Reading through the Bible together
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. The woman dreams of her husband’s approach, using numerous words and phrases capable of double meanings which probably refer to the couple’s love relationship. 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. See the similar phraseology describing the Messiah in Psalm 45:2 and the scores of Ellen White references applying them to Christ (AA 275; COL 339; etc.).
In this chapter we find husband and wife referring to their spouse with numerous “pet names.” He calls her “my love, my dove, my perfect one” (verse 2); she calls him “my beloved, . . . my friend” (verse 16). Throughout the Song the lovers employ at least fourteen different terms of endearment for each other! The Song of Solomon encourages us in our marriages to find creative ways to express verbally our affection for one another. What is your favorite “pet name” for your spouse? I like to call my wife “Schatzie”—the German name meaning “treasure.”
“Lord, thank You for my darling wife, and thank You for Jesus, the One who is ‘Chiefest among 10,000’, ‘the One altogether Lovely.’ 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