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Bible Commentaries

Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures
Song of Solomon 4

 

 

Verses 1-7

The Bride's Beauty - Literal Interpretation - As a part of the wedding song the bridegroom sings to his bride describing her beauty in Song of Solomon 4:1-7. In this passage of Scripture we can imagine the bridegroom beholding the beautiful bride in all of her glory as he seeks for words to describe his feelings towards her.

Figurative Interpretation- Watchman Nee notes in this passage of Scripture that there are seven characteristics of her beauty. The fact that there are seven means that these are divine characteristics that reflect the divine nature of the Lord Jesus Christ. 169] These seven characteristics of her beauty may be interpreted figuratively as follows:

169] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 70.

1. Eyes - Spiritual discernment

2. Hair - Submission to authority

3. Teeth - Without sin, healthy and prosperity

4. Lips - Words of divine authority

5. Temples (cheeks) - Humility

6. Neck - Strong in character

7. Breasts - Maturity in divine virtues

It can be noted that the eyes symbolize the maturity of the spirit of the believer, the hair symbolizes his mental maturity in being willing to submit, and the teeth reflect his physical well-being.

Song of Solomon 4:1 Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves" eyes within thy locks: thy hair is as a flock of goats, that appear from mount Gilead.

Song of Solomon 4:1 — "Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair" - Comments- This part of the song ( Song of Solomon 4:1-7) opens and closes with a similar phrase, "Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair" ( Song of Solomon 4:1) and, "Thou art all fair, my love; there is no spot in thee." ( Song of Solomon 4:7) Song of Solomon 4:1; Song of Solomon 4:7 may be interpreted figuratively to mean that this child of God is without sin. Hudson Taylor interprets this to mean that the believer is "fit for service". 170] In other words, Christ is calling a believer to a higher walk of forsaking all and following Him in divine service.

170] J. Hudson Taylor, Union and Communion (Edinburgh, Great Britain: R. & R. Clark, Ltd, c 1893, 1929) [on-line]; accessed 28 December 2008; available from http://www.ccel.org/ccel/taylor_jh/union.i.html; Internet, notes on Song of Solomon 4:7.

Song of Solomon 4:1 — "thou hast doves" eyes within thy locks" - Word Study on "doves'" - Strong says the Hebrew word "dove" "yownah" ( יוֹנָה) (H 3123) means, "dove." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 32times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "dove 21, pigeon 10, variant + 016861." It is used 6 times in the Song of Songs ( Song of Solomon 1:15; Song of Solomon 2:14; Song of Solomon 4:1; Song of Solomon 5:2; Song of Solomon 5:12; Song of Solomon 6:9). On three occasions it refers to the Shulamite, and on three occasions the lovers describe one another with dove's eyes.

Figurative Interpretation- The eyes of man are figurative of man's heart ( Matthew 6:22-23; Matthew 13:15, Luke 11:34). Watchman Nee suggests the dove's eyes symbolize the spiritual perception that she has acquired. 171] Note Luke 24:16 says that "their eyes were holden that they should not know him." This means the two on the road to Emmaus could not discern what was taking place in their midst. The dove may represent the believer who is born again by the Spirit of God. Watchman Nee interprets the phrase "within thy locks" to mean that this spiritual perception is hidden from the world. 172] They do not know the believer's ability to look within the heart of a man with spiritual discernment, or to be given spiritual direction from the Lord.

171] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 32, 70.

172] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 70.

This same metaphor is used earlier in Song of Solomon 1:15.

Song of Solomon 1:15, "Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves" eyes."

Song of Solomon 4:1 — "thy hair is as a flock of goats, that appear from mount Gilead" - Word Study on "mount" - Strong says the Hebrew word "mountain" "har" ( הַר) (H 2022) means, "a mountain or range of hills." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 546 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "mountain 261, mount 224, hill 59, hill country 1, promotion 1." This word is used 5 times in the Song of Solomon ( Song of Solomon 2:8; Song of Solomon 2:17; Song of Solomon 4:1; Song of Solomon 4:6; Song of Solomon 8:14).

Figurative Interpretation - "thy hair" - Watchman Nee interprets the hair to represent "special consecration and obedience". 173] 1. Consecration- Nee notes how Samson's hair was an outward sign of an inward consecration. In other words, he had been dedicated and set apart for the Lord ( Numbers 6:5, Judges 13:7). 2. Submission & Obedience- Nee notes the second significance of hair, in that it serves as a covering. We read in 1 Corinthians 11:1-16 that a woman's hair is given her as a covering that represents the authority of her husband over her. In other words, she is to reflect his glory with this covering of hair. This metaphor may represent the divine glory that a believer reflects in his life as a result of submitting to the authority of his head, which is Christ.

173] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 71-2.

Numbers 6:5, "All the days of the vow of his separation there shall no razor come upon his head: until the days be fulfilled, in the which he separateth himself unto the LORD, he shall be holy, and shall let the locks of the hair of his head grow."

Judges 13:7, "But he said unto me, Behold, thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; and now drink no wine nor strong drink, neither eat any unclean thing: for the child shall be a Nazarite to God from the womb to the day of his death."

"is as a flock of goats, that appear from mount Gilead" - Nee interprets the flock of goats to mean that this consecrated child of God has been well-fed on the slopes of Gilead ( Jeremiah 50:19, Micah 7:14). 174] In other words, the Lord has given His people abundant pastures. Just as goats that feed well are fat and ready to be offered as food or sacrificial Temple offerings, so is this believer ready to offer his body as "a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is our reasonable service." ( Romans 12:1)

174] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 72.

Jeremiah 50:19, "And I will bring Israel again to his habitation, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied upon mount Ephraim and Gilead."

Micah 7:14, "Feed thy people with thy rod, the flock of thine heritage, which dwell solitarily in the wood, in the midst of Carmel: let them feed in Bashan and Gilead, as in the days of old."

Since the valleys in Israel were used for crops, the surrounding hills were ideal for grazing livestock, such as sheep and goats, for these are their natural habitat in the wild.

The Song of Solomon describes the mountains metaphorically as "the mountains of Bether" ( Song of Solomon 2:17), "mount Gilead" ( Song of Solomon 4:1), "the mountain of myrrh" ( Song of Solomon 4:6), "the mountain of spices" ( Song of Solomon 8:14), "the mountains of the leopards" ( Song of Solomon 4:8). The hills are referred to as "the hill of frankincense" ( Song of Solomon 4:6). Watchman Nee says the phrase "the mountains of spices" refers to "the new millennial world of fragrance and beauty." 175] The mountains and hills seem to refer to the heavenly, spiritual realm of eternity that the believer partakes of in a limited measure along his earthly journey.

175] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 157.

This phrase is repeated in Song of Solomon 6:5.

Song of Solomon 6:5, "Turn away thine eyes from me, for they have overcome me: thy hair is as a flock of goats that appear from Gilead."

Song of Solomon 4:2 Thy teeth are like a flock of sheep that are even shorn, which came up from the washing; whereof every one bear twins, and none is barren among them.

Song of Solomon 4:2 — "Thy teeth are like a flock of sheep that are even shorn" - Literal Interpretation- The lover describes her teeth figuratively by comparing them to a flock of sheep. He is basically saying that her teeth are beautiful, white, clean and evenly set in her mouth, and not one of them is missing. Regarding the phrase, "everyone beareth twins," we know that each tooth in our mouth has a matching tooth on the other side as its matching pair. A beautiful set of teeth would have been of high praise in a culture where dentistry may have allowed the pulling of teeth to be a standard way of relieving tooth pain.

Figurative Interpretation - "Thy teeth are like a flock of sheep" - Teeth are figurative of the health of an animal or person. This may be interpreted to mean that the believer has divine health as a testimony of walking in God's blessings. "that are even shorn" - Perhaps the sheep were the whitest when they were just shaven, before their long wool was soiled from laying on the ground. White teeth are healthy teeth. "which came up from the washing" - Perhaps the washing is figurative of the fact that the believer is walking without sin. But the idea may be the leaping and prancing of sheep coming up from their washing as a way to mean they were all in good health. "whereof every one bear twins, and none is barren among them" - Song of Solomon 4:2 creates a picture of a flock of sheep with many offspring. Twin offspring, with none barren, represents a healthy, well-fed flock. When food is scarce, an animal's reproduction naturally decreases in the wild to compensate for a shortage of food. Thus, with an abundance of food is an abundance of offspring. Fruitfulness is a testimony of divine favor with God. It is evidence that a person is walking is God's blessings of abundance and prosperity. Thus, we can see the two-fold blessings of health and prosperity alluded to in Song of Solomon 4:2, which is a testimony that the believer's soul is prospering in Christ ( 3 John 1:2).

3 John 1:2, "Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth."

Song of Solomon 4:2 is repeated in Song of Solomon 6:6

Song of Solomon 6:6, "Thy teeth are as a flock of sheep which go up from the washing, whereof every one beareth twins, and there is not one barren among them."

Song of Solomon 4:3 Thy lips are like a thread of scarlet, and thy speech is comely: thy temples are like a piece of a pomegranate within thy locks.

Song of Solomon 4:3 — "Thy lips are like a thread of scarlet, and thy speech is comely" - Word Study on "like a thread of scarlet" - Garrett notes that the Hebrew words "like a thread of scarlet" ( כְּחוּט הַשָּׁנִי) are the same that are used in Joshua 2:18. This phrase is only used these two times in the Scriptures. 176]

176] Duane Garrett, Song of Songs, in Word Biblical Commentary, vol 23B (Dallas, Texas: Word, Incorporated, 2002), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004), comments on Song of Solomon 4:3.

Joshua 2:18, "Behold, when we come into the land, thou shalt bind this line of scarlet thread in the window which thou didst let us down by: and thou shalt bring thy father, and thy mother, and thy brethren, and all thy father"s household, home unto thee."

Word Study on "speech" - Strong says the Hebrew word "wilderness" "midbar" ( מִדְבָּר) (H 4057) means, "a pasture, open field, desert, speech." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 271times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "wilderness 255, desert 13, south 1, speech 1, wilderness + 07761." This word is used 3times in the Song of Solomon ("wilderness" Song of Solomon 3:6; "speech" Song of Solomon 4:3; "wilderness" Song of Solomon 8:5). Within the context of Song of Solomon 3:6; Song of Solomon 8:5, it probably refers to the open plains that surround many cities in the land of Palestine, which was used as pasture for the flocks, with this same Hebrew word used in Isaiah 42:11 to describe the relationship between the city and its surrounding plain, "Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up their voice." Zöckler suggests it is a reference to "the plain of Estraẽlon or Merj ibn'Amir, lying southward toward Shunem to Jezreel," through which a traveler coming from the capital must pass. 177] In Song of Solomon 4:3 it necessitates a figurative meaning, "the instrument of speech", since it comes from the primitive root ( דָּבַר) (H 1696), which means, "to speak"; hence, we can imagine a shepherd driving his sheep with his words across the pasture.

177] Otto Zckler, The Song of Solomon , trans. by W. Henry Green, in Lange's Commentary on the Holy Scriptures, ed. Philip Schaff (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1872), 128.

Figurative Interpretation - A person's speech is the true evidence of a mature believer walking in faith. With this new spiritual perception, a believer must learn to know what to say and when to say it to others. In many cultures a woman uses lipstick to paint her lips scarlet red in order to enhance her beauty. Watchman Nee notes that the color scarlet represents redemption as well as authority. He notes Rahab's scarlet thread used to redeem her family ( Joshua 2:21), and Jesus' red robe that signified divine authority ( Matthew 27:28-29). 178] "Thy lips are like a thread of scarlet" - In the Kingdom of God our lips must proclaim a message of redemption for mankind. "and thy speech is comely" - In addition, it must speak by the Spirit of God with divine authority. If we look at this phase of consecration and divine calling in the lives of Isaiah , Jeremiah and Ezekiel , we see how the Lord dealt with their mouth, for out of it they would fulfill their calling, and out of it prophecies would go forth to set into motion God's plan of redemption for mankind ( Isaiah 6:5-8. Jeremiah 1:9-10, Ezekiel 3:1-4).

178] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 73-4.

Isaiah 6:5-8, "Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts. Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar: And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged. Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I send me."

Jeremiah 1:9-10, "Then the LORD put forth his hand, and touched my mouth. And the LORD said unto me, Behold, I have put my words in thy mouth. See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant."

Ezekiel 3:1-4, "Moreover he said unto me, Son of Prayer of Manasseh , eat that thou findest; eat this roll, and go speak unto the house of Israel. So I opened my mouth, and he caused me to eat that roll. And he said unto me, Son of Prayer of Manasseh , cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll that I give thee. Then did I eat it; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness. And he said unto me, Son of Prayer of Manasseh , go, get thee unto the house of Israel, and speak with my words unto them."

Song of Solomon 4:3Word Study on "temples" - Gesenius tells us the Hebrew word "temples" "rak-kaw"" ( רַקָּה) (H 7541) is derived from the primitive root ( רָקַק) (7665), which means "to spit." This noun means properly, "something thin." He says it means, "temple" ( Judges 4:21-22; Judges 5:26), or poetically, "cheek" ( Song of Solomon 4:3; Song of Solomon 6:7). Strong says it means, "a temple." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 5 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "temple 5." This word is used 2times in Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:3, Song of Solomon 6:7).

Song of Solomon 4:3Word Study on "a pomegranate" - Strong says the Hebrew word "pomegranate" "rimmôwn" ( רִמּוֹן) (H 7416) means "a pomegranate, the tree or the fruit," and it also refers to the pomegranate ornament used in the Tabernacle and Temple. The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 32times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "pomegranate 31, pomegranate tree 1." It is used times in the book of Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:3; Song of Solomon 4:13; Song of Solomon 6:7; Song of Solomon 6:11; Song of Solomon 7:12; Song of Solomon 8:2).

Comments- The pomegranate tree was one of the most attractive fruit trees in the Middle East, with brilliant scarlet blossom in the spring ( Song of Solomon 7:12). The Israelites planted the tree in orchards ( Song of Solomon 4:13; Song of Solomon 6:11; Song of Solomon 7:12) and made wine from its juice ( Song of Solomon 8:2) The beautiful texture of its inner fruit may have been behind the metaphorical phrase, "thy temples are like a piece of a pomegranate within thy locks" ( Song of Solomon 4:3; Song of Solomon 6:7). 179]

179] E. W. G. Masterman, "Pomegranate," in International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, ed. James Orr (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co, c 1915, 1939), in The Sword Project, v 1511 [CD-ROM] (Temple, AZ: CrossWire Bible Society, 1990-2008).

According to Numbers 20:5 the pomegranate was a favorite fruit of the Israelites, along with figs and grapes. God promised Israel that Canaan would be a land of wheat, barley, vines, fig trees pomegranates, olive oil and honey. It continued to be a popular tree throughout Israel's history ( Haggai 2:19).

Numbers 20:5, "And wherefore have ye made us to come up out of Egypt, to bring us in unto this evil place? it is no place of seed, or of figs, or of vines, or of pomegranates; neither is there any water to drink."

Deuteronomy 8:8, "A land of wheat, and barley, and vines, and fig trees, and pomegranates; a land of oil olive, and honey;"

Haggai 2:19, "Is the seed yet in the barn? yea, as yet the vine, and the fig tree, and the pomegranate, and the olive tree, hath not brought forth: from this day will I bless you."

The NBD says because of its beauty the pomegranate was used as an ornament embroidered on the skirts of robe of the high priest between golden bells ( Exodus 28:33-34; Exodus 39:24-26). It was also used extensively to decoration the capitals of Solomon's Temple ( 1 Kings 7:18; 1 Kings 7:20; 1 Kings 7:42, 2 Kings 25:17, 2 Chronicles 3:16; 2 Chronicles 4:13, Jeremiah 52:22-23). It was also used on the silver shekel of Jerusalem that circulated 143-135 B.C.

Song of Solomon 4:3 — "thy temples are like a piece of a pomegranate within thy locks" - Literal Interpretation- Garrett takes the view in Song of Solomon 4:3 that the Shulamite's beautiful upper cheeks reminds her lover of the rich, pinkish colors of a slice of pomegranate fruit. 180]

180] Duane Garrett, Song of Songs, in Word Biblical Commentary, vol 23B (Dallas, Texas: Word, Incorporated, 2002), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004), comments on Song of Solomon 4:3.

Figurative Interpretation - Westwood suggests that this phrase refers to the attitude of humility. 181] Andrew Miller says the idea is "of modesty, shamefacedness, or blushing." He calls it the "the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit" ( 1 Peter 3:4). 182]

181] John Westwood, A Short Paraphrase of the Song of Solomon (London: Simpkin, Marshall and Co, 1848), 24.

182] Andrew Miller, Meditations on the Song of Solomon (London: G. Morrish, c 1877), in Biblecenter.org [on-line]; accessed 29 December 2008; available from http://www.biblecentre.org/commentaries/ Amos 26_Song of Song of Solomon 1to 5.htm#Canticles%204; Internet, comments on .

Song of Solomon 4:4 Thy neck is like the tower of David builded for an armoury, whereon there hang a thousand bucklers, all shields of mighty men.

Song of Solomon 4:4Word Study on "the tower of David" - There is no other reference in the Scriptures to the tower of David specifically. We note from the Scriptures that towers were often identified by the name of their location or builder.

Genesis 35:21, "And Israel journeyed, and spread his tent beyond the tower of Edar."

Judges 8:17, "And he beat down the tower of Penuel, and slew the men of the city."

Judges 9:46, "And when all the men of the tower of Shechem heard that, they entered into an hold of the house of the god Berith."

2 Kings 9:17, "And there stood a watchman on the tower in Jezreel, and he spied the company of Jehu as he came, and said, I see a company. And Joram said, Take an horseman, and send to meet them, and let him say, Is it peace?"

Nehemiah 3:1, "Then Eliashib the high priest rose up with his brethren the priests, and they builded the sheep gate; they sanctified it, and set up the doors of it; even unto the tower of Meah they sanctified it, unto the tower of Hananeel."

Jeremiah 31:38, "Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that the city shall be built to the LORD from the tower of Hananeel unto the gate of the corner."

Ezekiel 29:10, "Behold, therefore I am against thee, and against thy rivers, and I will make the land of Egypt utterly waste and desolate, from the tower of Syene even unto the border of Ethiopia."

Zechariah 14:10, "All the land shall be turned as a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem: and it shall be lifted up, and inhabited in her place, from Benjamin"s gate unto the place of the first gate, unto the corner gate, and from the tower of Hananeel unto the king"s winepresses."

There were numerous towers named around the walls of Jerusalem.

Nehemiah 12:38-39, "And the other company of them that gave thanks went over against them, and I after them, and the half of the people upon the wall, from beyond the tower of the furnaces even unto the broad wall; And from above the gate of Ephraim, and above the old gate, and above the fish gate, and the tower of Hananeel, and the tower of Meah, even unto the sheep gate: and they stood still in the prison gate."

They were places of fortification and strength for refugee from the enemy. David sang a song calling God his high tower, and his refuge. The Lord is then called "the tower of salvation."

2 Samuel 22:3, "The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence."

2 Samuel 22:51, "He is the tower of salvation for his king: and sheweth mercy to his anointed, unto David, and to his seed for evermore."

Also,

Psalm 61:3, "For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy."

Psalm 144:2, "My goodness, and my fortress; my high tower, and my deliverer; my shield, and he in whom I trust; who subdueth my people under me."

Proverbs 18:10, "The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe."

Towers were also used as watch towers to look for impending danger.

Habakkuk 2:1, "I will stand upon my watch, and set me upon the tower, and will watch to see what he will say unto me, and what I shall answer when I am reproved."

Song of Solomon 4:4Word Study on "an armoury" - Gesenius says the Hebrew word "armory" "tal-pee-yaw"" ( תַּלְפִּיּות) (H 8530) literally means, "the deadly," and it is used poetically for arms, that Isaiah , a place in which arms are suspended. Strong says it means, "something tall, slenderness." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used only one time in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "armoury 1."

Song of Solomon 4:4Literal Interpretation - Garrett notes that there is a type of beauty associated with an armory of military weapons, but the beauty is in the strength that is represented. He interprets the king to say in Song of Solomon 4:4 that she has the strength to resist all approaches, and hopes that she will accept his offer of marriage. Garrett notes a similar verse in Ezekiel 27:11. 183]

183] Duane Garrett, Song of Songs, in Word Biblical Commentary, vol 23B (Dallas, Texas: Word, Incorporated, 2002), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004), comments on Song of Solomon 4:3.

Ezekiel 27:11, "The men of Arvad with thine army were upon thy walls round about, and the Gammadims were in thy towers: they hanged their shields upon thy walls round about; they have made thy beauty perfect."

Figurative Interpretation - "Thy neck" - Watchman Nee suggests that the neck represents man's will. 184] Perhaps the neck is descriptive of a believer who is strong in character, being willing to choose divine service over personal pleasures. This is a person who has "power over his own will" ( 1 Corinthians 7:37), so that he is able to obey Christ despite the hardships. One excellent illustration of this is when Kenneth Hagin tells about the struggles during his early years of the field ministry, when he has to spend weeks away from home. He would literally start crying by the time his car drove around the block away from home to go preach at some distant location. 185]

184] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 75.

185] Kenneth Hagin, The Spirit Upon and the Spirit Within (Tulsa, Oklahoma: Faith Library Publications, c 2003, 2006), 110.

1 Corinthians 7:37, "Nevertheless he that standeth stedfast in his heart, having no necessity, but hath power over his own will, and hath so decreed in his heart that he will keep his virgin, doeth well."

In contrast, the Scriptures use the word neck to describe a person who refuses to receive instruction, a person in rebellion against God's will.

Deuteronomy 31:27, "For I know thy rebellion, and thy stiff neck: behold, while I am yet alive with you this day, ye have been rebellious against the LORD and how much more after my death?"

2 Kings 17:14, "Notwithstanding they would not hear, but hardened their necks, like to the neck of their fathers, that did not believe in the LORD their God."

2 Chronicles 36:13, "And he also rebelled against king Nebuchadnezzar, who had made him swear by God: but he stiffened his neck, and hardened his heart from turning unto the LORD God of Israel."

Nehemiah 9:16, "But they and our fathers dealt proudly, and hardened their necks, and hearkened not to thy commandments,"

Proverbs 29:1, " Hebrews , that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy."

Isaiah 48:4, "Because I knew that thou art obstinate, and thy neck is an iron sinew, and thy brow brass;"

Jeremiah 7:26, "Yet they hearkened not unto me, nor inclined their ear, but hardened their neck: they did worse than their fathers."

Jeremiah 17:23, "But they obeyed not, neither inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff, that they might not hear, nor receive instruction."

Micah 2:3, "Therefore thus saith the LORD Behold, against this family do I devise an evil, from which ye shall not remove your necks; neither shall ye go haughtily: for this time is evil."

"is like the tower of David builded for an armoury" - This was not ordinary tower, but one build and designed as an armoury of war. The battlefield against Satan is found in the mind. It is there where Satan tempts God's children with evil thoughts, and it is there where a believer chooses to resist him or yield. An excellent illustration is found in the story of Jesus' temptation in the wilderness ( Matthew 4:1-11). Although Jesus hungered, He would not turn stones to bread; and although He was the Son of God, He did not tempt His Heavenly Father; and although He had authority over all of creation, He submitted to the authority from God in Heaven.

"whereon there hang a thousand bucklers, all shields of mighty men" - Watchman Nee notes that this armoury is filled with shields, which are weapons of defense. It is in the mind that a person chooses to defend himself against the temptations of the world and serve the Lord. Nee suggests the number "a thousand" represents an all sufficient supply. God's Word supplies all we need in order to defeat the temptations of Satan. Nee says the phrase "mighty men" suggests the strength of these weapons against the devil. 186]

186] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 75-6.

Song of Solomon 4:5 Thy two breasts are like two young roes that are twins, which feed among the lilies.

Song of Solomon 4:5 — "Thy two breasts are like two young roes that are twins" - Literal Interpretation - Garrett suggests that the comparison of her breasts to two young deer "connote beauty, sexuality and life." 187] We can imagine oriental women with the beautiful skin of golden complexion, a color similar to the soft, velvet, golden color of the hair of the young fawns.

187] Duane Garrett, Song of Songs, in Word Biblical Commentary, vol 23B (Dallas, Texas: Word, Incorporated, 2002), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004), comments on Song of Solomon 4:5.

Figurative Interpretation - "Thy two breasts" - There has been many allegorical interpretations as to the two breasts referred to in Song of Solomon 4:5 and Song of Solomon 7:8. Dennis F. Kinlaw says:

"Jewish scholars have seen in the bride"s breasts Moses and Aaron; the two Messiahs, Messiah Son of David and Messiah son of Ephraim; Moses and Phinehas; and Joshua and Eleazar. Christian interpreters have been equally ingenious. They have seen the bride"s breasts as the church from which we feed; the two testaments, Old and New; the twin precepts of love of God and neighbor; and the Blood and the Water. Gregory of Nyssa found in them the outer and the inner Prayer of Manasseh , united in one sentient being. Little wonder that the allegorical interpretation has come under increasing attack in the last two centuries. It is not difficult to understand Luther when he insisted that the literal sense." 188]

188] Dennis F. Kinlaw, "Introduction," in Song of Solomon , in The Expositor's Bible Commentary, vol 5, ed. Frank E. Gaebelien, J. D. Douglas, and Dick Polcyn (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Pub. House, 1976-1992), in Zondervan Reference Software, v 28 [CD-ROM] (Grand Rapids, MI: The Zondervan Corp, 1989-2001).

Watchman Nee suggests the two breasts represent the seat of a woman's emotions. He suggests that faith and love are the two most important characteristics of the child of God and may well be represented here in this metaphor. 189]

189] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 76.

"are like two young roes" - The comparison of breasts to two young deer is easily seen in the fact that a deer's skin is soft as velvet to the touch. In other words, the breasts are soft and delicate as the deer's skin.

"that are twins" - Watchman suggests the concept of twins means that the two primary characteristics of faith and love are equally important in the believer' life. One cannot grow and develop without the others. In addition, these two characteristics are what sustain the believer in his daily walk with the Lord.

Galatians 5:6, "For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love."

Philemon 1:5, "Hearing of thy love and faith, which thou hast toward the Lord Jesus, and toward all saints;"

Song of Solomon 4:5 — "which feed among the lilies" - Word Study on "lilies" - Strong says the Hebrew word "lily" "shuwshan" ( שׁוּשַׁן) (H 7799) means, "a lily (from its whiteness), as a flower or [archaic] an ornament." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 15 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "lily 13, Shoshannim 2." However, its compound uses in Psalm 60 (Shushan-eduth) and Psalm 80 (Shoshannim-Eduth) can be included. It is found 8 times in Songs ( Song of Solomon 2:1-2; Song of Solomon 2:16; Song of Solomon 4:5; Song of Solomon 5:13; Song of Solomon 6:2-3; Song of Solomon 7:2). Lilies were used to adorn Solomon's Temple ( 1 Kings 7:19; 1 Kings 7:22; 1 Kings 7:26, 2 Chronicles 4:5). This word or its derivatives are used in the title of four psalms as "Shoshannim" ( Psalm 45, 60, 69, 80). Psalm 45 is a song of love, where a wedding processional is described. In Songs the Beloved is describes as "a lily of the valley," and "a lily among thorns" ( Song of Solomon 2:1-2). The Lover feeds among the lilies in the garden ( Song of Solomon 2:16; Song of Solomon 4:5; Song of Solomon 6:3), and gathers lilies ( Song of Solomon 5:13). Hosea describes the children of Israel as a lily, saying, "I will be as the dew unto Israel: he shall grow as the lily, and cast forth his roots as Lebanon." ( Hosea 14:5) Watchman Nee suggests that the lilies in Songs is symbolic of those who are upright before God. 190]

190] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 53.

Literal Interpretation - Garrett suggests the lilies may be water lilies, or water lotuses. 191] This would paint a picture of the two deer feeding on the edge of the pond with the lilies floating nearby.

191] Duane Garrett, Song of Songs, in Word Biblical Commentary, vol 23B (Dallas, Texas: Word, Incorporated, 2002), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004), comments on Song of Solomon 4:5.

Figurative interpretation - In the Song of Solomon the lilies are found in the garden ( Song of Solomon 6:2), which represents the place of prayer and communion with the Lord. Jesus communes with the upright in the prayer garden. Watchman Nee notes that it is in an environment of communion with God where faith and love develop and grow into maturity. 192]

192] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 76-7.

Song of Solomon 6:2, "My beloved is gone down into his garden, to the beds of spices, to feed in the gardens, and to gather lilies."

Song of Solomon 4:6 Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, I will get me to the mountain of myrrh, and to the hill of frankincense.

Song of Solomon 4:6Word Study on "mountain" - Strong says the Hebrew word "mountain" "har" ( הַר) (H 2022) means, "a mountain or range of hills." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 546 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "mountain 261, mount 224, hill 59, hill country 1, promotion 1." This word is used 5 times in the Song of Solomon ( Song of Solomon 2:8; Song of Solomon 2:17; Song of Solomon 4:1; Song of Solomon 4:6; Song of Solomon 8:14).

Comments- The Song of Solomon describes the mountains metaphorically as "the mountains of Bether" ( Song of Solomon 2:17), "mount Gilead" ( Song of Solomon 4:1), "the mountain of myrrh" ( Song of Solomon 4:6), "the mountain of spices" ( Song of Solomon 8:14), "the mountains of the leopards" ( Song of Solomon 4:8). The hills are referred to as "the hill of frankincense" ( Song of Solomon 4:6). Watchman Nee says the phrase "the mountains of spices" refers to "the new millennial world of fragrance and beauty." 193] The mountains and hills seem to refer to the heavenly, spiritual realm of eternity that the believer partakes of in a limited measure along his earthly journey.

193] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 157.

Song of Solomon 4:6Word Study on "hill" - Strong says the Hebrew word "hill" "gib`ah" ( גִּבְעָה) (H 1389) means, "a hillock, hill, little hill." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 69 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "hill 69." This word is used 2times in the Song of Songs ( Song of Solomon 2:8; Song of Solomon 4:6).

Song of Solomon 4:6Literal Interpretation - Garrett suggests the literal interpretation of Song of Solomon 4:6 is that the two mountains represent her breasts, and the king is determined to take her into the bead chamber and make love throughout the night. He supports this view with a similar metaphor used in Song of Solomon 7:7-8. 194]

194] Duane Garrett, Song of Songs, in Word Biblical Commentary, vol 23B (Dallas, Texas: Word, Incorporated, 2002), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004), comments on Song of Solomon 4:6.

Song of Solomon 7:7-8, "This thy stature is like to a palm tree, and thy breasts to clusters of grapes. I said, I will go up to the palm tree, I will take hold of the boughs thereof: now also thy breasts shall be as clusters of the vine, and the smell of thy nose like apples;"

Figurative Interpretation - "Until the day break, and the shadows flee away" - Perhaps the metaphor of the day breaking is a reference to the Second Coming of Christ Jesus. Jesus went in Heaven after the resurrection and sent the Holy Spirit upon earth until His Return. The breaking of day would be His glorious return to earth. The phrase "Until the day break, and the shadows flee away" is found in Song of Solomon 2:17 and Song of Solomon 4:6.

Song of Solomon 2:17, "Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, turn, my beloved, and be thou like a roe or a young hart upon the mountains of Bether."

Song of Solomon 4:6, "Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, I will get me to the mountain of myrrh, and to the hill of frankincense."

"I will get me to the mountain of myrrh, and to the hill of frankincense" - In the Song of Solomon the mountains and hills refer to the heavenly realm, where the resurrected Christ dwells, and from where the Holy Spirit was sent. The Lord is calling His children to abide in this heavenly realm as a place of retreat and refreshing. The mountain of myrrh and hill of frankincense is referred to again in Song of Solomon 4:6. In the closing verse of Songs a similar metaphor is used in the phrase "mountain of spices" ( Song of Solomon 8:14).

Song of Solomon 8:14, "Make haste, my beloved, and be thou like to a roe or to a young hart upon the mountains of spices."

Song of Solomon 4:7 Thou art all fair, my love; there is no spot in thee.

Song of Solomon 4:7Literal Interpretation - Song of Solomon 4:7 may be considered as a summary statement of the previous six verses that describe the beauty of the bride ( Song of Solomon 4:1-6).

Figurative Interpretation - Song of Solomon 4:7 may be interpreted figuratively to mean that this child of God is without sin. Hudson Taylor interprets this to mean that the believer is "fit for service." 195]

195] J. Hudson Taylor, Union and Communion (Edinburgh, Great Britain: R. & R. Clark, Ltd, c 1893, 1929) [on-line]; accessed 28 December 2008; available from http://www.ccel.org/ccel/taylor_jh/union.i.html; Internet, notes on Song of Solomon 4:7.


Verses 1-15

The Wedding Song of Solomon - We may look at Song of Solomon 4:1-15 as a wedding song in which the bridegroom expresses his devotion and love to his bride alone and asks her for the same commitment by giving her a wedding song ( Song of Solomon 4:1-15) before she yields to him in the marriage bed to consummate the wedding ( Song of Solomon 4:16 to Song of Solomon 5:1). He first describes her beauty, beginning with her eyes, then her teeth, her lips, her speech, her temples, her neck and her breasts ( Song of Solomon 4:1-7). Then he makes his request for her to forsake her homeland and come to dwell with him ( Song of Solomon 4:8). He then bases this request upon his passionate love for her ( Song of Solomon 4:9-10). The bridegroom then describes her inner beauty ( Song of Solomon 4:11-15).

Illustration- I remember the wedding of the music director of our church in the 1979 or 1980 at Hiland Park Baptist Church. During the wedding he sang to her a love song. Thus, such singing is not uncommon, even in our cultures today.


Verse 8

Song of Solomon 4:8 Come with me from Lebanon, my spouse, with me from Lebanon: look from the top of Amana, from the top of Shenir and Hermon, from the lions" dens, from the mountains of the leopards.

Song of Solomon 4:8Word Study on "my spouse" - Gesenius says the Hebrew word "spouse" "kal-law"" ( כַּלָּה) (H 3618) means, "a bride, maiden bethrothed, a daughter-in-law."Strong says it means, "a bride, a son's wife." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 34times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "daughter in law 17, bride 9, spouse 8." This word is found 6 times in the Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:8-12; Song of Solomon 5:1).

Song of Solomon 4:8Word Study on "Amana" - Gesenius says the Hebrew name "Amanah" ( אֲמָנָה) (H 549) means, "a covenant." Strong says the name Amana is the same as "Amanah" (H 548), and refers to "a mountain near Damascus." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used only two times in the Scriptures, the other use being translated as "Abana" as a variant reading, in 2 Kings 5:12. According to Naaman the leper it was a very beautiful river of Damascus.

2 Kings 5:12, "Are not Abana and Pharpar, rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? may I not wash in them, and be clean? So he turned and went away in a rage."

Song of Solomon 4:8Word Study on "Shenir" - Gesenius says the Hebrew name "Shenir" "shen-eer"" ( שְׂנִיר) (H 8149) literally means, "coat of mail." Strong says it is derived from an unused root that means "to be pointed, peak," and refers to "Shenir or Senir, a peak of Lebanon." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 4times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "Senir 2, Shenir 2." Its other uses are:

Deuteronomy 3:9, "(Which Hermon the Sidonians call Sirion; and the Amorites call it Shenir;)"

1 Chronicles 5:23, "And the children of the half tribe of Manasseh dwelt in the land: they increased from Bashan unto Baalhermon and Senir, and unto mount Hermon."

Ezekiel 27:5, "They have made all thy ship boards of fir trees of Senir: they have taken cedars from Lebanon to make masts for thee."

Song of Solomon 4:8Word Study on "Hermon" - Strong says the Hebrew name "Hermon" "kher-mone"" ( חֶרְמֹון) (H 2768) means, "abrupt," and refers to Hermon, "a mountain in Palestine." The Enhanced Strong says it is found 13times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "Hermon 13."

Song of Solomon 4:8Word Study on "mountains" - Strong says the Hebrew word "mountain" "harar" ( הָרָר) (H 2042) means, "mountain, hill, mount." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 13times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "mountain 10, hill 2, mount 1." The Enhanced Strong says it is one time used in the Song of Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:8).

The Song of Solomon describes the mountains metaphorically as "the mountains of Bether" ( Song of Solomon 2:17), "mount Gilead" ( Song of Solomon 4:1), "the mountain of myrrh" ( Song of Solomon 4:6), "the mountain of spices" ( Song of Solomon 8:14), "the mountains of the leopards" ( Song of Solomon 4:8). The hills are referred to as "the hill of frankincense" ( Song of Solomon 4:6). Watchman Nee says the phrase "the mountains of spices" refers to "the new millennial world of fragrance and beauty." 196] The mountains and hills seem to refer to the heavenly, spiritual realm of eternity that the believer partakes of in a limited measure along his earthly journey.

196] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 157.

Song of Solomon 4:8Literal Interpretation - Many scholars interpret Song of Solomon 4:8 as the Lover's call for the Shulamite to forsake her homeland in Lebanon. Mounts Amana, Shenir and Hermon are evidently three high peaks on the mountain range in Lebanon. Perhaps these mountain ranges were viewed from the hometown and vineyards of the Shulamite woman, thus, reminding her of her beautiful homeland. In this case, the king is calling her to forsake what is pleasant and beautiful in her sight.

In contrast, some scholars interpret Song of Solomon 4:8 as a call from her Lover to come up to the tops of the mountains so that she can see the beloved Promised Land in its beauty and majesty.

Figurative Interpretation - If the Lover is calling the Shulamite to forsake Lebanon, then the figurative interpretation means that Christ calls us at this point in our spiritual journey to forsake all and follow Him, much like Jesus called His disciples to do the same. Lebanon would represent the best that this world has to offer us. Figuratively speaking, this is the place in the Song of Solomon where a person is called to divine service, which is a greater sacrifice than what many believers are called to do.

If the Lover is calling his beloved bride to come up to the tops of the mountains of Lebanon so that she can see the beloved Promised Land in its beauty and majesty, then Song of Solomon 4:8 can be interpreted to mean that the Lord is calling us to walk in a higher realm, where we can see things from a heavenly perspective. From the mountains of Lebanon can be seen the beautify cedars of Lebanon. It may be possible to see portions of the Promised Land as well. The lion and the leopard represent the fact that strong demonic realms dwell on the mountain tops. There are great battles that must be fought in the heavenly realm. Christ is calling this person to walk in an elevated realm of authority and divine perception where the gifts of the Spirit manifest. This is the place where one walks in the anointing for the work of the ministry and tears down the strongholds of Satan. If the names of these three mountains are relevant, then they symbolize the covenant a minister of the Gospel has with Christ, who has put on his armour in order to defeat the higher realms of Satan. This interpretation draws for us the image of spiritual warfare that Paul describes in Ephesians 6:11-18.

Ephesians 6:11, "Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil."


Verse 9

Song of Solomon 4:9 Thou hast ravished my heart, my sister, my spouse; thou hast ravished my heart with one of thine eyes, with one chain of thy neck.

Song of Solomon 4:9Word Study on "ravished" - Strong says the Hebrew word "ravished" "law-bab"" ( לָבַב) (H 3823) means, "to be enclosed (as if with fat), to unheart, to transport (with love)," or to "stultify." The Enhanced Strong says this Hebrew word is used 5 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "ravished my heart 2, make 1, made cakes 1, be wise 1." It used twice in Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:9 twice). In Song of Solomon 4:9 it is used in the Piel form, which intensifies the meaning of the verb.

Comments- In its simple form the verb ( לָבַב) means that the bride has stirred his heart. The Piel form intensives it to mean, "captured his heart." With the repetitive statement in the Piel, it is the strongest way the Hebrew can say "You have uttered captured and ravished my heart."

Song of Solomon 4:9Word Study on "my spouse" - Gesenius says the Hebrew word "spouse" "kal-law"" ( כַּלָּה) (H 3618) means, "a bride, maiden bethrothed, a daughter-in-law."Strong says it means, "a bride, a son's wife." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 34times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "daughter in law 17, bride 9, spouse 8." This word is found 6 times in the Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:8-12; Song of Solomon 5:1).

Song of Solomon 4:9 — "my sister, my spouse" - Comments- The phrase "my sister, my spouse" will be used in Song of Solomon 4:9-10; Song of Solomon 4:12; Song of Solomon 5:1. Garrett suggests this phrase implies they have become "one family," having "common flesh and blood." 197] It is the bridegroom's attempt to emphasize the bride's covenant relationship so that she will yield to him in the marriage bed.

197] Duane Garrett, Song of Songs, in Word Biblical Commentary, vol 23B (Dallas, Texas: Word, Incorporated, 2002), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004), comments on Song of Solomon 4:9.

Song of Solomon 4:9Figurative Interpretation - "Thou hast ravished my heart, my sister, my spouse; thou hast ravished my heart" - The repetitive phrase in Song of Solomon 4:9 is used to intensify its meaning. In other words, the king was ravished to the ultimate degree with his bride. "with one of thine eyes" - One look at a person's eyes can tell a thousand words, if the two are intimate, if they know each other's thoughts. "with one chain of thy neck" - Watchman Nee notes that the chains on one's neck represents obedience. 198]

198] Watchman Nee, Song of Songs (Fort Washington, Pennsylvania: CLC Publications, c 1965, 2001), 86.

Proverbs 1:9, "For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck."


Verse 10

Song of Solomon 4:10 How fair is thy love, my sister, my spouse! how much better is thy love than wine! and the smell of thine ointments than all spices!

Song of Solomon 4:10Word Study on "my spouse" - Gesenius says the Hebrew word "spouse" "kal-law"" ( כַּלָּה) (H 3618) means, "a bride, maiden bethrothed, a daughter-in-law."Strong says it means, "a bride, a son's wife." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 34times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "daughter in law 17, bride 9, spouse 8." This word is found 6 times in the Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:8-12; Song of Solomon 5:1).

Song of Solomon 4:10Word Study on "spices" - Strong says the Hebrew word "spices" "besem" ( בֶּשֶׂם) or "bôsem" ( בֹּשֶׂם) (H 1314) means, "fragrance, spicery, the balsam plant." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 29 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "spice 24, sweet odours 2, sweet 2, sweet smell 1." This word is used six times in the Song of Solomon ( Song of Solomon 4:10; Song of Solomon 4:14; Song of Solomon 4:16; Song of Solomon 5:13; Song of Solomon 6:2; Song of Solomon 8:14).


Verses 11-15

Song of Solomon 4:11 Thy lips, O my spouse, drop as the honeycomb: honey and milk are under thy tongue; and the smell of thy garments is as the honeycomb.

Song of Solomon 4:11Word Study on "my spouse" - Gesenius says the Hebrew word "spouse" "kal-law"" ( כַּלָּה) (H 3618) means, "a bride, maiden bethrothed, a daughter-in-law."Strong says it means, "a bride, a son's wife." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 34times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "daughter in law 17, bride 9, spouse 8." This word is found 6 times in the Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:8-12; Song of Solomon 5:1).

Song of Solomon 4:11-15 — The Bride's Purity: The Bride is an Enclosed Garden- Literal Interpretation- Song of Solomon 4:12 seems to be figurative of a description of the Shulamite woman's virginity. Song of Solomon 4:13-15 will describe the beauty of virginity. A similar metaphor is used for the Shulamite's little sister.

Song of Solomon 8:8-9, "We have a little sister, and she hath no breasts: what shall we do for our sister in the day when she shall be spoken for? If she be a wall, we will build upon her a palace of silver: and if she be a door, we will inclose her with boards of cedar."

An enclosed garden is a place excluded for many. It is a place that only the chosen are allowed to enter. She will open only to him in Song of Solomon 4:16. God created her garden and designed it entirely for the delight of her husband.

Figurative Interpretation - "A garden inclosed is my sister, my spouse; a spring shut up, a fountain sealed" - We are to give our heart entirely unto the Lord, for it was created to belong entirely to Him. We are to guard our hearts with all diligence ( Proverbs 4:23). However, when He alone is the partaker of our heart and affections, as in Song of Solomon 5:1, "I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk," then His love overflows through us so that He may now say, "eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved." Then there is abundance for everyone to partake of.

Proverbs 4:23 reads, "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life."

"Thy plants are an orchard of pomegranates, with pleasant fruits; camphire, with spikenard, Spikenard and saffron; calamus and cinnamon, with all trees of frankincense; myrrh and aloes, with all the chief spices:" - Song of Solomon 4:13-14 describes a garden with unlimited plants to delight a person's senses and emotions. God created our hearts to be a source the source of gifts that bring delight to others. However, we must let these plantings be of the Lord and sanctify ourselves in holy living and communion with Him. Then our garden will be one of endless delights unto the Lord. Our joy will be full. These plants may symbolize the fruit of the Spirit, for in the moving of the wind ( Song of Solomon 4:16), these delights are released for others to enjoy ( Song of Solomon 5:1).

Song of Solomon 4:12 A garden inclosed is my sister, my spouse; a spring shut up, a fountain sealed.

Song of Solomon 4:12Word Study on "a garden" - Strong says the Hebrew word "garden" "gan" ( גַּן) (H 1588) literally means, "a garden (as fenced)." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 42times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "garden 42." The word is used 8 times in the Song of Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:12; Song of Solomon 4:15-16; Song of Solomon 5:1; Song of Solomon 6:2; Song of Solomon 8:13). It figuratively refers to a place of communion with God; for this was one of the reasons God planted the Garden of Eden, to have fellowship with man in the cool of the day.

Song of Solomon 4:12Word Study on "my spouse" - Gesenius says the Hebrew word "spouse" "kal-law"" ( כַּלָּה) (H 3618) means, "a bride, maiden bethrothed, a daughter-in-law."Strong says it means, "a bride, a son's wife." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 34times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "daughter in law 17, bride 9, spouse 8." This word is found 6 times in the Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:8-12; Song of Solomon 5:1).

Song of Solomon 4:13 Thy plants are an orchard of pomegranates, with pleasant fruits; camphire, with spikenard,

Song of Solomon 4:13Word Study on "pomegranates" - Strong says the Hebrew word "pomegranate" "rimmôwn" ( רִמּוֹן) (H 7416) means "a pomegranate, the tree or the fruit," and it also refers to the pomegranate ornament used in the Tabernacle and Temple. The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 32times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "pomegranate 31, pomegranate tree 1." It is used times in the book of Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:3; Song of Solomon 4:13; Song of Solomon 6:7; Song of Solomon 6:11; Song of Solomon 7:12; Song of Solomon 8:2).

Comments- The pomegranate tree was one of the most attractive fruit trees in the Middle East, with brilliant scarlet blossom in the spring ( Song of Solomon 7:12). The Israelites planted the tree in orchards ( Song of Solomon 4:13; Song of Solomon 6:11; Song of Solomon 7:12) and made wine from its juice ( Song of Solomon 8:2) The beautiful texture of its inner fruit may have been behind the metaphorical phrase, "thy temples are like a piece of a pomegranate within thy locks" ( Song of Solomon 4:3; Song of Solomon 6:7). 199]

199] E. W. G. Masterman, "Pomegranate," in International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, ed. James Orr (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co, c 1915, 1939), in The Sword Project, v 1511 [CD-ROM] (Temple, AZ: CrossWire Bible Society, 1990-2008).

Song of Solomon 4:14 Spikenard and saffron; calamus and cinnamon, with all trees of frankincense; myrrh and aloes, with all the chief spices:

Song of Solomon 4:14Word Study on "spices" - Strong says the Hebrew word "spices" "besem" ( בֶּשֶׂם) or "bôsem" ( בֹּשֶׂם) (H 1314) means, "fragrance, spicery, the balsam plant." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 29 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "spice 24, sweet odours 2, sweet 2, sweet smell 1." This word is used six times in the Song of Solomon ( Song of Solomon 4:10; Song of Solomon 4:14; Song of Solomon 4:16; Song of Solomon 5:13; Song of Solomon 6:2; Song of Solomon 8:14).

Song of Solomon 4:15 A fountain of gardens, a well of living waters, and streams from Lebanon.

Song of Solomon 4:15Word Study on "gardens" - Strong says the Hebrew word "garden" "gan" ( גַּן) (H 1588) literally means, "a garden (as fenced)." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 42times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "garden 42." The word is used 8 times in the Song of Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:12; Song of Solomon 4:15-16; Song of Solomon 5:1; Song of Solomon 6:2; Song of Solomon 8:13). It figuratively refers to a place of communion with God; for this was one of the reasons God planted the Garden of Eden, to have fellowship with man in the cool of the day.


Verse 16

The Wedding Vows- Some Christian scholars have interpreted Song of Solomon 4:16 to Song of Solomon 5:1 as a description of the act of consummating the marriage between a man and a woman in the wedding bed. We find a similar description of this bed of spices in Proverbs 7:16-18 when the adulteress tries to woo the naive young man into her bed of worldly pleasures. However, I understand it to be symbolic of the couple's wedding vows towards one another. Having been impressed by the wedding processional ( Song of Solomon 3:6-11) and wooed by a wedding song ( Song of Solomon 4:1-15), the bride finally yields to his desires by allowing him to come into her "garden," which is figurative of an experience of intense delight ( Song of Solomon 4:16 to Song of Solomon 5:1). She vows herself to him ( Song of Solomon 4:16) and he responds by accepting her as his wife ( Song of Solomon 5:1).

Proverbs 7:16-18, "I have decked my bed with coverings of tapestry, with carved works, with fine linen of Egypt. I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. Come, let us take our fill of love until the morning: let us solace ourselves with loves."

Song of Solomon 4:16 Awake, O north wind; and come, thou south; blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof may flow out. Let my beloved come into his garden, and eat his pleasant fruits.

Song of Solomon 4:16Word Study on "garden" - Strong says the Hebrew word "garden" "gan" ( גַּן) (H 1588) literally means, "a garden (as fenced)." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 42times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "garden 42." The word is used 8 times in the Song of Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:12; Song of Solomon 4:15-16; Song of Solomon 5:1; Song of Solomon 6:2; Song of Solomon 8:13). It figuratively refers to a place of communion with God; for this was one of the reasons God planted the Garden of Eden, to have fellowship with man in the cool of the day.

Song of Solomon 4:16Word Study on "the spices" - Strong says the Hebrew word "spices" "besem" ( בֶּשֶׂם) or "bôsem" ( בֹּשֶׂם) (H 1314) means, "fragrance, spicery, the balsam plant." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 29 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "spice 24, sweet odours 2, sweet 2, sweet smell 1." This word is used six times in the Song of Solomon ( Song of Solomon 4:10; Song of Solomon 4:14; Song of Solomon 4:16; Song of Solomon 5:13; Song of Solomon 6:2; Song of Solomon 8:14).

Song of Solomon 4:16Literal Interpretation- A garden symbolizes a place of pleasure and delight. In fact, God created a garden for Adam and Eve and named it "Eden", which means, "delight". It was created as a place where God could fellowship with Adam and walk with him in the cool of the day. In the same way, the Beloved invites her Lover into her "garden of delights" to taste of them. This means that she has yielded herself entirely to him and allows their love to be consummated in the marriage bed.

Figurative Interpretation - "Awake, O north wind; and come, thou south" - The wind is figurative of the Holy Spirit; or, the north wind symbolizes her willingness to endure adversities, and the south winds symbolize times of refreshing. Her commitment to accept the north wind is tested in Song of Solomon 5:3-7 as she faces persecution. "blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof may flow out" - Bickle refers to 2 Corinthians 2:15 to suggest the outflow of spices symbolizes her effort to offer life to others, committing herself to a deeper walk of consecration. 200]

200] Mike Bickle, Session 12 - The Ravished Heart of the Heavenly Bridegroom ( Song of Solomon 4:9-5:1), in Song of Songs (Kansas City, Missouri: International House of Prayer, 1998), 24.

2 Corinthians 2:15, "For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish:"

Song of Solomon 4:16 may also suggest that she is opening her heart for the Holy Spirit comes upon her. His presence during times of communion allows us to pray effectively and confidently as we feel God's presence. We can pray according to the will of God. This verse may also imply that a child of God is praying in the Holy Ghost, praying in tongues.

Song of Solomon 5:1 I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk: eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved.

Song of Solomon 5:1Word Study on "a garden" - Strong says the Hebrew word "garden" "gan" ( גַּן) (H 1588) literally means, "a garden (as fenced)." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 42times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "garden 42." The word is used 8 times in the Song of Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:12; Song of Solomon 4:15-16; Song of Solomon 5:1; Song of Solomon 6:2; Song of Solomon 8:13). It figuratively refers to a place of communion with God; for this was one of the reasons God planted the Garden of Eden, to have fellowship with man in the cool of the day.

Song of Solomon 5:1Word Study on "my spouse" - Gesenius says the Hebrew word "spouse" "kal-law"" ( כַּלָּה) (H 3618) means, "a bride, maiden bethrothed, a daughter-in-law."Strong says it means, "a bride, a son's wife." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 34times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "daughter in law 17, bride 9, spouse 8." This word is found 6 times in the Songs ( Song of Solomon 4:8-12; Song of Solomon 5:1).

Song of Solomon 5:1Word Study on "O beloved" - Strong says the Hebrew word "love" "dôwd" ( דּוֹד) (H 1730) means, a love-token, lover, friend, beloved, uncle," and comes from an unused root properly meaning "to boil." The Enhanced Strong says this word it is used 61times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as, "beloved 34, uncle 16, love(s) 8, father"s brother 2, wellbeloved 1." It is used 39 times in the book of Songs of its 61Old Testament uses. This Hebrew word in Song of Solomon 5:1 is used in its plural form, so should be translated "beloved ones," which is a reference to the wedding guests within the context of this passage.

Song of Solomon 5:1Comments- Song of Solomon 5:1 serves as a final verse to one of the five divisions of the Song of Solomon.

Literal Interpretation- "I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk" - The bridegroom responds to the bride's invitation and enters into the garden of delight, which is the first act of intercourse. It is a garden that God actually designed and made for this occasion. The variety of metaphors used in Song of Solomon 5:1 implies the manifold delights of the marriage bed. "drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved" - The bridegroom invites his new bride as well as his wedding guests to enjoy the wedding festival by drinking wine in abundance so that they will feel the pleasure of its effects.

Figurative Interpretation - "I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk" - The bridegroom now calls her "my garden, my sister, my spouse," indicating ownership over her will. We are to give our heart entirely unto the Lord. For it was created to belong entirely to Him. We are to guard our hearts with all diligence ( Proverbs 4:23). However, when He alone is the partaker of our heart and affections, as in Song of Solomon 5:1, "I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk," then His love overflows through us so that He may now say, "eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved." Then there is abundance for everyone to partake of. "eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved" - It is the Spirit of God that moves upon our hearts ( Song of Solomon 4:16) and releases His divine gifts that others may partake and be blessed. Communion with God through the Spirit is for everyone.

Proverbs 4:23 reads, "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life."

 


Copyright Statement
These files are copyrighted by the author, Gary Everett. Used by Permission.
No distribution beyond personal use without permission.

Bibliography Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Song of Solomon 4:4". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ghe/song-of-solomon-4.html. 2013.

Lectionary Calendar
Saturday, October 19th, 2019
the Week of Proper 23 / Ordinary 28
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