It took me until March of this year to reach that often ignored book of the Bible, Song of Solomon (or Song of Songs, depending on your translation). Growing up, it was a hushed topic, as though the book were marked “FOR MARRIED COUPLES ONLY” and closed to anyone without a wedding or engagement ring. Though I agree that the content of Songs of Solomon is beyond the purview of children, I regret that I did not discover one of the most beautiful books of the Bible until now.
The only reason I really gave Song of Solomon a second thought came when I was thumbing through the Bible in search of my daily devotional’s assigned verse. When I happened upon Song of Solomon, I decided to stay and peruse it for a few minutes, as it was one section of the Bible I hadn’t heard excerpted in church or covered in my Bible studies. What stunned me most is the incredible poetry and artistic construction of the verses. It is God at His artistic finest, even if the content is, at times, admittedly cheesy and a little awkward. But the intense love between two people that is communicated in each passage speaks to me not only of our capabilities for love, but also of how strong God’s love is for us.
Song of Solomon is the only love poetry that I’ve come across so far that has truly captivated me, and engaged me emotionally in a way that I can’t duplicate or really describe. I am left in awe of God’s vision, His creation, and the capability for love and romance that He has so generously given us. The Bible is full of beautiful storytelling and poetry, but I have to say that Song of Solomon is hands-down my favorite book and favorite set of poetic works, period, that I’ve ever come across. I would love to read the original work in order to more fully experience the artistry of it, but that, unfortunately, requires knowledge and capabilities beyond what I possess. 🙂
I’ll leave you with my favorite passage, quoted from Song of Solomon 5:10-16:
My lover is radiant and ruddy, outstanding among ten thousand. His head is purest gold; his hair is wavy and black as a raven. His eyes are like doves by the water streams, washed in milk, mounted like jewels. His cheeks are like beds of spice yielding perfume. His lips are like lilies dripping with myrrh. His arms are rods of gold set with chrysolite. His body is like polished ivory decorated with sapphires. His legs are pillars of marble set on bases of pure gold. His appearance is like Lebanon, choice as its cedars. His mouth is sweetness itself; he is altogether lovely. This is my lover, this is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem.