Song of Songs 2:3-7

The woman in Song of Songs attests that her lover is also unique.  He provides her with protection and pleasure.  The protection is highlighted through the mention of shade and a banner that cover her.  Protection from the sun comes from shade and protection from harmful people comes from the banner.  The banner is interesting because, although it is a sign that marks the banquet site, it is a military term for a war banner.  The protection over the woman and the sign that marks the location of pleasure is ‘love’.  This love leaves the woman weakened but craving more.  The man is a source of strength for the woman which nourishes her.  He enfolds her in a protective and intimate embrace.  Once more the nuance is in lovemaking, but whilst in the act she feels both her own weakness and her lover’s strength.  She feels both pleasure and protection.

Finally in these verses the woman says not to awaken or force love.  Love should be allowed to happen with the right person in the right way at the right time.  When the affects are so intoxicating and powerful love should be waited for with breathless anticipation.

Notice that the woman is glorying in what ‘is’ and not what ‘should be’.  She is not making demands and witholding her affections until those demands are met.  She chooses to sing of and meditate on the positive and is carried along by her strong, erotic desires.

Men should learn from this passage to be a safe place that protects and brings pleasure.  Women should learn to relinquish control and allow themselves to feel safety and pleasure in the embrace of their man.

Song of Songs 2:1-7

1 I am a rose[a]of Sharon,

   a lily of the valleys.

2 As a lily among brambles,   

so is

my love among the young women.

3 As an apple tree among the trees of the forest,   

so is my beloved among the young men.

With great delight I sat in his shadow,   

and his fruit was sweet to my taste.

4 He brought me to the banqueting house,[b]   

and his banner over me was love.

5 Sustain me with raisins;   

refresh me with apples,   

for I am sick with love.

6 His left hand is under my head,   

and his right hand embraces me!

7 I adjure you,[c] O daughters of Jerusalem,   

by the gazelles or the does of the field,

that you not stir up or awaken love

until it pleases.

Questions

  1. What do both shade and a banner provide?
  2. What do apples and raisins provide?
  3. Should a woman look to a man for protection?
  4. How do people force love rather than allowing God’s timing?
  5. How can you build up a man by praising his sweetness and protection?

Going Deeper

Raisin cakes and apples were thought to be aphrodisiacs.    Some sources list foods which we today think of as aphrodisiacs.  Think about adding the following to your shopping list:

  1. Hot chilis
  2. Aspragus/Avacados
  3. Bananas
  4. Chocolate
  5. Oysters
  6. Pomegranites
  7. Red wine
  8. Salmon or Walnuts
  9. Vanilla
  10. Watermellon

Do some research on aphrodisiacs and add them to your shopping list if you are married.

About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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