Awake, O north wind, And come, O south! Blow upon my garden, That its spices may flow out. Let my beloved come to his garden And eat its pleasant fruits…I have come to 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. (To His Friends) Eat, O friends! Drink, yes, drink deeply, O beloved ones! Song of Solomon 4:16 + 5:1
When I’m alone, I want to be left alone. When I’m with my wife or kids, I don’t want any intruders. When I’m communing with Jesus, I don’t want to be disturbed. When somebody talks or coughs during church service, I’m irritated. When I’m having an awesome time of fellowship with a friend or two or three, I’m not fond of others butting in and changing the topic.
The list could go on and on.
You and I are within our rights when it is our desire to maintain these cherished bonds, especially when the activities are both wholesome and pleasing to the Lord, aren’t we? After all, Jesus would be pleased that we wouldn’t want these moments with Him interrupted, right?
Not necessarily according to this portion of the Song of Solomon.
Song of Solomon
You may know that there are several ways we can analysis the *Song of Solomon, but I feel it’s most beneficial to see the entire eight chapters of the book as an allegory, that is a symbolic narrative that depicts Jesus Christ as the Groom and His subsequent love and purpose for the church, His bride.
“Awake, O north wind, And come, O south! Blow upon my garden, That its spices may flow out. Let my beloved come to his garden And eat its pleasant fruits.” Song of Solomon 4:16
Here, the bride speaks first and we see in her an attitude of eager and loyal submission to her Husband. Her first sentence is an invitation for His scrutiny. She effectively says to her Lord to let the revealing and sanctifying winds of adversity blow – she is subject to His ownership, authority, and redemptive power.
She further recognizes that not only does she belong to the King, but the garden and the fruit therein belongs to Him as well. Her confidence comes in knowing she is robed in His righteousness, that He alone is good, and that He creates good things for His good pleasure. The fruit she bears under His covering was produced by Him and for Him and as she freely brings Him blessing she is essentially fulfilling her God-given objective. As a result, she is filled with joy realizing her true purpose in the world.
“…For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure…You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created.” Philippians 2:13 + Revelation 4:11
Later on in the New Testament, Jesus Himself builds on that doctrine when while walking with His disciples He hungrily comes across a fig tree and curses it for being barren. We need to know that Jesus was not being cruel, but rather He was taking the occasion to illustrate a critical point to the church: fruitlessness is worthlessness and it defies the purpose of a Christian’s mission.
This cursed tree is for our example, but remember, Jesus knows the beginning from the end and whether-or-not a tree (or an alleged disciple) will ever in their lifetime produce. I personally find comfort in the parable He shares in Luke’s Gospel, as it reminds me that Jesus is the God of second chances and restoration.
“A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, ‘Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?’ But he answered and said to him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it down.’ ” Luke 13:6-9
Back to the Song
Her Beloved Lord now speaks…
“I have come to 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. (To His Friends) Eat, O friends! Drink, yes, drink deeply, O beloved ones! Song of Solomon 5:1
He comes to the garden, again making the distinction that it and all within belongs to Him. He communes, He partakes, He is blessed, and He brings home unexpected guests to His new bride.
I recall a time when my dad did that.
He was late for dinner, the food was getting cold, and mom couldn’t wait any longer; we were instructed to sit down at the table. In walked dad and it appeared that perhaps he had a little too much wine…without the milk. Right behind him walked his buddy Head-gear (whose real name was Edgar).
Honey, I brought home a dinner guest!
Let’s just say my Mom was not pleased, but in her defense her reaction was slightly influenced by my dad’s pre-dinner indulgences that day. Be that as it may…
God is saying here in the Bible text that He doesn’t always travel alone — His bride is representative of His corporate body, the Church. And not only that — sometimes He brings home some folks He loves that are not of the church in order that they too might be blessed, fed, and subsequently led into His family. Jesus is not just in love with us individually, He’s in love with the body entirely and those who might become His followers. Jesus is proclaiming that when we’re submitted to Him, we’re also submitted to His directives towards those He loves. What Jesus implies here in the Old Testament He later affirms in the New.
“By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35
- Are you submitted to both Jesus and to His doctrine?
- Do you see yourself and your stuff as belonging to Him?
- If not, are you submitted to sanctification and being refined?
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*I selected the Kings James Version of the text because it omits the explanatory notations that were not a part of the original text. Labels such as: The Beloved, The Shulamite, and The Daughters of Jerusalem aren’t inspired words of God and occasionally they are inaccurately placed within the text.
- Under the Fig Tree (gladlylistening.wordpress.com)
- No Figs? Get Rid of the Tree! (ptl2010.com)
- does a woman’s freedom in church incite rebellion in the home (eatinglocusts.wordpress.com)
- Thursday, December 15, 2011 @ Song of Solomon 3-4 (phyllisbenigas.wordpress.com)