When a Tear Became a Rose

Writer Author  Jerry Lee Kay Sr.
Christian Article : Christian Living  - Fiction  No

Christian Author Writer I lived in a small community of 250 but just a few miles down the road was a large city, of a few thousand, they even had two traffic signals and a blinking light, being a typical young person, I loved those big city lights on occasion, so I decided to drive there and get a taco and a coke and check out the big city way of doing things. I didn't have a clue I was about to meet someone that would change my life forever. I eased up in front of the hamburger stand, parked, and beheld the prettiest young lady I had ever seen in my life. I was so flabbergasted I just sat and watched her and worked on my game plan. I decided I was going to use my French accent on her and see what her reaction would be, so I walked up to the order window, she said may I help you sir, and I said, "Como sava Mon cherie amio la poopie doo babie, I think Ima luva you very mucha"! She said you been watching way to many of those Peppy Le'pew cartoons cowboy and I am not impressed, now wadda ya wanna eat? Oh' My what a blow to my 15 yr old ego. I started stuttering so bad I couldn't order so she gave me a burger, fries and a coke. Well, I knew right away I had to get more game so I started going everyday flashing big bills, you know five's and tens and buying for my buddies and stuff.
One day she shocked me by saying, you are spending a lot of money to impress me and it won't work, I am not interested in your money, and besides I know who you are Babie, you are that young preacher from down around Sheffield everyone is talking about and I have heard you preach, I know you want to take me out, so does a bunch more, but the only way that will ever happen is if your born again and walking in the spirit, just because you are preaching doesn't mean you are walking in the spirit! POW! I knew this was the one! And I knew she knew!
What a love story right? Someday I will tell you the rest of it, how I courted her until we were old enough to marry, how we were together and so very much in love until her death. But today I want to talk about another love story.
In the temple was the Holy of Holies... Jesus is the King of Kings...And among the poetical books of the Word of God is this, the Song of Songs.
God is not mentioned anywhere in it, very few teachers or preachers will speak from it,  it is completely ignored in the New Testament, The Jews read it every year at the feast of Passover but discourage their young people from reading it, even though it has been included in the Hebrew Bible for ages and generations... And very few think it shouldn't be in the bible. Also most agree it is genuine and inspired but they avoid it like the plague. I have even had serious disagreements with my teachers at Bible College about it, they told me to never preach from it. It is a big taboo avoid it at all cost. And the ones that would talk about it, and most of the ministry I have heard, misinterpret it anyway. "Solomon wrote three thousand proverbs: and his songs were a thousand and five."
1 kings 4:32, But this one is special, it is,"The Song of Songs"
I feel that there is a lot more to this book than meets the eye. In some ways, it is like the parables of the Lord Jesus..an earthly story with a heavenly meaning. This love song probably recounts things that actually happened. However I am sure that this song is much more than a love song. This is where the debate over this book begins, Probably no other book of the Bible, except the book of Revelation, has so many different interpretations.
Some scholars see the Song of Solomon as a collection of poems on the theme of love. This view is extreme, sometimes carried to absurdity. One author counts no fewer than twenty-three poems in the Song of Solomon. Those who take this view regard these songs as more or less erotic. According to such scholars, the songs were put together solely on the ground of their literary worth and poetic value. I believe in the inspiration of the sacred Scriptures, and do not agree with such a view of this beloved book of the Bible. Some see the book as an allegory of the history of the Jews from the time of Abraham to the Advent of the Messiah. Some people view the Song of Solomon as an allegory of the freedom of the Hebrew people from their slavery in Egypt. They think that it paints the wilderness wanderings of Israel and the eventual conquest of Canaan. Some other people think that the book talks about the relationship between Jehovah and Israel. Christian commentators believe that the book is about the love of Christ for the church or the love of a soul for Christ. And some other scholars view the book simply as a historical poem and believe that it celebrates the marriage of Solomon to Pharaoh's daughter, or tells how he met and won the affection of a country girl. According to one popular view, Solomon disguised himself to win the girl's love and later revealed who he really was. Each of these views has its support. Most interpretations of the Song of Solomon only talk about two main characters (Solomon and the Shulamite). This is where I differ, to me it has three main characters (Solomon, the Shulamite, and her beloved shepherd) and at least four other characters. The daughters of Jerusalem, some Jerusalem citizens, the brothers of the Shulamite, and friends of the shepherd.
I have no doubt these things recorded in the Song really happened. However I believe beneath the historical facts of the story lie deep, abiding spiritual lessons. And here, with your permission I want to present my views for you to consider.
This story is mainly concerned with a Shulamite shepherdess who has given her heart to a shepherd. They remain true to one another despite the opposition of her brothers. Their love story is complicated by the combined efforts of Solomon and his court women, They work very hard to overawe and win over the Shulamite and by the very fact that the Shulamite becomes a virtual prisoner in Solomon's place of abode.
The shepherd is a beautiful portrait of Christ, that Great Shepherd of the sheep. The Shulamite mirrors the church or the individual believer who is devoted to Him. Solomon represents the Prince of this world, and he uses all the worldly splendor, power, and magnificence he can muster up to advance his cause. The court women represent those who admire this worldly prince; and they look with suspicion at those who turn their backs upon the world and all that it has to offer in favor of an unseen and, to them, an unknown Beloved.
My view has its objectors. Those who oppose it say that Solomon would never thus record his own shame. But the objection is invalid. The prior book of Ecclesiastes shows how fully, under the urging of the Holy Spirit, Solomon recorded his worldliness, folly, and despair.
You will never convince me to see how this book can be made to fit into the life of Solomon if it has only two main speakers˜Solomon and the Shulamite˜and that the book is a record of their mutual attraction and love.
Most take the view that Solomon disguised himself as a shepherd for the sake of this romance. But that does not solve the problem.... When did Solomon ever assume a shepherd character?... Solomon is a self-confessed polygamist. He already has sixty queens, eighty concubines, and "virgins without number" at the very time he is seeking to break down the Shulamite's defenses (6:8). And that, of course, was only the beginning. Before he was through, Solomon's harem included seven hundred wives and three hundred concubines. Some of the best have tried but failed to convince me that such a sensualist can be a type of Christ and an ideal of nuptial purity? In no way is Solomon a type of Christ in this Song. But once we cast him in the role of the tempter, the song immediately takes on a new dimension of meaning and its true colors blaze forth. The setting around which Solomon wove this Song contains in every chapter, every verse, and every line a deep spiritual message.
Those who dislike typology and symbolism will never feel at home with the Song of Solomon. In this book, we find hidden some of "the deep things of God." I have sought to dig out the hidden treasures of this "song of songs" and make no apology for exploring its allegorical, symbolic, and typical teachings. I have avoided unsupported, and absurd meanings. However, I have not drawn back from following typological truth. 
 Solomon was Israel's most flamboyant and extravagant king. His wisdom was proverbial even in his own day. The historical books of the Bible describe at some length his enormous wealth and tireless industry. He had the Midas touch; everything he touched seemed to turn to gold. He built a temple in Jerusalem that rivaled for splendor, costliness, and magnificence any of the Seven Wonders of the World. He reigned in opulence and oriental magnificence. Ambassadors from scores of lands crowded his courts. His lectures on psychology and natural history drew audiences from as far as distant Sheba. In his pursuit of knowledge, he wrote, collected and edited, and published numerous proverbs, wise sayings, and songs. In his early years, he enjoyed singularly the rich blessings of God.
But Solomon's armor had one fatal crack: he loved many strange and foreign women and ended up with a thousand women in his harem. The Song of Solomon is concerned with the one woman he could not have. She turned him down cold!
This song involves three main characters: Solomon; the Shulamite, a lovely country girl who had caught the king's roving and appreciative eye; and the shepherd, the Shulamite's true beloved. As the story opens, she has already given her heart to him, and she remains true to him. The real romance in the Song revolves around the mutual love of the shepherd and the Shulamite. The shepherd himself, however, remains largely in the background. He is absent, but the shepherdess loves him, longs for him, and looks constantly for his coming. Solomon uses all of his worldly pomp and power to impress and dazzle the Shulamite and to draw away her affections from her beloved to himself.
Thus, the allegory begins to emerge. The Shulamite represents the church, the betrothed of Christ. She also represents the individual Christian in the world today.
The shepherd pictures the Lord Jesus, who has already won the believer's heart. He is absent right now; however, He visits us from time to time and makes Himself real to us in our moments of communion. Moreover, He has promised to come again to receive us to Himself.
Solomon depicts the tempter, the enemy of our souls. The enemy uses all of the allurements of the world and the flesh to try to seduce us from our loyalty to Christ.
The book's structure is complex, so I shall resist the temptation to stop here, there, and everywhere to make applications. Even so, I feel that here is a song to stir the soul, a song to draw out the heart in fresh love for the Lord Jesus. No book in the Bible is better calculated to alert us to how strong and subtle are the forces that would pull us away from Christ.
The Shulamite was tending her flock when she was suddenly seized and abducted to Solomon's pavilion. She was naturally very much alarmed. Into the pavilion came some of the sophisticated, glamorous women of Solomons court. They had overheard the Shulamite talking to herself and consoling herself in her love for her beloved shepherd. They were both amused and disdainful. (1:1-8)
"Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth," she was saying. "Thy love is better than wine." She was not talking about Solomon. He does not interest her; he has no hold upon her heart. He does not attract her; indeed, at this point, she had not yet met him. All she knew was that she was in his magnificent pavilion and that she was in love with her shepherd. She did not care that Solomon's women despised her!
"I am black, but comely, O ye daughters of Jerusalem," she said, then she turned her back upon them and continued to call out for her absent beloved. "Where are you?" she cried.
It was a good beginning. There was trouble; circumstances had closed in upon her. She was aware of the disdain and contempt of those who belonged to Solomon and who enjoyed his worldly ways. Her antidote was to fill her heart with thoughts of her beloved.
What an excellent way to deal with the allurements and blandishments of the world!
The world, after all, is all about us. It is like the sea that surrounds a ship, ever lapping against it, ever seeking for a weakness, ever probing for a crack through which it can pour and so submerge and sink the vessel. The answer to the constant pressure of the world upon our souls is Christ! We must keep our hearts singing in His love, our minds filled with thoughts of Himself, and our wills enslaved to His. Then the world will not get very far with us. Love for our absent Shepherd will be our impenetrable armor.
So then, the Shulamite is in trouble, but she hardly notices it. She occupies her mind with thoughts of her beloved. Her tranquility, however, is about to be tested severely.
Then Solomon came into the rich and splendid pavilion, making full use of his glory and his worldly display. What a showing he made! He was as handsome as a god, blessed with all of his father's extraordinary good looks and his mother's seductive charms. He was imposing, exciting, captivating˜a magnificent figure of a man! (1:9-11)
Look at him! He has about him an air of authority. He is knowledgeable, hearty, worldly-wise, capable, self-assured, clever, a veritable prince of this world. He has about him an aura of opulence and wealth. He is rich beyond the dreams of avarice. His robes are gorgeous, his fingers sparkle with rings and gems, his grooming is impeccable, and his manner is superb. He takes advantage of all of his worldly pomp and display to guarantee a grand entrance to the Shulamite. His entrance is designed to sweep this simple country girl off her feet and right into his arms. Or so he thinks!
"I have compared thee, O my love, to a company of horses in Pharaoh's chariots," he began. He was full of charm and flattery and far too experienced in the arts of seduction to stay long this time. His sole wish, in his first contact with the Shulamite, was to impress and dazzle her and to plant in her soul a seed of suggestion. So he just hints at what he has to offer if she will only surrender to his charms.
Thus, it is with Satan, the real Prince of this world. He is very clever. He has had vast experience in seducing people and in alluring believers from their loyalty to Christ. He plants a seed, gives a hint of forbidden delights, or offers, A brief, tantalizing taste of his wares and the promise of more to come is all he offers for now.
"You don't have to give up your work for the Lord," he says. "You don't have to stop going to church˜but just try it and see if you like it...."
Solomon, having made his grand entrance, left almost at once. Off he went to his table to sit down to a banquet fit for a king. Doubtless, he was very well pleased with himself. He has given that delectable woman something to think about! (1:12-2:7)
But he has reckoned without God because while he was off indulging himself at his table, the Shulamite and her shepherd are able to arrange a secret meeting. In this section of the Song, they commune with each other.
"A bundle of myrrh is my well beloved," cries the Shulamite. "Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves' eyes," responds the shepherd. With the insight and instinct of love, the Shulamite goes right to the heart of her relationship with her beloved. She calls him her spikenard and her myrrh, both of which were aromatic and fragrant spices. Both of them are connected in Scripture with death and burial.
Only as we lift all of this to higher ground, however, does its significance appear. It is the suffering and death of Christ that makes Him especially dear to our heart. Thus, the Shulamite and her shepherd commune together of their love. They tell each other, in terms of deepest affection and endearment, of their hearts' desires.
This is what the Christian life is all about˜the love that the Lord Jesus has for us and the love that we have for Him. Apart from that, there is nothing; with that, the world simply does not have a chance. All the way through this Song we shall hear the still, small voice of the Spirit of God, saying, "Do you love the Lord Jesus like that?" Did you say to Him today, "You are like the apple tree among the wild trees of the wood. I sat down beneath Your shadow with great delight. You brought me into your banqueting house and spread over me Your banner of love"?
Now the worldly-wise women of Solomon's court come back. The Shulamite's beloved had slipped away, and the shepherdess was to face alone the fresh allurements of the world. This new attack was more subtle because it was not Solomon himself putting forth his charms but those who were committed to him. These his women tried hard to persuade the Shulamite to give her affections to their lord. (2:8-3:5)
We are not told what they said to the young woman, but evidently they sought to incite wrong feelings in her. The Shulamite, fresh from her quiet time with her beloved, was more than a match for them.
"I charge you," she said, "O ye daughters of Jerusalem... that ye stir not up, nor awake my love, till he please."
The best form of defense is attack, however, so the Shulamite began right away to tell them about her beloved. She told them how he first came to her, came in all of the abundance of vigorous life˜"leaping upon the mountains, skipping upon the hills." She told how he had wooed her, called her to himself, desired to gaze upon her face. She told of opposition she had faced at home when her love was known and how her brothers had tried to hinder her love for her shepherd. They had sent her into the vineyards. She told, too, how she would wait for her beloved and of her meetings with him in the cool of the day.
Once, indeed, she went seeking him, and the watchmen of the city hindered her. Then she had found him again! "I found him," she cried, "I found him whom my soul loveth: I held him, and would not let him go" (3:4).
The Shulamite concluded this passionate outburst by repeating her request to Solomon's women that they leave her alone, particularly that they cease from their efforts to awaken affection in her heart for their chosen lord.
All of this speaks vividly to us. Our best defense against the snares of the world is to talk openly and freely about the Lord Jesus. The worldlings will soon get the message. When we talk to people about Jesus, the world's talk soon seems tawdry and cheap, if not downright vulgar and crude.
Then came a change. Solomon's excursion, having swept up the Shulamite, was over. The entourage made its way back from the country to Jerusalem. The scene shifted to the streets of the city and to the crowds who gathered to watch the splendid parade as it approached. Various people made comments on what they saw, and each one was taken up with the pomp and splendor of their king. They knew nothing at all about the Shulamite and less still about her shepherd. The world is always ignorant concerning Christ and His church. (3:6-11)
There were four speakers. The first speaker was taken up with Solomon's passion. He says, "Who is this that cometh out of the wilderness like pillars of smoke, perfumed with myrrh and frankincense, with all powders of the merchant?" Christ's "myrrh and frankincense," intended to promote in the soul of the believer pure and spiritual worship focused on His passion, is in contrast to the world's myrrh and frankincense, here coupled with "the powders of the merchant." That suggests passion for sale. There is a vast difference between the pure love of the believer for Christ and the lusts and passions of the world.
The second speaker was taken up with Solomon's power. "Behold his bed, which is Solomon's," he said. "Threescore valiant men are about it, of the valiant of Israel. They all hold swords, being expert in war." These warriors were at Solomon's call to promote his interests in the world, by force if necessary. They were there also to ensure that the Shulamite did not escape. She was now virtually Solomon's prisoner.
The third speaker was occupied with Solomon's pomp. "King Solomon made himself a chariot of the wood of Lebanon. He made the pillars thereof of silver, the bottom thereof of gold, the covering of it of purple, the midst thereof being paved with love, for the daughters of Jerusalem." The world can be made to appear very beautiful and attractive to the eye, especially to the eye that has never seen Christ.
The final speaker was entranced by Solomon's position. "Go forth, O ye daughters of Zion, and behold King Solomon with the crown wherewith his mother crowned him in the day of his espousals, and in the day of the gladness of his heart." Solomon was a king! What could be more desirable than that?
It was an hour of talk, the idle, inconsequential chatter of people impressed by the tinsel of this world's glory. None of these things had any attraction for the Shulamite. She had eyes for only her beloved.
The Shulamite was now in a very difficult position. Through no fault of her own, she had been trapped and, outwardly at least, compromised. Her heart was with her beloved, but the snares of the world were all about her, and she seemed to have no possible way of escape. Yet, in some way not described, the shepherd broke through to be with her. The Lord never leaves us alone in our hour of temptation and trial. No power in earth or hell can prevent His getting through to the hearts of those who love Him. Lock up a saint in prison! Sound in his ears the ceaseless din and clamor of a noisy, godless, rowdy age! The Lord still has His means of breaking through to that needy soul. (4:-5:1)
Throughout this section of the Song, the Shulamite and her shepherd exchange their vows of devotion and love.
"Thou art fair, my love... thou hast doves' eyes," says the shepherd. He likens Jerusalem and the royal court to "the lions' dens" and the king and his courtiers to the lion and the leopard. But his beloved is "a garden inclosed"˜that is, her heart is bolted and barred against the flatteries and promises of the worldly prince who held her temporarily in his power.
The Shulamite says very little. She simply enjoys listening to the voice of her beloved. His words sound like the sweetest music in her soul. "Let my beloved come into his garden, and eat his pleasant fruits," she says.
Here is the way to victory over the world. Our secret source of strength is to be found in our daily "quiet time"˜the time that we set apart to be with our Lord. In those moments, we open His Word and listen to His voice. All backsliding stems from neglect of this vital, daily time of togetherness with our risen Lord. As we love our souls, we must guard well that daily time of meeting with Him! He will find His own way to the meeting place. Let us ensure that we get alone with Him.
Too soon the hour of togetherness was over, and the women of Solomon's court returned. They made a comment about the Shulamite's beloved, but before they could say more she broke in. She was not going to have his memory defiled by the likes of them. Instead she gave her testimony and told them all that her beloved shepherd meant to her. (5:2-6:3)
Her testimony was in two parts. She begins with a dream of her beloved. Evidently, she had had this dream at some time in her past; now she relates it to the court women. In her dream, her beloved had come knocking at her door in the dead of night. She had been too tired to respond. She had made excuses so that he had simply gone away. Panic-stricken, in her dream, she had rushed out in search of him and had been abused by the city watchmen who had insulted and smitten her.
The Lord Jesus will not force Himself upon us. If we are too lazy or too busy to give Him time, if we make excuses, He will quietly withdraw and leave us to ourselves. This withdrawal will put us in spiritual peril. It will put us in a false position and give the world an opportunity to do us harm. No wonder the Shulamite was troubled by her dream. It was more like a nightmare. She thought that she had lost her beloved, but thankfully, it was all a dream.
Then, the Shulamite put aside her dream and gave the court women instead a description of her beloved in what is one of the most magnificent pictorial descriptions of Christ in all of the Bible. "My beloved is white and ruddy, the chiefest among ten thousand. His head is as the most fine gold... his hands, his feet, all gold... his legs, pillars of marble; his hair, wavy and black as the raven's wing; his mouth, most sweet." The description touches on ten features of the beloved. "This is my beloved!" she exclaimed, "This is my friend."
Even the sophisticated, polished beauties of Solomon's court were impressed by this testimony. They wanted to know where they could find this beloved for themselves. The Shulamite, however, suspecting their motives, gave them only an evasive answer.
Do we speak with such richness, warmth, and enthusiasm about our Beloved? Do we so speak that people say to us, "How can we find this One for ourselves?" And do we have the spiritual insight and discernment to be able to tell when people are sincere and when they are not really pure in their profession of interest?
So far, Solomon had appeared to the Shulamite only once. However, he had not gone away. He was simply biding his time, hoping, no doubt, that the court women would be able to "soften up" the Shulamite. Now, alarmed at the passionate outburst of the shepherdess and aware that she was becoming only more and more attached to her absent shepherd, the tempter decided that he must make an all-out bid for the Shulamite's heart. This long section is in two parts. (6:4-8:4)
First, it describes Solomon's flatteries. In a long monologue, Solomon talked on and on, doing all in his power to persuade the Shulamite to listen to what he had to say. "Thou art fair, my love, beautiful as Tirzah, comely as Jerusalem, awe-inspiring as an army with banners." The Shulamite was wholly unimpressed by his honeyed words. She explained that her meeting with him was quite accidental; in no way had she been flirting with temptation. She wanted nothing better than to be left alone.
The infatuated king continued his flatteries. He refused to take "No!" for an answer. He brought pressure to bear; he used high-sounding phrases, determined to have his way. He settled in at last to an embarrassing description of the Shulamite's physical charms. "You are like the view from Mahanaim," he said, Then, beginning with her feet, he allowed his eye to rove over her form and his tongue to pour out the grossest flatteries. Her head! Her hair! So beautiful! He was held captive by her ringlets he said. Her mouth he found as intoxicating as wine!
We are impressed, however, by the fact that he did not touch her. As powerful as he was, he did not dare force himself upon her. He could plead and persuade, but he could not force.
So it is with the Prince of the world, the great enemy of our souls. The archtempter can present his propositions to our hearts, but he cannot force us to bow to his will. We go after the world or yield to the demands of the flesh by our own choice. The serpent could persuade Eve to take the forbidden fruit, but he could not ram it down her throat. He could urge the Lord Jesus to cast Himself down from the pinnacle of the temple, but he could not push Him down. God has drawn a line beyond which the tempter cannot go.
This hour of testing concludes with the Shulamite's firmness. To all of the subtle suggestions of Solomon she answers just one sentence: "I am my beloved's, and his desire is toward me." Then, ignoring Solomon altogether, she cried out with all of her soul for her absent one to come and take her away. Solomon was silent, utterly defeated, left with nothing more to say.
After all, that is the best answer to temptation. We should simply turn away from it, affirming our love for the Lord Jesus and crying out for Him to come and come soon. The world will be silenced. It has no weapons that can penetrate armor such as that.
The story closes with the coming of the shepherd. The Shulamite went home with him, leaning on his arm. Her brothers subjected her to cross-examination but gave way before the evidence of her triumph over the tempter. The Song concludes with the shepherd and the Shulamite exchanging their vows of love for one another. The Shulamite had triumphed gloriously. (8:5-14)
Can you see the testimony of the overcomer in this? Oh Beloved can you see the time of temptation, the standing firm for the Lover of our Soul, the time of anguish, the tears she must have shed. Can you see the Bride of Christ saving herself for the Lamb of God no matter the cost.
That is how those tears will "Became a Rose." Amen!
God Bless You

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