June 20. Song of Songs 2.
Well, dear one, we have now left Proverbs behind. We will read just two chapters from Solomon's poem to his beloved wife. Here are a few little details that might interest you about this book:
- Most commentators believe this was written early in Solomon's life. First of all, his ardor for his wife sounds youthful, and second of all Song of Songs 6:8-9a (NKJV) says, "There are sixty queens and eighty concubines, and virgins without number. My dove, my perfect one, is the only one, the only one of her mother, the favorite of the one who bore her. The daughters saw her and called her blessed, the queens and the concubines, and they praised her." Solomon ends up with many more wives and concubines ("And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines; and his wives turned away his heart." I Kings 11:3 NKJV), leading us to believe this happened early on in his life. (We'll discuss the folly of all those women later on ... for now, let's just see this as a reference point that suggests Solomon wrote this as a younger man.)
- It is a work of art and a beautiful poem in English, but even more so in its original language.
- It celebrates married, sexual love quite ... ahem ... boldly. It's one of the passages in scripture that confirms for us that intimacy is a God-given gift to be enjoyed.
- Reading it should inspire us to celebrate our own intimacy if we are married.
Now then. How in the WORLD are we going to find verses in this love poem that are "shareable?" Well, I've already done the assignment and it's possible. Ha! I am eager to read what God shows you, as well.
My verse: Song of Songs 2:15 "Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards, our vineyards that are in bloom."
My response: Father, help me to be aware of those little things that can ruin my tenderness towards Ray. Help me not to let busyness or weariness make me indifferent to him, my own beloved. Keep both of us alert to anything that would eat away at our love for each other. And thank you, Lord, for this heady, breathless love poem that affirms the joy of choosing that one above all others that makes our hearts sing. And ultimately ... beyond here on earth ... the ONE above all others is YOU. And your banner over us is - and always will be - LOVE.