|Posted by Lorraine Serra on May 18, 2016 at 10:30 AM|
Around my neck of the woods, one can often
catch a glimpse of a most lovely demonstration
of serenity and peace: mama deer and their
fawns grazing and resting and playing in an
Solomon clearly enjoyed watching these
timid, gentle animals. He alludes to them
three times in his Song Poem, creating
a repeated refrain which causes us to
wonder at its meaning.
Let's take a look at Song Chapter 2 verse 7.
“I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem. By the
gazelles or by the does of the field,
Do not stir up nor awaken love until it pleases.”
The Shulamite offers what seems to be a
warning to the daughters of Jerusalem. But,
is it a warning, or a plea, or something else?
“I charge you”, she says. Sounds pretty strong
and a bit threatening. Other translations read,
“I adjure you”. Sounds just as rough. I get
visions of an arrest and conviction!
Yet, another translation I found states,
“Promise me!” What a difference!
Studying God's Word is an adventure, sometimes
a challenge, but always worth the effort to
be enlightened and changed by it's life-giving
So what do deer, gazelles, promises, and
passion have to do with anything here? What
does this refrain mean? What does it teach?
Among the interpretations I have studied
in various commentaries by church fathers
and theologians a key theme arises in this
A Call to Rejoice in the Purity
and the Power of a Covenant Love.
Two words: Purity and Power.
One exceedingly wonderful word: Covenant
The model is Christ's love for
the church, and ours for Him. The blessings are
available as practical advice for passionate lovers,
First, because this verse has been debated, here is
something to consider:
“Do not awaken love” can be interpreted as a call
to self-restraint and responsibility. It is truly a
protection from the devastating effects of feeling
used and abandoned, rather than cherished and treasured.
Purity keeps couples clear-minded
in evaluating the depth and sincerity of a relationship. How committed is each person. Is there evidence of sacrificial love, mutual respect?
The power of the covenant of marriage is God's
design. By that design, a covenant is unbreakable. While that may seem dauntingly frightening, we can see why God directs us to listen to His guidance and apply it.
Yet, even if we have sided with the culture in
this area, it is always possible to turn back to God, and
receive His unbreakable, always available covenant love, forgiveness and a fresh start. That's good news!
Today, if you need it, if you want it, confess your weaknesses and failures to the Lord who already knows, and already loves you unconditionally! Come to Him, bow before Him and receive new life. Obey Him, and find the peace that surpasses all human understanding!
Now then, let's look at how the Shulamite woman addresses her girl friends, and
other women who may be watching with a critical eye.
From my study, I have brought her possible meaning into our modern language:
“Promise me! Don't you dare
disturb the beautiful relationship that I have
with the king! Our love is tender, authentic,
and peaceful as the deer resting in the shade. Do not act like dogs
who flush out the does for the hunt, trying to
destroy what we have.”
Wow! I sure didn't get that the first time I read
the refrain. But, this warning not disturb or stir up trouble makes sense. As the saying
goes today, “Haters will hate.” It can be pretty
difficult to ignore the haters, the critics.
In today's culture in particular, our love relationship with
the King of Kings, Jesus Christ, is under constant attack.
But, we are called to press on and stand strong in our
faith, armed with the truth of God's Word, the unique
sacrifice of Jesus, and our testimonies of His hand at
work in our lives.
His pure and powerful covenant
love is unbreakable, indestructible, and unfailing, even though at times we
may fail or grow weary.
This proved to be the case when Solomon got a bit lost and failed. (1 Kings 11).
Oh, he suffered the consequences, but, God still loved him and even
had a plan to set him forever as an example
of His covenant love towards the wayward and rebellious.
I find it quite intriguing that the man who had a thousand
wives obviously knew in his heart that his lifestyle did not
honor God, the One he served in humility and with passion
at the beginning of his reign.
Though he made poor choices, and indeed, set himself up for
destruction, Solomon returned to his first love, the
Lord God Almighty. In his Song, Solomon cries out
about an authentic love....a covenant love...a one and only love.
The Shulamite and the King are the beautiful picture of what God
intends for couples, and for all His believing children.
Wow. With a heart full of wisdom born of regret, Solomon
wrote for all the world, by God's inspiration, critical lessons for life, both in
this Song, and in his book Ecclesiastes.
A genuine covenant relationship grows and deepens
over time and blooms when God centered, God
ordained. The marriage covenant takes time and commitment.
Take it from me, at 38 years and counting, all the rocky roads in my marriage to John were only straightened, smoothed and satisfied in Christ. I have found my peace in God's covenant love. John has, too. It is Christ's covenant with each of us that has taught us to honor the covenant with one another.
When we humbly seek God's will, He has promised He
will direct our steps and make our path straight....in
relationships, in our work, in every area of life.
As a much wiser Solomon wrote: “I have amassed everything
to delight the heart of man, but have found it all meaningless.
Fear the Lord, obey his commands. This is what brings
true joy to man.” (paraphrased Ecclesiastes Chapter 12)
Lord, I thank You for the beauty of Your Word. Rich instruction
for our joy, our peace, our prosperity in mind and heart.
As we meditate on it today, Lord, let it come alive in our hearts to make us genuinely
open to Your covenant love....a Forever Love....and to give
Categories: Song of Solomon