“Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm; for love is strong as death” (Song of Solomon 8:6).
The Song of Solomon is a beautiful Eastern love poetry extolling the love relationship between a husband and a wife. The poetry itself serves as a beautiful illustration of the love of Christ for the church. The preface to this song in one of the Jewish books, or Targums, reads something like this: “This is the Song of Solomon, the prophet king of Israel, which he sang before Jehovah the Lord.” The Song of Solomon expressed the beautiful relationship between God and His redeemed children. And the Old Testament Jews and the early church fathers understood it in that light.
The love of God for all His people is pictured in the Old Testament “For your Maker is your husband, the Lord of hosts is His name; and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel; He is called the God of the whole earth”; “I will betroth you to Me forever; yes, I will betroth you to Me in righteousness and justice, in loving kindness and mercy” (Isaiah 54:5; Hosea 2:19-20).
Also, the New Testament gives an analogy between the love of a husband and wife; groom and bride – with the love of Jesus for His Church “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her” (Ephesians 5:25-33). Both the teachings of the Old Testament and the New Testament include parables, allegories and figures of speech to describe God’s relationship with His people.
The love of a husband and wife is simply a manifestation and a picture of that deeper love which God has for His children (John 3:16). When Jesus comes back to take His bride -the church- home, He will great her with these words:
“For lo, the winter is past,
The rain is over and gone.
The flowers appear on the earth;
The time of singing has come,
And the voice of the turtledove
Is heard in our land.
The fig tree puts forth her green figs,
And the vines with the tender grapes
Give a good smell.
Rise up, my love, my fair one,
And come away!” (Song of Solomon 2:11-13)
In His service,