifically died, cleansing her of all sin, redeeming her unto Himself, to surely live with Him in heaven. The unconverted are called upon to believe these facts, but their role as bride to Christ, and as being redeemed by His death, are neither assumed nor declared until such time as they believe on Him. The Bible promises the cross only to believers. The problem with reformaphobia is that it misconstrues a call to a wedding as being a proposal of marriage." (David Pyles, Reformaphobia, p. 48) B. In the parable, the guests of the wedding equate to the local church. i. The Jews were first called by the gospel (Rom 1:16) to enter the kingdom of heaven/God (the local church) (Mar 1:14-15), and they refused (Mat 22:2-6 c/w Joh 1:11 c/w Mat 21:31-32 c/w Luk 7:29-30). ii. Because of their rejection of the call of the gospel, God took the kingdom from the Jews and destroyed their city (Mat 22:7 c/w Mat 21:43-44 c/w Luk 21:24). iii. After the Jews rejected the call of the gospel, it went to the Gentiles (Mat 22:8-10 c/w Act 13:46 c/w Act 18:6). C. In the parable, the guests (the church) are those that are both chosen by God (the elect) and called by the gospel (Mat 22:14). i. The gospel call is a universal call to all men (Act 17:30). ii. There will be both bad and good that are called by the gospel and will end up in the local church (Mat 22:10 c/w Gal 2:4 c/w Jud 1:4). iii. The reprobate that get into the church will be exposed and expelled (Mat 22:11-13; Mat 13:24-30, 37-43; 1Jo 2:19). 2. The parable of the marriage feast in Mat 22:1-14 is not identical to the marriage supper of the Lamb in Rev 19:7-9. A. The parable of the marriage feast in Mat 22:1-14 foretold the building of the NT local church, from its beginning when it went to the Jews who rejected it, and throughout the rest of its history when it was given the Gentiles and was filled with both elect and reprobate. B. The prophesy of the marriage supper of the Lamb in Rev 19:7-9 foretells of the consummation of the salvation of God's elect, the bride of Christ, when they will be brought into everlasting communion with their husband and Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ in heaven at the resurrection. C. Neither of these passages support the Baptist Bride belief. VI. Baptist Briders say that the wife in Rev 19:7 cannot be the same as those that are called to the marriage in Rev 19:9. 1. Bear in mind that we have here figures of speech. 2. Baptist Briders have no problem equating the wife of v. 7 with the saints of v. 8. 3. This is a wife that consists of a plurality of persons. 4. This is obviously a figure of speech since no literal wife is made of many persons. 5. This being the case, what is so farfetched with equating the wife with those who are called to the marriage supper? 6. If the wife consists here of all of God’s elect, aren’t all of God’s elect called by grace and, hence, to the marriage supper? (Rom 8:30) 7. And if the wife consists only of Baptist saints, aren’t they also called to be Baptist saints and thus called to the marriage supper? (Mar 3:13; 1Co 1:2) 8. So either way you run it, the wife consists of called persons. 9. So why should it be thought strange that in a passage that presents the Lamb’s wife as consisting of a plurality of persons, it should be said of those persons: “Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb”? VII. If the elect are already the wife of Christ, then why are they being married to Christ in Rev 19:7-9? 1. As was before proven, all the elect are already married to Jesus Christ (Eph 5:25-27) (see Section IV,1,C). 2. The marriage of Christ and the church is looked at variously in the scriptures. 3. In Eph 5:25-27 and Rom 7:4, the elect are declared to be legally married to Christ already. 4. In Rev 19:7-9, the elect come to experience their wedding unto Christ in all its glory. A. The elect now experience being married unto Christ in its seed form. B. At the marriage supper of the Lamb, they will experience it in its fullness. C. We only get a taste of it now, but then the whole meal. D. Our marriage to Christ now is as it is with those who elope and have a legal marriage performed at the courthouse in front of two witnesses. E. The marriage supper of the Lamb will be as it is when that couple later plans a huge celebration of their marriage with all their family and friends present and they renew their vows in the presence of them all. 5. Other aspects of our Christian life mirror this. A. We are now the sons of God (1Jo 3:2; Rom 8:16-17), but we will get to experience the manifestation of our sonship in its fullness in heaven (Rom 8:19-21). B. We are now adopted by God (Eph 1:5; Rom 8:15; Gal 4:5), but we wait for the full manifestation of our adoption that will happen at the resurrection when our bodies are redeemed (Rom 8:23). VIII. If all of the elect are the bride of Christ, then what's the point of being in a true Baptist church? 1. If all of God's elect are the bride of Christ and they all get to partake of the marriage supper of the Lamb, then what's the point of getting baptized, being a member of a local church, partaking of the communion, and keeping God's commandments in general? 2. Those that make this objection apparently think that if there is no eternal benefit to being a sound Baptist, then why bother. 3. Being a member of a true Baptist church is the means by which a child of God will experience many deliverances in this life that he would otherwise miss. A. These include salvation from ignorance, deception, fear of death, trying to establish his own righteousness, and chastisement in this life from God for sin. B. These also include salvation to the knowledge and assurance of eternal life, fellowship with like-believers, rest, and joy. C. See sermon on Temporal Salvation. 4. In addition, and this is part of temporal salvation, we can really have no Biblical assurance that we are eternally saved if we are not obeying the commandments of God including the commandments of baptism and local church communion. A. The evidence of eternal salvation lies in obedience, not in disobedience. B. This is not to say that there are no disobedient children of God. i. God has disobedient elect children that are not Bible Baptists. ii. (See sermons on Unconverted Elect and Unbelieving Children of God.) iii. But they lack Biblical assurance of their salvation. C. The genuineness of the faith of anyone who willfully refuses the commandment of Christ to be baptized should be questioned. i. One reason we are New Testament Baptists, is that this is that narrow way that leadeth unto life. ii. Only in this way can we be fully assured that we are God’s elect. D. Bear in mind that there are many very religious people who will be surprised to find themselves rejected in the Day of Judgment (Mat 7:21-23). E. These people are religious, but they do not do the will of the Father in keeping His commandments. F. See sermons on Assurance of Salvation (Part 1) and Assurance of Salvation (Part 2).