Many couples who are planning a wedding ceremony want to know what will make it more meaningful for everyone present. If you’re planning a traditional Christian ceremony, many heartwarming passages in the Bible make a great addition. You can use these passages as readings to include more people in the ceremony, along with your bridesmaids and groomsmen. Another way to add Bible readings is to ask your officiant to include your favorite passages from the sacred text in specific ceremony elements such as the greeting, the closing, and the exchange of rings. Some Bible passages are even used by some as vows. Below are small parts of the longer readings suggested, as well as an explanation of what topic each particular Bible passage can help you address in your ceremony.
1 Corinthians 13
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
This section of the most popular chapter in Corinthians for weddings is specifically about the many ways that people love each other and the qualities of love. If you strive to reach a high level in your love for each other, this can be a great choice.
Song of Solomon 2: 10-13, and 8: 6-7
My beloved spoke and said to me,
Arise, my darling,
my beautiful one, come with me.
See! The winter is past;
the rains are over and gone.
Song of Solomon is a beautiful love song between a bride and her groom, so it’s a popular choice in Christian weddings. If you like lyrical, metaphor-filled readings, this one will be uplifting and will emphasize how special and wonderful your marriage can be.
1 John 4: 7-12
Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.
This passage focuses more fully on why love exists in the Christian context. Love is what brings people closer to God and to each other, so even though this passage isn’t about romantic love, many people take it as an inspiration for the day-to-day kindnesses and efforts that marriage requires.
Colossians 3: 14-17
And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
This passage reminds the Christians at your ceremony about how love is itself a virtue that brings them closer to God. By promoting peace and love, this passage reveals how sacred those goals are for Christians and how love is at the center of all the things done to live a moral life.
Romans 12: 9-13
Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
Selflessness is an important feature of this passage, as it also discusses how sacrificially loving your partner is part of the goal. As we commit to another person, we are also committing to no longer putting ourselves first, which can be a beautiful thing to remind guests about in a wedding ceremony.
Ephesians 2: 4-10
But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.
This passage is more of a celebration of the most wonderful sacrifice made in the Christian religion, when Jesus Christ loved humanity enough to die for them. This sacrifice has become a symbol in the Christian church, in that if humanity is so loved by God, we should also be loving toward others. This passage is a great reminder of another cause for celebration that mirrors the wedding being witnessed.
Some couples benefit from a reading that emphasizes romantic love, while others prefer a wedding reading that emphasizes their shared commitment to Christian kindness and love. Whichever you decide to include in your wedding ceremony, you are sure to have your guests feeling thoughtful and joyful at this demonstration of love and respect.