Christian living- dealing with one 'oops' at a time…

Song of Songs (Poem 3)

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This commentary is based on my notes after reading The New International Commentary on the Old Testament: Song of Songs, by Tremper Longman III, 2001

Poem 3 (Time Together)

The Woman:

v 7 Tell me, one whom my soul loves, Where will you graze?

Where will you make your flocks lie down at noon?

(She does not like being separated from him.)

Why should I be like a veiled woman (prostitute/ having to hide her identity- remember Tamar wore veils when she posed as a prostitute with Judah),

around the flocks of your companions?

She does not like the social taboos that do not allow a wife to be with her husband while he is out with the flocks, but do allow prostitutes. She feels it is stupid that she, who rightfully belongs as a wife, has to be circumspect and stay away. She wants to be near him, by his side and there is an implication that this is where she belongs. The social taboos make no sense.

The Man:

v 8 If you do not know, most beautiful of women (compliment),

follow the tracks of the sheep,

and feed your young goats by the dwellings of the shepherds.

The man too, wants to be with her. He tells her to bring her goats so that she appears to be a shepherdess (like Rebekah and Zipporah) so she does not appear to be inappropriate. He is guarding her honor (like Boaz does for Ruth) while figuring out how to be with her.

Also take note of how many verbal compliments are contained in this Song. This indicates that love is fragile, and much verbal affirmation is a good, perhaps necessary, thing.

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