Song of Solomon 8 (Listen)

8:1   Oh that you were like a brother to me
    who nursed at my mother’s breasts!
  If I found you outside, I would kiss you,
    and none would despise me.
  I would lead you and bring you
    into the house of my mother—
    she who used to teach me.
  I would give you spiced wine to drink,
    the juice of my pomegranate.
  His left hand is under my head,
    and his right hand embraces me!
  I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem,
    that you not stir up or awaken love
    until it pleases.
  Who is that coming up from the wilderness,
    leaning on her beloved?
  Under the apple tree I awakened you.
  There your mother was in labor with you;
    there she who bore you was in labor.
  Set me as a seal upon your heart,
    as a seal upon your arm,
  for love is strong as death,
    jealousy is fierce as the grave.
  Its flashes are flashes of fire,
    the very flame of the LORD.
  Many waters cannot quench love,
    neither can floods drown it.
  If a man offered for love
    all the wealth of his house,
    he would be utterly despised.

  We have a little sister,
    and she has no breasts.
  What shall we do for our sister
    on the day when she is spoken for?
  If she is a wall,
    we will build on her a battlement of silver,
  but if she is a door,
    we will enclose her with boards of cedar.
10   I was a wall,
    and my breasts were like towers;
  then I was in his eyes
    as one who finds peace.
11   Solomon had a vineyard at Baal-hamon;
    he let out the vineyard to keepers;
    each one was to bring for its fruit a thousand pieces of silver.
12   My vineyard, my very own, is before me;
    you, O Solomon, may have the thousand,
    and the keepers of the fruit two hundred.
13   O you who dwell in the gardens,
    with companions listening for your voice;
    let me hear it.
14   Make haste, my beloved,
    and be like a gazelle
  or a young stag
    on the mountains of spices.




Devotional:

Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. If a man offered for love all the wealth of his house, he would be utterly despised. (Song of Solomon 8:7)

When it’s God’s covenant love, it’s for better and for worse, it’s for richer and for poorer, it’s in health and in sickness. It’s a love that the world would ridicule. Such love cannot be bought or earned – rather, it is given. Have we received – and do we remember the power of God’s love for us – and does it lead us to offer the same sort of covenantal love to others (even if it is at our own expense)?