This is about intimacy
Song of Songs 2:7 intrigued me the other night while we were at our house church. At one point, I had two Bibles open one on top of the other, another open in my other hand and was searching for a way to get another one open.
The NIV says it like this: “Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you by the gazelles and by the does of the field: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.”
Then I read it in The Living Bible and my mind was blown!
The Living Bible says it this way: “O girls of Jerusalem, I adjure you by the gazelles and deer in the park, that you do not awaken my lover.[a] Let him sleep!”
Woah! I thought. This said, Do not awaken my lover…
Most of the church looks at this verse and teaches it this way: Don’t jump headlong into a relationship with the opposite sex until you’re ready emotionally and mature enough for a commitment.
This is not necessarily a wrong thing to teach. It’s true that jumping into a relationship and going too far too fast is unhealthy. However, I’m more and more convinced this is not what the Shulamite girl was talking about here or what God had in mind when he inspired this book.
Remember: Song of Songs can be used as a playbook for the bedroom. But it’s most definitely not ONLY a playbook for the bedroom. The Bible, every sentence, each paragraph, points to Jesus.
Song of Songs 2:7 is more accurately talking about intimacy with God and the delight of knowing him.
Charles Spurgeon sums it up beautifully in his sermon on Song of Songs 2:7. He writes that the girl is full of joy at having found her beloved. “Her joy was so great as almost to overpower her, and yet, so nearly does fear tread upon the heels of joy, she was filled with dread lest her bliss should come to an end.”
She’d found the one her heart longed for. As Song People, we find God and realize deep within ourselves that this is it, this is God, and we’re madly in love. Male or female, we’re left to succumb to the very bliss of love. We allow ourselves to be ravished by God’s love and then rapidly seek for more!
Spurgeon goes on to explain that other people, those Daughters of Jerusalem, would disturb her Lord and grieve him. If grieved, she, too, would be grieved and if he left, the banquet of her delight would be over.
The Shulamite girl charges the Daughter of Jerusalem in a poetic way. She says, “by the gazelles and deer of the park…” It is understandable to say that if you saw a gazelle, you’d not want to disturb it, but rather, you’d look upon it with awe and make certain not to make any rash movements so that it would stay in your line of sight for as long as possible.
In his sermon, Spurgeon continues, “As one delights to see the red deer in the open glades of the forest, and counts the the finest ornaments of the scene, so do men whose eyes are opened rejoice in the saints whose high communion with heaven renders them beings of superior mould to common mortals. A person in converse with God is the admiration of angels.”
Being in an intimate place with God is such a special place that we want to jealously protect it. I’m not advocating that God’s like a vapor that will disappear at the slightest cough or hiccup. However, we are talking about the very real jealousy of Love.
“Was ever a lovelier sight seen than Jesus at the table with the beloved disciple leaning on his bosom? Is not Mary sitting at the Master’s feet a picture worthy of the choicest art? Do nothing, then, O ye who joy in things of beauty, to mar the fellowship in which the rarest beauty dwells,” writes Spurgeon.
The love of God is a tender thing. It’s gentle and kind. Protecting the place of intense intimacy is normal within the bounds of marriage. A man would never share his intimacy with his wife with someone else! No one else is allowed in the marriage bed except the husband and his wife. Likewise, as with our glorious bridegroom, we find ourselves addicted to the tender mercy and ocean-depth of love from Him. We want nothing, no sin or other lover, or trifling to”make even the slightest stir which might break the Beloved’s repose.”
This is not about works
This is not about doing or not doing something to make God stay or leave.
This is, and always has been, about LOVE.
Jesus has melted our hearts and given us the new nature of lovers and brides. Even the toughest of men are undone in the presence and love of God.
“Do not arouse or awaken love” is not a charge to stay pure until marriage. “Do not arouse or awaken love” is a charge to outside influences to keep away from our tender marriage to the Lord!
We say to drink deep the love of God! “This is the wine which they themselves quaff in everlasting bowls at the right hand of God, and the Lord of glory bids them quaff it to their fill” writes Spurgeon in a sermon on SoS 1:2.
Quaff your fill of love! Drink and guzzle. Don’t sip. Be drunk on the wine of goodness, be intoxicated on the intimacy of Heaven. You are a lover of God. You are a winebibber, a drunkard who cannot find his way out of doors of the house of wine!
I bid you myself to not allow anything to come between you and your bridegroom Jesus. Your heavenly husband is a jealous lover. You, my friend, are a jealous bride. Hold tight to Jesus and shut out every influence that tries to separate.
This is not a bid to go and search out every devil that lurks around the corner and I certainly am not advocating that you go on some religious cleanse where you rid yourself of all “non-essential” possessions. I’m not asking that you fast Netflix or remove yourself from friends. I’m merely encouraging you to guard your heart and protect this love that is your life with Christ!
Men and Women of planet Earth, I charge you by the gazelles and by the does of the field: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.
I love you guys, have a great week.
*All quotes from Charles Spurgeon are from a book called Charles Spurgeon on the Song of Solomon: 64 Sermons to Ignite a Passion for Jesus!