Jesus the Bridegroom: The Greatest Love Story Ever Told Hardcover – March 11, 2014
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"This book will change you. It is an invitation to the Messiah's wedding feast--and a foretaste of heaven. It will change the way you experience the sacraments, personal prayer, Scripture study, and marriage. Most of all, it will deepen your love for Christ." -Scott Hahn, author of The Lamb's Supper and Signs of Life.
"Brant Pitre has a wonderful gift for blending insight, scholarship, and an elegant, appealing style. The result is an extraordinary encounter with Jesus Christ, the meaning of his mission, and the spousal nature of God's love for humanity and Christ's love for the Church." -Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Capp., Archbishop of Philadelphia
"Brant Pitre helps us to know Jesus not just as a Savior and lord, but as our divine bridegroom. This excellent book show how the theme of Christ the bridegroom is at the very heart of salvation history and how it can transform the way we view baptism, the Eucharist, marriage, and our own relationship with Christ. The profound Biblical insights and clear, engaging writing style will take you deeper into the divine love story found in Sacred Scripture." -Edward Sri, author of Walking with Mary
“With his customary combination of deep erudition and clarity of expression, Brant Pitre sheds light on a central theme of the New Testament: Jesus as the incarnation of the God who wants to marry his people. In the course of elaborating this motif, Pitre offers wonderfully fresh readings of the Wedding Feast of Cana, the Woman at the Well, the Last Supper, and the Crucifixion. His interpretation of the Passion as the consummation of the spousal relationship between Jesus and his people is simply stunning. This is a book that will appeal to both the scholar and the ordinary believer, indeed to anyone interested in understanding Jesus Christ more profoundly.” -Father Robert Barron, founder of Word on Fire and author of Catholicism
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Pitre endeavors to present Yahweh not only as the creator but as the One who desires to be “united to His creatures in an everlasting relationship that is so intimate, so permanent, so sacrificial, and so life-giving that it can only be described as a marriage between Creator and creatures, between God and human beings, between YHWH and Israel.” Pitre traces this idea beginning with the “divine wedding” covenant at Mount Sinai, through the spiritual adulteries of Israel and into the moment when John the Baptist describes himself as the “friend of the Bridegroom.” (Jn. 3:29) The Bridegroom is Jesus, the Incarnate One, who has come to win the redemption of His bride. Pitre works through the accounts of the wedding at Cana, the woman at the well, the last supper and the passion of Christ, showing the remarkable connections between them, the prophets and the Jewish traditions. (The observations on the wedding at Cana and the Samaritan woman are more than worth the price of the book.) The story finds its culmination in the marriage supper of the Lamb and a vision of the glorious bride of Christ.
Pitre’s Roman Catholicism is quite evident in some of his application but there is a wealth of insight here that any Protestant would be rewarded by and I found a great deal of the language not often used in Protestant literature to be refreshing. Roman Catholic thought is most evident in the chapter called “The Bridal Mysteries” in which the subjects of baptism, Eucharist, marriage and virginity are discussed. Even though there is much that I would disagree with Pitre on, I found an enhancement of my own views of baptism and the Lord’s Supper while the material on marriage and virginity were outstanding. Pitre’s illumination of marriage from Paul’s letters and the Jewish sources is very instructive and interprets the union in a remarkable way. As we face the current onslaught of support for gay marriage, there is much here that explains why that aberration is the complete antithesis of God’s design for marriage. Pitre doesn’t mention gay marriage but he so elevates the mystery of marriage (Eph. 5:32) that it insists only on the union of man and woman. Furthermore, and I say this with compassion and understanding the sacrifice involved, the section on virginity or “consecrated celibacy” is a positive and holy direction for those Christians who struggle with same sex attraction.
Pitre concludes the book with a meditation on the Samaritan women. He highlights Jesus, the bridegroom, waiting for this woman to ask her for a drink. Jesus “thirst” was a prelude to the moment in which he would offer her the gift of living water. This quote from the Catechism of the Catholic Church is, frankly, one of the most lovely things I have ever read:
“‘If you knew the gift of God!’ The wonder of prayer is revealed beside the well where we come seeking water: there, Christ comes to meet every human being. It is he who first seeks us and asks us for a drink. Jesus thirsts; his asking arises from the depths of God's desire for us. Whether we realize it or not, prayer is the encounter of God's thirst with ours. God thirsts that we may thirst for him.”
I know some of my more reformed friends will not be able to crawl out of their anti-catholic shells far enough to appreciate this but that would be their loss. The notion of prayer as an encounter between God’s thirst and ours? That is priceless.Jesus is ever at the well, wooing his bride and inviting us to partake of the living water he alone can offer.
Top international reviews
A must read for any follower of Jesus Christ.
O foco deste livro é enxergar Deus como o esposo de nossas almas, com um olhar das raízes judaicas.