140 likes | 284 Views
The Song of Solomon. Key Ideas. The goodness of humanity created male and female in God’s image. The dignify of human affections The sanctity of sex in the context of marriage The virtue of chastity before marriage, and the virtue of faithfulness once married. The Writing of the Book.
E N D
Key Ideas • The goodness of humanity created male and female in God’s image. • The dignify of human affections • The sanctity of sex in the context of marriage • The virtue of chastity before marriage, and the virtue of faithfulness once married
The Writing of the Book Why is Song of Solomon considered a Wisdom book? • Associated with King Solomon (1 Ki. 4:29-34) • Concerned with mystery of humanity created male and female • Offers instruction on sexuality and marriage
The Writing of the Book • Traditionally, King Solomon is held as the author • Possible date of authorship: 10th-century BC (1:1) • Some, though, claim that King Hezekiah—king of Judah who played a key role in the preservation of Israelite wisdom literature—wrote the book
Historical Background • Other than the mention Solomon’s reign (ca. 970-930 BC), little else is given regarding the book’s historical background • Likely that love poetry speaks of actual events associated with Solomon’s reign • Solomon was dominated by sensuality, much like his father • Extravagance of his kingship (i.e., his palace) • Size of his royal harem (i.e., 700 wives and 300 concubines)
Purpose and Message Purpose • Instruction on and celebration of the physical nature of human beings created male and female by God • Praise God-ordained goodness and virtue of sexual love between man and woman
Purpose and Message Message • Argues for the dignity of human affections and sexual expression within a one-man-to-one-woman relationship. • Explains the two-fold purpose of the union between male and female: pleasure and procreation.
Interpreting the Book • The question of how to interpret this book has puzzled scholars for centuries, due to the fact that: • 1. The book’s theme, topic, and frank language have confused, shocked, and embarrassed both Jewish and Christian readers and scholars • 2. The nature and structure of love poetry is not easy to analyze • 3. The book’s historical vagueness and social ambiguity make it difficult to associate with other books
Interpreting the Book • In general, five major approaches to interpreting the book have emerged: • 1. Dramatic—the Song of Solomon is an ancient Hebrew play intended for royal entertainment. • 2. Wedding cycle—the Song of Solomon is a collection of wedding poems honoring the bride and groom; these would have been incorporated into the wedding celebration itself. • 3. Didactic—the Song of Solomon is intended to offer moral instruction on the purity and wonder of sexual love, on faithfulness and chastity, and on the proper place of human affection in marriage.
Interpreting the Book • 4. Allegory—the Song of Solomon is ultimately intended to symbolize either Yahweh’s relationship to Israel or Christ’s relationship to his bride, the church—or both. • 5. Literal—the Song of Solomon is a sensual, even erotic, expression of two young lovers’ desire for each other.
Major Theme The virtue of chastity in the young lovers before marriage, and the virtue of faithfulness of the young lovers in marriage.
Major Theme • Scripture is clear: God will judge all who are sexually immoral (1 Cor. 6:9,18-20; Heb. 13:4). • Genuine love, especial between a husband and wife, is shown in honesty and faithfulness, loyalty and commitment, respect and care for each other • Physical love is good and right within the confines of God-ordained marriage—a truth that is much-needed for the church in culture today praises sexual license and easy divorce.