Summary: Looking thru the song of songs and what it teaches us about relationships and sex.

INTRO: This morning we are continuing our look through the Song of Songs. Just in way of review for those who were not here last week:

Solomon lives in the 10th century. He’s the richest king in Israel’s history. He’s out looking over his vineyards when he meets a country girl, Shulamith. She captures the king’s heart. For some time the king pursues her and makes periodic visits to see her.

Solomon asks her to marry him. Shulamith gives serious consideration and she accepts. Last week we looked at the concept of attraction.

-Men: your name, your character is far more important than your appearance.

-Ladies: what is more important than your appearance is your servant hood, your obedience to authority.

-Have a set of standards, won’t settle for anything less. TITLE: The Art of A Relationship

TEXT: Song of Songs 1:8-17; 2:1-7

I. The First Thing Needed in a Relationship

A. The first is time – a relationship takes time.

-Isn’t it amazing when you are engaged and newly married you spend all sorts of time together; but if you are not careful as time passes, you spend less and less time together.

1. Be careful, as the years go by, that you make sure to spend enough time with one another to keep your relationship intact.

-So 20 or 30 years down the road, when the children are grown and the careers are coming to a close, when you find yourself with a lot of time to spend with one another, and it’s awkward because you hardly know the person you are married to. (You literally are married singles).

2. To those who are not married – spending time together must have boundaries. -Spend time together in public places. Romans 13:14b (KJV) make no provision for the flesh.

POINT: Friends, don’t open the door to passion before it’s time, or you will not be able to close it.

3. The king and Shulamith were out in the open.

v. 12 – "While the king was at his table."

v. 16 – "And our bed is verdant."

v. 17 – "The beams of our house are cedars; our rafters are firs."

-According to Tommy Nelson they are outside having a picnic together, out in the open with no strings attached looking at the grass and trees.

II. The 2nd Thing Needed in a Relationship – Cultivating Respect. Friends, we need to understand the greatest sex organ is the mind. Respect and romance are cousins.

A. How to cultivate a friendship – gentle – What do you say to a girl in order to win her heart?

1. Look at how Solomon sees her:

-v. 9 – "I liken you, my darling, to a mare harnessed to one of the chariots of Pharaoh. -In the orient the horse was not a beast of burden.

a. This mare was a white stead that leads the army of Pharaoh (most precious thing in Egypt).

-Basically saying, "You are one in a million, beyond value". He calls her my darling (Hebrew word means to guard and care for).

2. Look at what she says about him – v. 12-13

a. Most precious thing to a woman, according to Nelson, was her pouch of Myrrh. It gave a woman her fragrance. It was very expensive.

-This woman is likening Solomon to the pouch of Myrrh. His love brings out her beauty. All she does is think about him all day long.

Q: Husbands and wives: do you think about each other throughout the day?

B. How to regard one another – Solomon compares her to a mare. Shulamith compares him to Myrrh.

1. V. 15 – "Your eyes are like a dove". Idea of being tender. He looks at her beauty (her inner beauty) and he’s soft and gentle.

2. She looks at him – Oh, how charming. This is the same word David uses for his best friend, Jonathan (soul mate).

-NIV gives a poor translation.

-Idea that your mate is your best friend.

-Today, if we were going to take a survey (would you consider your spouse your best friend). If you say no, you are out of God’s will.

3. So they’re out having a picnic – v. 16-17. Seems strange she’s talking about bed, beams of our house are cedars, our rafters are firs.

-What she is saying is, "You are so wonderful that I feel like a millionaire." (She’s as happy as a queen living in a palace).

-And all I need is you.

4. Ladies: this is how you should feel when you’re around your mate.

-Notice, gentlemen, you have not put a mitt on them.

Ex...Guys have a tendency to conquer because they are competitive. So when they have won they no longer send flowers or do the special things they did before they were married.

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