Song of Solomon 6:1
Whither is thy beloved gone, O thou fairest among women? whither is thy beloved turned aside? that we may seek him with thee.
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(1-3) Whither is thy beloved gone . . . By a playful turn the poet heightens the description of the lover’s beauty by the impression supposed to be produced on the imaginary bystanders to whom the picture has been exhibited. They express a desire to share the pleasures of his company with the heroine, but she, under the figure before employed (Song of Solomon 4:12-16), declares that his affections are solely hers, and that, so far from being at their disposal, he is even now hastening to complete his and her happiness in their union. Difficulties crowd on the dramatic theory at this passage. Most of its advocates have recourse to some arbitrary insertion, such as, “here the lovers are re-united,” but they do not tell us how the distance from the harem at Jerusalem to the garden in the north was traversed, or the obstacles to the union surmounted. In the imagination of the poet all was easy and natural.

Song of Solomon 6:1-2. Whither is thy beloved gone — Namely, from thee: see chap. 5:6, 8. These are the words of the daughters of Jerusalem, last mentioned, whom the preceding full and pathetical description of the bridegroom’s excellence had inflamed with love to him. My beloved is gone into his garden — The spouse had hitherto been at a loss for her beloved, but, having diligently sought him, now at last she meets with a gracious answer from God, directing her where to find him. The garden may signify the church catholic, and the gardens, as it follows, as also the beds, the particular assemblies of the faithful, in which Christ affords his presence. To the beds of spices — In which the gifts and graces of God’s Spirit, fitly compared to spices, or aromatical flowers, appear and grow. To feed — To refresh and delight himself. To gather lilies — Which may denote either particular believers, whom Christ gathers to himself in his church, or the prayers and praises of his people in the public congregations.

6:1 Those made acquainted with the excellences of Christ, and the comfort of an interest in him, desire to know where they may meet him. Those who would find Christ, must seek him early and diligently.The question put by the chorus, and the answer it receives from the bride, show that the loss and seeking are not to be taken too seriously. CHAPTER 6

So 6:1-13.

1. Historically, at Jesus Christ's crucifixion and burial, Joseph of Arimathea, and Nicodemus, and others, joined with His professed disciples. By speaking of Jesus Christ, the bride does good not only to her own soul, but to others (see on [675]So 1:4; [676]Mal 3:16; [677]Mt 5:14-16). Compare the hypocritical use of similar words (Mt 2:8).An inquiry after Christ, Song of Solomon 6:1. The church’s answer, Song of Solomon 5:2. The church confesseth her faith in Christ, Song of Solomon 6:3. Christ showeth the graces of his church, Song of Solomon 6:4, and the beauty of several parts, Song of Solomon 6:5-10. He acquaints her where he had been, and what he had been doing, Song of Solomon 6:11; and discovers his affection to her, Song of Solomon 6:12; with an invitation of her to return to him again, Song of Solomon 6:13.

These are the words of the daughters of Jerusalem, last mentioned, whom this full and pathetical description of the Bridegroom’s excellency had inflamed with love to him.

Whither is thy Beloved turned aside, to wit, from thee, as thy words imply, Song of Solomon 6:6,8; where dost thou use to look for him, and to find him, when thou hast lost him? O thou who art well acquainted with all the places both of his usual abode, and of his diversion, inform us who are ignorant of them. That we may seek him with thee; we ask not with any evil design, but only because we desire an interest in him.

Whither is thy beloved gone, O thou fairest among women?.... The title is the same used by them, and by Christ before them, Sol 1:8; and here repeated, to assure her that they were serious in asking this question, and that it was in great respect to her they put it; and which, to the same sense, in other words, is expressed,

whither is thy beloved turned aside? which way did he take? on what hand did he turn, to the right or left, when he went from thy door? They ask no longer who or what he was, being satisfied with the church's description of him; by which they had gained some knowledge of him, and had their affections drawn out unto him; and were desirous of knowing more of him and of being better acquainted with him, and to enjoy his company and presence; though as yet they had but little faith in him, and therefore could not call him "their" beloved, only "her" beloved: and this question is put and repeated in this manner, to show that they were serious and in earnest; yea, were in haste, and impatient to know which way he went; say they,

that we may seek him with thee; it was not mere speculation or curiosity that led them to put the above questions; they were desirous to go into practice, to join with the church in the search of Christ, to seek him with her in the word and ordinances; upon which they were determined, could they get any hint from her whither he was gone, and where it was most likely to find him: for so the words may be rendered, "and we will seek him with thee" (p); this they had resolved on among themselves, and only wanted directions which way to steer their course, or a grant to go along with the church in quest of her beloved.

(p) Sept. "quaeremus", V. L. Pagninus, Montanus, Marckius, &c.

Where is thy beloved gone, {k} O thou fairest among women? where is thy beloved turned aside? that we may seek him with thee.

(k) Hearing of the excellency of Christ, the faithful desire to know how to find him.

Ch. Song of Solomon 6:1. These words are parallel to ch. Song of Solomon 5:9. In Song of Solomon 6:8 the Shulammite had adjured the daughters of Jerusalem, if they found her beloved, to tell him she was sick for love. They ask what is there special about her beloved that they should do so. She answers by describing him. Moved by this, the daughters of Jerusalem are eager to seek him, and now ask whither he is gone.

Whither is thy beloved turned aside?] R.V. Whither hath thy beloved turned him?

Verse 1. - Whither is thy beloved gone, O thou fairest among women? Whither hath thy beloved turned him, that we may seek him with thee? The dialogue still continues, possibly because, as Delitzsch suggests, the effect of the dream which Shulamith narrates is not passed away in the morning. Under the influence of it she goes forth and meets the daughters of Jerusalem, who offer their assistance. But there is no necessity for this. The poetry merely demands that the idea of the dream should be still kept before the mind of the reader. The scene is still in the palace. The ladies playfully carry on the bride's cue, and help her to pour out her feelings. The bridegroom, they know, is near at hand, and is coming to delight himself in his bride; but the bride has not yet drawn him back completely to her side. This is evident from the fact that there is no distress in the language of the bride. She is not complaining and crying out in agony under a sense of desertion; she is waiting for the return of her beloved, and so she calmly sings of his love and his perfect truthfulness, even though absent from her. He is where his perfect beauty and fragrance might well be. Song of Solomon 6:1The daughters of Jerusalem now offer to seek along with Shulamith for her beloved, who had turned away and was gone.

1 Whither has thy beloved gone,

   Thou fairest of women?

   Whither has thy beloved turned,

   That we may seek him with thee?

The longing remains with her even after she has wakened, as the after effect of her dream. In the morning she goes forth and meets with the daughters of Jerusalem. They cause Shulamith to describe her friend, and they ask whither he has gone. They wish to know the direction in which he disappeared from her, the way which he had probably taken (פנה, R. פן .R, to drive, to urge forward, to turn from one to another), that with her they might go to seek him (Vav of the consequence or the object, as at Psalm 83:17). The answer she gives proceeds on a conclusion which she draws from the inclination of her beloved.

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