Song of Songs 3:6-9 Who is this coming up from the desert like a column of smoke, perfumed with myrrh and incense made from all the spices of the merchant? Look! It is Solomon’s carriage, escorted by sixty warriors, the noblest of Israel, all of them wearing the sword, all experienced in battle, each with his sword at his side, prepared for the terrors of the night. King Solomon made for himself the carriage; he made it of wood from Lebanon.
I hope I am not guilty of reading too much into this passage of Scripture, but as I read through ‘Song of Songs’, and I keep in mind that this erotic ‘love song’ is pointing us to reflect on the deep, affectionate relationship between the true King who is ‘one greater than Solomon’ (Luke 11:31) and his ‘Bride’ (his Church – Revelation 19:7; 21:2, 9), something strikes me as I come to today’s verses!
The King is coming as a victorious Conqueror in all his glory, ‘prepared for the terrors of the night’, and his vehicle is a ‘carriage’, which he ‘made for himself’, ‘of wood’. I can’t help thinking of King Jesus’ victory over ‘the last enemy’, which the Apostle Paul tells us is ‘death’ (1 Corinthians 15:25-26, 54-57). The Lord Jesus Christ came from heaven to earth for the express purpose of shedding his blood for our sin, on a cross of ‘wood’, and in this sense he ‘made it for himself’. And the Apostle John was given a vision of Christ’s Coming as a victorious Conqueror, and as a “Lamb who was slain” but who is “worthy … to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honour and glory and praise!” (Revelation 5:12).
In the devotion for April 25 in ‘The Songs of Jesus’, Tim and Kathy Keller refer to C.S.Lewis’s ‘Pelandra’ (2nd book in the ‘Space Trilogy’): “The character possessed by the devil gloats over the death of the Son of God until Ransom, the Christian, asks him, essentially, ‘And how did that work out for you?’ The demon throws back his head and howls, because he remembers that in killing Christ he defeated himself and ended death.” With John Bowring I can sing wholeheartedly: “In the cross of Christ I glory towering o’er the wrecks of time; all the light of sacred story gathers round its head sublime. When the woes of life o’ertake me, hopes deceive and fears annoy, never shall the Cross forsake me, lo! It glows with peace and joy. When the sun of bliss is beaming light and love upon my way, from the Cross, the radiance streaming adds more lustre to the day. Bane and blessing, pain and pleasure, by the Cross are sanctified; peace is there that knows no measure, joys that through all time abide.”