Although some view God as a prude who is anti-sex, today we consider what sex looks like in God’s design. Couples, you may want to take notes, because the Lord has a recipe here for some good lovin’. How will you set the table of delight and desire tonight?
3 Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest
is my beloved among the young men.
I delight to sit in his shade,
and his fruit is sweet to my taste.
4 Let him lead me to the banquet hall,
and let his banner over me be love.
5 Strengthen me with raisins,
refresh me with apples,
for I am faint with love.
6 His left arm is under my head,
and his right arm embraces me.
7 Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you
by the gazelles and by the does of the field:
Do not arouse or awaken love
until it so desires.
16 My beloved is mine and I am his…
Song of Solomon 2:3-7, 16
Do you consider your husband to be a desirable apple tree among the trees of the forest? The forest of men is filled with many varieties, some with thorns and sharp bark (how does he treat you?), some with leaves that have fallen off (pattern baldness?), and some which are evergreen (always looking youthful?). Our bride here views her groom as an apple tree, good for sitting under and good eating…
She delights to sit in his shade, and his fruit is sweet to her taste. This is an intimate moment between them, his embrace covering her with shade and she, tasting of his fruit. Does this sound like delight to you? Some are saying yes, while others are cringing. I get it. There are a hundred different experiences of sex in the naked city. Before you compare and contrast yours with this story, perhaps just sit back and consider what sex could be like in God’s design.
We see desire and delight spring from the page here, and I believe these emotions come from two places: the mind and the eye. What decisions are you making to introduce delight and desire into your banquet hall?
Banquet Hall. That’s right. She refers to their bedroom as a place where the feast of celebration happens. How are you setting the table for sex in your house? Is it Grab-And-Go fast food or candlelit fine dining?
Are you taking pride in how you look to catch her attention, guys, or are you putting on your favourite sweats with the food stains? And speaking of setting the table, perhaps I forgot to mention her experience in setting the stage for delight and desire… guys are you helping to set the table and clean up the dishes? Delight and desire starts in the kitchen for many ladies.
These lovers showcase a tenderness which is guaranteed to quicken the love-making senses. One arm under her head while the other embraces her, he knows how to care for his lady. His banner over her is love. In other words, he covers her with his love – this happens in the place where they celebrate each other, yet it must also happen in the public domain. Do you feel loved by your spouse in the events of the day? And are you showing that love in the morning and the afternoon? If so, you will transport that tenderness and care into the night.
Notice the mutual ownership of each other in the summary. My beloved is mine and I am his. I am not my own. Rather, I give myself to you, my love, and I receive you as my own for the celebration of the pleasures of our fruit.
Three times in the Song book, we see the same caution as is here in verse 7: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires. No one wants to wait for this intimacy. No one desires to extinguish the flames of lust or love within. The context of these passionate verses, though, is the marriage of Solomon and his bride. And so we see that this intimacy is not for all, or for the love of this week. It is for the love of one’s life.
Husbands and wives, what inspiration will you draw from the stories of the Song tonight?