“I have compared thee, O my love, to a company of horses in Pharaoh’s chariots. Thy cheeks are comely with rows of jewels, thy neck with chains of gold. We will make thee borders of gold with studs of silver.” (Song of Solomon 1:9-11)
Here we continue to study the Song of Songs in reference to defining and describing the love in a Godly marriage, in light of the fact that this types out Christ and His Wife, the Church of the Living God. In the remaining verses of Chapter 1, verses 9-17, Solomon writes short comments of what the man says in view of his Love, his Wife; and what the woman says in view of her Beloved, her King.
These are only introductory remarks. In later chapters, the man describes in detail the beauty of his Wife, his Love (4:1-16; 6:4-13; 7:1-9); and the woman speaks of her Beloved’s physical characteristics (5:10-16).
These short interchanges of affection spoken to each other are very valuable steps in developing a firm foundation in a marriage. They are also necessary and beautiful steps in reaching consummation. In the physical realm, words of endearment, words of affection, words that speak of the inner desire and admiration of one mate to another, are vital for a deep, rich love affair with each other in marriage. They reveal that there is more than just a desire to satisfy lust. They lift one up to hear and see and know that their mate loves more about them than sex alone.
True love takes time to develop. True love is a process of steps that must be followed if the foundation is to be on solid rock. When a wife hears her Beloved’s words of affection for her, it builds her up. It gives her confidence and assurance that the eye of her Beloved is single to her and to none other. It is a basic instinct, placed in us by God, to want to be admired. It encourages us on the journey to keep on, keeping on. That is, to endure even when the storm comes and rocks the boat.
It is the same in the spiritual realm. It builds us up in the most holy faith to know how God views us “in Christ”; that is, covered with the Robes of Righteousness, the Garments of Salvation. It gives us assurance and confidence that truly we know God, He knows us, and He loves us.
The first word picture Solomon presents is the man’s view of his Love, his Wife (verses 9-11).
“I have compared thee, O my love, to a company of horses in Pharaoh’s chariots.” (verse 9)
Most who read these verses know nothing of the “horses in Pharaoh’s chariots.” The Pharaohs of Ancient Egypt were men who were like kings; they were the top officers in the government of Egypt. They were rich and powerful. To show their wealth and power, they had horses and chariots in great numbers. And these horses were highly decorated (or dressed).
“Thy cheeks are comely with rows of jewels, thy neck with chains of gold.” (verse 10)
“We will make thee borders of gold with studs of silver.” (verse 11)
This imagery of being arrayed in jewels and chains of gold and borders of gold with studs of silver, points to the glory, wealth, and beauty that Pharaoh presented on his servants, the horses. Pharaoh spared nothing to array his servants in beauty.
So it is with a man toward his Love. He covers her with the best he can. It brings him pleasure, and also brings honor from others, as they view his love for his wife.
So it is in the spiritual realm. Christ has covered His Love, His Church, with the Garments of Salvation, with His Robe of Righteousness.
This covering of righteousness is given as a witness to the ones covered and to all that perceive this covering of Christ’s love for them. Here in verse 9, it is the King who is speaking, even Christ. It is not what others say that He said about His Love, His Bride; but the King speaks it directly to His Love.
This then becomes a solid, assuring witness to His Love of His love for her and His admiration for her in His covering. Every wife needs this from her husband. This is what builds trust and assurance that her husband truly loves her. So it is in the spiritual realm. We are members of His Body, being His Wife; having been arrayed with the Riches of God in His Righteousness; which means we are redeemed from sin and its curse, its punishment, its presence, and its power.
Therefore, knowing by His call to us, that He has given us not the spirit of bondage to fear, but given us an understanding that we are His Love; we cry, “Abba, Father”; for we have been given the spirit of adoption. (See Romans 8:14-16; Galatians 4:5-7.) This gives the Church a firm foundation of assurance of His love for her. This is a great truth, which brings peace and rest in His Beloved (Romans 8:29-39).
When you know of His love for you by how He dresses you, then there is liberty (2 Corinthians 3:17). You know you are the apple of His eye; you know you are the only one for Him.