God’s Wife?

Throughout the Old Testament, God uses the marriage relationship as a metaphor for his relationship with the people of Israel. God uses metaphors for the sake of communicating with us. Since he is in the spirit realm, we would not be able to grasp everything. But when he uses imagery from our physical realm, we get “closer” to grasp what he wanted to communicate.

So when God uses the imagery of the marriage relationship to describe his relationship with his people, that communicates to us. But when metaphors are used, not all details will apply. Only what the speaker wishes to highlight.

Here, God wants to highlight the depth of the relationship that he desires. “I remember the devotion of your youth, your love as a bride, how you followed me in the wilderness, in a land not sown. Israel was holy to the lord, the first fruits of his harvest (Jer 2:2b-3a).

The devotion and love that God desires from his people are like that of a bride to her husband. From his end, God has promised the unending, covenant love of a husband. The uniqueness is that God is perfect and unfailing.

One of the greatest hindrances to this is religiosity. The ecclesiastical focus can become so prominent that the personal love relationship with Jesus can be pushed aside as trivial. The cerebral and institutional can rise to such a high level of importance that Jesus is just another person in your life.

In Jeremiah 2, God is calling his people back to their first love. In the wilderness, where they had none else, God was supreme. But after being established safely in the promised land, everything changed.

He wants you back. He wants me back. Separated for him and only for him. Holy to the Lord. For him, and only for him.
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