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Who is the Bride?

The Greek word numphe translated as "bride" is found in the following scriptures:

  • Matthew 10:35,
  • Luke 12:53,
  • John 3:29,
  • Revelation 18:23, 21:2 and 9, 22:17.

None of these occurrences read "the Bride of Christ" - nor are any of these in the church epistles.

"Bride" and references to a bride were sometimes figuratively used to refer to those who belong to the Lord Jesus Christ as a bride belongs to the bridegroom (refer to Matthew 9:15; John 14:1-3) - they are not completely together yet but they belong to each other and they will live together. This figure was used to help those during Jesus' ministry, prior to his death and resurrection, to understand his relationship with them at that time before they would be completely together.

This is similar to the illustration or figure of a husband and wife that is used to help us understand the relationship between the Lord Jesus Christ and those who are with him now (holy-people/Christians; refer to Ephesians 5:21-33) because we have the spirit of Christ in us (refer to Colossians 1:27).

"Bride" is also used to refer to the new Jerusalem which will be paradise on earth and to the group of people who will live there - including all holy-people (Christians), plus all who will be resurrected to eternal life from among Israel and the Gentiles (refer to Revelation chapters 20-22).