Here are the answers to the June Bible study for the Encourager’s Devotional Series. If you have not already read the devotion for June, you may want to do that before proceeding with the study as it explains the connection between “the city” and “the bride.”
Read Isaiah 62. What are some of the characteristics of the city before the Lord “saves” it or “establishes” it? Hint: In addition to other statements, look at what the city is called.
forsaken, desolate, foreigners eating and drinking from the labors of the city inhabitants
What will the characteristics be after the Lord establishes it?
His delight, sought out, married, a praise in the earth, holy, redeemed
What promises does the Lord make to the city?
Salvation comes! And your reward comes with it.
Read Revelation 21. What will it be like for the Bride, the inhabitants of the Holy City?
no tears, no death, no pain, God’s presence and glory
When Paul speaks on the marriage relationship in Ephesians 5:22-33, he says in verse 32, “This is a profound mystery – but I am talking about Christ and the church” (all Scripture references are NIV)
From verse 26, what does Christ use to cleanse us?
Baptism (“washing with water”) and the Word
Read John 17:6-21. Use verses 14, 16, and 18 to fill in the blanks. The world hates us. We are not of the world, but we have been sent into the world.
Verses 20-21 explain one reason we are sent into the world. What is it?
that the world may believe that Jesus was sent by God
According to James 1:27, we are also sent into the world to take care of other people. But while we are ministering to the world, we are warned to stay “unspotted by the world.”
In 2 Corinthians 11:2-4, what does Paul say we must guard against if we want to be a “pure virgin” when we are presented to our “one husband, to Christ”?
Read 2 Peter 2:12-3:18. What kind of people are described as “blots and blemishes”?
blasphemers, creatures of instinct (like animals), adultrous hearts, seducers, deceivers, greedy, people who use empty and boastful words, slaves of depravity, scoffers, lawless
Note, from 2:1, that these people are not people outside of the church, they are “among us.” Yet from Revelation 21:2,27 we see that the Bride, at the final presentation, will be “beautifully adorned” and that nothing unclean, and no one who does what is abominable or lies will ever enter the city. What does this say for those people who are “spots and blemishes” on the Bride right now? Continue reading