Tuesday, April 28, 2015
HERE COMES THE BRIDEGROOM!
Go forth, O daughters of Zion, And see King Solomon with the crown With which his mother crowned him On the day of his wedding, The day of the gladness of his heart. (Song of Solomon 3:11)
Our weddings seem to make the groom a supporting character, with the bride being the star of the show. Have you ever read the write up in the newspaper? It tells about the beauty of her dress--the length and design of it--and descriptions are glowingly given of her veil, bouquet, and the number and dress of her attendants. You know how the wedding begins--the mothers are seated, and the pastor leads the groom and best man out a side door. They wait and watch as the wedding march begins--then everyone stands as they play, "Here comes the bride!" Down the center aisle she comes, escorted by her father--all eyes are on her. Having officiated at a host of weddings, I can attest that I have never seen anything except a beautiful bride--though there have been a few close calls!
Weddings in Bible times were very different. The groom got his due! He wasn't an afterthought and accessory--he was the main attraction! This is especially true when it was a royal wedding. Here we see King Solomon coming to his wedding day.
The Song of Solomon expresses the lyrics of love. It is the glorious gift of intimacy the Lord intends for a husband and wife to enjoy. The poetic images are sensual, but not smutty. They speak of pleasure without being pornographic.
Having said that, it is also appropriate to find in this an illustration of God's love for Israel, and Christ's love for the church. We can see that Paul had no difficulty seamlessly weaving practical implication in the family with theological application in the church concerning marriage in Ephesians 5:22-32.
The first five verses of Song of Solomon, chapter three, show the passion that has been building during their courtship. She desires him so, that she dreams of him--and in her mind seeks him that she might embrace him. She longs for the consummation of their love--although she asks her friends to hold her accountable for maintaining her virginity until the wedding night (v.5). The child of God understands that restless longing to be with Jesus--that nothing can compare with the joy of seeing Him face to face.
When the night is past, some golden daybreak Jesus will come. King Solomon is seen coming in regal splendor to claim his bride in v.6-11. It is the day of his wedding and he is glad! Do we desire to see Christ? He will delight to be with us! That day will surely arrive. I sense it is near!
Perhaps the angels will strum their harps and the hosts of heaven will sing, "Here comes the Bridegroom!" What if it were today?