(The following is a guest post by Kyle Barton from his blog lifeandbuilding.com. You can view his original post here – The Divine Romance – a Diagram)

Christians often talk about God’s love. For themselves, for humanity, for the whole world. However, God’s love can be misapprehended and misapplied. Rob Bell’s latest book, Love Wins demonstrates this. We know that God is love, but in just what way does He love?

God expresses His love as Creator, Father, Master, and even Husband.

God’s fundamental concept of Himself in the creation of man was that of Husband. Since God is love in His nature and since spousal love is the basis of creation, when the Bible was inspired by the Spirit, this facet came through in the text. It’s possible then to trace a line of revelation throughout the entire Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, concerning the divine romancebetween God and man.

God is amorously interested in man.

For your Maker is your Husband… –Isaiah 54:5

This is not something merely read into the text by someone with an agenda. It is a progressive, consistent, and definite revelation throbbing within the heart of the Bible.

At times it is explicit, at times it is veiled in types, but it’s there. Even during the darkest hours of sin and rebellion among the children of Israel, God unwaveringly views Himself as their Husband. Hosea probably touches the depths of this poignancy by revealing God as a betrayed yet unrelenting lover.

One of my favorites is:

For as a young man marries a virgin, Your sons will marry you; and with the joy of the bridegroom over the bride Your God will rejoice over you. –Isaiah 62:5

In all four Gospels, Jesus referred to Himself as a bridegroom. In the epistles, Paul viewed his ministry as a betrothing ministry. In Revelation, the announcement is made that Christ’s wife has made herself ready, and then the whole thing ends in a marriage.

To help track this divine romance throughout the Bible, I made the diagram above. It is obviously not an exhaustive list, but it does bring out some of the best and most explicit verses on this line. Download it, look up the verses, and share it with others!

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