Loving our Lord | Song of Solomon 2:15
Song of Solomon 2:15
"Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes."
As we have passed through chapter two it seems that a lot of Solomon and the Shulamite's fellowship was spent in the gardens. The flowers are spoken of, trees, animals, all of it puts us in mind of the gardens Solomon was so famous for. History, as well as scripture, records this detail of Solomon's reign in Jerusalem. History tells us that the gardens of Solomon were beyond belief and Solomon himself tells us he planted Great gardens in Ecclesiastes 2:4-6
4 I made me great works; I builded me houses; I planted me vineyards: 5 I made me gardens and orchards, and I planted trees in them of all kind of fruits: 6 I made me pools of water, to water therewith the wood that bringeth forth trees: (KJV)
It seems to me that these gardens were a place for private fellowship with the Shulamite. In verse 15 he warns of a problem he has noticed in their garden of fellowship. That little foxes have crept in and have ruined the fruit that was hanging on the vine. Not bears, or deer, or some huge creature that would destroy the garden all at once, which would require a large hole in the fence or wall of their garden, but small foxes that found the smallest opening and crept in and did not destroy the garden all at once but day by day and night by night they would destroy the garden of fellowship little by little. Notice also that this was their vines, not his vines or her vines but he states "For our vines have tender grapes." The grapes growing were a combined effort and ownership. Both would suffer if these grapes were lost. How could he squeeze the grapes and bring her into the banqueting house if the fruits are destroyed, How will she find "great delight" as she did in verse 3 of this very chapter? These tender grapes are in danger of the small holes in the wall of their garden of fellowship letting small creatures destroy little by little what they both enjoyed so much.
Looking beyond Solomon and the Shulamite I was reminded of all the times that little things have hindered my fellowship with My Lord. There have been seasons of life where I kept my times of fellowship with him like a well-manicured garden. I was careful not to offend, not to trample on the tender vines and fruits of my fellowship with Him. If you've ever grown a garden you would understand the care taken. You invest time and money all to bear fruit in the end. When you walk through the rows you are careful not to step on the vines and fruits growing, when pests come in you do your best to spray them. When small creatures discover your garden they would love to come and gobble up the fruit before you. So, care must be taken if you want to bear fruit. Our fellowship with the Lord is like this. If you want to bear fruit as a Christian it is going to come from fellowship with Him. Galatians talks about sowing to the Spirit and reaping the fruits of the Spirit. Walking in the Spirit is fellowship with the Lord. Like Noah walked with God and became the heir of the righteousness which is by faith, like Enoch walked with God and was not because God took him and many others that have walked/fellowshipped/sowed to the Spirit and have borne the fruits of the Spirit in their life, so should we and so can we. These fruits of the Spirit are cultivated in the "garden of our fellowship." Same as you cannot expect children unless there has been communion between man and woman, neither can we expect fruit in this Christian life unless there has communion/fellowship with our Lord. Our fellowship is more often in danger of letting the little things of this life ruin fruits we would have born. It is the little holes in the fence that let in the small things that little by little cause us to be fruitless. Have the fruits of your Christian life been trampled on by the cares of this world? Have the "small sins" like pride, laziness, self-interest, just to name a few, crept in and destroyed your fellowship with the Lord? These "small" sins are of such a nature that they can find the smallest cracks in the wall and slip through. The good thing is this, if dealt with they won't totally destroy the garden, the bad news is this, if given just a couple of days they can destroy months of labor.
Dear Christian, Be watchful and don't let your fellowship with the Lord be destroyed by busy schedules, worried minds, or slothfulness. Chase out those little foxes and repair the holes in the wall; the fruit of the Spirit depends on it, your fellowship with the Lord is at hand.
I will leave us with one more warning from the wisdom of Solomon found in the book of Proverbs.
I went by the field of the slothful, and by the vineyard of the man void of understanding; And, lo, it was all grown over with thorns, and nettles had covered the face thereof, and the stone wall thereof was broken down. Then I saw, and considered it well: I looked upon it, and received instruction. Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth; and thy want as an armed man. (KJV)