The Beauty and Love of Marriage

by Connie Hodsdon Champeon | August 31, 2023

“The man said, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh. She will be called ‘woman,’ because she was taken out of Man.” Therefore a man will leave his father and his mother, and will join with his wife, and they will be one flesh.” (Gen 2:23-24)

Cards on the table, I don’t think Song of Songs is allegorical. I’m very slow to think any Scripture is unless it clearly claims to be in some way. I don’t understand why through the years so many scholars hide behind that claim, I have some guesses.

Sadly, many Christians leaders have marriage that don’t come close to reflecting the holy, selfless passion described in Song of Songs. I think sex is an extremely uncomfortable topic for many of them so it’s easiest for them to talk about it allegorically. I also think they are extremely uncomfortable with a woman talking about sexual desire in the ways the Shulammite woman does. Many feel a godly woman should not enjoy or want sex even after marriage, she should desire to please her husband but not herself.

If Song of Songs isn’t allegorical then it paints a very different picture of courtship, marriage and sexuality than many promote. Couples, and women in particular, are encouraged to settle for lesser things, to lower their expectations and be satisfied with “good enough.”

Marriage is the central relationship throughout Scripture.

It is the first relationship man had and he bursts into song about her and makes her his first priority. Jesus first miracle was at a marriage feast and the Bible closes with a marriage supper. The Bible is full of stories and illustrations of broken marriage relationships and horrific stories and illustrations of sexual abuse and misuse. There are few examples of good marriages to point to. Many of the ones you start rooting for, end up broken and twisted.

When did Isaak and Rebecca’s marriage become full of lies, manipulation, power plays and distrust?

Marriage itself is supposed to be an allegory of the love of God for us, a taste of the greater love and passion. But with all the brokenness on display in Scripture how are we to see what it is actually supposed to be? The answer I think is Song it Songs.

I also think Solomon is the antagonist in this story, not the hero.

Solomon with all his wives and concubines represents the opposite of godly, selfless love and passion. To make him an example of a godly marriage would be to make marriage a joke and a travesty. Solomon confessed he didn’t restrain himself in any way, but gave his flesh everything it desired.

The first verse indicates this book belonged to Solomon. He did write many songs like his father and it’s possible he wrote this but more likely it was written for him. It is an amazingly written collection of poems or play. Ecclesiastes showed how much Solomon’s failed at what really mattered. I think Song of Songs continues that theme.

No one had more women than Solomon but he couldn’t buy the love and passion of this woman he was infatuated with, a poor shepherd who was faithful and loyal had the one thing Solomon couldn’t.

But if Song of Songs is about marriage what is it’s message for singles or not yet marrieds? Don’t settle. Really, that’s its message for married people as well – don’t settle, don’t take each other for granted. Fight for love, continually revive the passion for each other. Don’t lose your first love for God or for each other. Make time to adore, admire and appreciate each other.

Dear Father, thank you that you care about my relationship with my husband so much You had an entire book devoted to the topic. Forgive me for the times I settle and don’t make our marriage a priority. Help me to love well. Help me to fight for passion and joy in our marriage. Help our marriage to be a reflection of your love for us.

Connie Hodsdon Champeon is a beloved daughter of the King, besotten wife, loyal friend, and international linguistics consultant.

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