Song of Solomon 3

* The trials of the church by the withdrawing of Christ. (1-5)

The excellences of the church, The care of Christ for her.

(6-11)

1-5 It was hard to the Old Testament church to find Christ in

the ceremonial law; the watchmen of that church gave little

assistance to those who sought after him. The night is a time of

coldness, darkness, and drowsiness, and of dim apprehensions

concerning spiritual things. At first, when uneasy, some feeble

efforts are made to obtain the comfort of communion with Christ.

This proves in vain; the believer is then roused to increased

diligence. The streets and broad-ways seem to imply the means of

grace in which the Lord is to be sought. Application is made to

those who watch for men's souls. Immediate satisfaction is not

found. We must not rest in any means, but by faith apply

directly to Christ. The holding of Christ, and not letting him

go, denotes earnest cleaving to him. What prevails is a humble,

ardent suing by prayer, with a lively exercise of faith on his

promises. So long as the faith of believers keeps hold of

Christ, he will not be offended at their earnest asking, yea, he

is well pleased with it. The believer desires to make others

acquainted with his Saviour. Wherever we find Christ, we must

take him home with us to our houses, especially to our hearts;

and we should call upon ourselves and each other, to beware of

grieving our holy Comforter, and provoking the departure of the

Beloved.
6-11 A wilderness is an emblem of the world; the believer comes

out of it when he is delivered from the love of its sinful

pleasures and pursuits, and refuses to comply with its customs

and fashions, to seek happiness in communion with the Saviour. A

poor soul shall come up, at last, under the conduct of the

Comforter; like a cloud of incense ascending from the altar, or

the smoke of the burnt-offerings. This signifies pious and

devout affections, and the mounting of the soul heaven-ward. The

believer is filled with the graces of God's Spirit; his

devotions now are very lively. These graces and comforts are

from the heavenly Canaan. He, who is the Peace of his people,

the King of the heavenly Zion, has provided for the safe

conveyance of his redeemed through the wilderness of this world.

The bed, or palanquin, was contrived for rest and easy

conveyance, but its beauty and magnificence showed the quality

of its owner. The church is well guarded; more are with her than

are against her: believers, when they repose in Christ, and with

him, though they have their fears in the night, are yet safe.

The chariot here denotes the covenant of redemption, the way of

our salvation. This is that work of Christ, which makes him

loved and admired in the eyes of believers. It is framed and

contrived, both for the glory of Christ, and for the comfort of

believers; it is well ordered in all things and sure. The blood

of the covenant, that rich purple, is the cover of this chariot,

by which believers are sheltered from the wind and storms of

Divine wrath, and the troubles of this world; but the midst of

it is that love of Christ which passes knowledge, this is for

believers to repose upon. Christ, in his gospel, manifests

himself. Take special notice of his crown. Applying this to

Christ, it speaks the honour put upon him, and his power and

dominion.
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