1998-06-12 - Come Away with Me
Song 4:7-10 "You are altogether beautiful, my darling, and there is no blemish in you. 8 "Come with me from Lebanon, my bride, may you come with me from Lebanon. Journey down from the summit of Amana, from the summit of Senir and Hermon, from the dens of lions, from the mountains of leopards. 9 "You have made my heart beat faster, my sister, my bride; you have made my heart beat faster with a single glance of your eyes, with a single strand of your necklace. 10 "How beautiful is your love, my sister, my bride! How much better is your love than wine, and the fragrance of your oils than all kinds of spices! (NAS)
Many avoid the Song of Solomon. They fairly tiptoe around it, feeling that it is a little too inspirational, so to speak. It is true that this is a love story between Solomon and his beloved. Solomon had many wives in spite of the warnings he had received against the common practice of royalty. This particular romance appears to be from the heart and soul of Solomon.
But a few of these phrases remind me of another relationship. The marriage relationship is a type, or shadow, of the relationship of Jesus with His bride, the church. Yes, if you are a believer in Christ as Savior and Lord, this is how He sees us. This is how much He loves us.
Rev 19:7-9 "Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready." 8 And it was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.9 And he said to me, "Write, 'Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.'" And he said to me, "These are true words of God." (NAS)
Typically a bride will select her own wedding dress, usually with the help of her mother or close friends. But the best clothes we can come up with - our best righteous works - are as filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). We cannot even dress ourselves for the most important moment of our lives! Jesus has to provide to us the garment we will clothe ourselves in - the righteous acts of the saints.
Eph 5:25-27 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her; 26 that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she should be holy and blameless. (NAS)
Here in Ephesians, the relationship between husband and wife is compared to Christ's relationship to the church. It is a powerful example to husbands. But it is also an equally powerful example of Christ's provision for us as His bride. He has cleansed us so that we can come before Him without spot or wrinkle. Jesus had to be the perfect sacrifice, acceptable to God without spot or wrinkle to be the propitiation for our sins. In this, He has made us a reflection of Himself.
The day is coming very soon when all this will become a stunning reality - the Marriage Supper of the Lamb in the fabulous city that Jesus has prepared for us - the New Jerusalem. When Jesus says to you, "Come away with Me," He has something wonderful to share with you. He wants to spend time with you. This is the period of betrothal - of commitment and preparation. If you know Jesus, they are days of expectation of glorious things to come. If you don't know Jesus, all these promises are for you too if you will ask Him into your heart. If we take an honest look into our hearts, it is easy to see the selfish, self-centered motives that are there. All that Jesus asks is that you acknowledge that you can not become perfect on your own. He stands ready to begin the process of changing your heart to be like His and to prepare you for the day when He can present you without spot or wrinkle - perfect.
Rev 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, "Come." And let the one who hears say, "Come." And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who wishes take the water of life without cost. (NAS)
Lord Jesus, call the hearts of those who read this message. Stir the desire in their hearts to be whole again and to reach out to You for the free gift that you have for us. I know You stand ready to pour out grace and mercy to those who will come. Give them the courage and the humility to reach out to You. Amen.