I am going out on a limb here. From my reading of Scripture I see Adam coming first in order for Christ to come. I see John the Baptist coming first in order for Christ to come as well. Could I also saw I see the Bride coming before Christ can come again?
Adam was the first man and Christ the second or last Adam. Adam had to come first and prepare the way for Christ to manifest as the last. John the Baptist had to come first, be birthed, to bring about the way for for Jesus to come forth in His ministry. So likewise the Bride of Christ must come forth in full manifestation in order for Christ to come back in full manifestation.
From what I can see from Scripture is that the Bride must come into her full expression and manifestation in order to prepare a place for the Bridegroom to come into her. Revelation 19:7-8 declares
7 Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” 8 And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.
The term “made herself ready” is very interesting in the Greek. It means – drawn from the oriental custom of sending on before kings on their journeys persons to level the roads and make them passable. Make herself ready by leveling the roads to make them passable for Jesus to come as King. I believe firmly that Christ is coming back for a beautiful bride and not a confused divorcee. There is only one thing we need to be divorced from and that is the law (see Rom. 7:1-6). Only to be married to Christ. Did you know even God is divorced (see Jer. 3:8)? No wonder why He hates it so much, because He understands it.
This is why I have a distaste for pre-trib rapture eschatology. This idea of Jesus is coming back for a broken down, defeated Church in order to deliver her from the world. This is not the case in my opinion. He is coming for a Warrior Bride who has made herself ready by destroy that which prevents Him from coming in fullness. We have spent to much time with a veil over our faces out of false humility. Lets take down and remove that veil by Christ and allow His light to overtake us so others can see it. No more baskets covering us. The Ekklesia must walk in her fullness for Him to come in His fullness. Adam came before Christ, John came before Christ, and the Bride must come before Christ. We must comes to place where we no longer wonder where we can go from His Presence but to a place, like the disciples, to where else would I want to go, because He has the words of eternal life. We must allow Him to get personal with us. May I say expose us. To be utterly naked before Him and others…full known and fully loved. No defilement. No spots. No blemishes. Total and complete God consciousness. Where our oneness with Him becomes a dance of mutual honor and respect. Complete perichoresis! A dance with Him leading the whole way! A Bride wrapped in adoration for the bridegroom. As we adore Him, as His Bride, we hasten His coming. His coming in fullness of Spirit prior to His physical reign. I’ll end with this beautiful Scripture in Revelation 22:17
“Come!” say the Spirit and the Bride.
Whoever hears, echo, “Come!”
Is anyone thirsty? Come!
All who will, come and drink,
Drink freely of the Water of Life!