Baptist John’s Joy as the Friend of the Bridegroom in the Wedding

Posted by admin on 20 November 2022 in 2 Corinthians, John, Matthew |

John 3:29

29 The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete.

I. The bride belongs to the bridegroom (29a)

See v29a.

The bride belongs to the bridegroom.

Here, the bride represents the church and the bridegroom Christ. The church belongs to Christ (29a).

II. The joy of the bridegroom’s friend (29b-29c)

See v29b.

The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice.

The friend who attends the bridegroom represents Baptist John, the forerunner of the Messiah (29b).

At that time, the bridegroom normally selected one or two close friends to escort the bride to the bridegroom’s marriage chamber. John gladly accepted his role as a friend of the bridegroom, just as he had earlier willingly turned over his disciples to Jesus in John 1:35-37. [1]

This role was also played by the Apostles. See 2 Corinthians 11:2.

I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him.

The friend waits and listens for the voicing of the bridegroom’s happiness and joy [2]. As the friend, he rejoices greatly when he hears the bridegroom (29b).

Baptist John was waiting for the lamb of God, Jesus to appear (Matthew 3:13-17, John 1:29-34, John 1:36) and people flocking around him (John 1:37, John 3:26-30).

Baptist John heard the news about Christ in John 3:26.

‘Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan—the one you testified about—look, he is baptising, and everyone is going to him.’

Baptist John showed neither rivalry nor envy but was filled with the joy of the bridegroom’s friend.

He said in 29c, “This is my joy. It is now complete”. New American Standard Bible (NASB) translates, “So, this joy of mine has been made full”.

References

[1] Gerald L. Borchert, John 1–11, vol. 25A, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1996), 191–192.

[2] R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of St. John’s Gospel (Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Publishing House, 1961), 285.

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