When thinking of the term “virgin”, you immediately think about the literal meaning of what it means to be a virgin, which is abstinence. While abstinence is the correct definition of this term, there is a broader definition of the term virgin—to be not yet touched, untainted, and flawless; it can also mean a kind of purity and simplicity, which has not been exploited in any way.
2 Corinthians is a book in the Holy Bible in which Paul illustrates what a person that lives and walks in the Spirit should look like and how they should conduct themselves. He uses a number of metaphors to describe such a person, one of which is “a pure virgin” (2 Cor. 11:2). This metaphor implies a relationship with Christ which is untainted, flawless, and simple. Hearing this, the first thought that would come to mind is: how do I have a simple relationship with Christ? How can I be a pure virgin to Christ?
Knowing what it means to have a pure and simple relationship with Christ is acknowledging and understanding that Christ is your Husband, which was the topic for the Irvine Christian Student’s Sunday Fellowship on November 18, 2018.
Christ is referred to by numerous titles in the Bible; He is our King of Kings and our Lord of Lords, our Advocate and Counselor, among many others. Furthermore, He is also referred to as our Husband. We see this referenced in Isaiah 54:5, where it says,
“For your Maker is your Husband; Jehovah of hosts is His name…”
This is also referred to in the New Testament where it says in Revelation 19:7 that “the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife [the believers as His corporate Bride] has made herself ready.” Hence we see that Christ is referred to as our Husband both in the Old and New Testament, and there are many other verses not listed here which state this same truth.
Why would God want to be our husband in the first place? In Genesis, God made man in the likeness of His image, and he saw that this was good because man was a pure image of his essence. But, what was not good was that man was alone, and he needed a counterpart (Gen. 2:18). Since man, when first created, was a pure representation of God Himself, man’s need for a counterpart was actually a reflection of God’s own desire and need for a counterpart. Therefore, the Bible, as the speaker ministered in the message, is really a love story between God and man, with God in Christ as the Husband seeking a relationship with man as His counterpart.
When examining the relationship between a husband and wife, we realize that the love between them should be pure and simple; it can also be hard to explain because it is such an innate feeling. However, society, the complexities of life, and our own flesh can bring strife into a marriage that is based on pure love. Such is the same in our relationship with Christ. When we first received Him into our hearts, we immediately made a connection with Him that could not be fully described because it was simply pure love, but as the years go on, external influences and the molding of our personality according to them will inevitably create complexity in our relationship with Christ. Life becomes confusing, and as a result our relationship with the Lord may be compromised. The speaker compared this complexity to the scenario of a man and a woman at the altar about to be married, and someone comes and asks the wife-to-be if she was sure, right in the middle of the wedding. Paul in 2 Corinthians 11:2-3 states:
“For I am jealous over you with a jealousy of God; for I betrothed you to one husband to present you as a pure virgin to Christ. But I fear lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your thoughts would be corrupted from the simplicity and the purity toward Christ.”
Paul shows that what once was a simple relationship Eve had with God soon became complex when she ate of the forbidden fruit. The enemy will similarly try to use different areas of our lives, even something as small as a busy school schedule, to pull us farther from the Lord. The speaker also said that just as someone would escort the interloper away from the marriage altar in the wedding previously described, we must escort the enemy out of our lives and away from our relationship with the Lord.
As people, we naturally think too much, myself included at times. We are constantly trying to reason everything. I am guilty of always trying to find a way to strike a balance between the human affairs of my life versus the spiritual areas of my life. Excuses come up such as: Oh, I can’t pray right now because I can’t pray as long as I usually do. I am just really busy right now. God wants to be fully integrated in our lives, not just at certain times or in certain contexts. We should pray all throughout the day and invite the Lord into our space, even when we are doing homework or hanging out with friends.
Just as a man in love with His wife wants to know everything about her, God wants to have a loving relationship with us in which we as His wife are in love with Him and He is in love with us. We need to only be pure and simple in our love for Jesus, and guard against the complexities that creep in to defile the virgin aspect of this love. Our love for Him should be flawless.