In Song of Solomon 1:4, we find that the bride calls her Beloved, “My king”. We have to know Jesus as our King before we can know Him as our Bridegroom. Many Christians never enter into a love-relationship with the Lord, because they do not know Him as Lord and King over all their lives. Some area in their lives still remains unyielded.
In Song of Solomon 1:5 we read about “the daughters of Jerusalem” or “the women of Jerusalem”. This phrase refers to half hearted believers, who do not love the Lord with all their hearts. They are the ones who are taken up with their “christian” ministry – preaching, teaching, Bible studies etc., and not with personal devotion to Jesus. They don’t live in sin. But they do not love the Lord fervently either. The Lord is looking for those who have the heart of a Bride, who are devoted to Him and whose service comes out of that heart of love.
The bride told these women, “I am black but lovely” (Song of Solomon 1:5). What she meant was that although she was unattractive, yet her Bridegroom had chosen her. The Bible says that God has chosen the poor and the foolish of the world primarily, and not the mighty and the noble and the clever (1 Corinthians 1:26–29). Some of us may perhaps feel like that, “I am not capable like other people. I am not intelligent. I can’t speak like others. I am so limited in my abilities.” Yet the Lord has chosen us!
There were prettier women in Jerusalem. But the Bridegroom chose this black one. Jesus does that, because He looks for qualities of the heart and not for appearance, gift or capabilities. We must learn something here. All our natural abilities, family background and accomplishments are not really of any value to God. It is a heart of devotion that He looks for. This is what the Lord seeks when He looks for someone to be His servant.
The bride knew that even though she was dark, she was beautiful in her Bridegroom’s eyes. Many married women suffer because they don’t feel that their husbands really accept them and rejoice in them. I rejoice in my wife. I hope all of you husbands also will do that. It’s very important that your wife knows that you rejoice in her. In the same way, many believers don’t realise that the Lord rejoices in them. Zephaniah 3:17 says, “The Lord your God in your midst is mighty. He shouts over you with shouts of joy.” God is very happy to have us as His children. Do you know that? We may be ugly in man’s eyes, but we are beautiful in God’s eyes. It is very important that we understand this clearly.
“Don’t look down on me, you beautiful, fair, city girls” (Song of Solomon 1:6). She was an uncultured, village girl and the refined city-girls of Jerusalem looked down on her. But the Bridegroom ignored all the smart, charming, city girls and chose that village girl. That is how the Lord has chosen us. Praise the Lord for that! Are other believers looking down on you? Don’t get discouraged, for you are precious to your Lord! Ezekiel 16 is a beautiful chapter that describes how God picked us up when we were filthy and rotten and neglected, lying helpless by the roadside.
In Song of Solomon 2:1, the bride says, “I am just a rose in Sharon. I am just a lily in the valley.” Those expressions (by the way), do not refer to the Bridegroom, but to the bride.
Many songs refer to Jesus as the “rose of Sharon” and the “lily of the valley”. But those are un-Scriptural expressions.
It is the bride saying to the Bridegroom, “I am just an ordinary rose in Sharon. There are thousands of roses in Sharon and I am just one of them. I am just an ordinary lily in the valley.” But the Bridegroom says, “Yes, that may be true. But you’re a lily in the midst of thorns” (Song of Solomon 2:2). Those fair, attractive women in Jerusalem were good looking on the outside, but they were like “pigs with golden rings in their noses” (Proverbs 11:22) – attractive, but without devotion to the Lord. So the Bridegroom likens them to thorns. In the midst of those thorns, his bride was like a lily.
In Song of Solomon 5:16 the Bride describes her Bridegroom as “He is altogether lovely, he is my beloved and my friend”. Can you say that Jesus is not only your Saviour, but also your Friend? Let Jesus be your closest and dearest Friend.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon