The Art of Deepening

Song of Solomon – Chapters 7-8 – The Art of Deepening

Review of the Love Song:

Chapters 1-2 – The Courtship

Chapters 3-4 – The Honeymoon

Chapters 5-6 – The Conflict

The world’s view is that you get married in this passionate attraction. Then you have this passionate honeymoon. The rest of your life is spent smoldering and remembering what used to be. That is a common worldly view of marriage that is wrong and non biblical. And I’ll show you from Song of Solomon chapters 7-8.

Let’s take a look at the years after the honeymoon and before the tomb and see how a marriage is supposed to be.

Guys, I’m going to give you eleven principles and girls you only get four.

7:1

How beautiful are your feet in sandals,
    O noble daughter!

Wait a minute. A lot of people will tell you the most unpraisworthy part of their body is their feet. This guy praises her feet. On the honeymoon he praises her eyes, her lips, her cheeks, and her hair. Now he praises her feet, because:

I. This guy’s intimate knowldege of his wife has deepened.

Good couples, if you ask them about their mate, will give you details that you would normally not notice.

II. His perception of his wife has deepend.

Previously he called her darling and dove, now he addresses her as royalty!

Look what he says next:

Your rounded thighs are like jewels,
    the work of a master hand.
Your navel is a rounded bowl
    that never lacks mixed wine.
Your belly is a heap of wheat,
    encircled with lilies.

III. His praise has deepend.

He praises intimate details and lets his wife know she is wonderful and exciting. She is getting older, and does not look the same as she did on the honeymoon, but his praise reinforces her. If you do not praise your wife she will feel as though she has crucified her worth for an unappreciative man.

Verse 2:

Your navel is a rounded bowl
    that never lacks mixed wine.
Your belly is a heap of wheat,
    encircled with lilies.

IV. His Appreciation has deepened.

This might get you kicked out of the bedroom if you don’t know what it means. For a Jewish person, two great events that were associated with the blessing of rain from God were the Spring crop of grapes and fruit and the Autumn crop of wheat. What he is saying is, “you are God’s gift to me.”

Proverbs 19:14

House and wealth are inherited from fathers, but a prudent wife is from the LORD.

Verse 3:

Your two breasts are like two fawns,
    twins of a gazelle.

V. His tenderness has remained deep from the honeymoon.

Two fawns shows softness and gentleness. You would handle them in a tender way. This is the same phrase he used on the honeymoon to describe his wife’s sexuality. A woman’s dream is that the romance, gentleness, and tenderness of a husband will continue and deepen.

Verse 4:

Your neck is like an ivory tower.

VI. His appreciation has deepened.

There is no record of a tower of ivory in the Bible. It would be too expensive! This man is saying to his wife you are a tourist attraction of inestimable value. There is no amount of money that could ever replace you.

Your eyes are pools in Heshbon,
    by the gate of Bath-rabbim.

VII. His need of her has deepened.

Heshbon is a real busy city. The gate of the city is where all the transaction takes place. There are two pools outside of Heshbon where you would go for refreshment to get away from the chaos of the city. He is telling his wife that her presence is an immediate life-giving retreat. Does your wife know how much you need her?

Your nose is like a tower of Lebanon,
    which looks toward Damascus.

VIII. His trust of her has deepened.

In the North of Israel is a tower that looked out for enemies approaching from Syria. The tower offered security and national defense. This guy looks at his wife and her countenance resembles national security. This is a woman who would never cut down her husband in public. 

Your head crowns you like Carmel,

IX. His respect has deepened.

Carmel means garden and it is a 1,700 ft ridge in the North along the Mediterranean coast. Carmel is the place you would go to see Israel’s beauty. It sits there like the crown of the nation. This husband praises her countenance as her crown. The husband’s crown is his boast, and his wife is his greatest resume. 

Proberbs 14:1

The wise woman builds her house, But the foolish tears it down with her own hands.

This is what a woman can do. She has great power. A husband’s greatest boast is a wise woman whose countenance shines. Wives, do you crown your husband like Carmel crowns Israel? Maybe you don’t have the body you had in high school but it doesn’t matter. Your head is what crowns you. This is your countenance, your character.

X. His devotion has deepened.

and your flowing locks are like purple;
    a king is held captive in the tresses.

Solomon was the Sovereign of the Orient. Nothing stood over him, except one thing. He says I am a slave to my wife. This is not a man who flirst with other women. He feels as though he is a slave to a queen. Before he has said, “She is mine.” Now he says, “I’m hers.”

verse 6:

How beautiful and pleasant you are,
    O loved one, with all your delights!

He treats his wife as a weaker (or porcelain) vessel. She is not tupperware that will bounce back or some old pot. She is soft and delicate.

Your stature is like a palm tree,
    and your breasts are like its clusters.
I say I will climb the palm tree
    and lay hold of its fruit.
Oh may your breasts be like clusters of the vine,
    and the scent of your breath like apples,
and your mouth like the best wine.

XI. The deepening of the physical relationship.

This guy physically desires his wife. Apples, grapes and dates. An oasis in a barren land. He sees the love of his wife as nourishing. This is the greatest picture in the world of what marital sex is meant to be. It is not just for making babies. It is for the fruitfulness, joy, and upbuilding of a man and woman. This is where a marriage is nourished. There is no way you have a great marriage and a bad sexual relationship. There is no way you have a bad marriage and a good sexual relationship. This has nothing to do with frequency, but intimacy. This couple is passionate.

Her response:

It goes down smoothly for my beloved,
    gliding over lips and teeth.

I am my beloved’s,
    and his desire is for me.

I. Her aprreciation for his passion deepens.

He says her love is like sweet wine and she picks it up right where he left off saying it goes down smoothly. She feels what he feels and thinks what he thinks. She does not see her husbands sexual drive as a nuasance, as so many do today. She appreciates that her beloved has a passion for her and that she fulfills that passion like sweet wine. She is responsive and uses his passion to bond and strengthen them.

Shey says:

Come, my beloved,
    let us go out into the fields
    and lodge in the villages;
let us go out early to the vineyards
    and see whether the vines have budded,
whether the grape blossoms have opened
    and the pomegranates are in bloom.

II. Her desire for time with her husband deepens.

III. Her desire to minister to her husbands needs deepens.

When they were courting, he would ask her to go out into the country and spend time in the vineyards. Now she asks him and they are still in the springtime of love. Their marriage is not built on kids or career. It is built on their relationship.

There I will give you my love.
The mandrakes give forth fragrance,
    and beside our doors are all choice fruits,
new as well as old,
    which I have laid up for you, O my beloved.

These verses would cause a Jewish audience to blush. Earlier in the text we saw the grapes, apples, and dates represented her sexuality. Here we have a different representation. The mandrake, due to the shape, represented manhood. Many people also believed they would increase sexual desire. This is a very provocative statement and she is saying to her husband, “I desire you.”

She says something else interesting as well. She is offering old fruit and new fruit. The old fruit consists of the things they’ve had since the beginning. But she is not becoming a crabby old lady. There is new fruit as well. She is imaginative and growing and there are new things to offer.

IV. Her exaltation of her husband deepens.

8:1-3

Oh that you were like a brother to me
    who nursed at my mother’s breasts!
If I found you outside, I would kiss you,
    and none would despise me.

In semitic cultures, husbands and wives do not show public affection. However, in these same cultures family often are very affectionate publicly. Here she says, “I wish you were my brother so I could kiss you in public!” There is nothing better for a husband than to be praised by his wife.

She concludes with the most intimate of positions.

I would lead you and bring you
    into the house of my mother—
    she who used to teach me.
I would give you spiced wine to drink,
    the juice of my pomegranate.
His left hand is under my head,
    and his right hand embraces me!
I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem,
    that you not stir up or awaken love
    until it pleases.

In this book we see the ideal. It has to happen naturally. Do your job. Be faithful. And let God develop the relationship.

Tommy Nelson is the pastor of Denton Bible Church and guest instructor at the Kanakuk Institute.

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