The church is currently going through the book “Songs of Solomon” in its pulpit ministry. I am not sure about you but this is not a book that is familiar to me. I have been looking up resources in the internet that might give me a good overview of the book, and I would like to share an excerpt from something I found with you.
Why is Song of Solomon so important?
This book remains singular within the Old Testament for at least two reasons: its character as a single poem and its subject matter, particularly the frank discussion of love between a married couple. The Song of Solomon’s willingness to broach the topic of physical love within marriage has made many of its readers throughout history uncomfortable, so much so that Rabbi Aqiba had to vigorously defend the book’s place in the Jewish canon even as late as AD 90 at the Council of Jamnia. But as a testament to the beauty of the marriage relationship in its fullness, Song of Solomon stands out with its uniquely detailed vision of this beautiful reality.
What’s the big idea?
The fullness of the union that takes place at marriage is described in some of the most splendid poetic language in the entire Bible. In a world where so many speak of God’s special gifts with coldly clinical or apathetic statistical language, the passion of Solomon’s poetry refreshes a world thirsty for the truth about marriage. Solomon began his rendering of this relationship with the two lovers in courtship longing for affection while expressing their love for one another (Song of Solomon 1:1–3:5). Eventually, they come together in marriage, the groom extolling his bride’s beauty before they consummate their relationship (3:6–5:1). Finally, she struggles with the fear of separation, while he reassures his bride of his affections for her (5:2–8:14). All of this reinforces the theme of the goodness of marriage. Some suggest the book also pictures in a more general way Christ’s love for His bride, the church.
How do I apply this?
From courtship to marriage to the assurance of love, Song of Solomon poetically presents a broad range of events and feelings in the days leading up to and during marriage, offering encouragement toward an enduring love amid the petty jealousies and fears sure to threaten even the strongest of relationships. We should heed the Song’s sublime words by continuing to value marriage as one of the bedrocks of society, appreciating the goodness and the beauty borne out of the union of two people in holy matrimony.
Would you consider your marriage a sign of God’s goodness and beauty working in your life, or has it become something less than that over time? Song of Solomon reminds us that both marriage and the physical union that follows originate in God; we should therefore consider each of them as evidence of His grace working itself out in the world.
Excerpt taken from The Bible Teaching Ministry of Charles R Swindoll, http://www.insight.org/resources/bible/the-wisdom-books/song-of-solomon
Deacon Michael Teo