Sep 28, 2012

The Shulamite Woman

Even before we moved in, I was invited by a friend to a Bible Study.  One of the first things I did after unpacking was attend.  Good decision on my part.   I am surrounded by a group of gals pursuing the Lord who first pursued them.  They are wanting to glorify Jesus in their relationships.  In their choices.  And...with their time, treasure,  and talents.  Everyone who shows up is in the industry to one degree or another.  They speak my language.   It's so funny how you forget to speak your language when it is not put to daily use.  And how...you are able to pick it up again...when fully immersed.  

This week...we laughed and cried while Natalie...the beautiful lady above...led a discussion on the Shulamite Woman.  She approached the study with the idea of the Shulamite Woman being any believer...and the husband being the Lord Himself.   What a passion she has for the Word! 

When I got home...I did some more study...and found this....

 .....by John MacArthur-

The Song of Solomon: A Look at God-Designed Marriage
While authority and submission is to exist in the home, our relationships should be bathed in love so that they melt together with mutual love and respect. This is illustrated in the Song of Solomon, where we will see a beautiful picture of a right marriage relationship. It is a beautiful example of how leadership is to work.
1. The perspective
In 2:13-15, the Shulamite women acknowledges her husband as the head of the home. She saw him as her protector (v. 3), her provider (v. 4), her sustainer (v. 5), her security (v. 6), and her leader and initiator (v. 10-15). There is no oppression or dictatorial spirit in this passage. She desired his leadership, and he took the role that God had given him. Now, even though authority and submission are present, verse 10 describes a beautiful mutuality: "My beloved is mine, and I am his" (cf. 7:10).
2. The portrait
In 5:10-16, we see a marvelous portrait of the Shulamite woman's husband through her eyes of love. She saw him as handsome (v. 10) and bronzed (v. 11), with soft, tender, misty eyes (v. 12). There was color in his cheeks (v. 13), his lips were fragrant (v. 13), his hands were bronzed (v. 14), and his stomach and legs were muscular and strong (vv. 14-15). She saw him as a strong, handsome, rugged character. In verse 16, when he opens his mouth, he isn't crass or rude. Then at the end of verse 16 she says, "This is my beloved, and this is my friend." She didn't see him as a dictator; she saw him a beloved friend. The mutuality and the spirit of love fits beautifully with authority and submission when love bathes the relationship.
3. The problem
Now you may say, "If my husband or wife was like that, we'd never have a problem." But in chapter 5, we find that this couple did have a problem---the wife would not submit to her husband. In verse 1 the husband comes home late at night, after his wife is already in bed. He was full of love for her, and he knocked on the door, asking that she let him in (v. 2). Her response to him, however, was basically, "Don't bother me now; I'm asleep. I'm not interested" (v. 3). But when she heard his hand on the door, love welled up in her heart, and she felt sorry for her lack of submissiveness (v. 4). So, she got up, put her robe on, and opened the door (v. 5). Unfortunately, it was too late---he had already gone (v. 6). Note that he was submissive to her, in that he didn't force himself on her. She panicked and ran all over the city trying to find him (vv. 6-9; 6:1). Finally, she decided he was in the garden (v. 2) and found him there (v. 4). When she found him, he didn't say, "Where have you been? Why didn't you let me in?" Instead, he said some of the same things he had said to her on their wedding night (vv. 5-7; cf. 4:1-3). In confirming his love for her, he told her that even though she had rejected him, he still loved her as much as he did the night he married her. The problem was solved, and they had a wonderful time renewing their relationship (chap. 7).

What an enormous blessing this group is.
Where God guides God provides.