So here’s a challenge for you, read the Song of Solomon through twice, once searching for the truth’s of a beautiful marriage the second time searching for the love of Christ for His bride. Today I’d like to show you were Christ can be found in this beautiful story. Over the next few days I’ll also delve into what we can learn from the literal interpretation of the Song of Solomon because they are BOTH very important.
As a musician the Song of Solomon fascinates me. It is the proclaimed in scripture to be the most high of songs ever written (Song of Solomon 1:1).
Solomon was the author of 1005 songs (1 Kings 4:32) and yet this one shines above the rest. The Jewish scholar’s of the time referred to it as the “Holy of Holies” in scripture.
At the time Song of Solomon was written the Jewish Rabbi’s and leaders interpreted the Song of Solomon as both a literal story of marital love, and a figurative story of the Lord’s love of Israel. No one on earth today would have better understanding than these men as to how the ancient Hebrew should be interpreted. They understood the nuainces of this sacred book because they lived it. And to be honest they so delicately handled the Song of Solomon in their teachings that I would be shocked if it was included in the Canon if it was JUST a book about marital love.
We can safely assume a few things about the Song of Solomon.
1) The Song of Solomon is truly the grandest, and most excellent song ever written. I make this assumption because the Bible declares it to be so. With that assumption, we can be sure there is nothing mentioned in this book by chance rather every word and phrase was chosen with purpose.
2) The Song of Solomon in the inspired Word of God. Even though Solomon might not have fully grasped the eternal truths while he was writing, the Holy Spirit was leading Him as he penned this poem.
3) The church is not Israel, but we are grafted onto the same tree. Israel has a special place in God’s plan and will one day receive special promises the church will not. However, the saved of Israel and the saved of the Gentile nations will both be the Bride of Christ at the great marriage feast in Revelation.
With these things in mind here are some things to consider while reading the Song of Solomon.
In Song of Solomon 1:9-7 The Shulamite woman falls in love with a handsome shepherd who she later discovers to be a King. This is certainly a clear picture of Christ who is both our Shepherd (Psalm 23, Luke 15) and our King (Revelation 17:14).
The Shulamite apologizes from the onset for being tan, she does not think her appearance is lovely. Indeed before we know Christ we are marred by sin and our appearance is unacceptable to him.
The Shulamite asks why she must wear a veil within the first chapter, later she is beaten and her veil is knocked off. After she goes through this trial there is a huge change in her perception of Solomon, much like the way the trials of our life change our walk with the Lord.
In chapter 5 Solomon pursues the Shulamite, and she refuses him, giving him every excuse in the book as to why she cannot join him. How often does Jesus pursue our hearts and we turn Him away only to find pain and trouble, as the Shulamite did, right around the corner?
2:14 compares Solomon’s love to a dove in the clefts of the rocks, when we are in Christ we are that perfect dove protected by the Rock of our salvation.
Solomon’s love is consistent throughout the book, the Shulamite’s love however goes on a journey. I know I certainly love Christ more than I did when I was first saved.
The intensity and depth of her love is finally full in chapter 8:6-7, the following verses can also be contrasted to see how her love grows and changes: 2:16, 6:3, 7:10
In the 6th chapter Solomon chooses to say his beloved is as fair as the moon and as clear as the sun. The longer we are in Christ we begin to resemble Him as our sin is taken away. It isn’t by chance Solomon chooses to call his bride the moon, the moon is a reflective glory of the perfect sun. Another parallel is of course when we draw closer and fall more deeply in love with Christ we become a light in the darkness. By loving Christ more we naturally are shining His light on others.
It is also appropriate that the very last verse (8:14) of the beautiful book is “Make haste, my beloved, and be thou like to a roe or to a young hart upon the mountains of spices.” The bride is waiting for her beloveds return, as we wait for the return of our beloved Christ.
This is certainly not an exhaustive list of all the parallels to Christ’s love in the Song of Solomon, but I hope it gives you a starting point as you read so you can be blessed by the many meanings in this book.
As I said yesterday, this is why our marriages are so important. Christ uses the picture of a marriage to show his love for us. Christian marriages should be special indeed.
Now it’s your turn, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments, or if this post blessed you would you consider sharing it?