Song of Solomon 5
I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk: eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved.
2 I sleep, but my heart waketh: it is the voice of my beloved that knocketh, saying, Open to me, my sister, my love, my dove, my undefiled: for my head is filled with dew, and my locks with the drops of the night.
3 I have put off my coat; how shall I put it on? I have washed my feet; how shall I defile them?
4 My beloved put in his hand by the hole of the door, and my bowels were moved for him.
5 I rose up to open to my beloved; and my hands dropped with myrrh, and my fingers with sweet smelling myrrh, upon the handles of the lock.
6 I opened to my beloved; but my beloved had withdrawn himself, and was gone: my soul failed when he spake: I sought him, but I could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.
7 The watchmen that went about the city found me, they smote me, they wounded me; the keepers of the walls took away my veil from me.
8 I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem, if ye find my beloved, that ye tell him, that I am sick of love.
9 What is thy beloved more than another beloved, O thou fairest among women? what is thy beloved more than another beloved, that thou dost so charge us?
10 My beloved is white and ruddy, the chiefest among ten thousand.
11 His head is as the most fine gold, his locks are bushy, and black as a raven.
12 His eyes are as the eyes of doves by the rivers of waters, washed with milk, and fitly set.
13 His cheeks are as a bed of spices, as sweet flowers: his lips like lilies, dropping sweet smelling myrrh.
14 His hands are as gold rings set with the beryl: his belly is as bright ivory overlaid with sapphires.
15 His legs are as pillars of marble, set upon sockets of fine gold: his countenance is as Lebanon, excellent as the cedars.
16 His mouth is most sweet: yea, he is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, and this is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem.
The Shulamite’s dream in Song 3:1-6 presents the lover at first absent and then present, but in the matching dream of chapter 5 (verses 2-8) the lover is at first present and then is absent. This dream perhaps points to the problems arising early in their marriage (Solomon’s late night approach and her lack of interest), and 5:9–6:13 may present a working out of those problems through a change of attitude and action. In our marriages we can expect relational challenges, but by the grace of God we can find solutions that will result in even stronger and happier marriages.
The Shulamite eloquently describes her husband’s distinguished qualities (verses 10-16). She depicts Solomon, son of David, as “chiefest among ten thousand” and “altogether lovely” (verses 10 and 16). These phrases also are particularly applicable to Jesus the Messsiah and the ultimate Son of David. (Ps. 45:2, AA 275; COL 339; etc.).“Lord, thank You for my darling wife, and thank You for Jesus, the One who is ‘Chiefest among 10,000.' May all of us gaze more constantly upon His matchless charms, and by doing so be transformed more and more into His likeness! Amen.”
Richard M. Davidson
Professor of Old Testament Interpretation
Andrews University Theological Seminary