The maiden’s promise to go to the mountain of myrrh, the place of full surrender, moves the heart of Jesus. He sees beauty in her because she has taken steps to live out her obedience. He knows her “yes” is sincere.
4:7 All beautiful you are, my darling; there is no flaw in you.
He says there is no flaw in her. Just admitting there are shadows in her life makes her perfect in His sight. That is our God—always looking beyond our faults and judging us by our good intentions and deep desires. He delights in seeing the good in us, and He admires us even in our weakest moments far more than we can comprehend.
Someone had offended my friend, and for three days she could not get past her irritation. She said, “I didn’t feel like talking to God or even hearing from Him. I was miserable feeling that way, but that is how it was. I was driving home from work when suddenly I looked at the license plate on the car in front of me. It said my name and then 4511. As soon as I got home, I looked up Psalm 45:11 and read, ‘The king is enthralled by your beauty.’ My heart melted before Him.”
How like Jesus to send a message of love when she felt unworthy! When we think He is far away, He is only around the corner with arms wide open. Knowing He loves us changes us.
Selah: Are you looking for perfection in yourself? Jesus is looking for a total surrender of your will to His. He will give you time to grow into His likeness. He delights in you even when you are weak. How would fully believing this concept change you?
4:8 Come with me from Lebanon, my bride, come with me from Lebanon. Descend from the crest of Amana, from the top of Senir, the summit of Hermon, from the lions’ dens and the mountain haunts of the leopards.
She agreed to go in 4:6, so once again He invites her to come with Him. It is in connection with this loving invitation that He changes the word my “love” for the more endearing term, my “bride.” Her willingness to be abandoned to Him and her commitment to come into intimate partnership with Him has ravished His heart. He will reveal to her what God wants to do among the people of the earth and teach her to engage in spiritual warfare against the “lions” and “leopards.”
“Come with me.” That is always His invitation. When Jesus said, “Go and make disciples of all nations,” He preceded it with, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me,” and followed it with “Surely I am with you always” (Matthew 28:18-20). He goes with us when we purpose to make disciples whether we’re in our own neighborhood or in a foreign country.
Lebanon was a beautiful country bordering Israel but it was also a compromising nation. He is calling her to flee all temptations to compromise as she goes with Him.
4:9 You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride; you have stolen my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace.
This verse summarizes the Song of Songs. I like the King James version: “Thou hast ravished my heart, my sister, [my] spouse; thou hast ravished my heart with one of thine eyes.” To be “ravished” can be defined as “to be filled with emotions of joy and delight because of one who is unusually attractive.”
He is more than a Bridegroom to her. “Anyone who does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother!” (Matthew 12:50). He delights in every relationship He has with us.
Her acceptance of His invitation to go with Him to seek and to rescue the perishing has ravished His heart. How incredible that we are able to delight His heart by simply saying “Yes” to Him. Our passionate Bridegroom cherishes us and sees us as beautiful each time we desire to do any small thing for Him.
Another translation says, “You have captured my heart” (NLT). One glance from our eyes does to Him what the armies and kings cannot do—we conquer Him fully. We steal His heart with just one loving thought, one heartfelt thank you, one loving act we do thinking, “This is just for You, Jesus!” Each look of devotion, every prayer, each whisper of love moves His heart.
The necklace speaks of her submitted will. He looked into her eyes and saw her willingness to answer to any demands He would make. Our submission is His greatest pleasure.
Jesus proclaims two times that we ravish His heart because He is so eager for us to believe it. The more we understand God’s affections for us, the more passion for God we will have.
For the first time He calls her “my sister.” In Luke 8:21, He said his immediate family includes those who hear God’s Word and obey it. She was eager to observe carefully all He was asking her to do.
She proudly displays the chain around her neck so that all might know to Whom she belongs. She is not embarrassed to display the chain of surrender and the crucified life to others. This thrills His heart.
Selah: What does this verse teach about Jesus’ affections for you?
4:10 How delightful is your love, my sister, my bride! How much more pleasing is your love than wine, and the fragrance of your perfume than any spice!
We may think that our love is too faint, but whatever we possess is very sweet to Jesus. When we come to Him we not only receive but we also give Him joy beyond our comprehension. Our adoration brings refreshment to His heart. Even our small expressions of love to Him are delightful.
The glory of the stars and galaxies surely must bring Jesus pleasure. Yet even all of His beautiful creation is not enough to meet His heart’s need for love. It is His dear surrendered believers whose love and passion satisfy Him.
At the beginning of the story she said His love is better than wine. Now He makes that same comment about her love. Her love satisfies Him.
The word “perfume” means oil in the Hebrew. The reference to her oils refers to the release of the Spirit in the life of the believer. She has spent so much time with Him that she now has the same fragrance as He—the aroma of Christ (2 Corinthians 2:15).
This great fragrance comes through the brokenness in her life. Gethsemane means “oil press.” When we go through our Gethsemane fully surrendered, a sweet fragrance is released from our lives.
A godly minister had an only child who was at the point of death. When the doctor informed these parents there was no hope their son would live, in their anguish they cried out that God was unkind.
Then the Holy Spirit reminded them that God is love and gave them grace to accept whatever God allowed. The father said, “We must not let God take our child. We must give him.” So kneeling at the bedside, they humbly gave back to God the child He had loaned them for a short time.
The fragrance of Christ came into their lives in a fresh way. Every person in their congregation sensed a wonderfully sweet spirit in this fully surrendered couple.
Selah: Why is the depth of our love for Jesus expressed most accurately during difficult times?
4:11 Your lips drop sweetness as the honeycomb, my bride; milk and honey are under your tongue. The fragrance of your garments is like that of Lebanon.
Her lips refer to her speech. He hears every word she says. As she seeks the lost, loves the needy, and witnesses of Him to others, the words of her lips are as sweet as honey. Honey restores the weak ones, and milk feeds the immature ones. She gives to each just the right words.
Milk represents the Word of God. “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation” (1 Peter 2:2). The delights of the Word of God are compared to honey dripping from the honeycomb. “They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the comb” (Psalm 19:10).
Her lips bring Him great happiness. In 1:2 she yearned for Him to kiss her with the kisses of His mouth, with precious revelation from His Word. She gives back what He had given to her.
Garments speak of outward conduct—her activities, entertainment, and conversation. Even though she lives in the world, she has His fragrance because she has spent so much time with Him. Paul mentions the fragrance of the sweet aroma of Christ that comes from the redeemed:
“But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life” (2 Corinthians 2:14-16).
Every loving deed done humbly for Jesus, no matter how insignificant, will not go unnoticed by the King. Through such deeds, we carry His sweet aroma.
Selah: Have you ever been with a believer who seemed to exude a special spiritual influence over you that you could not find words to describe? That is the fragrance of a life lived in loving submission to the Holy Spirit. What qualities attracted you to that person?
Christ in You
Not only in the words you say,
Not only in your deeds confessed,
But in the most unconscious way
Is Christ confessed.
Is it a beautiful smile,
A holy light upon your brow?
Oh no! I felt His presence
When you laughed, just now.
For me ‘twas not the truth you taught
(To you so clear, to me so dim)
But when you came to me, you brought
A sense of Him.
And from your eyes He beckons me,
And from your lips His love is shed
Till I lose sight of you, and see
The Christ instead.