The daughters of Jerusalem do not cease to call her the fairest among women, because her most painful wounds are hidden, and those which are exposed even add lustre to her beauty. They are astonished at beholding a love so strong, so constant and so faithful in the midst of so many disasters. They inquire, Who is this Well-beloved? For, say they, He must be of unequalled attraction, thus to engage His Spouse; for though these souls are spiritual, they are not yet sufficiently advanced to comprehend so straight and naked a path.
Had the bride thought of herself, she would have said, Call me not fair (Ruth i.20), she would have used some words of humility, but she is incapable of that; she has but one thought, the search of her Beloved. She can only speak of Him; she can think of nothing else, and though she should behold herself plunged into an abyss, it would excite no emotion in her. The reasoning she lately indulged in, through fear of becoming defiled, has cost her too dearly, since it has occasioned the absence of the Bridegroom. Instructed thus by her sad experience, she cannot look a moment at herself, and though she were as frightful as she is lovely, she could not think of it.