The Song Of Solomon 7.1-10

Read the full passage here.

After the third physical description of the bride we read that she concludes with this:

I am my beloved’s,
and he desires me!”

(The Song Of Solomon 7.10, NET)

Descriptions of delight are encouraging to read and help us to see the true value of a committed relationship where each partner enjoys the other (7.1-9). Accounts of the lovers pursuing one another help us to see the true value of a singular focus in our relationships (6.1-11). Above and beyond these points, however, is something we have talked about before: the essential of a mutual commitment (cf. 1.12-15):

I am my beloved’s,
and he desires me!”

Neither party is more committed than the other, and neither is left to pursue the other in a one-sided way. Both the bride (I am my beloved’s) and the husband (and he desires me!) are all-in for one another. 

Friends, if you are currently in a relationship or on the verge of entering into one, please make sure that your partner is as committed to it as you are. One of the strongest exhortations in The Song Of Solomon is that relationships take two (cf. Genesis 2.18). Don’t pursue someone who is not equally as committed to you as you are to them, and, in love and with grace, do not let yourself be pursued if you see no future in that relationship.

The Song Of Solomon 6.11-13

Having restored the relationship in 6.4-10, we now continue to read of the enjoyment this brings:

I went down to the orchard of walnut trees,

to look for the blossoms of the valley,

to see if the vines had budded
or if the pomegranates were in bloom.
I was beside myself with joy!
There please give me your myrrh,
O daughter of my princely people.

Turn,turn, OPerfect One!

Turn, turn, that I may stare at you!

Why do you gaze upon the Perfect One

like the dance of the Mahanaim?

(The Song Of Solomon 6.11-13, NET)

It seems as if the bride found her husband in the orchard of walnut trees (cf. 6.2) and is simply overjoyed to see him (v.12). Speaking of their reunion as being as exciting as riding a chariot (ESV) shows us the sheer exhilaration the bride felt (I was beside myself with joy!). The chorus of voices we have heard at various points in this narrative then enters with the desire to view the beauty of the bride (v.13a) and in response the husband replies in protection:

Why do you gaze upon the Perfect One

like the dance of the Mahanaim?

Perhaps your Bible translates the Perfect One as the Shulamite, but however your read this the idea is that the bride is the perfect companion for Solomon (the feminine version of his name is Shulamith). We see here the truths of Genesis 2.18 coming to life: the ideal earthly companion for each of us is so complementary that it is as if we are two sides of the same coin.

Whilst marriage is never prescribed as essential for the Christian (1 Corinthians 7.8, 17, for example) when it is spoken of we read of it in a very similar way to here in The Song Of Solomon. The relationship is one where we are excited to spend time with our partner, one where we are protective (but never possessive) of our partner, and one where we complement one another so perfectly.

If you are in that kind of relationship, rejoice over it today!

If you are not, remember that marriage is never prescribed for the believer and that God in His perfect will and ways will enrich your life in equally wonderful ways.

The Song Of Solomon 6.4-10

My darling, you are as beautiful as Tirzah,
as lovely as Jerusalem,
as awe-inspiring as bannered armies.
Turn your eyes away from me—
they overwhelm me!
Your hair is like a flock of goats
descending from Mount Gilead.
Your teeth are like a flock of sheep
coming up from the washing;
each has its twin;
not one of them is missing.
Like a slice of pomegranate
is your forehead behind your veil.
There may be sixty queens,
and eighty concubines,
and young women without number.
But she is unique,
my dove, my perfect one!
She is the special daughter of her mother;
she is the favourite of the one who bore her.
The maidens saw her and complimented her;
the queens and concubines praised her:
“Who is this who appearslike the dawn?
Beautiful as the moon, bright as the sun,
awe-inspiring as the stars in procession?”

(The Song Of Solomon 6.4-10, NET)

The search seems to be over (6.1) and the lovers are reunited. In 6.4-10 we are reading of the husband’s praise of his wife: an important part of a healthy relationship. Wives (and husbands too) should know that their partner prefers them over everyone else (vv.8-10). The husband describes his wife as comparable to the beautiful cities of Tizrah and Jerusalem, and again praises the beauty of her appearance (vv.4-7).

The key truth in this passage is that a restored relationship is being actively enjoyed. The search is over, the two parties are together again, and all feels right in the world.

For you and for me, whilst this passage may not direct us toward an earthly spouse and our primary horizontal relationship this side of eternity, it does direct us to pursue a relationship that is both vertical and eternal.

As the husband and wife were temporarily separated here yet yearned to be together, so too is the state of the current relationship (if left unaltered) between man and God. Sin has separated us, brought distance into the relationship, and there is a yearning for that to be removed and covered. Through the sinless, spotless, and supreme sacrifice of Jesus on the cross satisfying the righteous requirements of a holy God and clearing sin’s record of debt against us, we are able by grace and through faith to be restored to right relationship with the God in whose image we are made.

Take these truths into your day today:

The Father rejoices and celebrates when relationships are restored. Read the story of the prodigal son in Luke 15:

 “It was appropriate to celebrate and be glad, for your brother was dead, and is alive; he was lost and is found.’”

(Luke 15.32, NET)

The celebration is not limited to one side, though:

“Look, here is our God!
We waited for him, and he delivered us.
Here is the Lord! We waited for him.
Let’s rejoice and celebrate his deliverance!”

(Isaiah 25.9, NET)

“Hey, how are you?”

One of the many great things about being immersed full-time in the life of the church is interacting with such a wide range of people. An interesting insight I want to share from this is the approach and attitude to life in this season that different people take. 

Let’s be honest – 2020 didn’t go how many of us would have liked. 2021 wasn’t much better for many, 2022 was very much a year of rebuilding and rebooting, and 2023 isn’t very old. The difference in people’s approach and attitude to all of this, their perspective on all of this is, honestly, staggering. 

Some seem to be all doom and gloom (think Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh). This kind of person responds to a message of “How are you?” with something like this:

“I’m/we’re ok, holding on I guess…surviving…existing I guess…”

Others reply with something like this:

“Hey! Thanks so much for reaching out!

I’m/we’re doing well…would never have planned this but we’ve got so much to be thankful for…I’m just so grateful that…

I’m really loving…

We’re focusing on…

How are you?”

I’m not saying that a quick digital interaction with someone can paint an overly accurate picture of their general approach to life and all its trials and tribulations, but we learn a lot about each other by what we say and how we say it, don’t we? Words, and how we use them, are powerful (see Matthew 15.1-20, Proverbs 18.21, for example).

God wants more for you than for you to survive, to hold on, or to just exist. The pinnacle of His plan for humanity is not that we have life, and life-just-surviving. Jesus said this:

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;

I have come so that they may have life, and may have it abundantly.”

John 10.10

God wants more for you than for you to survive, to hold on, or to just exist.

He wants you to thrive and to have life; abundant, vibrant, fulfilling, satisfying, love-filled, and eternal.

Notice with me that none of this is tied to circumstances or situations. No matter what is going on around you, no matter what is happening to you, no matter what people are doing for you (or not), God wants more for you than for you to survive, to hold on, or to just exist.

That second group of people I mentioned above are absolutely right, and their perspective is so healthy, so right, and so true:

“Hey! Thanks so much for reaching out!

I’m/we’re doing well…would never have planned this but we’ve got so much to be thankful for…I’m just so grateful that…

I’m really loving…

We’re focusing on…

How are you?”

No, we wouldn’t have planned this last couple of years to look like this. 

But yes, we do have so much to be thankful for.

Yes, we are grateful for all of the good in our lives. 

So, the next time someone asks “Hey, how are you?” think really carefully about your reply. Think about what you’re saying without actually saying it. Think about what your words are saying about you and your approach and attitude toward life. I recently read this, a powerful thought to carry into the day:

“Christians are those whose hearts have been changed by the power of God, a change reflected in our words…Let the power of our words be used of God to manifest the power of our faith…Our words should demonstrate the power of God’s grace and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in our lives.”