The New Life Mission

Sermons

Subject 25 : The SONG OF SOLOMON

[25-5] (Song of Solomon 4:1-16) We Are Loved by God

(Song of Solomon 4:1-16)
“Behold, you are fair, my love!
Behold, you are fair!
You have dove’s eyes behind your veil.
Your hair is like a flock of goats,
Going down from Mount Gilead.
Your teeth are like a flock of shorn sheep
Which have come up from the washing,
Every one of which bears twins,
And none is barren among them.
Your lips are like a strand of scarlet,
And your mouth is lovely.
Your temples behind your veil
Are like a piece of pomegranate.
Your neck is like the tower of David,
Built for an armory,
On which hang a thousand bucklers,
All shields of mighty men.
Your two breasts are like two fawns,
Twins of a gazelle,
Which feed among the lilies.
Until the day breaks
And the shadows flee away,
I will go my way to the mountain of myrrh
And to the hill of frankincense.
You are all fair, my love,
And there is no spot in you.
Come with me from Lebanon, my spouse,
With me from Lebanon.
Look from the top of Amana,
From the top of Senir and Hermon,
From the lions’ dens,
From the mountains of the leopards.
You have ravished my heart,
My sister, my spouse;
You have ravished my heart
With one look of your eyes,
With one link of your necklace.
How fair is your love,
My sister, my spouse!
How much better than wine is your love,
And the scent of your perfumes
Than all spices!
Your lips, O my spouse,
Drip as the honeycomb;
Honey and milk are under your tongue;
And the fragrance of your garments
Is like the fragrance of Lebanon.
A garden enclosed
Is my sister, my spouse,
A spring shut up,
A fountain sealed.
Your plants are an orchard of pomegranates
With pleasant fruits,
Fragrant henna with spikenard,
Spikenard and saffron,
Calamus and cinnamon,
With all trees of frankincense,
Myrrh and aloes,
With all the chief spices—
A fountain of gardens,
A well of living waters,
And streams from Lebanon.
Awake, O north wind,
And come, O south!
Blow upon my garden,
That its spices may flow out.
Let my beloved come to his garden
And eat its pleasant fruits.”
 
 
When we turn to the Song of Solomon we can see just how much God loves us. It’s written in Song of Solomon 4:1-3: “Behold, you are fair, my love! Behold, you are fair! You have dove’s eyes behind your veil. Your hair is like a flock of goats, Going down from Mount Gilead. Your teeth are like a flock of shorn sheep Which have come up from the washing, Every one of which bears twins, And none is barren among them. Your lips are like a strand of scarlet, And your mouth is lovely. Your temples behind your veil Are like a piece of pomegranate.”
 
 
Today’s Scripture Reading Is Like a Love Story
 
Today’s Scripture reading may sound like a romantic poem written by someone who is head over heels in love. In reality, this passage shows us just how much God loves us the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, especially those of us who have become His workers. It illustrates how much God cherishes His workers. When God sees us, that’s how lovely we are to Him.
It’s written here: “You are all fair, my love, And there is no spot in you. Come with me from Lebanon, my spouse, With me from Lebanon. Look from the top of Amana, From the top of Senir and Hermon, From the lions’ dens, From the mountains of the leopards. You have ravished my heart, My sister, my spouse; You have ravished my heart With one look of your eyes, With one link of your necklace.”
The Bible says here that those who have received the remission of sins are such lovely beings in the Lord’s sight. When the Lord looks at the workers preaching the gospel of the water and the Spirit, they are so lovely to Him that His heart is ravished by them. This is because the Lord’s servants are ministering faithfully. The servants of the Lord spreading the gospel of the water and the Spirit in this age are ministering while standing against His enemies, and in the sight of the Lord, these servants are faithful to their ministry and love His righteousness. That’s why they are especially loved by the Lord, for they are spreading the gospel of the water and the Spirit while facing countless opponents.
Such servants of God have been falsely accused of heresy and rejected by worldly Christians. Despite this, far from capitulating to their persecutors, God’s servants have carried out the work of spreading the righteousness of the Lord even more faithfully. Some of them have even lost their everything for the sake of spreading the Lord’s gospel. Yet, they have faithfully carried out God’s work because their hearts love the Lord’s righteousness so much more. So, when the Lord sees them, He can’t help but love them. Wouldn’t you feel the same way if you were in His shoes? Because the Lord loves His servants so much, it’s only a matter of course for His heart to be ravished by them.
The Lord expressed His love for us by drawing an analogy to the mountains of Israel, such as Amana, Senir and Hermon. The top of Mount Hermon being always covered in snow is the all-important source of drinking and agricultural water for those living below the mountain. This symbolizes the love the Lord has for us. It also refers to the blessings that our God has given us by saving us from all our sins. In mentioning some of the highest mountains in Israel here, such as Hermon, Amana, and Senir, God is speaking about how we have put on His special grace to become His children. The Lord also said to us: “Look from the top of Amana, From the top of Senir and Hermon, From the lions’ dens,
From the mountains of the leopards.” Here, God is telling His servants to look at how He is protecting their ministry from all that threatens His work. Now that we have put on the God-given grace of salvation by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and as we carry on with our lives in this world, we can see just how great is the love with which God has clothed us.
Here the Lord spoke to us about “one link of your necklace,” and this refers to the life that’s lived to spread the righteousness of God. In other words, in God’s sight, the lives of faith led by His servants are beautiful. Their lives of faith are worthy of God’s approval. The faith that God’s servants have is one that believes in each and every Word of God wholeheartedly. That’s why they trust in and serve the righteousness of God. The life of everyone who has become sinless by believing in God’s righteousness is wonderful in His sight.
Today’s Scripture passage teaches us that although there are countless people living on this earth, those who have truly become God’s people are extremely few, and the life led by such people who have become God’s own children is very different from the life led by ordinary people. In God’s eyes the saints’ life is fundamentally distinct from the life of the worldly. The saints lead a beautiful life. All of us who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit are now living clothed in the amazing grace of God. We the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit are carrying out our ministry by God’s wonderful grace. We have received the amazing blessing of salvation from God in our lives. We now believe in the righteousness of God with all our hearts.
It’s written in Song of Solomon 4:9-12: “You have ravished my heart, My sister, my spouse; You have ravished my heart With one look of your eyes, With one link of your necklace. How fair is your love, My sister, my spouse! How much better than wine is your love, And the scent of your perfumes Than all spices! Your lips, O my spouse, Drip as the honeycomb; Honey and milk are under your tongue; And the fragrance of your garments Is like the fragrance of Lebanon. A garden enclosed Is my sister, my spouse, A spring shut up, A fountain sealed.”
This is how God sees all of us who have received the remission of sins. He is saying to us, “You have ravished my heart, My sister, my spouse.” As God said here, His heart has been ravished by us as we believe in His righteousness. That is how special we are, distinct from all the creatures in this world. We believe that God loves us so much like this. As we believe in the righteousness of God, we love Jesus Christ. And when God sees that we trust in His righteousness as His people, we are adorable in His sight. That’s why God said that His heart has been ravished by His people.
Song of Solomon 4:10-11 says: “How fair is your love, My sister, my spouse! How much better than wine is your love, And the scent of your perfumes Than all spices! Your lips, O my spouse, Drip as the honeycomb; Honey and milk are under your tongue; And the fragrance of your garments Is like the fragrance of Lebanon.” This passage means that when we praise our God’s righteousness and serve the Lord, He is absolutely delighted. Do you believe that God is delighted by us? Do you believe that God loves us so much like this when we praise His righteousness? We are God’s own people, and God indeed loves us all. It’s written in Song of Solomon 4:12: “A garden enclosed Is my sister, my spouse, A spring shut up, A fountain sealed.”
 
 
You and I Are the Fountains Sealed for the Lord’s Use
 
My fellow believers, whoever has received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit has become God’s own bride. Describing us the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, God Himself said that we are like “a garden enclosed,” “a spring shut up,” and “a fountain sealed.” In God’s sight, the hearts of all who believe in His righteousness are like a fountain sealed. We are God’s garden. We are the spring shut up, owned by God. We don’t open our hearts to anyone except the Lord. The hearts of the saints are open only to God, never to this world. This is true for most people who believe in the righteousness of God. Those who have received the remission of sins open their hearts to only God and His truth.
When are our hearts flung open? This happens when we listen to the Word of God, meet with our fellow righteous saints, or share the gospel with others. However, there are some righteous people who still remain carnal, and such people open their hearts to this world even as they keep them closed to the will of God. How about your heart then? Is it open to this world while it’s closed to God’s dominion? If this is the case, then you are asking for God’s wrath. If you really are being led by the Holy Spirit, you would never love the world.
 Some of you might sometimes think that it would be fun to go to a bar or a nightclub, but once you actually go to such a place, you will see that it has nothing to offer. Places like these hold no fun for those who have already received the remission of sins. The Lord said to us that His love is better than wine. This is actually the case. Nothing in this world is better than the Lord’s love. While those who are hated by God open their hearts to this world, those who are led by the Holy Spirit open their hearts only to God. As such people who open their hearts to the God-spoken Truth and are joyful by it, we are being led by the Holy Spirit.
My fellow believers, the Lord said that the saints’ hearts are like “a fountain sealed.” Indeed, we open our hearts to the Lord our Master whenever we are visited by Him, but we keep our hearts closed when approached by anyone else. Everyone has carnal desires. Even those who have been born again by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit have fleshly desires, but they also have righteous desires. As those who have become righteous, we have outer fleshly selves, but we also have inner selves. Because we have inner selves, we tend to open the door to the Lord while keeping it closed to this world. So the door of our inner selves is always open to the Lord. But this is not true when it comes to the world. Of course, our outer selves tend to be more open to the world than to our Lord. However, because our inner selves are open to the Lord alone, we belong to the Lord. We keep our hearts closed to the world. This is what is meant by “a fountain sealed.”
 
 
The Lord Is the Master of Our Hearts
 
The Lord is our God. What is the purpose for every fountain? It’s for its owner to drink from it. Why do we have a fountain in our hearts then? It’s there so that our Lord could make us do God’s work and share fellowship with us. A fountain serves its purpose only when its owner drinks from it. The fountain in our hearts is owned by the Lord, and therefore we ought to open it to the Lord alone and keep it closed to everyone else. In other words, we should not let just anyone near us and rule over our hearts. Only the King can come to us and drink from the sealed fountain that’s in our hearts. We ought to keep our hearts sealed off completely at all times and open them only when we are visited by our Lord. Our hearts ought to be open to our Lord alone. They ought to be accessible only to our God.
We believe in our God. When should we open our hearts? We should open them only when the righteousness of God knocks on the door. Clearly understanding this point is absolutely critical to leading a proper life of faith. We should never cheapen ourselves by opening our hearts to just anyone. We ought to open them only when it’s called for and keep them closed at all other times. In other words, while we ought to open our hearts to whatever is the Lord’s work and whatever pleases Him, we should close them without hesitation to anything else that’s not pleasing to the Lord.
While you have the free will to either open or close your heart whenever you want to, now that you have received the remission of sins from the Lord, you should not forget that you are His bride. Every bride opens the door only visited by her groom. If you smile and open your heart to just anyone who visits you, then you would fail as a bride of God. If the Lord really is our Groom, we ought to open our hearts only when we are visited by our Groom. This is what God is teaching us here in today’s Scripture passage, telling us that we are His brides and ought to behave as such. We have actually become God’s own brides by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
My fellow believers, none other than you and I are God’s brides. Each and every bride of God opens their hearts only to the Groom, God Himself. If you really have become God’s bride, and if you really know this fact, then you ought to keep your heart chaste. God’s brides are no one else but you and I. Not only our sisters here, but also all our brothers sitting here are God’s brides. There is a sealed fountain in the heart of each and every one of us. Our hearts ought to be open only to our Groom. You and I are a sealed fountain. There are many sealed fountains here.
My heart is a sealed fountain, just as your heart is also a sealed fountain. We don’t open our hearts to just anyone. We open them only to our fellow believers, to God, and to His Church. Our hearts are open to our fellow brothers and sisters who have become God’s own people. Other than this, we keep our hearts closed, except when we open them for a short while to preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit. We never open ourselves up to anyone but the Lord. We are cold-hearted in that way. However, to those who believe in God’s gospel, we open our hearts wide. We do so because there is the Spirit of God inside them.
In God’s sight, all of us are pure and unblemished brides. We are sealed fountains. That’s what God is saying to us. We have actually become God’s own brides. On account of our faith, by believing in God, we have become His brides. We ought to live with a full realization of our new status, knowing what we now have become. It doesn’t matter how others see us or what they think about us, for we have become God’s brides.
All of you gathered here are the sons and daughters of God and His own brides. You have put on God’s special love. As such privileged people, however, we also need to have compassion on others. When God says to us to look from the top of Hermon, from the lion’s dens and the mountains of the leopards, He also wants us to have mercy on everyone. Since we are looking down from the top of the mountain, in some ways it may seem as though we are being arrogant, but we are in fact humble and full of compassion. It does, however, show our new status. Who is most exalted in this world then? Those who believe in God are the most exalted, other than God Himself, of course. Who is most blessed by God? Those who have received the remission of sins once and for all by believing in the righteousness of God are the most blessed. So let us all give thanks to our God.
It’s written in Song of Solomon 4:13-16: “Your plants are an orchard of pomegranates With pleasant fruits, Fragrant henna with spikenard, Spikenard and saffron, Calamus and cinnamon, With all trees of frankincense, Myrrh and aloes, With all the chief spices—A fountain of gardens, A well of living waters, And streams from Lebanon. Awake, O north wind, And come, O south! Blow upon my garden, That its spices may flow out. Let my beloved come to his garden And eat its pleasant fruits.”
My fellow believers, you and I are the streams of life for this world. Those who have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit are like the streams from the snow-capped mountains of Lebanon, carrying ice-cold water to the desert below to bring it to life. None other than you and I are such streams of life that brings water to the desert, making it possible for flowers to blossom, all kinds of fragrant trees to grow, and every kind of fruit to be born according to the seasons. The saved people of God who trust in Him are the streams of life for this world. It is through the believers in God’s righteousness that everyone in this world can receive everlasting life, God’s blessings, and precious fruit. All the blessings for everyone living in this world are received through the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
God enables His people to bear abundant fruit. The Lord helps us to bear the nine fruits of the Spirit according to the seasons, from the fruit of kindness to the fruit of self-discipline and the fruit of love. Now that we have become our God’s own brides, He wants us to come into His Church and bear fruit. He is asking us, “Has someone received the remission of sins today through you? What are the fruits born inside you? Is the fruit of love born? The fruit of kindness? The fruit of self-discipline? Is there the fruit of faithfulness? The fruit of perseverance?”
Our Lord God wants to be glorified by these fruits. He wants to be glorified by His Church. Whatever is precious in us the saints, has all come from God. It’s all thanks to God our Groom that we have received blessings, we believe in God faithfully, our selves have been wholly transformed, our hearts have become sinless, we have been made God’s own people, and we have found peace—in short, everything wonderful that we have has come from God above. Words cannot express just how grateful we are to God. Every wonderful blessing has come from above. So we can’t help but thank God for giving us such amazing blessings.
God wants us to always abide in His Church and receive His blessings, today and tomorrow alike until the day He judges this world. Throughout all these years God has given nothing but the best to His Church, enabling us to bear the fruits of faith in this Church. Not only has our God given us these fruits of faith, but He has also made us praise Him with our lips. Accordingly, we have come to give all glory to God. In faith we give all our thanks to God. We thank God and praise Him whenever we pray and sing hymns. We thank Him for loving us so much.
With this unending love our Lord provides for all our needs and works in our lives. God would never end His relationship with us. He wants to keep this relationship going forever, and He is in fact making sure that it would last forever. Whenever a bride goes astray, the place that corrects her, teaches her, and guides her is God’s vineyard, the Church. As long as we abide in the Church, our Lord will love us always, listen to our every prayer, and provide for our every need, just as Solomon loved the Shulamite woman and cherished her with all his heart.
Today’s Scripture reading shows us just how much our Lord loves us through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, illustrating how lovely we all are in His sight. God’s love and blessings are so amazing that we can’t help but wonder how on earth we have come to receive them; all that we can do is just thank God. On our own, we have done nothing to deserve this, yet God loved us so much that He chose us in Christ and enabled us to receive the remission of sins by believing in Him. So we simply can’t help but thank God. When we really think about how the Lord is keeping His relationship with us forever alive and giving us His eternal blessings even at this very moment, we are so overwhelmed by gratefulness that words cannot express just how thankful we are. We have found God’s amazing grace. So let us give all our thanks to Him.