Bible Pathways 7/31/2001
Read Song of Solomon 1 -- 8
This poem describes the wholesome enjoyment of married love, the delight of the bridegroom in the bride and of the bride in her husband. The bride describes herself as black, but comely. . . . because the sun has looked upon me (I have worked out in the sun) (Song of Solomon 1:5-6). The word black does not necessarily mean the skin is black, but rather sunburned, signifying the swarthy appearance of one who has been working in the fields, with the ruddy, healthy appearance that comes from country life (Lamentations 4:8). The daughters of Jerusalem referred to her as the fairest among women (Song of Solomon 6:1).
Christians, as the Bride of Christ, know their shortcomings and the blackness of their sin. But Christians rejoice in hearing their Beloved say: If we confess our sins, He (their Beloved) is faithful and just (true to His own nature and promises) to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (everything not in conformity to His will in purpose, thought, and action) (I John 1:9). What blessed hope and joy for Christians to know that we have been cleansed with the washing of water by the Word, that He (Jesus) might present it (the Church) to Himself a glorious Church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be Holy and without blemish (Ephesians 5:26-27).
At first, the question is where to find the bridegroom, whom my soul loves (Song of Solomon 1:7). Every believer is assured that my Beloved is mine, and I am His (2:16), for He has entered into our very lives and our love relationship continues to grow and deepen as we spend time listening to Him as we read His Word. We become a different person by virtue of our relationship with the coming Bridegroom. He is my life: I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me (Galatians 2:20).
As the Bride, we know that we have a right to enter the banqueting house, and His banner over me is love (Song of Solomon 2:4). This is suggestive of both joyful company and abundant provision. We experience the presence of the Lord through prayer, His Word, and the unction of the Holy Spirit by which our souls are refreshed and strengthened. His banner of love provides our right to enter into His presence forever. The once-lost sinner is led by Jesus Christ our Savior into His banqueting house where all hunger is satisfied and the provisions of His abundance and love are enjoyed forever. Marriage vows must not be taken lightly. Marriage means total commitment to one's spouse. Our Creator, who instituted marriage, said: Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they shall be one flesh (Genesis 2:24). He also proclaimed, through the Apostle Paul: Marriage is honorable in all, and the (marriage) bed undefiled (sacred): but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge (Hebrews 13:4).
Yet, there are days when the Lord seems far away and we too have unsatisfied longings: I sought Him, but I found Him not (Song of Solomon 3:1-2). But then, with great joy, we can say with the Shulamite: I found Him whom my soul loves: I held Him, and would not let Him go (3:4).
Christ Revealed: As the chiefest among ten thousand (Song of Solomon 5:10). Jesus is the KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS (Rev. 19:16).
Word Studies: 1:3 savor means fragrance; 1:11 borders means ornaments; 1:12 spikenard means perfume; 1:16 our bed is green means we recline on a grassy field; 2:5 sick of love means lovesick; flagons means cake of raisins or grapes; 4:4 bucklers means shields; 5:4 bowels means heart; 8:5 raised means awakened.
Government Official: Rep. Adam Putnam (FL) · BPM Staff: Mark Ketterer · Pray for New Tribes missionaries being held hostage in Colombia · Pray for the Bible Pathway International Radio broadcast sponsored by Dr. and Mrs. John A. Hash · Country: Slovakia (5 million) central Europe · Major languages: Slovak and Hungarian · Religious freedom · 60% Roman Catholic; 8% Protestant; 4% Orthodox · Prayer Suggestion: Your prayers must be offered to God with the Spirit and understanding (John 4:22-24).
Optional Reading: Hebrews 8
Memory Verse for the Week: I Corinthians 3:17