READING: Song of Solomon 1-8
I’m not convinced that we can come up with words that fully describe what happens when God brings together a man and woman and unites them. Even the wording seems strange to us: “the two become one.” How that happens is a mystery of God — and yet our culture (and even the church, for that matter) takes marriage lightly. Too many of us miss the miracle of a man’s becoming “my beloved” to his wife (Song 1:13), and her becoming “my darling” to her husband (Song 1:9).
Indeed, God gives spouses a love for each other that “is as strong as death, its jealousy unyielding as the grave. It burns like blazing fire, like a mighty flame. Many waters cannot quench love; rivers cannot sweep it away” (Song 8:6-7). Godly love is as persistent and pursuing as death is, and its passion is like the fire of the Lord Himself. Its jealousy comes only from a deep undying love, and the floods cannot overtake it. This kind of love is unquenchable — so powerful and transforming that one could not purchase it with “all the wealth of one’s house” (Song 8:7b).
I do not believe that the Bible requires all of us to be married, but for those of us who are called to that state, few things are as powerful as concluding, “I am my beloved’s, and my beloved is mine” (Song 6:3). To take this relationship for granted — which many of us do — is sinful indeed. At the same time, to trivialize marriage by having sex before marriage or entering the marriage covenant with divorce as an option is equally sinful. We have a long way to go to live up to God’s standards for marriage.
- If you are married, thank God for your spouse. Then, love your spouse well under God’s power and direction.
- If you are not married, make a commitment today to do nothing that trivializes godly marriage — nothing that will weaken the picture of the gospel that marriage is intended to portray.
PRAYER: “God, make me a good spouse today. Help me to love my beloved in a way that pleases You.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Isaiah 1-4