Song of Solomon 3:8 MEANING

Song of Solomon 3:8
(8) Because of fear--i.e., because of the alarms common at night. For fear in the sense of object of fear, comp. Psalm 91:5; Proverbs 3:25.

Verse 8. - They all handle the sword, and are expert in war: every man hath his sword upon his thigh because of fear in the night. The guard of warriors round the litter secured the bride from any sudden alarm as she travelled through the wilderness, and so gave her quiet rest. The journey from Shunem to Jerusalem would be about fifty miles in a direct course, and it was therefore necessary to pass at least one, if not two, nights on the way; the course being through a wild and solitary region. The Church of God may be often called to pass through dangers and enemies, but he that loveth her will provide against her destruction - she shall have rest in the love cf. her Lord. He will surround her with his strength. "My peace I give unto thee" - provided by me, coming from myself, the fruit of my self-sacrificing love.

3:6-11 A wilderness is an emblem of the world; the believer comes out of it when he is delivered from the love of its sinful pleasures and pursuits, and refuses to comply with its customs and fashions, to seek happiness in communion with the Saviour. A poor soul shall come up, at last, under the conduct of the Comforter; like a cloud of incense ascending from the altar, or the smoke of the burnt-offerings. This signifies pious and devout affections, and the mounting of the soul heaven-ward. The believer is filled with the graces of God's Spirit; his devotions now are very lively. These graces and comforts are from the heavenly Canaan. He, who is the Peace of his people, the King of the heavenly Zion, has provided for the safe conveyance of his redeemed through the wilderness of this world. The bed, or palanquin, was contrived for rest and easy conveyance, but its beauty and magnificence showed the quality of its owner. The church is well guarded; more are with her than are against her: believers, when they repose in Christ, and with him, though they have their fears in the night, are yet safe. The chariot here denotes the covenant of redemption, the way of our salvation. This is that work of Christ, which makes him loved and admired in the eyes of believers. It is framed and contrived, both for the glory of Christ, and for the comfort of believers; it is well ordered in all things and sure. The blood of the covenant, that rich purple, is the cover of this chariot, by which believers are sheltered from the wind and storms of Divine wrath, and the troubles of this world; but the midst of it is that love of Christ which passes knowledge, this is for believers to repose upon. Christ, in his gospel, manifests himself. Take special notice of his crown. Applying this to Christ, it speaks the honour put upon him, and his power and dominion.They all hold swords,.... Or a "sword" (r); the word is singular, which designs the word of God, called the sword of the Spirit, and said to be sharper than a twoedged sword, Ephesians 6:17, Hebrews 4:12; which everyone of the ministers of the Gospel hold in their hands; and which denotes not only their apprehension, but their retention of it, and firm adherence to it; it cleaves to them, and they to that; they and their sword cannot be parted, as Gussetius (s) observes the word signifies; these ministers could not be prevailed upon to drop it, or part with it, but retained it to the last; which shows them to be valiant men;

being expert in war; in military straits, in the spiritual war against sin, Satan, and the world, in common with other Christians; and in fighting the good fight of faith, against all opposers of the doctrines of the Gospel; knowing how to use to the best advantage the spiritual sword, the Scriptures of truth, to defend the Gospel, and refute error;

every man hath his sword upon his thigh; as a preparation for war, and an indication of readiness to engage in it, Psalm 45:3; for, being on the thigh, it is near, easy to come at, at once upon occasion, and so always in a posture of defence; all which expresses the familiar acquaintance ministers have with the word of God, its nearness, so that they can easily come at it, and furnish themselves with a sufficient proof of truth, and with proper arguments for the refutation of error. And this is done

because of fear in the night: when there is most danger; hence Cyrus considering that men are most easily taken when eating and drinking, and in the bath, and in bed, and in sleep, looked out for the most faithful men to be his bodyguard (t). By "night" or "nights" (u) may be meant the nights of desertion, temptation, affliction, and persecution; when saints are in fear of their spiritual enemies, and of being overcome and destroyed by them: now Christ has provided a guard for his people, to prevent or remove these fears, and defend them from such as would make inroads upon their faith and comfort; namely, his ministers, that by their ministerings they may be a means of securing their peace and comfort, and of freeing them from all terrible apprehensions of things; which, as it shows the safety and security of the saints, so the tender care and concern of Christ for them.

(r) Sept. "gladium", Pagninus, Junius & Tremellius, Cocceius. (s) Ebr. Comment. p. 23. (t) Xenophon. Cyropaedia, l. 6. c. 29. (u) "in noctibus", Pagninus, Montanus, Piscator, Marckius, Michaelis.

Courtesy of Open Bible