Loving our Lord | Song of Songs 1:1-2
Song of Songs 1:1-2
1 The song of songs, which is Solomon's.
2 Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth:
for thy love is better than wine.
I have opted to refer to this book of the Bible as the Song of Songs because as we see in the very first verse of the book the Author gives us its name, The Song of Songs. Solomon and the Shulamite women take turns speaking back and forth. The phrase song of songs means that this is the greatest among the songs, it was a Jewish way of saying something was the greatest; for example, Christ is referred to as the King of kings and Lord of lords. I believe the thing that makes the greatest among songs is not so much the love that is shared between Solomon and his beloved, although it is a beautiful story, it is what this story foreshadows and illustrates that makes it the song of songs. This story is a foreshadowing of the love that Christ has for his bride, The Church. When we speak of The Church, we speak of The Church universal, not your local assembly; when we speak of The Church we speak of every born again believer in every age, not only past and present but even future. This love Christ has for his bride is vastly universal, cutting across all lines of race, creed, culture, or any other dividing line there may be, and at the same time, his love is extremely personal to every individual that makes up his bride. Only an infinite Christ could love with such universality and at the same time such individuality.
Solomon reminds us of Christ in this Song of Songs. Solomon is extremely wealthy, extremely wise, extremely powerful, the most powerful man in the world at the time. Yet, his power and prowess do not keep him from loving the Shulamite woman who is not royal or rich or even the favorite among her own family. She is a woman of low degree, and he is the highest man in land, nay, in the world at the time. Solomon even enters into the home of this Shulamite, visiting with her family, taking of the wine they had prepared for him. All of these details we will get into as we go through the book, but I want to emphasize Solomon’s illustration of a high and holy Christ who is yet so tender and loving to men of low degree. He has no respect of persons, if you live in a castle with all the wealth of the world or if you live in a hut in the deep villages of Africa, he is neither impressed nor depressed, but his love and his present Spirit has comforted kings and beggars alike. I am reminded of a verse of song:
No friend like Him is so high and holy–
No, not one! no, not one!
And yet no friend is so meek and lowly–
No, not one! no, not one!
Verse one gives us the Title and Author of this arrangement of poems back and forth between Solomon and his beloved and verse two starts the first poem. Obviously, it is the Shulamite speaking, and she says “let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth.” Right out of the gate we know what kind of story it is going to be. It starts with her longing for the close embrace of the one whom she loves. Kisses are reserved for a few people in this life, there are kisses you would give your children and grandchildren, on the head or cheek. In some cultures, friends will greet each other with a kiss, also on the cheek or head, and usually a very short peck. Then some kisses are only shared between two who are in love. May I add that any unmarried people reading this should keep in mind that this sort of intimacy should be reserved for marriage, and if done so it will become all that more intimate and enjoyable when it is enjoyed in the bonds of marriage. The kiss the woman speaks of here isn’t the kiss of a friend or kiss of greeting from a mother or father but she longs to feel the embrace of Solomon. A kiss from the one who has condescended to love someone of low degree like her. She wants to be embraced and feel the close communion of her beloved. This is a perfectly natural desire and I would remind you that it was God who instituted this sort of behavior when He put Adam and Eve in the Garden and told them to be fruitful and multiply. She makes the statement that His love is sweeter than wine.
Oh, how this reminds us of the love and longing we have for our beloved Christ. To feel the embrace of his sweet presence, to be intoxicated with the filling of his Spirit[“be not drunk on wine wherein is excess but be ye filled with the Spirit”]. There has never been a substance or love sweeter than this. His presence has brought me to tears of joy, it has brought me through trials of sorrow. I am convinced that we could pass through any trial, even through death [Romans 8:38-39]. The three Hebrew boys prove this; Steven proves this and even our own experience has proved that His love is more powerful than the most intoxicating substance that Satan has to offer. Men on earth run to wine to forget the troubles of their poor miserable life, such wine leads them to all sorts of debauchery and forgetfulness. The wine of Christ love is everything that the wine of this world isn’t. Downtrodden Saints have run to the fountain of his love and found strength for the journey, sorrow is replaced with joy unspeakable and full of glory, pains lose their pain, and the only thing forgotten is our sorrows and the remembrance of his graces are made more real. Truly his love is sweeter than wine! We would exclaim like the governor of the feast in John Chapter 2, “Thou hast saved the good wine until now!”
Now, the thing about love is it has to be tasted. I can tell you of the love that Christ has for me and I have for Christ and it may make you hunger for it but I can never experience it for you. You may read a love story and be enthralled with the characters and the love they had for one another but if you have never been in love then you won't know fully the feelings that the writer talks about. Love is something someone must experience for themselves. I’m afraid that we have many proclaiming Christians who have learned about the love of Christ but have never tasted the love of Christ. My goal is not to teach you about the love of Christ but to make you hungry for the love of Christ. I will exclaim with the Psalmist:
8 O taste and see that the LORD is good:
blessed is the man that trusteth in him.
I agree with the longing and exclamation of the Shulamite in our verse today. “Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth: for thy love is sweeter than wine.”