Sunday, 2 August 2015

New book - Song of Solomon

Good evening girls. I'm just popping in with an update of my plans for our Bible Study over the month of August. Over at Women Living Well (whose plan we follow), Courtney plans to study Song of Solomon a chapter a day for 8 days and then take a break for three weeks before starting into the book of Acts in September. But you know me, I don't let you off the hook that easily! I'd rather keep studying because it helps us to remain focused and committed to our Bible readings and I'd like us not to fall by the wayside by not studying. So hopefully you'll be able to continue along with me, even though we are still in the holiday months. So, to make it a bit easier, I think we'll just study a few verses a day, rather than a whole chapter. I am going to confess to you that I have never really studied this lovely book before, for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I could never really understand its true meaning (and the world has made out that it is quite 'on the edge' because of the physical references to the bride and the love between her and the bridegroom). Secondly, I could never work out who was talking to who and about who. So, unfortunately, I kind of skipped over this book. But I feel that I have missed out on a beautiful love story, not so much between this Shulamite woman and her shepherd bridegroom, but the ultimate love story between the redeemed church of the Lord Jesus Christ (ie the bride, which is in fact, you and me) and our Saviour, Christ Himself.

Of course I am no expert in Bible commentary, so I had to look for a book that we could use to guide us through this mysterious Song and I think I have found it in one which was published in 1997 by Dr Brian Green, London. Some of you may already have it in your own home, "The Shepherd of the Hills". Dr Green makes certain comments right from the outset of his book which have already clarified some of my questions. He says that generally when the bride speaks, it is about the bridegroom. Usually she is referred to by him as "my love" and he is called "my beloved" by her. If your Bible is anything like mine, it will have little headings saying who is speaking but I feel that I will have to disregard those because, if I am to go by Dr Green's interpretation (and that of many other renowned authors such as CH Spurgeon), the most important thought that he has in my opinion is this one - there are not three main characters/groups (which is the line most authors take) but four! These are:

  • The Bride (also known as the Shulamite shepherdess)
  • The King (Solomon in all his wealth and majesty)
  • The Shepherd or bridegroom (living among his flock)
  • The daughters and watchmen of Jerusalem
Having read and agreed with his insight on this, I have been able to understand the book much more easily. It makes more sense to me now. Of course, you can make up your own mind on this but the most important thing of all is not to focus on the physical relationship between this betrothed or engaged couple (bear in mind, they are not yet married) but to focus on the fact that it is a picture of us, the redeemed Church, waiting in this world of trouble and trial and temptation for our Bridegroom, the Lord Jesus Christ to come for us for the final time to live with Him for ever in eternity.

Each week I will add the verses that we will be studying. So here are the readings for this week.

Wishing you a blessed time of studies as you draw closer to God through His love story to and about us, His redeemed and privileged people,

Hugs, Karen x

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