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  • Writer's pictureJan Weihl

Sanctity of Marriage (Song of Solomon 6)

I started and ended my reading in Song of Solomon thinking "this is my least favorite book in all of Scripture." It's still towards the bottom of the list. But after spending time studying it and meditating on it, I was blown away by the application for marriage.

Song of Solomon is a love poem which tells of the love between a bridegroom (King Solomon) and his bride (a peasant girl). The application is in the illustrations of their marriage, which also reminds us of Christ's great love for those who trust in Him.

Just as Jesus' love for His followers never fails, a man's love for his bride and a woman's love for her husband, should never fail. The marriage covenant is not just between a man and his wife but also between them and God.

Song of Solomon starts out in chapter 1 describing the wedding day:

Song of Solomon 1:4 The king has brought me into his chambers.

This is the final step of the wedding, the consummation of the marriage covenant, established by God for all humanity through the first man and his wife in Genesis:

Genesis 2:23-24 The man said, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.

Isn't it amazing that God created a genetic opposite mate, not just for man, but for all creatures on this earth? Can you imagine Adam's delight and amazement to see God create a perfect mate, genetically opposite with different skills, abilities, and responsibilities, yet perfectly matching his needs for a life partner?

This beautiful union between a man and his wife is exactly what Song of Solomon celebrates. The peasant woman who became Solomon's wife describes herself as just common and ordinary as the common flowers of Israel:

Song of Solomon 2:1 I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys.

But to the man, King Solomon, she was his perfect mate and partner, specifically designed for him by God, just as we saw Eve was for Adam in Genesis. This is indeed God's perfect plan for all humanity over all time.

And God's plan, His sanctity for marriage, is perfect and life long. But the man and his wife must keep God at the center and honor their covenant to God, to love each other as Jesus loves us.

Then we see some wise warnings about how we are to honor our covenant to God in our marriage:

Song of Solomon 2:7 Promise me, O women of Jerusalem, .. not to awaken love until the time is right.

In other words, physical attraction is not enough to support a lasting committed relationship, honoring the covenant we make before God in marriage. We must patiently hold back the physical feelings and expressions of love, giving time for the commitment to be tested and developed and for God to acknowledge this is the mate He has chosen for us to join with through the sanctity of marriage.

Song of Solomon 4:15 You are a garden spring, a well of fresh water

Solomon's wife was refreshing to him. Do we refresh our spouse or are we a burden of complaints, sorrows, and problems? A man and wife must be determined and intentional to spend time together, constantly working at refreshing each other with encouraging words, respect, honor, and appreciation. We need to each be a haven of refreshment for our spouse from the world which will bring constant challenges.

Song of Solomon 5:16 This is my beloved and this is my friend.

The woman calls her husband her "friend." This could so easily be skipped over but is one of the most important aspects to marriage and I believe why so many marriages fail today. If a man and his wife are not in constant communication, talking through their plans, commitments, triumphs, and struggles, the marriage will break down as the communication breaks down.

God designed marriage to not just be physical attraction to the opposite gender but a physical, spiritual, and emotional union that cannot be replicated by any other relationship. It takes daily focus and time to truly honor the covenant we make with each other before God. It's not at all easy, but totally worth it. It's truly a beautiful gift God has given exclusively to a man and his wife.

In the last chapter, we see God's desired conclusion to the marriage covenant:

Song of Solomon 8:6 Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm; for love is as strong as death.

In God's perfect plan for marriage, we are to love our spouse until death do we part. The love we are supposed to bring to the marriage covenant, which represents Jesus' love for us, cannot be killed by time, disaster, or the challenges we face in this world.

True love is priceless. It cannot be bought. It cannot wane or disappear. It is not selfish or self seeking.

In fact, when both the man and his wife understand their love for each other is to be an unending reflection of Christ's love for us, forgiving and full of grace, we also understand how God expects us to live out our marriage covenant to our spouse, until death do us part.

Dear Lord, Thank you for opening my eyes to the amazing application You have for us in the Song of Solomon. Lord, my heart is overcome with sadness as I see so many marriages, inside and outside of your body of believers, who are ending in divorce.

Once again I am reminded that within Your Word, if we just dedicate ourselves to studying it, meditating on it, and following it, You have given us everything we need to survive the challenges this world constantly brings to our lives.

Lord, I pray for those who are struggling in their marriages and going through divorce. Whatever their situation, I ask that they would be drawn close to You, experience your healing, love, and direction for the path You are calling them to take in the days ahead. In Jesus' name, amen.

Jan Weihl

Living Word Ministries

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