“And I looked, and lo a Lamb stood on Mount Zion and with Him an hundred and forty and four thousand having His Father’s name written in their foreheads”…“These are they which were not DEFILED WITH WOMEN; for they are virgins….”
4 These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb,” Rev. 14:1-5.
“FOR THY MAKER IS THINE HUSBAND; the Lord of host is His name and thy Redeemer the Holy one of Israel, the God of the whole earth shall He be called, Isa. 54:4-5.
Our first love is when we are determined to please our husband, the Christ of God.
Now in relation to that of Israel, please see Hos. 2:15+; Ezek. 16:8. It was this union of Israel with God – her husband – that brought her out of Egypt.
“I am the Lord thy God, which brought thee out of the Land of Egypt…,” Ps. 81:10.
So you find that our true love for God will separate us from the entanglement of this present evil world, counting them as dung, as did Paul when the son was revealed to him (Phil. 3:8; Gal. 1:15-16).
WHY THE DESERT?
Thank God, for the right place for man and God to have a honeymoon is the desert, because there she may be totally separated from all that will distract as far as the busy world is concerned. So all of our desert experiences wherein we totally have to rely on God, our lover/husband for food, water and clothing (Matt. 6:8, 31-32) is a preparation towards a better heavenly consciousness.
It is a realm wherein we are stripped of self and ego, of all that is man, so that He alone will reign supreme. That we may not be independent but dependent on Him in all situations, as our sufficiency is of God (2Cor. 3:5, 9:8).
This dependence brings us to our true citizenship in heaven (Phil. 3:20), for he that is in Christ is a new – redeemed – creature (2Cor. 5:17) from among men whom the whore is sitting upon (Rev. 17:1, 15).
THE BENEFITS AS WE RETURN TO OUR FIRST LOVE
The book of Hosea, chapter 2 is actually about God talking of her unfaithful lover, Israel, but desiring to bring her back to Himself with repeated corrections; eventually He succeeded. Then having tested her repentance, He welcomes her with all the fervour of His first love and showers gifts on her.
“…I mean to make her pay for all the days when she burnt offerings to the Baals and decked herself with rings and necklaces to court her lovers, forgetting me …”
(is this not what we do? Do we not dress and pattern our programs to entice and suit the desires of men? Do we not still have the concept of ‘notice me or I die’ right in the church system? Sure we do! That is why there is competition of what to buy or wear and even how to speak in the pulpit without really being ourselves.)
“ …That is why I am going to block her way with thorns and walk her in so that she cannot find her way. She will chase after her lovers and never catch up with them…“
(Are we surprised then that no matter how we will try to get even and to be accepted by them, it is not yielding fruits, why? Because God has blocked our ways. And mind you, no amount of prayer can solve this, except a return to your God as your first love.)
“ …Then she will say; I will go back to my first husband, I was happier then than I am today. That is why I am going to have her and lead her out into the wilderness and to speak to her heart …”
(separation into the wilderness will make the children of Israel to forsake and forget their gods and so they can hear clearly from God. Even so until we are separated unto God, we cannot hear distinctly from him).
“…There she will respond to me as she did when she was young, as she did when she came out of the land of Egypt… when that day comes – she will call me ‘my husband;’ no longer will she call me, ‘my Baal’ …’ (Hos. 2:1-18) JB.
This is what taking the name of the Lord means. “…I will write upon him the name of my God…,” Rev. 3:21.
In other words, we are becoming united again, with our true nature – husband – after we have gone a whoring (prostituting) with the nature of Adam’ in the lust of the flesh – the world.
To love the name of the ‘city of God’ is to become the bride of Christ. Therein, our needs are truly met, both spiritually, physically and materially, even as all realms of creation are made to be at peace with us, breaking all powers on our behalf (Prov. 16:7; Hos. 2:20+).
Thereafter He bestows on us His tender love with gifts as of one who is first married to her husband (Ps. 136: 1 +; Jer. 3l:3; Gen. 24:53, 34:12).
“I will betroth you to myself forever, betroth you with integrity and justice, with tenderness and love” (v. 19-21).
The picture at hand is graphically displayed before us in the case of the return of the prodigal son, to whom the father had to restore all things (Luke 15:11+). Compare Ps. 45:14-15, Dt. 23:1+.
To be continued…