Poetry – Song of Songs 5:2 – 7:8

She
I slept but my heart was awake.
    Listen! My beloved is knocking:
“Open to me, my sister, my darling,
    my dove, my flawless one.
My head is drenched with dew,
    my hair with the dampness of the night.”
I have taken off my robe—
    must I put it on again?
I have washed my feet—
    must I soil them again?
My beloved thrust his hand through the latch-opening;
    my heart began to pound for him.
I arose to open for my beloved,
    and my hands dripped with myrrh,
my fingers with flowing myrrh,
    on the handles of the bolt.
I opened for my beloved,
    but my beloved had left; he was gone.
    My heart sank at his departure.
I looked for him but did not find him.
    I called him but he did not answer.
The watchmen found me
    as they made their rounds in the city.
They beat me, they bruised me;
    they took away my cloak,
    those watchmen of the walls!
Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you—
    if you find my beloved,
what will you tell him?
    Tell him I am faint with love.
Friends
How is your beloved better than others,
    most beautiful of women?
How is your beloved better than others,
    that you so charge us?
She
My beloved is radiant and ruddy,
    outstanding among ten thousand.
His head is purest gold;
    his hair is wavy
    and black as a raven.
His eyes are like doves
    by the water streams,
washed in milk,
    mounted like jewels.
His cheeks are like beds of spice
    yielding perfume.
His lips are like lilies
    dripping with myrrh.
His arms are rods of gold
    set with topaz.
His body is like polished ivory
    decorated with lapis lazuli.
His legs are pillars of marble
    set on bases of pure gold.
His appearance is like Lebanon,
    choice as its cedars.
His mouth is sweetness itself;
    he is altogether lovely.
This is my beloved, this is my friend,
    daughters of Jerusalem.

  • Song of Songs 5:2-16

Friends
Where has your beloved gone,
    most beautiful of women?
Which way did your beloved turn,
    that we may look for him with you?
She
My beloved has gone down to his garden,
    to the beds of spices,
to browse in the gardens
    and to gather lilies.
I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine;
    he browses among the lilies.
He
You are as beautiful as Tirzah, my darling,
    as lovely as Jerusalem,
    as majestic as troops with banners.
Turn your eyes from me;
    they overwhelm me.
Your hair is like a flock of goats
    descending from Gilead.
Your teeth are like a flock of sheep
    coming up from the washing.
Each has its twin,
    not one of them is missing.
Your temples behind your veil
    are like the halves of a pomegranate.
Sixty queens there may be,
    and eighty concubines,
    and virgins beyond number;
but my dove, my perfect one, is unique,
    the only daughter of her mother,
    the favorite of the one who bore her.
The young women saw her and called her blessed;
    the queens and concubines praised her.
Friends
Who is this that appears like the dawn,
    fair as the moon, bright as the sun,
    majestic as the stars in procession?
He
I went down to the grove of nut trees
    to look at the new growth in the valley,
to see if the vines had budded
    or the pomegranates were in bloom.
Before I realized it,
    my desire set me among the royal chariots of my people.
Friends
Come back, come back, O Shulammite;
    come back, come back, that we may gaze on you!
He
Why would you gaze on the Shulammite
    as on the dance of Mahanaim?

  • Song of Songs 6:1-13

How beautiful your sandaled feet,
    O prince’s daughter!
Your graceful legs are like jewels,
    the work of an artist’s hands.
Your navel is a rounded goblet
    that never lacks blended wine.
Your waist is a mound of wheat
    encircled by lilies.
Your breasts are like two fawns,
    like twin fawns of a gazelle.
Your neck is like an ivory tower.
Your eyes are the pools of Heshbon
    by the gate of Bath Rabbim.
Your nose is like the tower of Lebanon
    looking toward Damascus.
Your head crowns you like Mount Carmel.
    Your hair is like royal tapestry;
    the king is held captive by its tresses.
How beautiful you are and how pleasing,
    my love, with your delights!
Your stature is like that of the palm,
    and your breasts like clusters of fruit.
I said, “I will climb the palm tree;
    I will take hold of its fruit.”
May your breasts be like clusters of grapes on the vine,
    the fragrance of your breath like apples,

  • Song of Songs 7:1-8

Noted Biblical Scholars, Teachers, and Preachers Comments

NOTE from the author:  I am using as one resource a book by Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck.  She is a writer and for many years a radio cohost of Proverbs 31 Ministries.  She writes from a literal perspective of the love between Solomon and the Shulammite woman.  (She adds an extra “m” in Shulammite and I did not correct that spelling, quoting it as her book states it.)  She writes from a female perspective, so that males could learn by reversing the gender in what she says.  It may be jarring to contrast her approach to that of Rev. Spurgeon who speaks of the male lover being Jesus, and the female lover being each of us as we love Jesus with every fiber of our body, mind, and soul.  Taking the text literally as Ms. Jaynes has done can make the interpretation rather steamy at times, but it is a good lesson for us in keeping the romance going with our spouse.

And remember, this book of the Bible is for mature audiences.

Song of Songs 5:2-3 ‘Not now, maybe later’: “ ’Open to me, my sister, my darling, my dove, my flawless one.’ Can’t you just hear his wooing through the paneled door? He’s cooing the fourfold words of adoration, words that at one time made her heart melt like butter on a hot biscuit. The man is smooth. He can’t wait to see his woman. To be with her. To make love to her. But she’s not interested.
“ ‘Not now, honey,’ she says. ‘I’m tired. I’ve already washed my face, brushed my teeth, and put on my pj’s. Besides, I’m halfway asleep already.’ (That’s a modern-day translation—not that I would know.)
“We’ve all been there. Go ahead. Admit it.
“Before the Shulammite and Solomon were married, she couldn’t wait to hop in bed with her man. She thought about it all the time and dreamed about it every night. She had to have talks with herself to wait until the honeymoon. And now that she had him, she wasn’t all the interested. She was taking him for granted and turning him away, apathetic toward the man who had once made her ‘faint with love’ (2:5). The Shulammite still called Solomon her dodi (5:2, 4-6, 8), but she sure didn’t treat him like one.”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 5:2 ‘Are we ready for Jesus?’: “We may be Christians, but the love we have is a calculating and narrow love, a love that doesn’t give itself. And so how can He who gave Himself ever fellowship with us? Do you want a Bible illustration of this? Let me give it to you. It is in the fifth chapter of the Song of Solomon, that delicate, gentle, wondrous, beautiful book.
“You’ll remember that the bridegroom (who represents Jesus) had given gifts to his bride-to-be. He was out taking care of his sheep, out among the lilies. The dew was falling, and his locks were wet with the dews of the night (5:2). He was out there doing what his interests required him to do, what his heart wanted to do.
“He came and knocked on her door to say, ‘Won’t you come and join me?’ She said, ‘How can l? l am not dressed for it. I’m dressed for the couch and the home, and even my hands drip with the ointments you’ve given me. I can’t come.’ And so he disappeared (5:3-6). He was still her lover and he still wanted to marry her (and he did finally, thank God, and it came out all right).
“He was out there pouring himself out, and she was in her house admiring herself and taking long whiffs of the perfume that he’d given her, standing before the mirror and admiring the robes and jewelry he’d given her. He wanted her, but she wanted his jewelry and his perfumes. Then finally she got under conviction about it and she quickly, hastily dressed, not really for street dress. But she got some clothes on and a robe about her and started out looking for her beloved.
“She asked the watchman, ‘Where is he?’ And the watchman beat her (5:7) and said she was a harlot and told her to go home. She went on staggering under the blows and couldn’t find him. And while she was hunting him, her friends said, ‘What‘s the matter? Why don’t you go home?’ They said, ‘What is thy beloved more than another beloved?’ (5:9). And then she burst out into a beautiful song of praise, saying, ‘My beloved is white and ruddy’—she described him from head to foot—’the chiefest among ten thousand’ (5:10).
“He wanted her fellowship and she was too selfish and self-centered. Of course there could be no fellowship while he’s out there doing one thing and she’s selfishly staying in the house doing another.”

  • A. W. Tozer, The Attributes of God I

Song of Songs 5:2 ‘three subjects for meditation: sleeping, heart awake, and then knocking’: “We find, at one moment, that the spouse is so happy that she cries out, ‘Sustain me with raisins; refresh me with apricots, for I am lovesick’ (2:5), and at another moment she is searching for her beloved and cannot find him, and mourning because of the darkness and the cruelty of ‘the guards who go about the city’ (3:3). The text very readily suggests three subjects for meditation—first, a lamentable state—’I was sleeping.’ Secondly, a hopeful sign—’but my heart was awake.’ And thirdly, a potent remedy—’A sound! My love was knocking!’ Nothing can wake a believer out of his sleep like the sound of his beloved.”

  • Charles H. Spurgeon, from sermon notes

Song of Songs 5:4-6 ‘The King’s Response’: “Solomon didn’t respond as you or I might expect. He didn’t get angry or bang on the door to demand entrance. He didn’t yell or scream in frustration. He could have said, ‘Hey, I’m the king. How dare you ignore me! I rescued you from Working in the fields all day. Look how I’ve provided for you! And this is the thanks I get?’ Instead, he simply slipped his hand through the keyhole and poured myrrh on the latch. In other words, he left his calling card.
“The keyholes in Solomon’s day were large enough to put your hand through. The bottom had a ledge. That’s where Solomon left his gift. All through the Song, the couple referred to myrrh as their special perfume. Perhaps you have a special perfume that your husband loves. Maybe he has a certain cologne that drives you Wild. Myrrh was their fragrance”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 5:6 ‘losing the sense of God’s presence’: “The Christian is unhappy to the utmost degree whenever he loses the sense of his Lord’s presence. Then the pillars of his house are made to tremble, his fresh springs are dried up, the sun is hidden from his eyes, and the sky is so dark overhead that he walks, rather wanders, about a world that cannot render to his soul any substantial comfort. Were he of the world, he could live on the world, but having been taught by divine grace to aspire after something nobler and better, the loss is exceedingly grievous to his spirit. I question whether most Christians do not sometimes lose the enjoyment of the Lord’s company. I question yet further whether there are not many professing Christians who live contentedly under that loss—nor can I account for this exception the supposition that they can have known but little of that presence in their best estate.”

  • Charles H. Spurgeon, from sermon notes

Song of Songs 5:6-8 ‘the danger of apathy’: “This scenario sounds much like her dream in chapter 3 but with a greater sense of urgency. You can almost feel the panic as if she were saying, ‘What have I done? What have I done?’ Rather than sit in her room and wait for him to come back to her, she went looking for him, seeking reconciliation as soon as possible.
“As we saw in Song of Solomon 3, the night watchmen were guards that patrolled the city walls. They would have known she was the queen, and I doubt they would have laid a hand on her. I suspect she was using poetic imagery. Every time she asked someone if he or she had seen her man and they replied that they hadn’t, she felt beat up and bruised by her own actions. Either way, whether literal or figurative, her heart took a beating. She showed us just how dangerous apathy in marriage can be.”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 5:10-16 ‘in their love song, metaphors abound’: “Just as Solomon took an inventory of seven of his bride’s stunning features on their wedding night, the Shulammite took inventory of ten of his. In the Bible, the number ten, like seven, is a number for perfection.
“She started with his complexion. It was ruddy and radiant, tanned by the sun from tending the flocks. The original Hebrew word actually means ‘to glow’ or ‘to shine.’ I love that! He’s shiny! He’s dazzling!
“Just as Solomon compared the Shulammite’s hair to the flowing black fleece of goats running down the hillside, she compared his wavy hair to the brilliant black ravens flying in the sky. She compared his head (not hair) to the nobility of gold. He wasn’t just the king of Israel; he was the king of her heart.
“She went on …”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 5:16 ‘Best thing about Christ is Christ Himself’: “No words can ever express the gratitude we owe him who loved us even when we were dead in trespasses and sins. The love of Jesus is unutterably precious and worthy of daily praise. No songs can ever fitly celebrate the triumphs of that salvation that he worked single-handedly on our behalf. The work of Jesus is glorious beyond comparison, and all the harps of angels fall short of its worthy honor. Yet I do believe, and my heart prompts me to say, that the highest praise of every ransomed soul and of the entire Christian church should be offered to the blessed person of Jesus Christ, our adorable Lord. The love of his heart is excelled by the heart that gave forth that love, and the wonders of his hand are outdone by the hand itself, which worked those godlike miracles of grace. We ought to bless him for what he has done for us as mediator in the place of humble service under the law, for what he suffered for us as substitute on the altar of sacrifice from before the foundation of the world, and for what he is doing for us as advocate in the place of highest honor at the right hand of the Majesty on high. But still, the best thing about Christ is Christ himself.”

  • Charles H. Spurgeon, from sermon notes

Song of Songs 5:10-6:3 ‘The Bride Sings of Her Lover’: “The bride breaks into song, describing her lover’s physical appearance. She notes his head, hair, eyes, cheeks, lips, arms, body, legs and mouth, concluding that “he is altogether lovely.” She doesn’t spare the similes in telling the daughters of Jerusalem why he is “outstanding among ten thousand.” They offer to help find her lover, but she declines their help, stating that she knows where he is.

  • Eugene E. Carpenter, Asbury Bible Commentary

Song of Songs 6:1 ‘She needn’t have wondered’: “The Shulammite didn’t have to wonder where to find her husband. He was consistent in character, conviction, and behavior. She didn’t have to speculate if he was gallivanting with another woman, storming around in anger, or planning revenge for her lapse of judgment. That wasn’t who he was. Even though they had occasional arguments, misunderstandings, and disappointments as any couple would, she had no doubts about the strength of their relationship or the stability of their commitment. She knew just where to find him.”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 6:2-3 ‘stewing in the garden’: “I’ve read myriad commentaries and books on the Song of Solomon while writing this one, and all of them were written by men. The guys have shared some helpful insights about how men process information. Matt Chandler offered this male perspective on what Solomon was most likely feeling after his wife’s rejection:
“ ‘He went to the garden. If I had to guess, I think he was probably wrestling with his frustration. He probably knew his frustration wasn’t valid. So he sat alone, working through, processing, and praying.
“ ‘This is a fairly typical male trait. Wives, you may think that in times of conflict, your husband is ‘shutting down,’ and this means he’s not as engaged, not as invested in the relationship as you. Men tend to process things a little differently than women, though. Women tend to be more verbal in their processing, able to access multiple thoughts and feelings simultaneously and express them fairly quickly. Men need a little more stewing. …
“ ‘Men tend to process more internally. It’s likely that Solomon was doing just that. He didn’t want to react in a poor way, so he gave her a sign that he loved her and then stole away for a bit to be alone and work through his frustrations?’ [
Chandler and Wilson, The Mingling of Souls]”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 6:4-7:9a ‘The groom sings of the bride’s beauty’: “The king does not allow the bride’s praise of his charm to go unrequited. He sings of her beauty, which surpasses even that of all the king’s women. She is the choicest of all the virgins, ‘my perfect one’ (6:8-9). There are others who enter the conversation at this point. They call for the maiden to return so that they can gaze on her beauty. The significant name of the maiden as the Shulammite, probably from the village of Shunem, gives the setting for the groom’s song as he continues (7:1-9a). The most intimate chambers of married love are here described as the groom extols his bride’s feet, legs, navel, waist, breasts, neck, eyes, nose, head, hair, breath, and mouth. This section should be seen of married bliss in all its candor and grace. The Jews would not condone any description of fornication.)”

  • Eugene E. Carpenter, Asbury Bible Commentary

Song of Songs 6:4-9 ‘reaffirmation and reassurance’: “Once again Solomon elaborated on the Shulammite’s beautiful features. He used many of the same words he used on their wedding night, which told her that his love, commitment, and adoration hadn’t changed.
“Let’s break the code and uncover the clues of his romantic reassurances hidden in the poetic language. He began with, ‘You are as beautiful as Tirzah, my darling.’ Tirzah was an ancient city located six miles northeast of Shechem. The name meant ‘pleasure, pleasantness, or beauty.’ The city was known for its beauty and strength. That’s what she was to him.
“He also compared her to Jerusalem—the magnificent capital in the south. By comparing her to the exquisite city of Tirzah in the north and to the resplendent capital of Jerusalem in the south, he reaffirmed that she was the most beautiful woman in the entire land.”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 6:4 ‘the judgment of the spouse’: “The most accurate judgment we are likely to get of a woman is that of her husband. The author of Proverbs 31 says concerning the virtuous woman, ‘Her husband also praises her’ (Pr 31:28). Of that fairest among women, the church of Christ, the same observation may be made. It is to her of small consequence to be judged by human judgment, but it is her honor and joy to stand well in the love and esteem of her royal spouse, the Prince Emmanuel. Though the words before us are allegorical, and the whole song is crowded with metaphor and parable, yet the teaching is plain enough in this instance; it is evident that the divine Bridegroom gives his bride a high place in his heart, and to him, whatever she may be to others, she is fair, lovely, comely, beautiful, and in the eyes of his love without a spot.”

  • Charles H. Spurgeon, from sermon notes

Song of Songs 6:8 ‘queens … concubines … virgins’: “Are these Solomon’s other women? Actually, there is no language of ownership or relationship. Also, the numerical progression from sixty to eighty to ‘without number’ points to the use of various categories for literary effect only. Solomon tells his beloved that she stands above all women.”

  • John MacArthur, John MacArthur Commentary (quoted Scripture without bold/italics)

Song of Songs 6:13 ‘Return, return’: “This is best understood as being spoken by the daughters of Jerusalem. In effect, they beckon the bride back to the royal palace. Shulamite. A variant spelling of Shunammite, i.e., a resident of Shunem, a part of the high priest allotted to Issachar (cf. Josh. 19:18). What would you see. This is best understood as being spoken by the beloved. This probably refers to some form of marital dance associated with the city of Mahanaim which would be inappropriate for anyone other than Solomon to witness.”

  • John MacArthur, John MacArthur Commentary (quoted Scripture without bold/italics)

Song of Songs 6:13 ‘shining with the King’s brightness’: “The translation into the word ‘Shulammite’ is unhappy; it is unmusical and misses the meaning. The Hebrew word is a feminine of ‘Solomon.’ ‘Solomon’ may stand for the bridegroom’s name, and then the well-beloved bride takes her husband’s name in a feminine form of it, which is Shulamith, Salome, or perhaps better ”Solyma.” The King has given his name to her. He is the Prince of Peace, and she is the daughter of peace.
“A soul redeemed by blood and brought by the Holy Spirit into a loving, living, lasting union with the beloved cannot remain unnoticed. Solomon is known all over the world; he is sought after for his wisdom. Therefore, Solyma will shine with something of his brightness, and she will be inquired after too. In the church of God no one lives to himself or travels through the world unwatched. If we are interested in Christ, heaven and earth and hell will be interested in us. A pilgrim bound for the celestial city cannot go through the world, even through the worst part of it, such as Vanity Fair, without being noticed and questioned and sought after—and, if possible, ensnared. We who have been made a living soul by the quickening of the Holy Spirit glide through this world as the spiritually dead can do. They may be quietly borne along to the place of corruption, but the life within us is too strange, too operative to be overlooked. We are a wonder to many, and we may well be so, for God has worked great marvels in us and for us. We are the Lord’s witnesses, and witnesses must not sulk away in the background or remain mute.”

  • Charles H. Spurgeon, from sermon notes

Song of Songs 6 ‘Reflections’: “I am using this Old Testament story as a good and forceful illustration even though someone may insist that it does not stand up under the rigorous criticism of the Bible scholar and expositor. Frankly l do not know how anyone is going to soundly expound the Song of Solomon—we are more likely to get every man’s idea of what it means!
“The illustration is in chapter five and the bride is telling of her distress because her beloved had called her during the evening to go with him and she was slow to respond. He called to her saying that his head was covered with the dew and his locks with the drops of the night, for he had been gathering lilies and myrrh and caring for his sheep.
“ln a kind of summary, she recalls that she was garbed beautifully for the night chamber but not in the attire which would allow her to respond quickly to his call, for he wanted her to join him in his humility and service among the sheep and in the duties of the gardens and fields.
“Then she confesses: ‘l opened to my beloved; but my beloved had withdrawn himself, and was gone. … I sought him, but l could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.’
“By the time she was willing to put on the proper garment to join him in his humble duties, he was gone.
“Now, the scriptures are conclusive in teaching that God is always on the side of the humble man and Peter is in full agreement with the statement that God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble.
“Perhaps human beings are generally of the opinion that they will find Jesus Christ wherever they are; but I think there is such a thing as finding Christ wherever He is—and that will be in the place of humility, always!
“God resists the man who is proud—and stubborn!
“l believe God has to consider the attitude of the proud man as being resistance to Him. It is not very often—perhaps once in a hundred years—that a person will actually raise his face to God and exclaim: ‘God, I resist you, l defy you!’
“There is no general pattern of that kind of defiance among men. We are much more likely to oppose God by resisting the side He is on and resisting His ways.
“But the scriptures plainly teach that when a proud and stubborn man resists God, he may expect to find that God is resisting him.”

  • A. W. Tozer, Tozer Speaks II

Song of Songs 7:1-2 ‘the love fire remains kindled’: “Yep, the Shulammite’s body may have softened, shifted, and even sagged, but Solomon still thought she was the most captivating woman he had ever seen.
“I want you to picture him on his knees, holding her feet in his hands, as she sat on the side of the bed. He did not literally worship the ground she walked on, but he certainly loved the feet that did the walking.”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 7:3-4 ‘She still has IT’: “Solomon stopped to pause at his wife’s breasts. This was the same compliment he gave her on their honeymoon (4:5), Which makes me like him even more. Those fawns most likely weren’t as frisky and perky as they had been those many years ago, but that didn’t diminish his admiration or deter his passion. He was still enamored with her seductive sexiness. What woman doesn’t want to know that she’s still got it after years have morphed youthful beauty into something quite different—that her husband still finds her attractive and alluring? He let her know that he did.
“What about that nose? It wasn’t a little pug nose. It was ‘like the tower of Lebanon’ (7:4). It’s what we might consider … large. Oh, friend, we have got to stop allowing our culture to dictate what true beauty looks like. It doesn’t get to decide!”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 7:5 ‘the queen of his heart’: “On their wedding night, Solomon had removed his bride’s veil, allowing her hair to fall down and around her shoulders, and likened it to cascading flocks of goats running down the hills of Gilead. On this particular night, he said her hair was like a crown. Queens wore their crowns only at royal and public events. He saw her hair as a perpetual crown worn only for him. She was the queen of his kingdom and the queen of his heart.”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

Song of Songs 7:6-9 ‘climbing a date palm’: “Okay, friend, again, the clusters of fruit are not the Old and the New Testament, as some of the older biblical scholars supposed. Solomon was clearly ready to stop admiring his wife’s body and to take hold of all that was his. He compared his wife’s breasts to a cluster of dates nestled in the leaves of a palm tree. He was ready to climb that palm tree and take hold of its fruit. It’s no wonder that for many centuries Jewish boys were not permitted to read the Song of Solomon.”

  • Sharon Jaynes, Lovestruck

 

My Thoughts

I think the scholarly comments cover most of what I got from this section, but some of the scholarly quotes confused me.

If the wedding night was the steamy conversation in Song of Songs 4, they cannot be back to courting in the fifth and sixth chapter.  I agree with those who consider it at a short time after the wedding, as things start to get into a routine.

As for the ending, I cut the last part of a sentence off, Song of Songs 7:9a.  It concludes the King’s song to the Shulamite by saying, and your mouth like the best wine.”

Many of the metaphors are the same as before.

As this section starts, the NIV makes it seem that the Shulamite simply did not get to the door in time rather than having excuses.  Regardless of what is said, we all seem to have excuses from time to time.  And sometimes the excuses are legitimate.

And without the steaminess of the 4th chapter, it is very easy to see three interpretations in this section.  Sharon Jaynes described the literal interpretation quite well between the King and the Shulamite.

The relationship between us and Jesus is clear also.  We stray.  We get distracted.  Then we realize our error and we run back to Him.

Then the relationship between the Church and Jesus is clear also.  Once the End Times have come, God will always be there, metaphorically in the garden, and the Church will know where God was all the time and come back to Him.  And we should not be haughty in thinking that “our denomination” has not wandered.  None are perfect and they will all miss the garden at one point or another, but our faith will be there to find the garden and return to our first love, Jesus.

Some Serendipitous Reflections

Song of Songs 5:2-6:1 – The Shulamite’s song: 1. What person would you describe as both ‘my lover…my friend’? Are you your mate’s best friend? Was your love first based in friendship, or did friendship really develop only after the fires of passion settled down?
“2. How are you ensuring that neither friendship nor lovemaking will be neglected in the future? What is the next date on the calendar for just the two of you?
“3. With your beloved, as with the two in this story, what keeps your love alive: (a) Playful teasing? (b) Dreaming together? (c) Times apart? (d) Caring friends? (e) Private reunion times?
“4. What would a ‘reminder list’ of his or her attributes do for your relationship? What three things about your mate do you most appreciate? Write them down and exchange lists.
“5. Rank the following for yourself and your mate regarding his needs and her needs: Admiration, affection, attractive spouse, honesty and trust, family commitment, open conversation, domestic support, financial security, recreational companionship, sexual fulfillment. Which needs are the ‘top five’ for him? For her?
“6. Knowing this, how can you better meet each other‘s needs to celebrate what God has given you, and to ‘affair-proof’ the marriage?
Song of Songs 6:2-7:8 – The King’s Song: 1. God is a jealous lover. So were these two. Do you ever get jealous or arouse your mate’s jealousy? How so?
“2. When celebrating ‘after hours’ the body that God has given you and its capacity to bring pleasure to another, what thoughts and prayers come to mind?
“3. Does your hope for true married love spring eternal? Or has it wilted? Where does it need the nourishment and security of God’s true love, renewed every morning?
“4. What serendipitous event has kept alive the love between you and yours?
“5. Who still sees you essentially as you were when you first declared your mutual love and commitment? ls that unconditional acceptance romantic? Paternal? Fraternal? Divine?”

  • Lyman Coleman, et al, The NIV Serendipity Bible for Study Groups

There is two sets of questions for these two and a half chapters.

Note: These questions cover both literal and allegorical interpretations.  And some of the answers may be tough to say out loud in a small group unless you trust each other completely.

Substitute whatever group for any reference to a small group or ask who could come to your aid.

If you like these Thursday morning Bible studies, but you think you missed a few, you can use this LINK. I have set up a page off the home page for links to these Thursday morning posts. I will continue to modify the page as I add more.

Soli Deo Gloria.  Only to God be the Glory.

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