by Wade E Taylor
“And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the Lord’s anointed is before Him. But the Lord said to Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord sees not as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” I Samuel 16:6-7
When the Lord deals with us, He probes the motives of our heart in order to reach the root, or the source of our condition and need. He then works within us according to the “potential” that He sees.
“I have compared you, O My love, to a company of horses in Pharaoh’s chariots.” Song of Solomon 1:9
When rightly understood, this is a powerful compliment. Pharaoh’s chariot was the most elaborate and ornate in the world of that time. The horses that pulled this chariot were highly trained and disciplined in order to enhance the power and glory of Pharaoh.
The Lord is saying that He has seen the possibility of her being like one of these horses in Pharaoh’s chariot, capable of bringing into open view the King of all kings – in all His glory.
This potential Bride has deeply touched the heart of her Lord and has gained His favor. His approbation now rests upon her life. In Song of Solomon 1:10-11, the Master Workman (Ephesians 2:10) shares with her all that He is about to do, to cause her to become what He sees her to be.
“Your cheeks are comely with rows of jewels, your neck with chains of gold. We will make you borders of gold with studs of silver.”
Gold is a type of the divine nature; silver speaks of righteousness. These together speak of our being made conformable to the Lord’s image and likeness, and becoming so compatible with Him, that we are qualified to become His Bride.
The Bride then responds to all that the Lord is saying to her.
“Behold, You are fair, my Beloved, yea, pleasant: also our bed is green. The beams of our house are cedar, and our rafters of fir.” Song of Solomon 1:16-17
The cedar tree was a common tree of that area. She is saying that her home is very ordinary. The humility of her heart is evident as she tells the Lord, “You are speaking about this tremendous potential of righteousness and royalty which You see as being within me, but I am just a simple, ordinary person.”
Then she added, “I am but a rose of Sharon, and a lily of the valleys.” There were multiplied tens of thousands of these, the hillsides and valleys were covered with them. “I am just one of many, Lord, why should You single me out, what do You see in me?”
His reply was:
“As the lily among thorns, so is My love among the daughters.” Song of Solomon 2:2
The Lord is saying, “You may be just one among all these, but I saw the hunger of your heart when you cried from the depth of your being – draw me.” Also, you expressed an intense desire for something beyond your present spiritual experience when you said, “I will run after You.”
Even though she had no special gifts or talents, the Lord saw the spiritual hunger and potential that was within her, and told her that she was as a lily among thorns. “Divine approbation,” or favor is now resting upon her.
She responded with an attempt to say something nice to Him.
“As the apple tree among the trees of wood, so is my Beloved among the sons….” Song of Solomon 2:3
He had said, “As the lily among thorns,” and she responded, “Lord, You are like an apple tree in the woods.” It was a poor comparison, but it was the best she could do. The Lord was pleased because she said it out of the sincerity of her heart, and He accepted it. Then she added, “I sat down under His shadow with great delight, and His fruit was sweet to my taste.” She has come into a place of rest.
The Lord has met her and she is satisfied, even though He is only as a “shadow” to her. She can relate better to the blessings that the Lord has provided, than to Him as a person who is seeking her fellowship.
“…His fruit was sweet to my taste.” Song of Solomon 2:3
The fruit of the Spirit has begun to work into her life, and by tasting of His goodness, she has begun to seek the one who has blessed her so much.
“He brought me to the banqueting house, and His banner over me was love.” Song of Solomon 2:4
We are both created and called to go beyond gifts and blessings, and enter into an active personal relationship with the Lord. Now that she is beginning to rest in His presence, the Lord will cause her to understand that He is much more than just a “feeling” or a “blessing;” but rather, He is a Person who desires to fellowship and commune with her.
“I charge you, O you daughters of Jerusalem, by the roes, and by the hinds of the field, that you stir not up, nor awake My love, till she please.” Song of Solomon 2:7 (New American Standard Bible)
The Lord is saying to all those around her, who are trying to “help” her, “Let her alone, until she becomes dissatisfied with her present experience. Only then will she begin to seek after Me for fellowship.”
“The voice of my Beloved! behold, He comes leaping upon the mountains, skipping upon the hills. My Beloved is like a roe or a young hart: behold, He stands behind our wall, He looks forth at the windows, showing Himself through the lattice.” Song of Solomon 2:8-9
The Lord is beginning to bring her into a new experience. He shows just enough of Himself to her so she might see that He is a Person who desires to be in her presence.
The Lord is standing without, alone, knocking on the door of her heart (Revelation 3:20), while she is within her cottage, satisfied with all the blessings that He has provided. He is waiting for her to invite Him to come within.
“He who has My commandments, and keeps them, he it is that loves Me: and he that loves Me shall be loved of My Father, and I will love him, and will manifest Myself to him.” John 14:21
The word “manifest” means to make visible to one or more of our five senses, for the Lord desires to reveal Himself manifestly to us – not just in types and shadows, but in reality.
She responded as He revealed Himself to her through the lattice (the things that hinder His full manifest presence) and invited Him to come within. She is no longer satisfied with His blessings alone, and desires to be with Him. The Lord then speaks to her to come up into a higher realm of spiritual experience.
“My beloved spoke, and said to me, Rise up, My love, My fair one, and come away.” Song of Solomon 2:10
Our growth in the Lord is dependent upon the spiritual life (divine substance) that we receive when we experience His manifest presence. This cannot take place through intellectual comprehension or understanding alone, but through the “spiritual impartation” that we receive while being in His presence.
Just as the Bride, we also must experience each stage of the progression of the Bride, from her self-centeredness into an intimate relationship with her Lord.
“It was but a little that I passed from them, but I found Him whom my soul loves: I held Him, and would not let Him go, until I had brought Him into my mother’s house, and into the chamber of her that conceived me.” Song of Solomon 3:4
She has progressed in her spiritual experience from being satisfied with information about Him, into an intimate knowing Him, and is ready to experience all that He has for her, as His Bride.
“I am my Beloved’s, and His desire is toward me.” Song of Solomon 7:10
She has fully submitted her life to Jesus as her Heavenly Bridegroom. Now He can say to her:
“Come, My beloved, let us go forth into the field; let us lodge in the villages. Let us get up early to the vineyards; let us see if the vine flourish, whether the tender grape appear, and the pomegranates bud forth: there will I give you My loves.” Song of Solomon 7:11-12