THE MYSTERY OF A JEWISH WEDDING
In the beginning the mystery of your existance already was.
This is the story about the beauty of the wedding between the Khatan and the Kalah, the bridegroom and the bride.
In Israel, in the days of the Messiah, Yeshua, a hebrew girl and a hebrew boy would grow up, seperately, in seperate houses. Often they would not know from each other, until the time of their meeting. When the two now come of age the preparation for marriage begins. The hebrew bridegroom has to leave his house and journey to the house of the bride, to her father’s house. And there he has to visit her, no matter where and no matter how the house would look like ! And there, in her house, he would pledge his love to her. There he must offer her a costly gift, the Mohar. It has to be costly, for it is a sign of his love for her. the Bridal Price.
The Khatan and the Kalah
And then he asks her to be his wife and then she has to choose. Often he is a stranger, she hardly ever saw him before. To say “yes” is to leave everything she has known, to embrace something she has never seen, to leave her family and friends and her house, to go to somewhere she has never been. If she says “yes” the Mohar is given and she is set free of the bounds of her house. The two are pledged to each other. They share a cup of wine together and a blessing is said. She is now the Kalah, the bride, and he is now the Khatan, the bridegroom.
The first visit
The two are deemed married, but only by their pledge. When the covenant is sealed, the Khatan, the bridegroom bits his bride farewell and he leaves her. The first visit is over and it’s called the Kiddushin.
The bridegroom then returns to his house and thus begins the great separation. The two reside in separate places for about a year. The groom spends his time preparing a home for the bride. There was a law in Israel, that the house of the bridegroom has to be at least as good as the house that she came from.
The preparation of the Bride
The bride spends her time of the separation preparing herself for the groom. Everything looks the same for her. She is still the daughter in her father’s house, but she is no longer of it anymore. She is now the Kalah, she is pledged. Everything is changed for her, it looks the same, but she is pledged. Her room in her house looks the same, but she is in a covenant and she is “his”!
Now her house becomes a bridal chamber just to prepare her for that day. She has to consecrate herself and keep herself pure and give herself to no one else. She spends her time learning how to say goodbye to everything she has known. Letting go of the “old house” and all it’s luxuries and burdens, distractions, temptations, it’s claims, everything . And suddenly it doesn’t matter what her room looks like anymore, because she is in love with him, she has got him ! She has one purpose, not to get wrapped up in her house anymore, but to prepare to be his companion and to become beautiful ! She is his beloved, but she doesn’t see him.
During the time of their betrothal, the bridegroom sends a gift for his bride. It’s called the Mathan. It’s not the price he paid, it’s a gift of love to encourage her, to beautify her, to assure her and to express his love for her.
The Khatan now is finished to prepare the house for the Kalah
The days of the preparation come to an end. The khatan is finished preparing the house for the bride. He now dresses up in his royal clothes, like a king with a garment on his head, with fine linen, and surrounded by his men. It’s the day of the Katonah, the wedding day. It’s the manifestation what they pledged in secret, now it is coming into the open. The bridegroom and his men begin a great journey procession from the house of the bridegroom to the house of the bride. It is his second visit, his second coming. The first he was dressed in everyday clothes, now he will come as a king. The first time everything was going on as if in secret, now everything stops and the whole village turns.
They behold the bridegroom coming with his men, in the streets at night time. The groom and his men come with torches held high and singing songs of love and praise to God, through the open roads and the villages.
Behold the Bridegroom !
The bride is meanwhile readying herself, with her maidens beading in water, being anointed with olive oil, perfumed and seized with costly jewelry and royal linen garments, her head made ready as a queen. She was one’s just the daughter, now she is the kalah! The bride. Her maidens keep watch for the first sign of the khatan. Some are standing outside with their lamps lit … waiting ! When they see the first torches of the bridegroom procession, they cry out loud: behold the bridegroom !
The second visit
The khatan with his men near the house of the bride. The house is waiting, lit up with radiance and great expectation. The khatan with his men stand outside the house waiting for the appearance of the bride. And the kalah appears to the door, nervous but she is excited. She has walked through the door a thousand times as a little girl, but now, as she walks through, it is the last time she’ll ever walk through. Her maidens usher her out and they bring her to the groom. The two stand there looking at each other, while everyone is watching, a king and a queen, her face is veiled.
Remove your veil…
And then he says to her: remove your veil. And nervously she removes her veil and they stand there face to face. And then she puts it up again. The two of them are lifted up on a sedan chair by their friends, they lift them up with great rejoicing and the great procession begins with partying from the house of the bride to the house of the groom. With torch light and great company, as is written: The voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride are heard in the land, with music and songs of rejoicing to the streets of the village, the road. She looks back at her home, sees it fading away, becoming smaller and smaller, knowing that it will never be her home again. Waiting for the sight of the house she has never seen. The house she never dwelt in.
Lit up, new and ready, adorned waiting…
And then she sees it, lit up, new and ready, adorned waiting for her and there inside the house and waiting outside the house are his family and friends, waiting to meet her singing: baruch kalah, baruch chatan, “Welcome bride, welcome bridegroom” ! They are lowered down and they walk to the entrance and the bridegroom takes his bride to the threshold while the people are showering them with blessings and flowers. She enters the house of her bridegroom, prepared for her. she has never seen it before. This is what she thought of, dreamed of in her own room. But now she sees it ! Now it will be her home.
They go inside, where a great celebration is, a great festival which will last for 7 days. And in the house is prepared for them a canopy, the Chupah. It’s a symbol of a joining, of the kalah and the chatan under the bridegroom covering. When she comes under it, everything that is his, has become hers.
The two sit there as king and queen, just sitting in each other’s presence, while all around there is a celebration. The two lift up a cup of wine, a symbol of their oneness. The first since the day they pledged themselves to each other in secret.
And during the 7 days of celebration, the two of them slip away into the bridegroom chamber. And there in the chamber the two bear themselves to each other, the: Two become one ! The mystery of the Khatan and the Kalah, the bridegroom and the bride.
And now the meaning !
For all existence of life there is a Divine Love Story.
The existence is coming into being for the sake of a wedding.
The mystery begins with the Khatan. The bridegroom of all bridegrooms ! Everything else is just a shadow. The Khatan- olam is The Bridegroom of existence ! The One who is from the very beginning and for whom all else is made. And as from the man his rib came the woman, so from His side comes the universe ! He is the source of all love, the One who alone can fill life and without whom everything else is empty. And without whose love all else is wanting and nothing makes sense.
Who is this Khatan !
The Khatan is the eternal. The Khatan is God. He is the Almighty, He is the King of the universe, but He is first The Khatan, the Bridegroom. And the mystery of The Khatan, in Hebrew the word khatan comes from a word that means: One who longs to join Himself in love ! Who is God, He is not cold or distant. He is the one who longs to join Himself in love to His Beloved.
Who then is The kalah ?
And what about the other part of the mystery ? Who then is The kalah ? Who is the Bride ? The Bride is right here. You can’t see The Khatan, but you can see The Kalah. The voice of the Bridegroom calls to the heart of the Bride right now and says: You are My Kalah ! Each one of you, whether man or woman, jew, gentile, old, young, holy or struggling. You came into existence for one reason only, to be My Kalah. And everything else, everything else is second to that. And everything in your being longs for that, if you know it or not. And that’s why you search to be married, that’s why your searching goes out after things you can marry your soul to. To have success, to security, to ministry, to a million things, because you were meant to be married but to Me alone. And that’s why nothing else can fill you because you are The Kalah, My Kalah.
He Who sees in secret
And so your deepest part in your life longs to be one with Me. You are My Kalah, says your bridegroom and I’ve known you before your existence. I called you into existence, says the Lord. I know your heart, I know your fears, I know your weaknesses and your mistakes before you make them. I know your secrets and I know what you try to hide. And yet, I still love you. For you exist to be My Kalah. For I am the Bridegroom of your soul.
Two different houses, the eternal and the temperal
And so there is the Bridegroom and there is the Bride. And the mystery begins with both each dwelling in a separate house. So you grow up in a separate house from His. You grow up not knowing Him, not seeing Him. But longing for something more. Oh, you know there is something more. There is something or someone and you feel empty without Him and that is good, because it shows you’re His Kalah. You are empty without Him. And when He is not first in your heart, you’re empty. That’s good, because it is a Love Story. In two different houses; the eternal and the temperal. The Bride in the temperal and the Groom in the eternal.
The Bridegroom made His journey
According to the mystery, there can be no marriage until the Khatan makes the journey. Until the Khatan journey’s from His house, to the house of the Bride. And therefore according to the ancient mystery, two thousand years ago, the Khatan made His journey. Not across the villages or towns, but across eternity. God came to earth, the Khatan of existence came into our existence. The Bridegroom made the journey into the realm of time and space. He came to our house, a world build with imperfection and brokenness, because it was your house. He came as the hebrew groom came without great fanfare and while everyday life was going on, He came quietly. He must come that way first, for the Bride must love Him not for His riches, but for Him and His love alone.
It didn’t matter what kind of house she was in. It didn’t matter if it was a mud hut or a mansion, the Khatan would come. He came to the house of Israel and to the house of the Bride and so the same way, the Groom has made His visit to you. Each of you. You in your dwelling place, seperate. And then one day you hear a knock on the door, it was the Khatan.
He still knocks, I am right here !
And even now He comes, because that is His nature. Even you who have known Him, He still knocks and He still stands at the house and the voice of the Bridegroom calls the Bride and says now: I am not far from you, I am right here. I am closer to anything or anyone else. Even to the person next to you, I am closer. You could never journey to Me, but I have come to you. I have come to your house. It doesn’t matter how far away your house has been. It doesn’t matter, there is no distance with love. It doesn’t matter what your house is like, even now what it is like. No matter how dark, or poor, or cold, or cut off from Me it’s been. It doesn’t matter still I come and still I knock.
Open the door, My Beloved !
And now I knock at the door of your life and your heart and still you have yet to truly let Me in. And let Me in, open the door My Beloved, says the Groom. Open the door, to your heart, open the door to your hurts and your tears and your wounds and your scars and your loneliness and your fears and your guilds and your regrets and your unforgiveness, let Me come in and let Me touch it. You got to open the door and let Me in with no reservation and that’s the only way you can be healed. That’s the only way you can be filled. Because that’s why you exist; for Me to come in.
Now, let Me carry it
And so the virgin opens the door and the Khatan comes into her house. And He doesn’t judge her for her house, because He doesn’t care about that, He has come for her. So the Khatan comes into your house and He says: I have come in, I have come into your secret places. And there is nothing that separates us. Your burdens are My burdens. Your tears are My tears. Your weakness is My weakness. Your sins are My sins and your troubles are My troubles now. And your life is My life and you never have to go through any trial or any burden or any temptation, any hardship alone anymore. For you will never be alone again, but you must share all you carry and let Me carry it.
To be continued …