This book of songs is written by King Solomon. (Song of Solomon 1:1). There are 8 chapters, 117 verses, and 2,661 words, and it was written in approximately 950 BC. The Israelites read this book annually at the Passover observation to remind them of God’s love for them. However, it is said that a Jewish man was not allowed to read this work until he was 30 years old, just to be sure that he did not get the wrong idea about this book called the Song of Solomon.
For centuries, experts have debated what the true interpretations of this great love story should be. Some of the interpretations are as follows: 1) It is the love story of a Shulamite woman and Solomon. 2) It shows us God’s love for Israel. 3) It shows God’s love for the Church. 4) It shows us love between husband and wife. But the one I like best is: 5) It shows God’s love for me- an individual. Christ loves me, and I love him. I need to be careful to keep this love of Christ hot in my heart, as there are so many things that could cause my love for Christ to be turned away from Him.
Christ’s love for me is seen in chapter 2:1-4. Notice verse 4- “He brought me to the banqueting house and his banner over me was love”. And Chapter 2: 8 – 13 speaks of His coming for His beloved. Jesus is coming again, and we will rise up to be with Him. Winter is past. No more cold, hard times. Flowers appear. There is singing and peace. He will come one day for the redeemed – His beloved, calling out, “Arise my love, my fair one, and come away.” (2:10)
But the book also warns us that we need to answer His call when it comes. In chapter 5: 2-6, when the beloved called to his love after she was already in bed, she had all kinds of excuses not to answer the call. But when she finally did get up to open the door, she found he had gone. “I sought him, but I could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.” (5:6) The Lord does not always tarry when we do not respond to His promptings.
So as you read and study this great love book, keep in mind His great love for you, and your love for Him. Be careful as you read. The verses change quickly from the man speaking to the woman speaking, and then back again. For example, in chapter 2, verses 1 & 2, the man is speaking, but verses 3-13, the woman is speaking, etc. Notice also the things that can spoil your love for Him, such as the little foxes in 2:15. Then notice in chapter 8: 6-7 the strength of true love for another, and above all for our Lord. It’s as strong as death, and it cannot be quenched. All this leads us to John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” And Gal 2:20; “I am crucified with Christ; nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
So let us read this great love book and see how our love should be toward our spouse and loved ones. But above all, let us learn to love the Christ who loved me so very, very much that He came to where I was; He saved me; He put me in the “royal family of God”. And one day I will hear Him say “Arise my love and come away. The hard work of life is over. Enter into the spring time and into the Joy of the Lord.” Greater love hath no man than to lay down his life for another.
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