In Song of Solomon 2:4 (TLB), the bride says, “He has brought me to his banqueting hall so that everyone can see how much he loves me. The father of the prodigal son brought his son to the table. Jesus sat with His disciples around a table. The table speaks of fellowship. At a table, we are not engaged in ministry for our Lord, but in fellowship with our Lord. We dine with Him (Revelation 3:20). Ministry should never be the primary focus of our lives. Love for the Lord must always be primary. After serving the Lord full time for more than 50 years, I want to say this, that my devotion to my Lord is the basis of all my ministry. Our ministry will have no value at all in God’s eyes, if our devotion to Christ were to decrease. A personal, loving, devoted relationship with Christ is the spring from which all true service for the Lord flows.
The Bridegroom appreciates the Bride saying, “How beautiful you are!” (Song of Solomon 4:1) We need to hear such words from the Lord – that assure us that the Lord really delights in us. Husbands and wives also need to hear such expressions of appreciation from one another. In Song of Solomon, Chapter 4 we hear a long appreciation of the bride from the Bridegroom. One mark of spiritual growth is that we learn to listen to the Lord more than to talk ourselves. As the Bride listens, she finds her Bridegroom expressing His admiration of her. He admires every part of her and then concludes by saying, “You are altogether beautiful, my darling” (Song of Solomon 4:7). The Bridegroom further expresses His appreciation for the bride (Song of Solomon 6:4–10). He says that among all women, no-one is like His bride, His perfect one. I choose her above everybody else.” Every husband should look at his wife like this: There are many attractive women in the world, but there is no-one like my wife. She is Number One in my eyes. This is what the Lord says about us. He appreciates us more than all the clever people, and the rich people, and the great people in the world. In Song of Solomon 7:1–9, we read how the Bridegroom admires His bride. We need to see clearly that despite all our weaknesses, our Lord actually admires us and appreciates us. Many believers live with constant self-condemnation, just because they cannot believe that the Lord admires them.
In Song of Solomon 5:16 the Bride admires the Bridegroom, “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? What about your earthly husband/wife? Is he/she also your best friend on earth? It should be so. Many husbands and wives say that they love one another, but they are not the best of friends with each other. Their best friends are found among others. That is unfortunate. Jesus is my closest and dearest Friend – closer than even my wife. But among those on earth, my wife is my closest and best friend – and she will be so throughout my life. This has made both my Christian life and my married life extremely happy.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon