You won’t find the phrase “bride of Christ” in your Bible. Just like the Trinity, this concept appears in Scripture without the wording we now use.
Though the biblical authors use this image to refer to the collective people of God, many today misapply it to individuals. This error has far-reaching and unexpected consequences.
The Old Testament
Let’s begin with the Bible. In the Old Testament, the nation of Israel was the people of God by virtue of God’s gracious covenant. In Isaiah 54 (and elsewhere), God used the language of marriage to describe his relationship with his people as a whole.
“Fear not, for you will not be ashamed;
be not confounded, for you will not be disgraced;
for you will forget the shame of your youth,
and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more.
For your Maker is your husband,
the Lord of hosts is…
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