The Wedding Quiz Answers
I.) Why do ushers seat the families and friends of the bride and groom on opposite sides of the auditorium?
This provides a covenant setting. Marriage is established by God as a covenant; not a contract ". . . she is thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant." (Malachi 2:14). (See also Proverbs 2:16-17).
16 To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words;
17 Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her God.
The Hebrew word for covenant is beriyth. Strongs Concordance defines it, "In the sense of cutting; a compact made by passing between pieces of flesh."
Definition: A compact is a signed written agreement that binds you to do what you've promised.
This word is pictured in Gods' covenant with Abraham. Before the covenant was made, Abraham, according to Gods' instruction, took selected sacrifices " . . . and divided them in the midst . . . And it came to pass, that, when the sun went down, and it was dark, behold a smoking furnace, and a burning lamp that passed between those pieces. In the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram . . ." (Gen 15:10, 17:18).
When God brought the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt, He established a covenant with them in which the people were to pass between the pieces of a calf. (See Jeremiah 34:13, 28).
Seating families and friends on each side of the auditorium symbolizes the sacrifices which they have made in order for the bride and groom to enter into this covenant.
II.) What is the significance of a white runner in the aisle?
It is the symbol of walking on holy ground. A covenant is not made merely between two people and their witnesses. It is made in the presence of God, and He is actively involved in the agreement, since it is God that joins them together. (Matthew 19:6).
6 Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
When Moses was in the presence of God, he was told to respect that presence with the command, ". . . And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. (Exodus 3:5).
III.) Why are the parents of the couple given special seating?
The parents of the bride and groom are part of the marriage covenant. The commitments they make during the ceremony are just as binding as the vows of the couple.
The final responsibility of parents for their sons and daughters is to determine with them Gods' will for a life partner. Thereafter, they serve in a chain of counsel for them and their children. Thus, the parents enter in the line of authority, and they leave in the line of counsel.
"Hearken unto they father that begat thee, and despise not thy mother when she is old" (Proverbs 23.22).
IV.) Why does the groom enter the auditorium before the bride?
By entering first, the groom signifies that he is the covenant initiator. This is important because whoever initiates the covenant assumes greater responsibility for seeing it fulfilled.
God initiated covenants with Noah, Abraham, and David. God also initiated the covenant of salvation with us through His Lamb, Jesus Christ. God is still at work to fulfill His covenants, and Christ will soon appear with the sound of trumpets to consummate the wedding with His bride, the Church. (See I Thessalonians 4: 14 - 17).
I Thessalonians 4: 14 - 17
14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord
Based on this, the following would be appropriate:
TO THE GROOM (before bride arrives)
As you come before these witnesses, are you signifying that are taking the initiative in this marriage covenant, and that you will, by the example of our Lord Jesus Christ, assume the greater responsibility in carrying out its terms?
V.) Why does the father of the bride walk with the bride down the aisle?
This action has a two-fold significance. The father is saying to the bride, "I am endorsing this young man as Gods' very best choice of a husband for you, and I am now bringing you to him."
At the same time the father is saying to he young man, "I am presenting to you a daughter whom I have earnestly endeavored to train up as a pure bride." In Scripture, the father is responsible for the purity of the daughter before marriage. See Deuteronomy 22:13 - 21).
13 If any man take a wife, and go in unto her, and hate her,
14 And give occasions of speech against her, and bring up an evil name upon her, and say, I took this woman, and when I came to her, I found her not a maid:
15 Then shall the father of the damsel, and her mother, take and bring forth the tokens of the damsel's virginity unto the elders of the city in the gate:
16 And the damsel's father shall say unto the elders, I gave my daughter unto this man to wife, and he hateth her;
17 And, lo, he hath given occasions of speech against her, saying, I found not thy daughter a maid; and yet these are the tokens of my daughter's virginity. And they shall spread the cloth before the elders of the city.
18 And the elders of that city shall take that man and chastise him;
19 And they shall amerce him in an hundred shekels of silver, and give them unto the father of the damsel, because he hath brought up an evil name upon a virgin of Israel: and she shall be his wife; he may not put her away all his days.
20 But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel:
21 Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father's house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father's house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you.
Paul illustrates this responsibility in his preparation of the bride of Christ. "For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin in Christ" (II Corinthians 11:2).
VI.) What is the real significance of the wedding dress?
The white wedding gown symbolizes the purity of heart and life for which the husband is responsible in the life of his wife. During the marriage, he is to cleanse her by the Word of God, just as Christ purifies the believers by the Word.
"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing but that it should be holy and without blemish. So ought men to love their wives . . ." (Ephesians 5:25 - 28).
VII.) Why does the minister ask the question, "Who gives this woman to be married to this man?"
This answer and response symbolizes not only the full blessing of the parents, but also the transfer of responsibility to the groom by the father. A daughter is under the authority and responsibility of he father until she is married. (See Numbers 30:4 - 8). It is, therefore, the father who transfers this responsibility to the groom. "So then, he that giveth her in marriage doeth well . . ." I Corinthians 7:38.
Because of this, the question should be expanded.
TO THE FATHER
By walking down the aisle with your daughter, are you and your wife affirming that you are giving your full blessing to this marriage of this daughter with this man?
(Response by the father)
Are you hereby transferring your God given responsibility for the care of your daughter to this man?
(Response by the father)
VIII.) Why do the bride and groom take each others' right hand during the wedding vows?
The open right hand offered by each party symbolizes their strength, resources, and purpose. By clasping each others' right hand, they are pledging these to each other. Just as we depend upon the "saving strength of Gods' right hand," so each partner can depend upon all the resources that the other brings to the covenant relationship. (See Psalms 20:6).
6 Now know I that the LORD saveth his anointed; he will hear him from his holy heaven with the saving strength of his right hand.
The handshake goes far beyond sealing a contract. It symbolizes the cleaving together of lives which is to be accomplished in the marriage covenant. (See Genesis 2:24).
Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
IX.) Why does the minister address the bridegroom first in the wedding vows?
He must be the leader and assume the greater responsibility to fulfill the marriage covenant. As covenant initiator, he must commit himself to the purposes of marriage which God established in the beginning. These must be reflected in his vows.
See: SIX PURPOSES OF MARRIAGE
X.) What is the real significance of the wedding ring?
It transfers symbol of authority, strength and protection. There is difficulty in saying that it represents eternal love since, the marriage covenant ends at death and since there are no marriages in heaven. (See Romans 7:1 - 3, Matthew 22:30).
Romans 7:1 - 3
1 What advantage then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision?
2 Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God.
3 For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect?
30 For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven.
In Scripture the ring is a symbol of authority and the resources that go with it. (Esther 8:2).
And the king took off his ring, which he had taken from Haman, and gave it unto Mordecai. And Esther set Mordecai over the house of Haman.
In a covenant relationship, the ring symbolizes identification. The belt has also been used in scripture as the token of a covenant. (See I Samuel 18:1 - 4). The belt represented the initiators' strength and pledge of protection.
I Samuel 18:1 - 4
1 And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.
2 And Saul took him that day, and would let him go no more home to his father's house.
3 Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.
4 And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.
When God made a covenant with Noah, He put a symbol in the sky - a rainbow. When viewed from the sky, the rainbow is a circle. It was to be a continual reminder to God of the covenant that He had made. (See Genesis 9:8 - 17).
Genesis 9:8 - 17
8 And God spake unto Noah, and to his sons with him, saying,
9 And I, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you;
10 And with every living creature that is with you, of the fowl, of the cattle, and of every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the ark, to every beast of the earth.
11 And I will establish my covenant with you; neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.
12 And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations:
13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth.
14 And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud:
15 And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.
16 And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth.
17 And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.
XI.) What is the special meaning of the veil which the bride wears?
The veil represents modesty and respect. It symbolized the sanctity and the exclusiveness of the marriage covenant. It reminds the couple and the witnesses that the physical relationship is only to be entered into after the vows are completed.
There is further significance in the veil as it relates to salvation. When Christ fulfilled the conditions of His covenant for our redemption, the veil in the temple was taken away. (See Matthew 27:50 - 51).
Matthew 27:50 - 51
50 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.
51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;
Similarly, when a nonbeliever receives Jesus Christ as his Saviour, the veil between him and Christ is removed. (See II Corinthians 3:14).
II Corinthians 3:14
14 But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which vail is done away in Christ.
XII.) Why does the minister say "I now pronounce you husband and wife?"
The pronouncement of the husband and wife establishes a definite point in time for the beginning of the marriage. These words are to remove any future doubt in the minds of the couple and the witnesses about the validity of the marriage.
The establishing of a point in time is also important in salvation. When we confess with our mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in our heart the message once delivered to the saints, that God raised Him from the dead, we are united with Christ in salvation through baptism in His name. (See Romans 10:9-13).
9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. The largest part of belief is believing enough to follow His plan of Salvation.
Public baptism and the enfilling of the Holy Ghost through authority of His Word then give the official pronouncement that we are indeed, saved. "But as many as received Him, to them He gave power to become sons of God, even to them that believe on His Name. (See John 1:12).
In the days of the birth of the church, is was quite an ordeal one went through when they believed the message . . . They had to shun the beliefs held by the common Jew that Jesus was not the Messiah. All were ostracized . . . many were tortured and died for this wondrous message of Jesus Name Salvation!
XIII.) What is the purpose of officially introducing the couple to the wedding guests?
The introduction of the new couple establishes their names. In the marriage, the wife takes on the name of the husband and the man becomes known as the husband of the wife. This name change is clearly illustrated in th covenant between Jehovah God and Abram. (See Genesis 17:4 - 5); the early church and baptism in His Name. (See Acts 4:12, 19:5,
Genesis 17:4 - 5
4 As for me, behold, my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations.
5 Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee.
God combined Abrahams' name with the promise represented in His Name to form the new name Abraham. He is now known as "the father of multitudes," and Jehovah is known as "the God of Abraham."
XIV.) Why does the couple sign wedding papers?
The couple signs the wedding papers to establish a public document. It is a continuing public record of the covenant. God wrote out the testimony of His covenant in Scripture. When Laban made a covenant with Jacob a heap of stones became a witness. (See Genesis 31:43 - 55).
Genesis 31:43 - 55
43 And Laban answered and said unto Jacob, These daughters are my daughters, and these children are my children, and these cattle are my cattle, and all that thou seest is mine: and what can I do this day unto these my daughters, or unto their children which they have born?
44 Now therefore come thou, let us make a covenant, I and thou; and let it be for a witness between me and thee.
45 And Jacob took a stone, and set it up for a pillar.
46 And Jacob said unto his brethren, Gather stones; and they took stones, and made an heap: and they did eat there upon the heap.
47 And Laban called it Jegarsahadutha: but Jacob called it Galeed.
48 And Laban said, This heap is a witness between me and thee this day. Therefore was the name of it called Galeed;
49 And Mizpah; for he said, The LORD watch between me and thee, when we are absent one from another.
50 If thou shalt afflict my daughters, or if thou shalt take other wives beside my daughters, no man is with us; see, God is witness betwixt me and thee.
51 And Laban said to Jacob, Behold this heap, and behold this pillar, which I have cast betwixt me and thee;
52 This heap be witness, and this pillar be witness, that I will not pass over this heap to thee, and that thou shalt not pass over this heap and this pillar unto me, for harm.
53 The God of Abraham, and the God of Nahor, the God of their father, judge betwixt us. And Jacob sware by the fear of his father Isaac.
54 Then Jacob offered sacrifice upon the mount, and called his brethren to eat bread: and they did eat bread, and tarried all night in the mount.
55 And early in the morning Laban rose up, and kissed his sons and his daughters, and blessed them: and Laban departed, and returned unto his place.
XV.) What is the significance of the guests signing the guest book?
The guests become the official witnesses to the covenant. By signing their names they are saying, "I have witnessed the vows, and I will testify to the reality of this marriage." The witnesses can also serve as Gods' reminders to the couple to be faithful to their marriage vows. Because of the significance of signing the guest book, it should be done after the wedding rather than before it.
XVI.) What is the special purpose of the receiving line?
The guests give their blessings to the parents and the couple in the receiving line. When Boaz entered into the covenant with Ruth to be his wife, all the people in the gate and the elders said "We are witnesses" Then they gave their blessings. " . . . the Lord make the woman that is come unto thy house like Rachel and like Leah, which two did build the house of Israel . . .
And the women said unto Naomi, Blessed be the Lord which hath not left thee this day without a kinsmen, that his name be famous in Israel. And he shall be unto thee a restorer of thy life, and a nourisher of thy old age . . ." Ruth 4:11 - 15).
Ruth 4:11 - 15
11 And all the people that were in the gate, and the elders, said, We are witnesses. The LORD make the woman that is come into thine house like Rachel and like Leah, which two did build the house of Israel: and do thou worthily in Ephratah, and be famous in Bethlehem:
12 And let thy house be like the house of Pharez, whom Tamar bare unto Judah, of the seed which the LORD shall give thee of this young woman.
13 So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bare a son.
XVII.) Why is a special invitation given to attend a reception?
The invitation for the reception symbolizes the invitation for salvation. In the teaching ministry of Christ, He used the invitation to the wedding feast as an illustration of inviting people to partake of salvation. The wedding feast was free to the invited guests, just as salvation is free to all who will receive it. (See Isaiah 55:1).
1 Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.
All who respond to Christs' invitation, both good and bad, must enter on His terms. The man who came without the proper wedding attire in the parable was cast into outer darkness. (See Matthew 22:1 - 14).
Matthew 22:1 - 14
1 And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said,
2 The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,
3 And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.
4 Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.
5 But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise:
6 And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them.
7 But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.
8 Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy.
9 Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.
10 So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests.
11 And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:
12 And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.
13 Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
14 For many are called, but few are chosen.
XVIII.) What is the significance of food being served at a wedding reception?
Food is part of the covenant celebration. One of the root meanings of the covenant is the "to feed." Following the marriage a feast was customary to further symbolize the unity of the couple. Entering into a meal itself is a form of covenant. It is significant that the first event of Christs' ministry was attending a wedding feast and His first miracle took place during that occasion. (See John 2:1 -11).
John 2:1 -11
1 And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there:
2 And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage.
3 And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine.
4 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come.
5 His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.
6 And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece.
7 Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim.
8 And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it.
9 When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the servants which drew the water knew;) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom,
10 And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now.
11 This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.
XIX.) Why does the couple feed cake to each other during the reception?
The act symbolizes their becoming one flesh. By feeding cake to each other they are saying, "This represents my body. As you eat it I am becoming a part of you and you, and as I eat the cake that you give to me, you become a part of me."
The obvious New Testament confirmation of this symbolism is in the Lords' Supper. He took bread, broke it, and giving to His disciples saying, " . . . Take, eat, this is my body which is broken for you . . . after the same manner also, He took the cup . . ." (See I Corinthians 11:24 -25).
I Corinthians 11:24 -25
24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
XX.) Why do the guests throw rice at the newlywed couple?
The gesture symbolizes fruitfulness. When a covenant was completed, both parties would often establish a memorial garden.
In the marriage covenant, the garden represents children who are to grow up as Olive plants around the family table. (See Psalms 128:3)
3. Thy wife shall be as a fruitful vine by the sides of thine house: thy children like olive plants round about thy table.
It is through children that the parents achieve their ultimate oneness, and it is through the children that God desires to enrich and reward the marriage covenant.
Psalms 127:3 - 5
3 Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.
4 As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.
5 Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate.