Song of Solomon 5 Benson Commentary
Song of Solomon 5
Benson Commentary
I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk: eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved.
Song of Solomon 5:1. I am come into my garden — This is the bridegroom’s answer. I have gathered my myrrh, &c. — I have eaten of my pleasant fruits; I have taken notice of, and delight in, the service and obedience of my people. Eat, O friends — Believers are here encouraged with freedom and cheerfulness to eat and drink their spiritual food.

I sleep, but my heart waketh: it is the voice of my beloved that knocketh, saying, Open to me, my sister, my love, my dove, my undefiled: for my head is filled with dew, and my locks with the drops of the night.
Song of Solomon 5:2. I sleep — I was dull and sluggish; but my heart waketh — Yet in my very sleep my thoughts run upon my beloved. It is the voice of my beloved — Between sleeping and waking, I heard his voice; that knocketh — By his word, and providence, and Spirit, at the door of my heart; saying, Open to me — Inviting me to let him into my soul; my sister, my love, &c. — This heap of kind compellations signifies Christ’s fervent affection to his people. My head is filled with dew — While I wait without the door, which signifies his sufferings for the church’s good. My locks with the drops of the night — The dew which falls in the night.

I have put off my coat; how shall I put it on? I have washed my feet; how shall I defile them?
Song of Solomon 5:3. I have put off my coat — My day clothes, as persons use to do when they go to rest. How shall I put it on? — It is inconvenient and troublesome to do it at this time. I have washed my feet — Which the eastern people commonly did when they went to bed.

My beloved put in his hand by the hole of the door, and my bowels were moved for him.
Song of Solomon 5:4-5. By the hole — He assayed to open the door. When his word would not prevail, his Spirit, which is called the finger of God, (Luke 11:20,) wrought inwardly upon my conscience. My bowels were moved — With compassion for him and his sufferings, and with affection to him. I rose — I went forth to receive him. My hands dropped with myrrh — With oil or ointment made of myrrh, which dropped from the bridegroom’s hand upon the door in great abundance, when he put it into the hole of the door — And consequently upon her hands and fingers when she touched the door to open it. By which she signifies, that Christ, though he withdrew himself from her, yet left a sweet savour behind him. Upon the handles of the lock — Hebrew, with myrrh passing, or flowing, upon the handles of the lock, which place the bridegroom had touched when he attempted to open it.

I rose up to open to my beloved; and my hands dropped with myrrh, and my fingers with sweet smelling myrrh, upon the handles of the lock.
I opened to my beloved; but my beloved had withdrawn himself, and was gone: my soul failed when he spake: I sought him, but I could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.
Song of Solomon 5:6. My beloved had withdrawn — Denied me his comfortable presence, as a just punishment for my former neglect. My soul failed — Hebrew, went out of me. I fainted, and was ready to die away; when he spake — Or, for what he spake; for those endearing expressions related Song of Solomon 5:2, which then I did not heed. I sought him — By diligent inquiry and importunate prayer.

The watchmen that went about the city found me, they smote me, they wounded me; the keepers of the walls took away my veil from me.
Song of Solomon 5:7. The watchman that went about the city — The governors of the church, who, though by their place they are obliged to comfort the faithful, do frequently discourage them. Found me, and smote me — With bitter calumnies and persecutions. The keepers of the walls — The same with the watchmen, whose office it is to keep the gates and walls of the city. Took away my veil from me — Which was an ornament of her sex, and an ensign of her relation to Christ. And so the taking of this veil away signifies their contemptuous usage of her, and endeavours to represent her as one that had no relation to Christ.

I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem, if ye find my beloved, that ye tell him, that I am sick of love.
Song of Solomon 5:8-9. I charge you, O daughters, &c. — The church having passed the watchmen, proceeds in the pursuit of her beloved, and inquires of every particular believer, whom she meets, concerning him. Tell him, that I am sick, &c. — That I am ready to faint for want of his presence. What is thy beloved, &c., more than another — Wherein doth he excel them?

Believers might ask this, that they might be more fully informed of it.

What is thy beloved more than another beloved, O thou fairest among women? what is thy beloved more than another beloved, that thou dost so charge us?
My beloved is white and ruddy, the chiefest among ten thousand.
Song of Solomon 5:10-13. My beloved is white and ruddy — The white may denote his pure and spotless innocence, and the ruddy colour, his bloody passion. His head is as the most fine gold — It shines like gold, by reason of the crown of pure gold upon his head. We need not aim at a distinct application of this and the following particulars unto some special excellences of Christ, because such things are mere conjectures, and the only design of this description is to set forth the beauty of Christ under the notion of a most amiable person, in whom there is no defect or blemish, from the crown of his head to the sole of his feet. His eyes, the eyes of doves — Lovely and pleasant, chaste and innocent. By rivers of waters — Where they delight to abide. Washed with milk — The doves, not their eyes, were of a white colour. His cheeks — His face or countenance, an eminent part whereof is the cheeks; are as a bed of spices — Of aromatic flowers, which delight both the eye with a pleasant prospect, and the smell with their fragrancy. His lips are like lilies — Beautiful and pleasant; dropping sweet-smelling myrrh — Not only grateful to the eye, as lilies are, but also fragrant to the smell.

His head is as the most fine gold, his locks are bushy, and black as a raven.
His eyes are as the eyes of doves by the rivers of waters, washed with milk, and fitly set.
His cheeks are as a bed of spices, as sweet flowers: his lips like lilies, dropping sweet smelling myrrh.
His hands are as gold rings set with the beryl: his belly is as bright ivory overlaid with sapphires.
Song of Solomon 5:14-16. His hands as gold rings set with beryl — Beautiful and precious, and richly adorned, as it were, with gold rings set with precious stones; his belly as bright ivory — Which seems to be here used for the whole body, reaching from the neck to the bottom of the belly; overlaid with sapphires — Of a pure and bright white colour, intermixed with blue veins; for some sapphires are of a bright blue colour. His legs as pillars of marble — White, and straight, and well shaped, and strong; set upon sockets of fine gold — His feet are compared to gold, for their singular brightness, for which they are compared to fine brass, Revelation 1:15; his countenance — Hebrew, his aspect or appearance, his form or person; is as Lebanon, &c. — In respect of its cedars, tall, and upright, and stately. He is altogether lovely — Not to run out into more particulars. This is my beloved, O ye daughters, &c. — And therefore you have no cause to wonder if I am transported with love to so excellent a personage.

His legs are as pillars of marble, set upon sockets of fine gold: his countenance is as Lebanon, excellent as the cedars.
His mouth is most sweet: yea, he is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, and this is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem.
Benson Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

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