Solomon’s mare

Solomon’s first wife was an Egyptian princess (1 Kings 3:1). She was Solomon’s mare among the chariots of Egypt (Song of Songs 1:9). We can imagine Pharaoh showing Solomon around the capital, displaying his court and his stables and gathering his army to make an impressive military . . . . Continue Reading »

Mare among Pharaoh’s chariots

In his first speech of praise to his Beloved, the Lover of the Song compares her to “my mare among Pharaoh’s chariots” (Song of Songs 1:9). Among other things, the comparison evokes the story of the exodus, where Pharaoh’s horses and chariots are overthrown. Griffiths ( Song . . . . Continue Reading »

Grazing among lilies

In his superb commentary on the Vulgate of the Song of Songs ( Song of Songs (Brazo’s Theological Commentary on the Bible) , p. 28), Paul Griffiths asks what Solomon means by talking about grazing among the lilies. He answers: “This, in the Song, is something the lover is said by his . . . . Continue Reading »

Whom My Soul Loves

The soul ( nephesh ) is the seat of desire in Scripture. Souls hunger for food, thirst for water, yearn for God like a panting deer in a dry and weary land where there is no water. And, souls long for other souls. “He whom my soul loves” is the Bride’s epithet for her Lover (1:7; . . . . Continue Reading »

Most Beautifullest

Right from the beginning, Dodi regards the Bride as the most beautiful ( yapheh ) among women. She is beautiful like Sarai, Rachel, Abigail, David’s daughter Tamar, David’s son Absalom (!), Esther. Dodi or others praise her beauty over and over in the Song (1:8; 1:15 [2x]; 2:10, 13; 4:1 . . . . Continue Reading »

Like One Covered

The Bride asks Dodi where he pastures the flock and where he finds shade at noon because she doesn’t want to be like those women who veil themselves beside the flocks (Song of Songs 1:7). The reasoning is obscure. Let’s see if we can unravel it a bit. She implies that if she . . . . Continue Reading »

Lions and Leopards

Come to Lebanon, my bride, the Lover says in the Song. Take the journey from the “dens of lions” and the “mountains of leopards” (Song of Songs 4:8). It’s a wild place with wild animals. But it’s also the temple/palace complex. The temple was paneled with cedar . . . . Continue Reading »


The Song of Songs includes two full wasfs , poems that enumerate and commend the beauties of the Bride’s body (another wasf of the Bridegroom also appears in chapter 5). Though similar in form, the two differ at a number of points. In the first, the Bride is still veiled (4:1, 3), while in . . . . Continue Reading »

Second birth

The final chapter of the Song of Songs is filled with imagery of birth, and rebirth. The Bride longs to be as near to Dodi as a sister to her brother, united in a mother, nursing at the same breasts (v. 1). She wants to take Dodi into the “house of my mother,” where she will serve him . . . . Continue Reading »