Song of songs 1:12-17
v12: (The Shulamite): The king is at his table (this word can also mean ‘reclining’): They are apart. When the king was at his party, or reclining, she was not with him.
- Spikenard: Perfume. Nard
- Sends forth its fragrance: As long as the king was away, she gave forth a pleasing fragrance. Perfume is intended to draw one to the wearer. She wanted the Shepherd, and not King Solomon, to be drawn to her.
v13: My beloved: She is not referring to King Solomon but to her beloved, the Shepherd.
- Between my breasts: This is simply a poetic way to speak of the place where her heart lies. This separation has caused her to long for him and she is holding this longing in the secret place of her heart.
v14: A cluster of henna… in the vineyards: She is saying that her husband is unique.
- Ein Gedi: An oasis in the desert. It is situated on the western shore of the Dead Sea.
v15: (The Shepherd): Behold you are fair (beautiful): Repetition shows emphasis. He is emphatically reaffirming her.
- Dove’s eyes: Her eyes reminded him of something he found beautiful in a dove’s eyes. Doves are paired for life, and they are constantly watching each other. When we fix our eyes on something or someone then that is what we think about. A dove is constantly thinking of his/her spouse.
v16: (The Shulamite): Pleasant: Their love and their intimacy (“our bed”) is pleasant – it is highly appropriate/fitting.
- Green: Their relationship breeds life. It is refreshing to them.
v17: Cedar: This is the wood that the temple was constructed from. It alludes to holiness, that which is related to, and pleasing to, G-d. Their love was strong. It was a shelter for them, protecting them from the elements.
Note: Cedar and fir tree wood came from Lebanon.