His Bride, the Overcomers
Edited from the writings of
In each dispensation, according to revelation as then given,
the Lord provided a way to attain perfection. Also, there
were "representative "men who were examples of what
the Lord required. "Enoch walked with God" Gen 5:22a.
"Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations,
and Noah walked with God" Gen 6:9. "The LORD appeared
to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before
me, and be thou perfect" Gen 17:1b. "There was a
man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was
perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed
evil" Job 1:1.
The Scriptures show that Jesus required perfection. "Be
ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven
is perfect" Matt 5:48. Paul also testified to this, and
to the faithful assistance that God will render to all who
seek to fulfill His will. "And the very God of peace
sanctify you wholly" I Thess 5:23a.
Experimental blessings gained in one dispensation move into
the following age where they are enlarged and enjoyed. For
example, Abraham became the father of all those who are "justified
by faith" (Romans 4:8-16). The patriarchal period required
a perfect walk with God. The dispensation of Law required
the same with additional ceremonial and moral obedience and
sanctity. The Spirit dispensation requires a higher sanctity
along with an obedience to the leadings and workings of the
We are living in "the time of restoration" (Eph
1:10-11). Our privileges of experience are the highest ever
known, since attainments of the past increase in the present.
Healing, health, holiness, a walk with God, and a life in
the Spirit are ours, bequeathed to us by past dispensational
grants. All these are by way of restoration and are given
us in a higher degree than formerly. And yet other, new dispensational
privileges are being added as our inheritance in Christ.
Jesus Christ is to take from among men a Bride to Himself.
This is a great condescension. For the Christ to take upon
Himself the nature and form of man was certainly very humbling.
But to take a Bride company from among men and then live with
this Bride in close association and fellowship is beyond the
comprehension of finite creatures.
A common teaching is that all classes of believers, regardless
of their lack in attainment, will be part of the "Bride
of Christ." His Kingdom is altogether different and apart
from the earth realm in which man is found. How entirely unreasonable
then, to suppose that Jesus Christ would consider and accept
as His Bride immature Christians who have never sighted, entered,
or operated on this higher spiritual plane. The conduct of
affairs in His Kingdom will be on this high Spirit plane.
We cannot sow in the realm of the natural and reap in the
realm of the Spiritual. "Like begets like" is an
inherent law. "Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs
of thistles?" Matthew 7:16b.
"Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him:
for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife
hath made herself ready. And to her was granted
that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and
white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of
saints. And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are
they which are called unto the marriage supper of
the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true
sayings of God" Rev 19:7-9.
The Lord is seeking out and qualifying a Bride. A clear vision
and a practical understanding of the state and experience
which is the divine standard for this calling is essential
if one is to enter this high calling. We must know and attain
to God's requirements.
In past ages, to prepare a bride as a queen for her intended
King, there were elaborate, prolonged schooling and various
preparations that were required of her. Such an occasion is
recited in Esther 2:8-13. See further Psalm 45:13-14.
Insight into the character and nature of Jesus Christ will
help us to understand the characteristics He expects to find
within His Bride. Certainly He will require her to be of like
character with Himself. This speaks of our becoming an overcomer,
by which we rise up into a state of union with Him, fully
prepared to become His Bride.
"Learn of Me for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye
shall find rest unto your souls" Matthew 11:29b. The
rest of God that is described in Hebrews 4:1-10 is the result
of our having ceased from all independent, self-activity.
Jesus lived in this state of rest from the works of man. It
was this perfect state of union with His Father which enabled
Him to say,
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do
nothing of Himself, but what He seeth the Father
do: for what things soever He doeth, these also
doeth the Son likewise" John 5:19b.
"When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall
ye know that I am He, and that I do nothing of myself;
but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.
And He that sent me is with me: the Father hath not
left me alone; for I do always those things that
please Him" John 8:28-29.
"Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the
Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak
not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he
doeth the works. Believe me that I am in the Father,
and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very
works' sake" John 14:10-11.
The Father's indwelling of the Son was the foundation of
their union. Jesus prayed that His disciples also should be
brought into this oneness.
"As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have
also sent them into the world ... That they all may
be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee,
that they also may be one in us: that the world may
believe that thou hast sent me" John 17:18, 21.
The Father and Son, by the Holy Spirit, seeks complete control
of the whole man, physical, soul, and spirit. Nothing less
than a union such as this divine indwelling and co-working
could satisfy God. This alone will constitute an acceptable
Bride for Christ.
"Treat one another with the same spirit as you experience
in Christ Jesus. Though He was Divine by nature, He did
not set store upon equality with God, but emptied Himself
by taking the nature of a servant: born in human guise and
appearing in human form, He humbly stooped in His obedience
even to die, and to die on the cross" Phil 2:1-8 Moffatt.
If He, the WORTHY ONE, so deeply humbled Himself, how lowly
a place is our due?
Jesus humbled Himself and allowed these who accused Him as
a blasphemer to spit on Him, smite Him, scourge Him, and crown
Him with thorns. He allowed them to falsely bow as they decked
Him with royal robes, and to nail Him to the cross between
criminals. Although holy and undefiled, He took the defenseless
attitude of a lamb and became the victim for our sins.
The whole attitude of Jesus was entirely unselfish. "The
Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister."
He never did a selfish act. Never were the works of the flesh
manifested in His life. Let no one imagine that an intimate
association with Christ is possible without being saved to
"These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever
goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the
first fruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their
mouth was found no guile, for they are without fault
before the Throne of God" Rev 14:4b.
"To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with Me
in My Throne" Rev3:21a. To overcome means to experience
victory, to master. The absence of a qualifying or modifying
word means that we are to overcome in all ways, and in everything.
"Now thanks be unto God, which ALWAYS cause thus to triumph
in Christ" 2 Cor 2:14a.
This complete overcoming describes the way to a seat with
Christ in His Throne. Therefore, it is important to have a
clear understanding of what it is to overcome, and the means
and methods by which it is accomplished. Chapters two and
three of the book of Revelation describe several phases of
overcoming. The Church at Ephesus was commended, but with
one serious reproof: "Thou hast left thy first love.
Remember therefore, from whence thou art fallen, and repent
and do the first works" Rev 2:4b-5a. A return to their
first love and first works was their only means of overcoming.
Today, many of us make a great showing outwardly, but we have
lost our original passionate love for Jesus and the control
of the Holy Spirit over our lives. Return and restoration
must be our first steps if we are to become overcomers.
The Churches at Smyrna, Pergamos, and Thyatira, also had
much for which to be commended, but the Lord saw there were
among them the doctrines of Balaam, Jezebel, and Nicolaitanism.
It is vain to think of being overcomers while linked with
these false doctrines. Notice that Jesus is speaking in Rev
2:24, to those who have not known the depths of Satan. They
are admonished to "hold fast" and a promise is given
"And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto
to him will I give power over the nations" Rev 2:26.
In the Church at Sardis were those who were due for judgment.
Their names would be blotted out (Rev 3:5). If the Church
at Philadelphia held out, they would get the crown. Verse
12 speaks of the Bride of Christ.
The Laodicean Church which was rich and in need of nothing
in their own eyes, was "wretched, blind, miserable and
naked" in the Lord's estimation. They were spiritually
blind and needed Heaven's eye salve, the Spirit of revelation.
They thought earthly treasure was great riches, but of the
gold of faith, the coin of the heavenly kingdom, they possessed
little. To be spiritually naked, while outwardly clad in satin
is a terrible deception. The Lord told them to buy of Him
white raiment which speaks of spiritual garments.
It was this high estimate of their condition which caused
them to settle into a self-satisfied carnal sleep. They became
lukewarm which is to the Lord, a sickening condition. Many
who are busy with valid responsibilities are spiritually lukewarm
and lacking in godliness.
If we do not heed His warning to buy of Him "gold tried
in the fire," we too will be found of Him with only a
pile of good works. That which appears to be gold to us may
be only a stack of straw to be burned. Although straw and
gold are the same color, gold is purified through refining
fires, whereas straw is consumed.
In order to become His Bride, we must awake and overcome
lest we find ourselves to have fallen short of His calling.