Posted by Nathan Warner on

“You will be hated by all because of My name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved” (Matthew 10:22).

Traditionally, a bride takes the name of her husband when she marries him—she identifies with her husband’s identity, receives his name as her own name, and inherits his reputation and purpose in the world.  Her husband’s identity, in turn, was inherited from his father.  If his father was a butcher, he’d be a butcher and then his wife was to be a butcher’s wife, supporting his labor and sharing in his identity.  In the same way, if his father had been a king, he would become a king, and his wife would become a queen, supporting and sharing in the identity, purpose, and responsibility of his name.  This name brought her all the honor (or dishonor) that her husband’s father had accrued over time, as well as giving her access to all the resources and benefits that family with that name were entitled to. 

Husband and wife become joint heirs, because a wife intrinsically inherits her husband’s inheritance, which he receives from his father—she lives with him in the house of his inheritance, has the use of all its resources, and is in authority over its staff and servants.  If her husband’s inheritance is a good one, she prospers under it—if it is a bad one, she suffers.  Everywhere a wife went, she went clothed in her husband’s name, and everything she did, she did in her husband’s name. 

In like manner, Jesus’ identity is in His Father’s name: “the works that I do in My Father’s name, these testify of Me” (Jn. 10:25b).  And in like manner, the Church has taken the name of Jesus as her own name, for it was always God’s intention to take “from among the Gentiles a people for His name” (Acts 15:14b) - a people to whom Jesus said, “I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you” (Jn. 15:16b).  As part of this Bride, you once belonged to a wicked family, “but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor. 6:11b).  Like a bride leaving her father’s house for her husband, Jesus described the Church as “everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or farms for My name’s sake, [they] will receive many times as much, and will inherit eternal life” (Matt. 19:29).  

By taking His name as her own, the Church has also inherited His reputation and work in the world as His helpmate, “for God is not unjust so as to forget your work and the love which you have shown toward His name, in having ministered and in still ministering to the saints” (Heb. 6:10).  We cannot do His work for Him, but we are called to be His help-meet.  So like a devoted wife, “whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father” (Col. 3:17), Who “put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church” (Eph. 1:22).  As Christ’s wife, under His headship, the Church inherits all things with Him.

Before returning to His Father, Jesus exercised His loving and protective headship, praying over His Bride: “Holy Father, keep them in Your name, the name which You have given Me, that they may be one even as We are” (Jn. 17:11b), for “I have made Your name known to them, and will make it known, so that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them” (Jn. 17:26). 

As His Bride, may you live “so that the name of our Lord Jesus will be glorified in you, and you in Him” (2 Thess. 1:12).  Amen.

Tags: bride, father, husband, identity, inheritance, marriage, name, purpose, reputation, son, wife


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