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Holy embrace

Posted on Jan 22, 2014 by in Love songs for my Savior | 0 comments

embrace

Did you know that God is a hopeless romantic?  That He created romance?  That His heart longs for that intimate connection with us?  Listen to this:

He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love [for love waved as a protecting and comforting banner over my head when I was near him].

Sustain me with raisins, refresh me with apples, for I am sick with love.

[I can feel] his left hand under my head and his right hand embraces me!

Song of Solomon 2:4-6, AMP

 

My beloved speaks and says to me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.

The fig tree puts forth and ripens her green figs, and the vines are in blossom and give forth their fragrance. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.

[So I went with him, and when we were climbing the rocky steps up the hillside, my beloved shepherd said to me] O my dove, [while you are here] in the seclusion of the clefts in the solid rock, in the sheltered and secret place of the cliff, let me see your face, let me hear your voice; for your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely.

Song of Solomon 2:10; 13-14, AMP

 

There are many theories on this scandalous love story tucked between Ecclesiastes and Isaiah.  Why is it in the Bible?  It’s not just in the appendices, or “Further Reading” section…it was placed right in the middle of the Old Testament.

Is it really just a poem that King Solomon wrote about one of his hundreds of wives and concubines?

Why would God put such an enticing, alluring love story in His sacred Scriptures?

I believe that it is an unashamed declaration of love from the Bridegroom to His Bride.  It is Jesus, boldly declaring His passion for us.

For you and for me.

The exchange in chapter two touches a deep place in my women’s heart, especially where he says,

O my dove, [while you are here] in the seclusion of the clefts in the solid rock, in the sheltered and secret place of the cliff, let me see your face, let me hear your voice; for your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely.

As women, isn’t that our deepest desire?  To be lovely?  For someone to think that we are lovely beyond compare?  For someone to desire us?

Jesus is a bold Lover.  He openly allures and woos us into His heart.  He seeks us out just to tell us how much He loves us.

Can we believe this?

Can YOU believe this?  That this shameless, beautiful, scandalous love story is for you?  That Jesus wrote this love story for you?  I would ask you to read this book, slowly.  Instead of picturing Solomon and his Shulamite lover, see yourself and Jesus.

(I know, I know, some of the descriptions are extremely erotic, and they clearly point to a physical love relationship.  This book is also thought to be a description of the beauty of  marriage relationship.  So as you read it, focus on the passages that connect with you as being about Jesus and His Bride.  Some of my favorite passages are chapter 2; chapter 3:1-4; chapter 5:2-8, 6:1-3.  Which passages speak to you?  Where is the Lord calling you? Meditate on the verses that speak to you.  What is He trying to tell you?  Where is He leading you?)

Moving beyond Song of Solomon, let’s look at some other passages about this Holy Romance.  What about Revelation 2:4?  This is Jesus speaking to his seven churches through his apostle John.

But I have this [one charge to make] against you: that you have left (abandoned) the love that you had at first [you have deserted Me, your first love].

This is a devoted Husband crying out to His Bride, “Where have you gone?  Come back to Me, your first love!”

Have you lost your first love?  Have you never loved Jesus and felt loved by Jesus in such an intimate way?  He’s calling for you today!

Then we have the story of Hosea and Gomer, a heart-wrenching parallel of God and His Bride, Israel.  God chose to use a love story, comparing Himself to Hosea as a faithful husband, and Israel to Gomer, a prostitute that continued chasing after her lovers even after being rescued from that lifestyle by Hosea.  First God tells Israel through the prophet Hosea that He will punish Israel and strip her bare because of her shameless whoring after pagan gods.  But later on in the chapter, He promises to restore His Bride to Himself:

Therefore, behold, I will allure her [Israel] and bring her into the wilderness, and I will speak tenderly and to her heart.

There I will give her her vineyards and make the Valley of Achor [troubling] to be for her a door of hope and expectation. And she shall sing there and respond as in the days of her youth and as at the time when she came up out of the land of Egypt.

And it shall be in that day, says the Lord, that you will call Me Ishi [my Husband], and you shall no more call Me Baali [my Baal].

Hosea 2:14-16, AMP

“I will be her Husband!”

And I will betroth you to Me forever; yes, I will betroth you to Me in righteousness and justice, in steadfast love, and in mercy.

I will even betroth you to Me in stability and in faithfulness, and you shall know (recognize, be acquainted with, appreciate, give heed to, and cherish) the Lord.

Hosea 2:20-21, AMP

“I will betroth you to Me forever! In steadfast love and mercy!”

Is that romantic, or what?

In case you’re not convinced that the Almighty God and Creator of the Universe wants to romance you (yes, you!), here are a couple more passages for you to ponder.

Fear not, for you shall not be ashamed; neither be confounded and depressed, for you shall not be put to shame. For you shall forget the shame of your youth, and you shall not [seriously] remember the reproach of your widowhood any more.

For your Maker is your Husband—the Lord of hosts is His name—and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; the God of the whole earth He is called.

For the Lord has called you like a woman forsaken, grieved in spirit, and heartsore—even a wife [wooed and won] in youth, when she is [later] refused and scorned, says your God.

For a brief moment I forsook you, but with great compassion and mercy I will gather you [to Me] again.

In a little burst of wrath I hid My face from you for a moment, but with age-enduring love and kindness I will have compassion and mercy on you, says the Lord, your Redeemer.

Isaiah 54:4-8, AMP

Over and over God uses the illustration of a love relationship in His plea to His people Israel, the seed of Abraham- and we, today, are the continuation of Abraham’s seed, as it says in Galatians 3:

Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.

And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.

So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

Galatians 3:7-9, AMP

 

Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.

Galatians 3:16, AMP

 

 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

Galatians 3:29, AMP

So this love story, that began thousands of years before you were born, is YOUR love story!  Do you see?  You are the Bride of Christ, the seed of Abraham, Father of Israel.  We are heirs according to the promise of Abraham, because we are the seed of Christ!

Let this sink in a little bit, really sink in.  Today, answer the call of your Lover, your Husband, your Bridegroom.  He longs to heal you, to fill you with His perfect love, to bring you into wholeness, to complete you!

Will you let Him?  What will your answer be?

I pray it is a resounding “YES!” of your heart and soul.  I pray that you throw yourself at the feet of this Faithful Lover.  Surrender to His love.  He will cherish you and uplift you and support you like no man has ever done…because He is no earthly man.  He is Jesus.

 

“Dear Jesus, I pray that my sisters today will answer Your call like never before.  I pray that they will let go of their every fear and doubt.  I pray against every lie of the enemy that has kept them in darkness.  Release them from all condemnation and shame that have made them feel unworthy of this Love.  Release Truth into their hearts right now!  Hide Your Truth in their inward parts and sanctify them with the Truth of Your endless Love.  Jesus, lead them into Your heart where healing, wholeness, and freedom is found.  Heal every wound, Jesus.  Go deep into the wounds of their past and deliver them from the fear of their future.  I claim this in the precious Name above every name, the only Name that can save us- Jesus!”

 

 

 

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/vintagefindings/8382420086/”>PaintedWorksByKB.com</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>cc</a>

 

 

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