Expositor's Dictionary of Texts
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.The Incomparableness of Christ
Song of Solomon 5:9
'What is thy Beloved more than another beloved?' Wherein is Christ incomparable?
I. Christ is Incomparable in the Inquiries He Excites.—There must be something in our Beloved that is more than another beloved when such interrogatories are urged upon us. Commonplaceness does not arrest attention. Mediocrity does not challenge comparison. Ordinary personalities do not normally create extraordinary excitement. But our Beloved is much inquired about. Christ's people are always being inquired of concerning their Beloved. The world is intensely interested in the Saviour. He has been lifted up, and through the reluctant centuries He is drawing all men unto Him.
The repeated inquiry in this text arises from the testimony the lover has borne to the Beloved. The Beloved has so captivated the Bride that she has made no secret of her love.
II. Christ is Incomparable in the Love He Evokes.—Note the epithet, 'thy Beloved'. Note that it is twice repeated. Note also that it is often used in this book. There is no designation by which Christ can be more suitably spoken of. Christ draws out love as none other can. He dominates love as He dominates everything. Others evoke love; there are many beloveds; but this Beloved is 'more than another beloved,' for none lay up such wealth of love as He. This is His supremacy. As Napoleon said, 'Jesus alone founded His empire upon love'. And so His empire outlasts all other empires and outlasts the universe.
III. Christ is Incomparable in the Beauty of those who Follow Him.—The loveliness of the Bride appeals to those who inquire of her and they exclaim, 'O thou fairest among women'. It was largely by reason of her loveliness that bystanders and friends challenged her concerning her Beloved. They felt that He must be glorious after whom so beautiful a being followed. And it is generally the beauty of Christ's followers which leads men and women to inquire after Him. These beautiful followers of Jesus are supremely fair in all eyes but their own. Perfect loveliness is ever unconscious of itself.
IV. Christ is Incomparable in the Earnestness which He Inspires.—Christ's follower is represented by those around her as charging them. The Revised Version reads, 'that thou dost so adjure us'. Adjuration is an intense and solemn charge. This is typical of Christ's followers—they adjure the world and they adjure one another.
—Dinsdale T. Young, The Crimson Book, p. 124.
References.—V. 9.—Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xlii. No. 2469. J. Richardson, Penny Pulpit, vol. xiv. No. 817, p. 217. V. 9, 10.—J. M. Neale, Sermons on the Song of. Songs, p. 239. V. 10.—Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xlii. No. 2478. V. 13.—Ibid. vol. xlii. No. 2479. V. 16.—Ibid. vol. xvii. No. 1001; vol. xxiv. No. 1446. A. G. Brown, Penny Pulpit, No. 801, vol. xiv. p. 97. VI. 2.—J. M. Neale, Sermons on the Song of Songs, p. 252. VI. 4.—Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xvii. No. 984. VI. 5.—Ibid. vol. xlii. No. 2486. VI. 10.—J. M. Neale, Sermons on the Song of Songs, p. 261. VI. 11.—Ibid. p. 275. W. Robertson Nicoll, The Garden of Nuts, p. 81. R. Collyse, Where the Light Dwelleth, p. 19.
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.
I have put off my coat; how shall I put it on? I have washed my feet; how shall I defile them?
My beloved put in his hand by the hole of the door, and my bowels were moved for him.
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.
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.
I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem, if ye find my beloved, that ye tell him, that I am sick of love.
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.
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.
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.