November 1 – Today’s Readings – Song of Solomon 1-3 and Psalms 121
In the Song of Solomon, we find one of the great love stories of the Bible. If this is your first time through this book, you need to be aware of a couple of things. First – if the language seems somewhat sexually suggestive, it’s because God is deliberately trying to use the language of romance to speak about how He loves the Church. These are words of love spoken between lovers, but the primary or spiritual theme of the book is not about sex and marital love but about Christ and the Church. God wants us to understand that there should be PASSION in our relationship with Christ. Think for a moment of how these words could easily be phrases of love between you and the Lord Jesus:
Chapter 1:4 “Take me away with you—let us hurry! Let the king bring me into his chambers.”
Chapter 2:4 “He has taken me to the banquet hall, and his banner over me is love.”
Chapter 2:16 “My lover is mine and I am his; he browses among the lilies.”
Chapter 3:11 “Come out, you daughters of Zion, and look at King Solomon wearing the crown,”
This is an expression of how we might feel toward Jesus as we come to Him in worship. We want to be close to Him – we acknowledge that His banner over us is love – we know we are His and He is ours – we see Him as King of our lives. I’m hoping that the next three days of reading will bring you to a more passionate understanding of your love relationship with Jesus and His love relationship with you. It’s time for a new passion to arise in the Church.
Churches, Pastors and Teachers often seem to hold back when it comes to the Song Of Solomon, fearing they may be misunderstood or that the subject matter may be rated as inappropriate for Church. However, we should come to the Lord in worship in much the same way that a spouse would approach the marriage bed. Our purpose is to be completely open and vulnerable – that is, “naked and unashamed” [Genesis 2:25] with the Lord. As we sing, pray, and listen for His voice, we want and need to have a living experience with Him – an experience that leaves us surrendered and content in His arms of love. This is the spiritual meaning behind the book we are reading. Remember that it was only when sin separated man from woman – and mankind from God, that Adam and Eve felt the need to “cover up”. [Genesis 3:7] As children of God, we come to Him with no cover-ups and we express ourselves with no shame because of the covenant He has made with us.
1. In which ways could your personal relationship with Jesus be more “passionate”?
2. Give an example of a Bible character who had a “passionate” relationship with the Lord.