A Still Greater Love
“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” (Song 8:6–7).- Song of Solomon 7–8
We have scarcely been able to scratch the surface of the Song of Solomon in our brief overview, but we hope these studies have encouraged a new appreciation for this overlooked piece of wisdom literature. Our focus has been primarily on the human dimensions of love, and so we will today look at how this book points us to Jesus, since we should always endeavor to be Christ-centered.
First, we need to dispel the myth that emphasizing what a text says about humanity is a man-centered approach. If we rightly understand what the Bible says about mankind and the actions demanded of us, we are being Christ-centered even if Jesus is not mentioned explicitly. Our Lord and Savior said that if we love Him, we will keep His commandments (John 14:15), and His commandments are found throughout Scripture because Jesus is divine and the Bible is God’s inspired Word (2 Tim. 3:16–17). When we base our thoughts and actions on God’s holy Word, we are obeying Jesus and are therefore centered on Him.
That being said, there are two other ways the Song of Solomon points us to Jesus. First, it helps us understand the strength of His love for us. The climax of the Song of Solomon, found in today’s passage, tells us that love is like “the very flame of the Lord” in its intensity (Song 8:6). Given the strength of the love of a bride for her groom and vice versa, it is no surprise that Scripture compares the relationship of God and His people to marriage (Isa. 62:5; Rev. 19:6–10). If the love between man and woman is as intense as the Lord’s fire, imagine how great the Almighty’s love for His people must be. Though we are undeserving, He is passionate for His own (Zeph. 3:17).
Secondly, the Song of Solomon encourages us to long for Christ. As noted, the Song depicts love and marriage in an idealized form. Yet every married couple knows that no matter how strong their relationship is, it still cannot fulfill their every need, much less always reach the heights depicted by Solomon. Even the best marriages have their bad days. This imperfection makes us long for a love that satisfies us wholly. Such love is found only in Christ (Rom. 8:38–39).
As good as marriage is, there is always the danger of idolizing it. It is all too common to expect this relationship to meet all our needs. As such, it is all too easy to neglect as a family our devotions to the Lord. It is also not difficult to be overly consumed with finding a mate if single. Christ alone can perfectly satisfy all our needs, and so whether you are married or single, make sure you seek Jesus above all else (Ps. 73:25; Matt. 10: 34–39).
Passages for Further Study