Meditating afresh on Song of Songs 1, I was struck by the awesome parallels between the bride’s burgeoning relationship with the King, and the beginning of our relationship (and romance!) with the Lord.
- She starts by talking with others about her longing for Him (“Let him kiss me;” 1:2a)
- Then she talks directly to Him about this longing (“your love is better…” 1:2b)
- Though she wants to follow Him, she needs Him to carry her; she lacks power in herself (“Draw me after you;” 1:4a)
- The King immediately draws her into intimacy and nearness with Him (“The king has brought me into his chambers.” 1:4b)
- As she draws toward His presence, she perceives how unworthy she is compared to Him. His light reveals her darkness (“I am very dark…Do not gaze at me…my own vineyard I have not kept!” 1:5-6)
- Yet she also knows she is loved in Him (“I am…lovely,” 1:5)
- She wants to be beautiful for Him, and asks how (“Tell me…where you pasture your flock…why should I be like one who veils herself…” 1:7).
- Though He knows she is dark in herself, He also finds her desire to follow Him beautiful (“most beautiful among women” 1:8)
- He tells her to (A) follow those who have gone before her in His ways (i.e. be discipled by true followers of Jesus), and (B) pass this on to those she shepherds (i.e. disciple others) (“follow in the tracks of the flock and pasture your young goats…” 1:8)
If such a love for the Lord seems foreign or long ago to you, I implore:
- “The report was true that I heard in my own land…I came and my own eyes had seen it. And behold, the half was not told me.” (1 Kings 10:6-7 – the Queen of Sheba says of Solomon; but it finds its ultimate fulfillment in us adoring Christ, see Matt. 12:42)
- “Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!” (Psalm 34:8)
- “I [Jesus] have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first.” (Rev. 2:4-5)