The marks of a ready Church
It is always faith-lifting to view situations on earth through the lens of heaven. Looking at life only
from an earthly perspective allows doom and gloom to permeate the narrative. The story is often
different when our viewpoint from above. For instance, we can choose to see the church as a weak, compromised, and struggling entity, or we can see what the angels are seeing: a bride that has made herself ready for Christ, her Lord and lover (Revelation 19:7).
There will be a generation of believers who, through understanding and application, make
themselves ready for Christ. But what would this readiness look like? What, according to revelation
from God’s word, are the marks of a Church prepared for Christ? I propose this bird-eye view of five
realities that will characterise the ready Church.
In His heart-to-heart communion with the Father, Jesus prayed that the Church would become one
as He and the Father are one. Towards the end of this prayer, Jesus said, “Father, I desire that they
also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You
have given Me” (John 17:24). True unity will precede our eternal union with Christ, and there would
be a generation of believers who will be the answer to Christ’s deep longing.
Jesus is coming for a glorious church, not a church in shambles (Ephesians 5:27). We are meant to
be a people reflecting the glory of God through Christ. The full manifestation of this glory is
somewhat connected to our attaining unity and abiding in love (John 17: 20-23). There would be a
generation of believers that comprehends these by revelation and actualise them daily.
Jesus is also coming for a church without spots, wrinkles, or any kind of blemish (Ephesians 5:27).
Holiness will not be a struggle; rather, it will flow out of the depths of a blood-bought, covenant
relationship with Christ. Surely, there will be a generation of believers who keep themselves pure for
Jesus is not coming for an idle church. We are not meant to passively wait for the Lord to rescue us
from this life of sin. Instead, the church that is ready will be fully engaged with ministry in its
manifold expressions. Serving the Lord and doing His bidding will be second nature, the reason for
the church’s existence. There will be a generation of believers that is functioning fully in the grace of
God for good works.
Jesus is coming for a church that is actively and decisively subduing the enemies of Christ under His
feet (Psalm 110:1-2). He wants us to occupy until He comes, be the light and salt in the world, and
take the gospel of the kingdom to the ends of the earth. There will be a generation of believers that
are advancing until He comes.
Love & submission
The cord that binds all these traits together as one is the twin cord of love and submission – love for God manifesting as submission to one another. None of these traits would be sacrificed for the other. They will all be present and effective within us. Yes, there will be a generation of believers that is ready for the wedding of Christ. Could that be our generation? I declare by faith: the bride is ready!