The Song Of Solomon 4.12-15

Building on the multi-faceted relationship the male voice in this book has with his bride we now read of just how highly he values her premarital virginity:

You are a locked garden, my sister, my bride;
you are an enclosed spring, a sealed-up fountain.
Your shoots are a royal garden full of pomegranates
with choice fruits:
henna with nard,
nard and saffron,
calamus and cinnamon with every kind of spice,
myrrh and aloes with all the finest spices.
You are a garden spring,
a well of fresh water flowing down from Lebanon.”

(The Song Of Solomon 4.12-15, NET)

The sexual purity of the bride is right there in v.12:

You are a locked garden, my sister, my bride;
you are an enclosed spring, a sealed-up fountain.”

Speaking of her sexuality as a locked garden tells us that her virginity is private, separate, and not for anyone to enter. Enclosed springs and sealed-up fountains speaks of the fact that the body of the bride is to be given to its rightful partner and not anyone who might enjoy it.

“To ‘seal’ a spring was to enclose it and protect the water for its rightful owner; Hezekiah did this when he had the tunnel dug from the Virgin’s Spring at Gihon to the Pool of Siloam to safeguard Jerusalem’s water supply [2 Kings 20:20].” (Carr)

What we can take from this is the high value of premarital virginity. Much and many around us will discount this value as archaic and useless, but as we have seen before the clear teaching of Scripture is that sex belongs in, is to be enjoyed in, the covenant of marriage.

I love what David Guzik wrote about the reasons we can give ourselves in order to justify a free and open attitude to sex:

Seeing the high value of virginity also helps us to understand the Biblical commands against pre-marital sex. It is helpful to refute many myths about pre-marital sex:

· Myth: “The Bible says nothing against premarital sex.” Fact: The high value placed on virginity, seen here and in other passages such as Deuteronomy 22:13-29 shows premarital sex is wrong. But it also clearly found in the passages that speak against the sexual sin known in the New Testament as porneia, and commonly translated “fornication” (1 Corinthians 6:13 and 6:18; Ephesians 5:3 and 5:5; 1 Thessalonians 4:3. Porneia broadly refers to all types of sexual activity outside of marriage (including homosexuality); it encompasses practically all sexual behavior outside of that which is practiced between a husband and a wife in the bonds of their marriage.

· Myth: “My boyfriend is a Christian and loves the Lord. I don’t have to worry about that.” Fact: Christian men face the same challenges as non-Christians when it comes to sexual desires and lusts. They have the ability to overcome those lusts by the power of the Holy Spirit, but it isn’t easy and many who thought they were strong enough have fallen to these sins.

· Myth: “We are going to get married, so it doesn’t matter.” Fact: It does matter. First, you are setting a value on your own sexuality; there is a sense in which a woman then gives her future husband the right to treat her as an object. Second, you are setting a pattern; you are agreeing that in some circumstances, sex outside of marriage is acceptable, and this is something you don’t want in your mind or in the mind of your marriage partner; especially because on of the most important aspects of a long lasting, fulfilling sexual relationship is trust. Third, you are only taking away from the blessing God intends for your sexual relationship when married.

· Myth: “We can be married before God.” Fact: If you were on a desert island without any intuitions of government or society, this might be an argument. But marriage in both the Biblical and cultural sense is being joined together in a public ceremony that is recognized as legal and legitimate by the law and the culture. You aren’t on a desert island.

If this is a sin that you have struggled with or fallen at, try this for an encouragement to get back on track.

Published by James Travis

Pastor of Saar Fellowship in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Married to Robyn and Dad to our two boys.

One thought on “The Song Of Solomon 4.12-15

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