Have you ever wondered why “Song of Solomon” is in the Bible? Here was a man who had many wives, some of which were worshipers of anything but the God of the Bible. Of course, they led this wisest of all men to fall into serious sin. He wrote most of the Proverbs, built the temple, established the ordained worship there, wrote hundreds of songs, of which this is the “Song of Songs.” His reign as King of Israel was marked by wealth, justice, and world renown. But, a love song??? Why not just stick with Frank Sinatra or Bobby Darin or Rod Steward?
The reason is that this is about Jesus’s love for his people. It uses two of our closest relationships to illustrate just how intimate our relationship with him can be.
I came to my garden, my sister, my bride. I gathered my myrrh with my spice. I ate my honeycomb with my honey. I drank my wine with my milk. Eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved (Song of Solomon 5:1).
Jesus is calling for his friends, indeed his “beloved,” to drink abundantly of his love. We have talked about the Father’s love and how important it is to bask in the sunshine of his love for us. Now this is giving us a new dimension of the love of Christ for us, his repentant people. We are his sister. He is our brother. He will fight for us, if necessary. He will come to our help if someone is abusing us. He will go to war for us. Can’t we always go to our brother–sometimes with secrets we would never tell our parents. Later, we work with our brother to care for our aging parents and get even closer. It is a life relationship that enriches our life and is quite different from husband or father. By this we know that this is not Solomon telling a story about his greatest love affair. Leviticus doesn’t allow romantic love between brother and sister. But, this is Jesus speaking to his Beloved, his church, his people. “You are my sister.” What does that mean to you?
The Lord Jesus Christ took on human nature and a body like ours. He was a man in every way. He was a “Son of Adam” or “Son of Man.” Meaning he was the ideal man, like Adam before he sinned. Even now, resurrected and sitting at the right hand of God, the Father, he calls us his beloved sister.
In addition, he has prepared a special place to take his sister. A garden. I love gardens. Especially ones in unlikely places like beside a busy street. They are retreats from the noise and confusion of life. I like to grow herbs and spices too. Rosemary, basil, mint, thyme, oregano…. Jesus brought wine, milk, and honey with him. into the garden. And of course, myrrh, a rock-like perfume. A secret garden. A special place to meet. What a sweet brother! But, Jesus is no ordinary brother. He is kind and ever caring. H forgives. Look how he forgave Peter’s denial and John’s running away from the Garden. Look how he taught the men on the road to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-35) and shared a simple meal with them. Look how kind he was to appear to Mary Magdalene to show her that he really was alive, telling her to go to his brothers (John 20:15-19)e
Think about how he has treated you. He died in your place so you could live forever in spite of your sins. He talks about your needs to his father and pleads for your care and for more grace. And, perhaps most of all, he asked the Holy Spirit to comfort and strength you until he can be with you again physically in his resurrected body. All man and all God. A very special brother.
You have been swimming in the ocean of the Father’s love for you. Now immerse yourself in the brotherly love of Christ Jesus for you. Think about his desire to be with you. Make sure your heart is tender through turning away from any sin of which you are aware. Tender because you see your weakness, and yet, he asks you to come away from your troubles and the glitter of the world into a secret garden to spend a little time with him.
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