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Who is Jesus (2 of 4) The Passionate Bridegroom

Mike Connell

Page 4 of 9
She never knew as the time went by, which was the night he's going to come.

Now you can imagine - you know when Christmas is coming, and the frenzy that gets just before Christmas. Got the lights, I've got everything up, presents under the tree, that anticipation of it all coming is all part of it all. The anticipation of Christmas coming is immense! The kids get so excited they can hardly sleep the night of it. Now of course with this, you never knew when he was coming. You knew approximately when he was coming, didn't know exactly when he was coming, and so therefore that required that she be always ready. So she had this intense process, where now she's having to deal with all the spots, all the wrinkles. She's got to deal with her skin, and get her skin all beautiful, so now is when you get Botox, and now is [laughter] when you get to the beauty place. That's when you get yourself all done up, get rid of every wrinkle, every spot, everything that says - you wake up and there's a little bit of pimple, oh no! He might come tonight, so there'd be a frenzy to get everything right.

So it was incredibly important that first of all, that her body was presented well, and then also she focussed on getting the wedding garments, so she would work to get beautiful wedding garments ready, and she would either use the family jewels, or borrow jewellery from neighbours and friends, so that when the time came, she could instantly put on the wedding garment. She could put on the jewels, and she could go forth to meet her husband, so that's the period. Now during that period, it was expected the bride would be faithful. In other words, they're as good as married. There's no other lovers, there's no other boyfriends. All boyfriends are gone, that's the end of all boyfriends. This is one lover, one person I'm committed to, and he is coming, and we've got a great wedding day, and a life together, so that's the betrothal.

Now you can understand the problem that Joseph had here, when he's got this season of betrothal, he hasn't got to the wedding, and his wife's pregnant, and he hasn't had a part in that. That is a problem. [Laughter] That is a big problem - small town, big problem. [Laughter] Small town. Small town mentality, the atmosphere's full of judgement, and comparisons, and everyone looks at everyone else. Everyone's watching everyone else's business, minding everyone's business, so for Mary to get pregnant during the time of betrothal, either Joseph did it, or she's been unfaithful, so he's thinking whoa, what am I going to do? Now it says that he's a just man, and he's thinking: I wonder if I could have a quiet divorce. I don't want to shame her publicly, so he had a good heart to her. Imagine how he felt. He loves her, paid the price, done all the negotiations, got the thing he's looking forward to the wedding and she's pregnant? That's not easy for a man to find his wife's pregnant before they're married - and he wasn't involved. [Laughter] Just think about the internal struggle he had over that.

Being a just man, he did not react with retaliation. He decided what he would do would be to try to quietly divorce her, because of her unfaithfulness apparently, it was as good as over. However the angel revealed to him, this is actually a divine intervention, don't do that thing. Keep her, and it says - notice this - it said: he did not know her, until after they were married. In other words during that betrothal, no sexual intimacy, faithfulness, and he kept her until after she'd had Jesus. So you see it there in the Bible. Now of course the next phase of course is the actual wedding ceremony itself, which is called nissuin (marriage), which means to carry away. Now we get this thing of carrying the bride across the threshold. That's where it comes from, out of the Bible. It all comes out of the Bible, but mostly it's so changed these days we don't understand it - so you see then the return of the groom.

So the bride is aware of approximately when it might happen, but not exactly when it will happen, and so the time is determined by the father. The father decides when the son's got everything all ready, and when he's got everything ready he says: okay, time for the wedding, and they would have the whole house all prepared for the wedding. The guests were all ready to come, guests were all invited, and now they're ready to have the wedding, so the son would go out, and he would have friends with him. They would have the shofar (trumpets), they would have lights, they would have a noise, they would shout, there would be a tremendous shout, the shofar (the trumpets), the sound and they would make a great din outside. Now you can imagine if you are waiting, and you don't know which night this is going to be - and suddenly you hear the shouting!