Today’s Reading: Song of Solomon 1-8
Today’s Reflection: Song of Solomon 1:2
Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! For your love is better than wine;
So, let’s talk about sex.
If you’re a typical Christian, that sentence either made you giggle, or caused you discomfort. The sad reality in most churches is that sex is a topic not discussed or covered at all. Some churches and puritan Christian traditions actually teach that enjoying sex is a sin, even after you’re married. Adolescent curiosity about sex is treated like a disease to be stamped out quickly (usually with the advice to not do in until they’re married, or else). The world has its perspectives on sex it is only too happy to share with our young, but let us not forget it is our churches leaving a knowledge gap about sex for the world to fill.
In truth sex should be a topic discussed openly, honestly and respectfully in our churches and exhibit number one is Song of Solomon. The story of Solomon’s courtship of the beautiful Shulamite woman—while also an analogy of the intimacy between Christ and His church—is first and foremost a frank and Godly look at romance, relationship and sexual desire between a man and a woman that teaches us many things:
Mutual attraction is important: Physical attraction is an important consideration. We don’t like to say that because in our politically correct time it sounds superficial, especially for followers of God, but it is true. It is also true that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. There truly is someone for everyone, and everyone is attractive to someone. The importance of physical attraction doesn’t negate the fact that character, intelligence, achievement, spirituality and other qualities also attract two people to each other.
1:15 – Behold, you are beautiful, my love; behold, you are beautiful; your eyes are doves.
Enjoying one another is important: Spouses aren’t just ‘friends plus’ (though it helps if they are also friends). Spouses are partners in being, two people who become one, who merge their two separate individualities to create a new life together. There is an intensity involved in two people giving up their independence for interdependence that can only be sustained between people who enjoy one another and delight in each other’s presence.
2:8-9 – 8) The voice of my beloved! Behold, he comes, leaping over the mountains, bounding over the hills. 9) My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Behold, there he stands behind our wall, gazing through the windows, looking through the lattice.
Timing is important: Sex is good. It’s good because God made it good (Genesis 1:28, 31). It is a wonderful gift to humanity. Sex is also incredibly powerful, so powerful that it binds two people together as long as they both live (1 Corinthians 7:39). This is why God housed sex within the boundaries of marriage, to help fulfill and enrich the commitment people make to each other when they marry (Genesis 2:24) and to protect unmarried people from making connections that will threaten their possibilities for future marital intimacy. Sex is great when it is saved for the appropriate time.
2:7 – I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or the does of the field, that you not stir up or awaken love until it pleases.
Respecting one another is important: Not all courtships end in marriage. It is important to understand where the line between courtship and marriage is drawn and not engage in physical or emotional bonds beyond that line. The purpose of a relationship is to help two people determine if they should marry. If they choose not to marry, they should be able to walk away from the relationship respecting one another and better equipped to find their future spouse, not carrying wounds and hurts from an inappropriate entanglement.
3:5 – I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or the does of the field, that you not stir up or awaken love until it pleases.