Song of Solomon 6:5
Turn away thine eyes from me, for they have overcome me: thy hair is as a flock of goats that appear from Gilead.
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(5) Overcome.—Marg., puffed up; Heb. hirîbunî, from the verb rahab, a word whose root-idea seems to be to show spirit against oppression or prejudice. (See Isaiah 3:5; Proverbs 6:3.) The Hiphil therefore = make me spirited, or bold. (Comp. Psalm 138:3.) The LXX. and Vulg., however, followed by many moderns, take it in the sense of scare or dazzle.

For the rest of the description, see Note, Song of Solomon 4:1, seqq.

Song of Solomon 6:5. Turn away thine eyes from me — It is a poetical expression, signifying how beautiful the church was in Christ’s eyes. Thy hair, &c. — This clause and the whole following verse are repeated from Song of Solomon 4:1-2. And this repetition is not vain, but confirms what was said before, that the church’s miscarriage had not alienated Christ’s affection from her.

6:4-10 All the real excellence and holiness on earth centre in the church. Christ goes forth subduing his enemies, while his followers gain victories over the world, the flesh, and the devil. He shows the tenderness of a Redeemer, the delight he takes in his redeemed people, and the workings of his own grace in them. True believers alone can possess the beauty of holiness. And when their real character is known, it will be commended. Both the church and believers, at their first conversion, look forth as the morning, their light being small, but increasing. As to their sanctification, they are fair as the moon, deriving all their light, grace, and holiness from Christ; and as to justification, clear as the sun, clothed with Christ, the Sun of righteousness, and fighting the good fight of faith, under the banners of Christ, against all spiritual enemies.Even for the king the gentle eyes of the bride have an awe-striking majesty. Such is the condescension of love. Now follows Sol 6:5-7 the longest of the repetitions which abound in the Song, marking the continuance of the king's affection as when first solemnly proclaimed Sol 4:1-6. The two descriptions belong, according to some (Christian) expositors, to the Church of different periods, e. g. to the primitive Church in the splendor of her first vocation, and to the Church under Constantine; other (Jewish) expositors apply them to "the congregation of Israel" under the first and second temples respectively.5. (So 4:9; Ge 32:28; Ex 32:9-14; Ho 12:4). This is the way "the army" (So 6:4) "overcomes" not only enemies, but Jesus Christ Himself, with eyes fixed on Him (Ps 25:15; Mt 11:12). Historically, So 6:3-5, represent the restoration of Jesus Christ to His Church at the resurrection; His sending her forth as an army, with new powers (Mr 16:15-18, 20); His rehearsing the same instructions (see on [680]So 6:6) as when with them (Lu 24:44).

overcome—literally, "have taken me by storm."

Turn away thine eyes from me, for I can scarce bear the lustre of them. It is a poetical and amatorious expression, signifying how beautiful the church was in Christ’s eyes, and how passionately he loved her.

Thy hair is as a flock of goats that appear from Gilead: this clause, and the whole following verse, are repeated from Song of Solomon 4:1,2. And this repetition is not vain nor absurd, but very agreeable to the nature of a pastoral and song of love, as being an effect and testimony of vehement affection, and besides it confirms what was said before, and showeth that the church’s miscarriages, and Christ’s desertion of her upon it, had not made him change his opinion of her, or affection to her.

Turn away thine eyes from me,.... Her eyes of faith and love; not through dislike of them, but as ravished with them; his passions were so struck by them, and his heart pierced with them, that he could stand it out no longer against her; see Sol 4:9. Some render the words, "turn about thine eyes over against me" (b); this being the first time of meeting, after her ungrateful treatment of him, she might be filled with shame and confusion for it, and therefore hung down her head, or looked on one side; wherefore he encourages her to look him full in the face, with a holy confidence; for such looks of faith are very agreeable to Christ; see Sol 2:14;

for they have overcome me; that is, her eyes, they had made a conquest of his heart; which does not imply weakness in Christ, but condescending grace, that he should suffer himself, as it were, to be overpowered by the faith and love of his people, who has conquered them and all their enemies. This clause is very differently rendered: by some, "they have strengthened me" (c); his desire towards his church, and the enjoyment of her company: by others, the reverse, "are stronger than me", or "have taken away my strength" (d); so that he was spiritless, and as one dead, or in an ecstasy: by others, "they have made me fly away" (e); that is, out of himself; so that he was not master of himself, could not bear the force and brightness of her eyes: by others, "they have lifted me up" (f); revived, cheered, and comforted him, through sympathy with her, in virtue of their near union: by others, "they have made me proud", or "prouder" (g); see Isaiah 3:5. Christ has a kind of pride as well as pleasure in his church; he is proud of the beauty he has put upon her, of the graces he has wrought in her; and especially of her faith, when in exercise; see Matthew 8:10; and by others, "they have made me fiercer" (h); not with anger and indignation, but with love; there is a force, a fierceness in love, as well as in wrath: "love is strong as death, and jealousy is cruel as the grave", Sol 8:6; it is so in the church, much more in Christ. All which shows the power of faith, to which mighty things are ascribed, Hebrews 11:1; and here the conquest of Christ himself;

thy hair is as a flock of goats that appear from Gilead; from Mount Gilead; see Gill on Sol 4:1.

(b) , Sept. "ex adverso mei"; Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Marckius; so Montanus and Ainsworth. (c) "corroborant me", Marckius; so Kimchi, and Ben Melech. (d) "Fortiores fuerunt me", Pagninus; so Aben Ezra. (e) So the Septuagint and Vulgate Latin versions. (f) Mercerus, Ainsworth. (g) Tigurine version, Piscator; so Jarchi. (h) Montanus, Cocceius.

{c} Turn away thy eyes from me, for they have overcome me: thy hair is as a flock of goats that appear from Gilead.

(c) This declares the exceeding love of Christ toward his Church.

Song of Solomon 6:55a Turn away thine eyes from me,

     For overpoweringly they assail me.

Dpke translates, ferocire me faciunt; Hengst.: they make me proud; but although הרהיב, after Psalm 138:3, may be thus used, yet that would be an effect produced by the eyes, which certainly would suggest the very opposite of the request to turn them away. The verb רהב means to be impetuous, and to press impetuously against any one; the Hiph. is the intens. of this trans. signification of the Kal: to press overpoweringly against one, to infuse terror, terrorem incutere. The lxx translates it by ἀναπτεροῦν, which is also used of the effect of terror ("to make to start up"), and the Syr. by afred, to put to flight, because arheb signifies to put in fear, as also arhab equals khawwaf, terrefacere; but here the meaning of the verb corresponds more with the sense of Arab. r''b, to be placed in the state of ro'b, i.e., of paralyzing terror. If she directed her large, clear, penetrating eyes to him, he must sink his own: their glance is unbearable by him. This peculiar form the praise of her eyes here assume; but then the description proceeds as at Sol 4:1, Sol 2:3. The words used there in praise of her hair, her teeth, and her cheeks, are here repeated.

5b Thy hair is like a flock of goats

     Which repose downwards on Giliad.

6 Thy teeth like a flock of lambs

   Which come up from the washing,

   All of them bearing twins,

   And a bereaved one is not among them.

7 Like a piece of pomegranate thy temples

   Behind thy veil.

The repetition is literal, but yet not without change in the expression, - there, גל מהר, here, מן־הגּל; there, הקּץ, tonsarum, here, הרח, agnarum (Symm., Venet. τῶν ἀμνάδων); for רחל, in its proper signification, is like the Arab. rachil, richl, richleh, the female lamb, and particularly the ewe. Hitzig imagines that Solomon here repeats to Shulamith what he had said to another donna chosen for marriage, and that the flattery becomes insipid by repetition to Shulamith, as well as also to the reader. But the romance which he finds in the Song is not this itself, but his own palimpsest, in the style of Lucian's transformed ass. The repetition has a morally better reason, and not one so subtle. Shulamith appears to Solomon yet more beautiful than on the day when she was brought to him as his bride. His love is still the same, unchanged; and this both she and the reader or hearer must conclude from these words of praise, repeated now as they were then. There is no one among the ladies of the court whom he prefers to her, - these must themselves acknowledge her superiority.

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