Today’s reading: Song of Solomon 1-8, Psalm 76-77
If you’ve never read Song of Solomon before, you are in for quite a surprise today. It doesn’t take long to realize that you have entered very different territory from anything else you’ll read in the perfect 100. Perhaps you even checked the cover to make sure you picked up the right book. Today’s sensual reading seems more akin to erotic poetry than anything else, which might have you asking, “And this is in the Bible because. . .?”
The extensive use of sexuality as a marketing tool in our world today has fed us all kinds of unhealthy messages about human attraction. It has also contributed to the privatization of our thoughts and feelings about sex and left many of us unable to talk openly about the subject. Thank goodness early church leaders decided to leave a book in the Biblical canon that explores the subject unabashedly. The Song of Solomon reminds us that human attraction and sexuality are good gifts from God. Far from being a cause for shame or embarrassment, they are to be embraced with gratitude and joy. Elsewhere in Scripture, we find needed instruction on the boundaries within which this gift is to be shared. There are also exhortations that remind us that the gift of sex is not to be exploited, but to be cherished.
Song of Solomon takes us back to the garden of Eden, Remember that in the beginning, Adam and Eve were both naked and unashamed. But then sin enters the picture and our understanding and apprecation of each other as sexual beings becomes skewed. The Song encourages married couples to recover the feeling of being so comfortable and assured in each others’ presence that they could be uninhibited and without fear in expressing their love. On the road to recovering a healthy attitude toward God’s good gift, this little book’s message is invaluable.