The purpose of the bride price is to compensate the family for raising the woman and losing the productive labor of the grown woman. In other words, she is purchased, bought, paid for, and is now owned by the husband.
Kings sent gifts to Abram for Sarah, because they were told she was his sister (she was his half sister); he was also his wife.
And he entreated Abram well for her sake: and he had sheep, and oxen, and he asses, and menservants, and maidservants, and she asses, and camels. Genesis 12:16
Jacob works for Laban, Rachel's father, as the bride price for Rachel.
And Jacob loved Rachel; and said, I will serve thee seven years for Rachel thy younger daughter. Genesis 29:18
Jacob then serves a second seven years, because he was not given Rachel. This is the first period of trouble in Jacob's life, that lasts seven years. The second comes in his old age, when the seven years of famine force his family to move to Egypt where Joseph had been sold into slavery. The "time of Jacob's trouble" is a period of 7 years, and means tribulation. Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob's trouble, but he shall be saved out of it. Jeremiah 30:7
The story of Hamor and Shechem and Dinah is a very interesting one. Not only does it speak strongly of the bride price, but there are other comparisons as well. The sons of Jacob force the circumcision on everyone, and go out to kill them, just as the Jews killed Christ and the early Christians, and the legalizers tried to force the circumcision on the Christians in the New Testament. Sechem, like Christ, ends up being killed for his beloved, Dinah.
Ask me never so much dowry and gift, and I will give according as ye shall say unto me: but give me the damsel to wife. Genesis 34:12
"And they slew Hamor and Shechem his son ..." Genesis 34:26
And they said, Should he deal with our sister as with an harlot? Genesis 34:31
Finally, the sons of Jacob said Dinah was made into a harlot, to excuse their actions. There is a very interesting parallel with this... Yeshua preached:
Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Yeshua saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of Yahweh before you. Matthew 21:31
David, did not have money to give as a Dowry to Saul, so King Saul asked for something else...
And Saul said, Thus shall ye say to David, The king desireth not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king's enemies. But Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines. 1 Samuel 18:25
And David sent messengers to Ishbosheth Saul's son, saying, Deliver me my wife Michal, which I espoused to me for an hundred foreskins of the Philistines. 2 Samuel 3:14
The book of Ruth is a beautiful love story; of how Boaz is a kinsman redeemer (as Yeshua is our redeemer) of Naiomi and Ruth's inheritance which had been sold. He buys back their land, and Ruth.
Moreover Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, have I purchased to be my wife, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance, that the name of the dead be not cut off from among his brethren, and from the gate of his place: ye are witnesses this day. Ruth 4:10
Other Bride Price Examples:
And the men of Israel said, Have ye seen this man that is come up? surely to defy Israel is he come up: and it shall be, that the man who killeth him, the king will enrich him with great riches, and will give him his daughter, and make his father's house free in Israel. 1 Samuel 17:25
16 And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife.
17 And Othniel the son of Kenaz, the brother of Caleb, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife.
1 Then said the LORD unto me, Go yet, love a woman beloved of her friend, yet an adulteress, according to the love of the LORD toward the children of Israel, who look to other gods, and love flagons of wine.
2 So I bought her to me for fifteen pieces of silver, and for an homer of barley, and an half homer of barley:
3 And I said unto her, Thou shalt abide for me many days; thou shalt not play the harlot, and thou shalt not be for another man: so will I also be for thee.
These examples show that the dowry or bride price is, indeed, a practice of Yahweh's people, and is found throughout the Bible: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David & Saul, Ruth, Caleb, Hosea...
Christ gave his life for his Bride to purchase and redeem and buy us.:
Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of Yahweh, which he hath purchased with his own blood. Acts 20:28
Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; Eph 5:25
Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: 1 Peter 1:18 -19
For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify Yahweh in your body, and in your spirit, which are Yahweh's. 1Cor 6:20
Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field. Matthew 13:44
Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written,
Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: Galatians 3:13
To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. Galatians 4:5
And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to Yahweh by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; Revelation 5:9