Sermons

Summary: This is the 3rd study in the study "Intimacy". This study looks at being engaged and the pressures and stresses that go with engagement.

ENGAGEMENT

Song of Solomon 2:8-3:5

As we continue in our study we will watch the courtship process taking place. Realizing that courtship and dating differ in some ways, we will see this couple enter into what our culture would consider engagement.

The Proposal

Song of Solomon 2:8-14(NKJV)

THE SHULAMITE

8 The voice of my beloved! Behold, he comes Leaping upon the mountains, Skipping upon the hills.

9 My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Behold, he stands behind our wall; He is looking through the windows, Gazing through the lattice.

10 My beloved spoke, and said to me: “Rise up, my love, my fair one, And come away.

11 For lo, the winter is past, The rain is over and gone.

12 The flowers appear on the earth; The time of singing has come, And the voice of the turtledove Is heard in our land.

13 The fig tree puts forth her green figs, And the vines with the tender grapes Give a good smell. Rise up, my love, my fair one, And come away!

14 “O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, In the secret places 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 Songs 2:8-14(The Message)

Look! Listen! There’s my lover! Do you see him coming? Vaulting the mountains, leaping the hills. My lover is like a gazelle, graceful; like a young stag, virile. Look at him there, on tiptoe at the gate, all ears, all eyes- ready! My lover has arrived and he’s speaking to me!

THE MAN

Get up, my dear friend, fair and beautiful lover- come to me! Look around you: Winter is over; the winter rains are over, gone! Spring flowers are in blossom all over. The whole world’s a choir- and singing! Spring warblers are filling the forest with sweet arpeggios. Lilacs are exuberantly purple and perfumed, and cherry trees fragrant with blossoms. Oh, get up, dear friend, my fair and beautiful lover- come to me! Come, my shy and modest dove- leave your seclusion, come out in the open. Let me see your face, let me hear your voice. For your voice is soothing and your face is ravishing.

The Shulamite woman is recalling how much she enjoyed being with Solomon and how he would stand and look at her. In verses 10-14 she is recalling how he proposed marriage to her. He told her that he wanted to be with her sexually now. He was tired of waiting. It was becoming time in their relationship to move to the next step, marriage.

It is always difficult to know when just the right time is to propose marriage. Is it too soon? Will she say yes or no? Is this the right decision? Do I know this person as well as I think? Men, make sure you bathe this decision in prayer and allow God to guide you.

Remember When?

If you are married, do you remember when you proposed to your wife or your husband proposed to you? How did it go?

***

The Pressures

Song of Solomon 2:15-17(NKJV)

HER BROTHERS

15 Catch us the foxes, The little foxes that spoil the vines, For our vines have tender grapes.

THE SHULAMITE

16 My beloved is mine, and I am his. He feeds his flock among the lilies.

(TO HER BELOVED)

17 Until the day breaks And the shadows flee away, Turn, my beloved, And be like a gazelle Or a young stag Upon the mountains of Bether.

Song of Songs 2:15-17(The Message)

THE WOMAN

Then you must protect me from the foxes, foxes on the prowl, Foxes who would like nothing better than to get into our flowering garden.

My lover is mine, and I am his. Nightly he strolls in our garden, Delighting in the flowers until dawn breathes its light and night slips away.

Turn to me, dear lover. Come like a gazelle. Leap like a wild stag on delectable mountains!

In verse 15 we see that there are some foxes loose that need to be caught before they destroy everything. The little foxes represent problems in the relationship. Problems can creep in before you know it. What was going so well all of a sudden turns into doubts. It is important not to ignore these problems. Don’t begin your marriage with major obstacles and barriers. Solve those problems before you say “I do”.

The engagement time of a relationship is usually very stressful. You are still trying to learn more about the person you are planning on spending your life with. You have to spend more time with one another’s families. In our culture, most couples want to have a “Church Wedding Ceremony”, which involves more stress; especially for the woman. The pressures of preparing to live together, setting up house, wedding ceremony arrangements, etc… can be overwhelming.

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