Of all the various ways that the Bible describes salvation, the warmest, most beautiful, and most personal illustration that God uses for His wonderful salvation is that of Marriage – to be specific, The Marriage Covenant, and to be even more specific, The Traditional Jewish Betrothal-and-Marriage Covenant and the various procedures surrounding it.
This is the very imagery behind John 14:1-3, “Let not your heart be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. In my father’s house are many dwellings; and, if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And, if I go and prepare a place for you, I am coming again and will receive you to myself, so that where I am you also may be.” A Jewish bridegroom would “go to prepare a place” for his betrothed bride with the promise, “I am coming again and will receive you to myself…” This last expression of receiving pictures the bridegroom at the end of the betrothal period surprising his bride, as he comes for her for the beginning of the wedding feast.
Many things in marriage help a believer to better understand the relationship to Jesus Christ that he or she has in salvation. On the other hand, many things in salvation help a believer to understand marriage better. Salvation is a relationship to God through Jesus Christ, a close relationship. Marriage helps us to see what a “relationship” is all about and to understand how to be “other-centered” instead of self-centered in a relationship. Commitment is the whole basis of salvation and of marriage. Both involve promises on both sides, and such promises are to be kept no matter what the future may hold. A promise is a promise. The more one studies and discovers the details of marriage, especially in its early Hebrew setting, the more one will find how wonderful and glorious salvation really is.