“My” is the slave girl. She neglected her vineyard. She didn’t neglect someone else’s vineyard. She had a responsibility to take care of her vineyard. “My” meaning her own vineyard. Her job was to take care of her vineyard. Her vineyard that should have grapes growing in it. The foxes were destroying her vineyard and she couldn’t catch them Song 2:15.
My “own“. It is her vineyard she neglected in contrast to the vineyard she is taking care of. The one she is working in is not her own. She is in forced labor working in another vineyard for the profit of another. She is a slave working for her Mother’s sons who are angry with her.
My own “vineyard” I have neglected. It’s a vineyard that is being neglected. Not her body, not her complexion.
My own vineyard “I” have neglected. She takes personal responsibility for the neglect of her vineyard. She was supposed to take care of it and she didn’t. Someone else didn’t have the responsibility she did.
My own vineyard I “have” neglected. This shows the certainty of her neglect. Or some versions. My own vineyard I have not kept.
My own vineyard I have “neglected”. She neglected to catch the foxes so her vineyard got destroyed and ruined 2:15. She didn’t keep it up as she was supposed to. Foxes would dig near the roots of grape vineyards and destroy the blossoming grapes. She had no fruit in her vineyard. She neglected it. She had no proper protection from the foxes. In Neh. 4:3 Tobiah mocks Israel for rebuilding the wall, saying a “even a fox climbing up on it will break down their wall of stones.” By Song 8:10, she is a spiritual mother and is likened to a “wall”, no foxes are destroying her blossoming relationship with God by then. The book is about growing in spiritual maturity.
She had a job to catch the foxes, take care of her vineyard and have a fruitful harvest, but she neglected it.
The vineyard is put for our relationship with God. She neglected her relationship with God and therefore was dark. And according to Dt. 28:30,39 she was experiencing the curse of God. Which is consistent with her being a natural born enemy of God 1 Kings 9:20-21.
The longer you neglect your relationship with God the darker you get. She was really dark. Dark like the tents of Kedar. The darker you were then would show the length of time you were outside a covenant relationship with God beside the flocks of Solomon’s friends. The darker you were the harder your heart.
All in principle. This guy speaks. No rules here!!:
“She complains, besides, of the ill treatment of relations but also of exposing her to these servile employment’s by which I think’ she is to be understood as meaning to depicture still more the misery of her former situation. You see me‘discoloured by the sun ; it arises from my having been employed in the labours of husbandry, not that I myself have reaped any fruits from my industry. I was cruelly reduced to be the slave of others ;‘ they alone have received the proﬁts of ‘my toil and’ labour.”
She was supposed to do something and didn’t. In context she is explaining why she is sunburnt. She is giving her testimony as to why she is black. She neglected her vineyard and her angry brother’s forced her to work outside in the sun and she is now sunburnt. Now if I had responsibilities in life and neglected them then I would be irresponsible.
Her irresponsibility lead to her being dark. Had she taken care of her vineyard her brother’s would not have been angry with her.
The text is explaining why she is dark in descending order therefore getting to the root cause of her being dark. She is also feeling like other’s including Solomon would stare at her and despise her for being outside the flock of Solomon’s friends. The staring comes from her being immoral. She is being treated like a prostitute. She isn’t a prostitute but is being treated like one outside the flock of Solomon’s friends. This is consistent with the slave labor force in 1 Kings 9:20-21. She is a natural born enemy of God.
Given all this information, I take it that it is her responsibility to take care of her literal vineyard. This is what God wants her to do. If you don’t do what God wants you to do then you are in sin. She neglected to honor God by producing fruit in her vineyard. So she is in sin for not doing what God wanted her to do. This is the root cause of her sunburn and being treated as an immoral person outside a covenant relationship with God and not in a covenant relationship with God like Solomon’s flock of friends were.
Now going back up the line. She sinned by neglecting to do what God wanted her to do. Her brother’s got angry with her and made her take care of their vineyard. The work in the vineyard outside in the sun. Therefore she is guilty of disobeying God and ought to be judged so. Being immoral and darkened by the sun she doesn’t want Solomon to stare at her. Meaning she doesn’t want the king to judge her based on her sinful past that eventually caused her skin to darken from the sun.
Had she cultivated her relationship with God then she would have taken care of her vineyard. But since she didn’t care for obeying God she neglected her responsibilities. The taking care of our vineyards is put for the taking care of our responsibilities before God. So the idea is that disobedience to God lead to her being dark and despised.
The idea is that of responsibility. Taking care of our vineyard is our God given responsibility. To not take care of your vineyard is to neglect your relationship with God. If you cultivated a growing relationship with God then you wouldn’t neglect your vineyard. You would catch the foxes and the vineyard would bloom and your Mother’s sons wouldn’t be angry with you and you wouldn’t be dark and despised.
Dt. 28:30 “You will plant a vineyard, but you will not even begin to enjoy its fruit”
Dt. 28:39 “You will plant vineyards and cultivate them but you will not drink the wine or gather the grapes, because worms will eat them.”
Due to the neglect of her vineyard or disobedience to God she desires Solomon to overlook her sunburn that carries a stigma that she is an enemy of God and not in a covenant relationship with the LORD. She fears being enslaved by Solomon “Do not stare at me because I am black/sunburnt by the sun.” Song 1:6 She overcomes this fear and he compliments her by comparing her to a fearless mare in battle.
‘Tis as impossible, in the nature of things, that a holy and Christian hope, should be kept alive, in its clearness and strength, in such circumstances, as it is to keep the light in the room, when the candle is put out; or to maintain the bright sunshine in the air, when the sun is gone down. Distant experiences, when darkened by present prevailing lust and corruption, will never keep alive a gracious confidence and assurance; but that sickens and decays upon it, as necessarily as a little child by repeated blows on the head with the hammer. Nor is it at all to be lamented that persons doubt of their state in such circumstances; but on the contrary, ’tis desirable and every way best that they should. ‘Tis agreeable to that wise and merciful constitution of things, which God hath established, that it should be so. For so hath God contrived and constituted things, in his dispensations towards his own people, that when their love decays, and the exercises of it fail, or become weak, fear should arise; for then they need it to restrain them from sin, and to excite ’em to care for the good of their souls, and so to stir them up to watchfulness and diligence in religion: but God hath so ordered that when love rises, and is in vigorous exercise, then fear should vanish, and be driven away; for then they need it not, having a higher and more excellent principle in exercise, to restrain ’em from sin, and stir ’em up to their duty. There are no other principles, which human nature is under the influence of, that will ever make men conscientious, but one of these two, fear or love: and therefore, if one of these should not prevail, as the other decayed, God’s people when fallen into dead and carnal frames, when love is asleep, would be lamentably exposed indeed. And therefore God has wisely ordained, that these two opposite principles of love and fear, should rise and fall, like the two opposite scales of a balance; when one rises, the other sinks. As light and darkness, necessarily and unavoidably succeed each other; if light prevails, so much does darkness cease, and no more; and if light decays, so much does darkness prevail; so it is in the heart of a child of God: if divine love decays and falls asleep, and lust prevails, the light and joy of hope goes out, and dark fear and doubting arises; and if on the contrary, divine love prevails, and comes into lively exercise, this brings in the brightness of hope, and drives away black lust, and fear with it. Jonathan Edwards
Song 1:6 “Mine own vineyard I have neglected”
- I have not obeyed God, I have transgressed, I am full of iniquity, sin and am totally depraved. God has shown me my heart “and every intent of the thoughts of my heart was only evil continually.” Gen. 6:5
- I have not guarded my heart, I have not had Him as my God and King, I have not kept right thoughts of God in my understanding, I have misused His Name, I have not delighted in His Love more than anything else, I have not honored people in authority nor have I been honorable as I ought to, I have been angry when I ought to have shown love by forgiving and not being angry, I have lusted in my heart, I lie and don’t keep my promises nor do I tell the truth, I am not content and covet my neighbors goods. Mine own vineyard I have neglected
- I am dark and evil because I have not guarded my vineyard.
- I am dark and sinful because I have neglected my vineyard and God would be just to punish me.
- Mine own Husband God I have neglected. I have cultivated a relationship with the God of this world, Satan. I have believed his lies and neglected my vineyard.
This is a study of the meaning and use of the words “vineyards” and “vineyard” in Song of Song 1:6 The Song teaches you what to do with certain feelings in marriage and your relationship with Christ. Solomon the lesser Christ. In marriage the wife may feel like she is being despised or morally rejected. A right understanding of the use of vineyards and vineyard in Song 1:6 will help the marriage move forward in closer intimacy and also for the Christ to learn how to cultivate a closer relationship with Christ when they have these feelings.
Song of Solomon 1:5-7
5 “I am black but lovely,
O daughters of Jerusalem,
Like the tents of Kedar,
Like the curtains of Solomon.
6a “Do not stare at me because I am swarthy,
6b For the sun has burned me.
6c My mother’s sons were angry with me;
6d They made me caretaker of the VINEYARDS,
6e But I have not taken care of my own VINEYARD.
7 “Tell me, O you whom my soul loves,
Where do you pasture your flock,
Where do you make it lie down at noon?
For why should I be like one who veils herself
Beside the flocks of your companions?”
- Courtship or Baby Christian phase of the Song
- They have not met yet. They meet in Song 1:9
- She is single wanting to be married to the Solomon, the king to whom peace belongs. Expressed in her words in Song 1:2-4 “take me into his chambers”.
- The whole of Song 1:2-4 which is previous to v. 5 is all about moral character. Solomon’s love, Solomon name. The uprightness of the virgins or young women. They rejoice and praise Solomon’s love.
- In thinking of Solomon she see’s other righteous women rightly adoring him. Song 1:4 As if to say that Solomon could easily choose one of them to marry but not her because she is being looked upon because she is dark.
- This section is her testimony as to why she is dark.
- Solomon accepts these daughters of Jerusalem as friends and she in not being treated as one of them. She is outside Solomon’s flock of friends. Song 1:7
- She is being treated like an immoral prostitute and doesn’t want it to be so. Song 1:7
- People she is not related to and has no emotional attachment to, her “mothers sons”, are angry with her and treating her severely. Song 1:6
- She is being forced to do something she can’t get out of. In Jewish culture this meant she was in slavery. “made me take care of the vineyards” Song 1:6
- She is explaining in descending order why she is dark.
The questions are
- Is the root of her dark skin her fault because of sinful laziness and neglect and therefore she is being despised and looked down upon because she is a sinner?
- Is the root of her dark skin to blame on someone else like her mother’s sons?
- Is the root cause of her being dark from the sun?
- What did society think was beautiful and or attractive in a spouse?
How this question is answered plays a very important role in how you interpret the rest of the Song and especially how Song 1:9-11 is understood. My view is that all three questions are right but the root cause is a moral inability to guard or take care of her vineyard so in sinfully neglecting her vineyard she is in forced labor for another outside in their vineyards under the sun.
She uses beautiful with a moral good Solomon’s curtains and a dark tent of evil people or a dwelling place of sin. I am dark a dwelling place of sin, I am lovely like holy curtains in the temple. Set apart for a purpose. Holy.
Also the love of Solomon is greater if he overlooks her dark skin because of a root moral issue. If the root issue behind her being dark is because of her brother’s then Solomon is only overlooking her dark appearance. Still love either way, but if she deserves moral rejection and Solomon loves her anyway then the glory of Solomon’s love is much more glorious.
Interpretations of Song 1:6
Nearly all interpret 6d as a literal grape vineyard. This is because the sun darkened her and clearly being outside working in a vineyard would tan you black. Physical labor getting physically dark and blacker the longer you are working in the vineyard. Where interpretations differ is the meaning of vineyard in 6e.
- Interpretations of “vineyard” in Song 1:6e
- Her appearance. (She neglected is her appearance or complexion. Iain Duguid)
- Her beloved (she could not attend to her beloved)
- Her body (meaning she failed to keep her chastity) Douglas O’Donnell
- A people or a nation Ps. 79:9 or House of Israel Jer. 2:21 (Apponius pg 46 The Churches Bible)
- “Our souls are the neglected vineyard.” (Henry Law)
- Neglecting her “concerns” and taking care of the “concerns” of others. Dr. Good
- “Vineyard” “May suggest the woman’s sexuality, or sex appeal” Tremper Longman. So she did not take care of her sex appeal.
- 6d “vineyards”Being burdened living up to everyone’s expectations (Brian Simmons) (Here I believe “being burdened living up to everyones expectations” is one application of nearly endless applications of what is being taught in the passage. The idea is of neglecting one thing you ought to do and being in forced labor doing another as a result or consequence of sinful neglect.)
- In slavery to sin (John Fry)
- Falling in with corrupt worship and observance of the vain traditions and ordinances of men. Vineyards= false churches John Gill (I take him to understand it that she neglected her True religion (singular) and was severely treated living a meaningless life under false teachings (plural)
- “Vineyard” Your inner spirit where God lives. (Jeanne Guyon). Yes, she did neglect her real vineyard, but she would have if she would of guarded her heart and done the duties God had for her.
- Literally, a real vineyard and the “Vineyard” is her duty and business incumbent on her. The religious exercise she ought to have been employed in. John Gill
- “What is entrusted to us by God to be faithful with” (the idea or definition of a vineyard is the be put for vineyard.) She neglected what God entrusted her with to be a faithful servant of God with. She neglected her own vineyard. She failed to be faithful with what God entrusted her with. She neglected her vineyard. Her sinful behavior is the root cause of her dark skin and rightful slavery of her brother’s.
May of the above meanings are applications of the principle. Meaning the idea or principle is that “she didn’t do what God wanted her to do.” God would want her to take care of her vineyard. Would God want her to take care of her “own vineyard”? Yes, God would want her to take care of her own vineyard, but she was in disobedience to God and in sin and wasn’t guarding her own vineyard. Later she produces fruit from her own vineyard and gives the profit to Solomon and those who tended it. 8:12
Understanding the text
- The meaning of vineyard must be the same in both sentences. Or
- If there is an idea being conveyed by the whole sentence then words at not to be taken literally. The idea being conveyed must keep corresponding relations preserved.
But it is a hazardous mode of interpretation to take an expression in the same verse in an ordinary and in an extraordinary sense, which ought never to be done unless required by absolute necessity, which is not the case here
Brown, Green, Longman and Roberts, The Song of Songs, page 134
Some take the meaning to be “Through the constant watch, which my brothers made me keeper of their vineyards, I could not take care of “my complexion” vineyard.”
They state that either the vineyard is “her appearance or her beloved” and they reject another view that “Dr. Good” who says she was dark because she was “assisting in her brother’s concerns” and neglecting her concerns. This use of the word vineyard holds the same meaning in Song 1:6
Meaning that if the word “vineyard” shows up 2x in the same verse then it has to mean the same thing in both places or you are using “a hazardous mode of interpretation”. Meaning that if you take vineyard to be a literal vineyard in “My mothers sons were angry with me and made me take care of the vineyards” and the meaning is a literal vineyard then you have to take “My own vineyard I have neglected” as a literal vineyard as well. You cant take the first vineyard as literal and make the second vineyard to mean her body or anything else.
Most translators take the first vineyard to be a real vineyard that you work and till and get food and grapes from. And they take they second vineyard to be her body that she has neglected, thus her complexion was bad or sunburnt. Although it is true that she didn’t take care of her complexion but not her own literal vineyard. To do this is absolutely unnecessary and an abuse of the text. Either vineyard means a literal vineyard in both cases or vineyard means her body in both cases. It means vineyard in both cases.
My view on the use of the word vineyard.
She is explaining where the dark sunburnt scorched skin came from. Had she taken care of her real vineyard then she would not be in slavery working someone else’s. The idea is “who is her husband?”
- She is dark..like the tents of Kedar Why was she dark?
- Darkened by the sun. Why did the sun darken you?
- “My mothers son’s were angry with me and made me take care of their vineyards” outside in the sun. Why were you in forced labor?
- “My own vineyard I neglected”
The reason she is in forced labor being treated severely is that she couldn’t produce fruit in her vineyard because she neglected taking care of her own grape vineyard. Now in Jewish law if a woman couldn’t do her responsibilities in the family then was would be enslaved by them.
Now either she is a lazy Jew or she is an enemy of God in slave labor.
Is she a lazy Jew? I doubt it because during Solomon’s reign everyone was under their own fig tree and all of Israel was experiencing their promised peace and rest in a land flowing with milk and honey.
She is an enemy of God in slave labor. Click here for more details.
The text clearly indicates that she is getting to the root of her sun scorched skin. Since she is a natural born sinner she neglected what God entrusted to her to do, she didn’t guard her vineyard from foxes, therefore her brother’s she is not directly related to enslaved her to their vineyards. Then her skin got black from the sun. Then she is despised and looked down upon because she was a sinner. Moral rejection because of moral inability. Not rejection because of her skin color, but rejection because sunburnt dark slaves were sinner and enemies of God in Solomon’s kingdom.
Also note that the phrase “Mothers son’s” not brothers. Intimates that there was no real relation between her and them. No real love emotional involvement either. They were angry with her and treated her severely. But this was a righteous anger. She deserved Gods wrath. The Israelites had no love of complacency toward God’s enemies.
Double determination “My own” “Mine own”
Also “My own vineyard i have neglected” is a double determination. “my very own vineyard” or “my vineyard which is mine” She is laboring for another is the emphasis. The cause of her moral rejection is because she is neglectful!! She is irresponsible. She was given something of her own to take care of and productive with and she didn’t. Similar to the lazy servant that hid his talent in the parable of the talents. The idea of servants being entrusted with possessions. In the parable the servant is “lazy” Matthew 25:16. And “worthless” v. 30. In the Song she was entrusted with her vineyard and she neglected it.
The idea is that she is in slavery. She is sunburnt. She doesn’t want to be stared at due to her sunburn. If you have a vineyard then God wants you to do the best at your God given responsibilities wether they are physical responsibilities of spiritual.
I believe she was enslaved by Satan to do his will and was until she was born again and desired to marry Solomon. There are two slaveries. One to Satan and the other by her mother’s sons.
The main root idea is that of slavery and freedom. Or who is she yoked to. Who is her husband? Her father? No. A husband? No. Her angry mothers sons? Yes. She is in slavery and wants out. There is a contrast being made. The point isn’t to figure how neglecting her own vineyard led to being enslaved to other’s but the fact that she has her own responsibilities. She was in sin by not taking care of her own vineyard and is enslaved working for someone else profiting them and nor herself. She is in bondage to another and not free. Being in slavery to one and not to another. Who is it you are united to and working for? Is it someone who loves you or someone who righteously hates you.
Is this a righteous hatred or a sinful hatred?
Is your Husband God? then you will not neglect your own vineyard. Is your husband Satan? then your bound to him.
She is being morally rejected outside the flock of Solomon’s friends. She is getting to the root of her being morally rejected. Had she taken care of her own vineyard then she would be inside the flock of Solomon’s friends and being accepted and not looked down upon. I take the vineyards to be literal vineyards but by way of application you ask yourself “What have I neglected that would cause God, the one I am courting, my husband or Christ to despise and reject me?”
I tend to think the main idea is that she neglected her True Husband God and therefore was severely treated and enslaved by “those whom she had no proper relation to” or other husbands and not her own Husband.
When you don’t guard one relationship you are binding yourself to another. No fruit will be produced in the one you are supposed to be taking care of.
My view is that She is giving testimony, getting to the root of her dark sun tan. Why is she being morally rejected “beside the flocks of Solomon’s friends” in descending order therefore getting to the root of the issue. Prostitutes were morally rejected. She is not a prostitute but is being treated like one. She is being treated like a sinner an immoral person. At the root issue of it all, they (Solomon and the people in his kingdom culturally “stared” at her. They judged her and were treating her like an immoral prostitute. Who in Solomon’s kingdom were treated like immoral prostitutes? and why?
The intention of the author is to communicate a truth a principle. So we ask the question “What would be the cause as to why she is being despised like a prostitute and stared at?” It is so, but she doesn’t want it to be that way so she says “Why should I be like a veiled woman, beside the flocks of your friends?” Song 1:7 here we see she is making reference to being beside Solomon’s friends. This also intimates that she was an enemy and not a friend of the King.
- She is outside a covenant relationship with God. She is not sharing in the blessing of being INSIDE and not beside the flocks of Solomon’s friends.
- It is so that she is being treated like a prostitute despised and rejected beside the flocks of Solomon’s friends. It is so, but she doesn’t want it to be that way.
“My own vineyard I have neglected” is taken as a whole phrase meaning “I haven’t taken care of my grape vineyard” (The foxes were destroying it according to Song 2:16) “I have failed to produce fruit” God wants me to be productive in my relationship with Him but I wasn’t”
The idea of having a husband other than her own is also being conveyed here. She was owned by her brothers. They enslaved her and made her take care of their vineyards. Union with her brother’s and not God. She was outside a covenant relationship with God.
Christ is bone of our bone and flesh of our flesh we are one with Him, it is not possible for Him to despise His own body. He is the Bridegroom and we the bride. Him the Head and us the body.
Why do I believe this is a rightful moral rejection and despising that ought not to be so:
- Because she contrasts the dark with beautiful. As dark us ugly and whiter is beautiful. Dark and despised as opposed to beautiful and accepted. She says she is beautiful. Despised only because of her vocation in the vineyards and dark skin. If a physical despising then a physical beauty. Yet being darkened by the sun was not considered attractive at the time. Only whiter complexions where attractive. If being despised and stared at because darker skin was less attractive then why would she say she was outwardly beautiful. She confesses “Dark am I yet lovely”
- Love to a godly man consists in a complacent love. She delights in his love. Song 1:2 She delighted in his love. Solomon’s love was morally excellent. Solomon loved God. She delighted in his love to God and love to Israel. His love was more delightful than wine. The wicked have no delight in loving God. They hate him. The wicked take delight in sin. Her delight was in Solomon’s Love. This delight makes her also morally excellent and holy. Holiness consists in love to God. Therefore she is beautiful on the inside.
- External beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The beholders in Solomon’s time thought that the whiter you were then the more desirable you were. She was very dark. Therefore not desirable at all for marriage. Actually she would be the last one chosen if external beauty was the standard by which a king chose a wife. What kind of king would choose a dark wife? Only one who was looking at the inside and not the outside. Now I doubt that Solomon would allow a society to dictate who he chooses as a wife. If she is good on the inside but despised by other’s because of the outside then that would not matter to Solomon. Man looks at the outward appearance but God looks at the heart. This seems to be every woman’s desire. For her man to love her for who she is and not for what’s on the outside.
- She was being looked upon as evil on the inside and unattractive on the outside. Despised morally and physically but it ought not to be so because not only is she dark, but lovely. She would still have to be dark on the outside when she said this, which means that the beauty she is talking about is an inward beauty.
“Do not stare at me because I am dark” Darkened by the sun.
- The sun made her dark and therefore her outward appearance would not be attractive to a Holy king of Jerusalem who had every other righteous whiter maidens to choose from. She was dark and out of the running. No way could she ever think of having a close relationship with a king. She was a dark slave. She would not add to his glory. A marriage to her would be to his shame. His status would go down. The view other’s had of him would go down. Less honor and not more would prevail.
- Let him marry one of the lowest people of all the slaves. An enemy slave. Let me marry her and I will prove my love to my enemies. Solomon didn’t hate them. He loved them and wanted the other sinful nations to repent. So he proved his love to his enemies by giving his kingdom to an enemy slave in marriage. And presenting her holy and blameless to himself. He carried her the whole time up out of the wilderness, it was him there all along, he never left her, she only thought he was gone, it was all a dream when I thought he was gone. Song “I was sleeping but my heart was awake” “let him kiss me with the kisses of his lips
- I googled slave Egypt Israel vineyards wilderness and thought of Song 8:5 “leaning on her beloved” and thought that he was with her all along.
Neglect of maintaining personal communion and fellowship with the Lord Jesus Christ. The cultivation of the soul, the care that needs to be taken regarding a close walk with God.
Gregory of Nyssa
We are to “guard” the good things God has given us.
If he means to think that the woman was a teacher of Israel and she didn’t take care of her vineyard/ or flock through right teaching. I don’t think that fits the husband wife illustration.
“They made me the keeper of the vineyards; but mine own vineyard have I not kept.” The first mention of “vineyard” is plural in number, it is organized by man. The second mention of “vineyard” is singular in number; it is ordained by God. “They made me the keeper of the vineyards.” This was her former work. After she has received God’s enlightening and is dealt with by Him, she realizes the vanity of her former work-she has only done what man entrusted to her, but not wha God ordained for her.
The first reference is plural-vineyards, and it refers to works organized and arranged by the hand of man. The second reference is in the singular-vineyard, and this points to that work which the Lord Himself has arranged and assigned.
She had been doing that which had been entrusted to her by man, but she had been negligent of the work which the Lord had prepared for her.
Spurgeon “vineyards” or rather the phrase “made me take care of the vineyards” is being under the dominion of the world, the flesh and the devil. Working for self and not God.
Harvey Cox and Stephanie Pausell
The woman is seeing herself beautiful even though she works outside and is dark. She continues to see herself how her lover would, as externally beautiful.
Song of Songs Divine Romance
Song of Song 1:6 Please don’t stare in scorn because of my dark and sinful ways. My angry bothers quarreled with me and appointed me guardian of the ministry vineyards, yet I have not tended my vineyard within.
Shir Hashirim, song of songs Art Scroll series. Verse 1:6 “Jerusalem; though sullied as the tents of Kedar, I will be immaculate was the draperies of Shlomo* Do not view me with contempt despite my swarthiness, for it is but the sun which has glared upon me. The alien children of my mother were incensed with me and made me a keeper of the vineyards of idols, but the vineyard of my own true God I did not keep.
*Solomon used here is defined as “King to whom peace belongs”
The Midrash explains that this is Israel’s prophets not wanting God to judge Israel through the sins of their leaders. They say that God would not let all of Israel into the promise land because of Moses smiting the rock and of Isaiah who was a man of unclean lips and therefore dark. Go Here for a Jewish commentary on the Song
Song of Solomon 1:6New Living Translation (NLT)
6 Don’t stare at me because I am dark—
the sun has darkened my skin.
My brothers were angry with me;
they forced me to care for their vineyards,
so I couldn’t care for myself—my own vineyard.
Other vineyard verses
Is 27:6 Israel shall blossom and bud, and fill the face of the world with fruit.
5 In that day shall the Lord of hosts be for a crown of glory, and for a diadem of beauty, unto the residue of his people,
Song 1:6 “do not look upon me” with1 Samuel 16:12“And he sent, and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to.”
Saved in 2000 at age 27. Nearly immediately I fell in love with the Song and grew very fast the first two years memorizing large portions of scripture purifying my mind the started chewing on meat to soon and struggled for 12 years and Christ has me on track like always but I just took the long way around and now I love leading others closer to Christ by seeing His love reflected in Solomons love for an enemy slave girl.
I have experienced God's love to me in the Song in ways that words can't express. There are many portion of the Word where she experiences extra ordinary outpouring of the Holy Spirit of God. If you have a burning desire for a close intimate relationship with God by experiencing His Love to you over and over again at greater and greater heights, depths, lengths and breaths then The Song of Songs is where you need to be.
I can help you with this process of Growing in the experience of God's love. As of 7-23-16 I have experienced everything prior to chapter 8. The Song of Song is progressive in experience. Meaning that if you are mature then you can experience the joys and extraordinary outpourings of God's Love shed abroad in your heart.
If you are not so mature then the delights in the first chapter of the Song will satisfy your thirst for experiencing the Love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Many Christian are living in sin because they do not know how to experience God's love and get hooked on Loving Him. It feels good to be loved and to love Him. His burden is not heavy and His yoke is light, Jesus said in Matt. 10:28
I believe God wants to use me to help beautify His Bride through the Song of Solomon.
If you see the book literally you will not understand nor grasp the Love God has for you. If you see the book and the verses in it relating to Christ's love to you then I would love to show you how to experience this Love to the fullest. I will pray for you daily and guide you every step of the way.
16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
I grew up going to church but was a hypocrite. I lived my life how I chose but went to church on Sunday because my family went.
Mom and Dad divorced when I was about 5.
About this time I was sexually abused by "Bob" a made up name. This incident changed my life for the worst. I had no clue how to deal with it.
As I got older I grew in my hatred for Bob. I didn't blame anyone of my family because I was to young to know any better. Some of what happened during the abuse was in a bathroom. So overtime I would use the bathroom and look at my private parts that night would replay in my mind. My hatred for Bob would continue to grow each time.
Now I know this only happened to me one night. I can't image the pain other's go through who have had this happen to them over and over. Even as I write this now I cry with many tears for those hurting. God love you even though you may not know it or feel it. Go to Him in your time of need.
I was a really bad teenager. I only cared about myself and not even my family. I always came first in my mind. Even at the expense of hurting others. I was growing in my hatred for God by now.
I was going to church and was learned that God was in control. I thought well, if God was in control then He must have let me be sexually abused. I didn't understand this, How could a good and loving God allow this. I hated Him for it. My hatred for Bob grew as well. I was still using the bathroom and memories kept coming back. My heart grew even harder for Bob and God. As far as I was concerned God would have nothing to do with my life so I lived even worse. I thought I would be in jail or dead and I really didn't care, I thought it could be much worse than reliving your painful past over and over again. Little did I know that God's plan later would be to use these events to give me a burning passion for the closest most intimate love relationship with Himself through Christ mainly through the love poem in the Song of Songs in the Bible.
I remember hating Bob so much that the only thing that would relieve my pain was actually thinking he would suffer forever for what he did. I grew so much in my hatred for him that I had to continue to think that he would get even worse than what I imaged before. After some time I would only be relieved of hatred for him unless I thought he would burn in a hotter and hotter hell for all the suffering he put me through.
I never told my mom or family what happened, although I think some of them knew something had happened.
I grew up quite rebellious and even went to jail at the age of 20. I was living the fast life pursuing all my sinful desires and wanting more. It never seemed to be enough. I was quite happy in my sin but I just wanted more of it.
I lived life thinking I would die at a young age, riding motorcycle and living on the edge put me in the hospital many times and I should have been dead.
California at age 26.
I moved to California for a job opportunity at the age of 27. While trying to figure out what radio stations to program in my car, I ran across a RC Sproul talking about "people who have the faith that saves and people who only say that have faith" only the people who have the faith that saves will go to heaven. I thought "I don't think I have the faith that saves because my life was so bad." I searched the scriptures to try to get this faith. I found a church and thought people there could help me get this faith that saves. All along God kept showing me how sinful I was and that I deserved punishment from Him for living my life hating Him.
One weekend I read Matthew, Mark, Luke and John desperately trying to find out how to get this faith that saves. By now I knew that if you had the faith that saves that Jesus would be saving you from a life of sin. I still liked my sin and Jesus sure wasn't saving me from a life of sin, so I rightly concluded that I didn't have the faith that saves.
By the time I got to John, I saw "believe" everywhere. John 3:16 and other verses and wow the whole book was written so that you may believe. John 20:31 "these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name." So at night I would pray "I believe Jesus died for me, I believe, I believe. This was just an intellectual belief. I knew that in history and the Bible that Jesus died for everyone, so I believed it. But this belief did not change my life.
I would go on night after night saying the same prayer only to wake up the next day wanting to fulfill my sinful desires. The prayer wasn't working so I started to word it different each time hoping some prayer would work. After about 2 weeks of this I was fed up with it all, nothing was happening. I still was living in my sin and wanted more of it. A Christian hates their sin and does something about it, and certainly they don't continue to make plans to sin. The prayers weren't working so I gave up. I thought to myself "God, I tried with all my might, I searched the Scriptures, went to church, read the Bible and prayed all to no avail. If Im going to be saved your going to have to do it because I tried."
So I quit praying but still the Bible kept calling me so I read more. 3 Days later I was laying in a tanning bed and God convicted me really hard that I had offended Him by the life I was living. I was so scared of God, where could I run. You can't hide from God. It seemed like forever that I was under these terrors of being punished by a Holy Angry God. This lasted about 10 minutes then this is how I understood it. God let me understand that all that anger that He had for me for all my sin should come my way but He had poured that anger out on Jesus 2,000 years ago. I immediately started weeping an couldn't stop for about 20 minutes. All the sins that I could think of I confessed for that 20 minutes one after another after another, I was so sorrowful and grieved it physically hurt inside.
After I stopped crying I thought that was the weirdest thing that ever happened. I walked out of the tanning salon and stood outside and everything seemed so beautiful, the tree's, the birds, even the air seemed pleasant. Now I was really wondering what was going on.
I pondered all of this as I drove to work that day. I brought my Bible to work and was thinking what am I doing, I want to take my Bible to work so I can read it. As soon as I got to work I started reading my Bible. I couldn't believe what I was reading!! It all was so wonderful. It felt so good to just read my Bible. My client showed up and as I was training them the only thing I could think about was getting back to my Bible. I read all night and slept about 2 hours and was reading again.
I had sinful things in my apartment and I rounded everything evil up and threw it in the garbage. It was weird I was thinking but it felt good so I left it all in the garbage. I called my girlfriend to break it up and she thought I had another girl, I said no, I just think this is wrong we shouldn't be sleeping together. She didn't understand so I told her I was a Christian now and she still thought I had another girlfriend. She said "Im glad your a Christian, so am I" I thought to myself, "I have a strong conviction that sleeping together is wrong and she thought it was okay" I wondered how she could think that. Anyway we broke up.
I kept reading my bible and repenting, there was so much to repent of and I had lived a very sinful life. I was a thief for some part of my life and all the people I stole from kept coming to mind. I owed so much money. I was instantly in debt about $80,000. As I could I paid them back. As of 7-18-2016 I still owe about $25,000 but it sure is a joy to be paying them back.
The first week of being saved a car just about ran me over, they hit me but I wasn't hurt at all. The guy in the car felt so bad. I just looked at him and said "God bless you and have a great day, I am okay" smiled at him and moved on. Now I was really wondering what was going on because I normally would have cussed him out left and right and instead of cussing I blessed him. That was so weird. But again it felt good. I learned to do good by what my conscience told me was good and that it felt good. I got hooked on this feeling good by doing good and did it more often.
About two weeks after being saved I thought of Bob. I immediately prayed for him, something like "Lord help him.." then I stopped praying and said out loud "What am I doing?" I'm praying for a man that I hated my whole life, but it feels good and right, so I did it again. I stopped again midway in the prayer and started pacing around. I was trying to make sense of what was going on and couldn't figure it out. But again it made me happy to pray for him so I did. Bob would often come to mind when I went to the bathroom and each time I would pray for Him. The more I did this the less weird it got. And the greater my love grew for him.
I started memorizing large portions of scripture and this was wonderful because it felt like the words were cleaning my mind and as Proverbs 2:10 "For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul." I wanted more and more of this pleasantness. So I memorized even more and the joy got more and more.
Then this life changing advice came:
A friend from church told me to find a book of the Bible and really understand it. Read through the Bible and pick one and read it over and over and study it and really get it. So I started in Genesis and read through. When I got to Proverbs I really liked it so I thought that would be the book. I started by memorizing all of Proverbs chapter 3. After that I thought maybe there is a better book than Proverbs. So I read on. Then I came to Song of Solomon. I read it with quite some confusion. It wasn't as good as the other books, I didn't know why. So I bought a commentary on it. George Burrowes commentary on the Song of Solomon.
In the commentary I found that George and other saw the book as illustrating God's love to the Church. And not only illustrating it but displaying the Love of Christ better than any other book. This caught my attention big time, because I was having a burning desire for a closer relationship with God and desperately learning about His Love so that I could Love God. You see I had hated Him for so long that God used that old hard heart to spur me on in loving Him. I so much did not want to hate God anymore that I was on fire to learn to Love Him as much and as fast as possible. So here was a book that would help me do that. So I landed on the Song of Solomon. I committed to learning as much of this book as possible.
I memorized the first chapter and would repeat it often throughout the day. I didn't know much of what I was repeating but it sure made me happier and on fire for God. I grew so fast repeating the first chapter over and over again all day, like a dozen times a day at least. It felt so good and I never found any other book that caused me to weep so much. I would often weep everyday just reading it. I was to immature to know what was going on. Even though it hurt to weep so much, I felt like my heart was being cleansed from the filth that was in it by repeating it over and over again so I did. As I read the commentary I understood more and more. What God was doing in me through the Song was greater and faster than any other portion of Scripture so I tended to stay there often. I was so excited about God that I thought it funny that other's in church weren't the same way. Some where happy but it seemed most of them didn't seem to care much about God. They would talk about work, football the weather. The only thing I wanted to talk about was Jesus and God and how can I grow closer to Him.
About this time there was a mission trip to Ireland.
I started to have convictions that I should try to find Bob and witness to him. I kept praying for him but how could he be saved if he hadn't heard the Gospel that has power unto salvation. So I asked family if they had any information. Like me before, my family hated him and thought he deserved hell. After some time I got his name but no location or phone number. Either they didn't know where he was or didn't want to tell me. I prayed some more and then started to get stronger convictions to do something about finding Bob.
So I went on the internet and typed in "his name and child molestation sex offender court" thinking that some court record would have some info leading to where I may find him" I even talked to a private eye and he couldn't help. So I googled some key words and spent hours each day looking through each page. I believed it was God's will for me to witness to Bob. I wanted him to be saved. Really bad. So much so that I thought God would save Bob if I were to witness to him. So I didn't stop searching for him. I kept my computer on each day and went page by page. It took two years to go through about 15,000 pages but I found someone who matched his name in a prison for molesting his grandchildren. I wrote the prison and he wrote back. All kinds of emotions went through my body when I saw his letter from the jail. I didn't open it right away but two hours later God gave me enough courage to face my fears again and I opened the letter. He admitted to being the one who molested me. We wrote back and forth I told him I was angry before but now I was saved and that I loved him and believed God wanted me to talk to him. He read my letters over and over again. I shared the gospel in each one.
I got mad at Bob 2x. Once he said that he love me. I got really angry with him. He didn't love me. That night it was hard to love Bob, I had to call a friend to pray for me to repent, after he prayed I felt greater love for Bob. Then I wrote him back saying "I'm sorry but you can't say that you loved me. You did not love me you lusted after me." He admitted he didn't love as he should have and admitted that it was lust and sinful. Finally some conviction. Yet I only thought he was saying that because I was being nice to him. All his family had left him and he said I was the only "friend" he had.
Wether or not it was true Bob said that he had cancer in his arm and that the help the prison gives was not enough and if he had money he could see a different doctor and get help. I sent him some money and since I was in jail before I knew what it was like to be in there without money, so I sent him money.
About 4-5 months in the economy went down, it was 2008. Work was hard. I still sent him money and I had to work harder. This was a really good lesson for me because I had to "work hard for the benefit of someone who did not deserve it." This was one of the greatest blessing ever because I realized with great certainty that Jesus was in me. This is what Jesus did. Jesus worked his whole life for me and I didn't deserve it!! Christ was in me! This was one of the best feelings ever and it put me in worship for months.
Then a mission trip to Croatia.
Each time I had to leave my business and amazing as it is I was completely okay each time. I am a self employed personal trainer and it is normally absurd to just leave and start over, but each time I had enough work within 2 weeks of coming back. This is a flat out miracle. I trusted God to provide and he did. How many people can start up a business in 2 weeks. Only with the help of God. God was teaching me early on in my walk that as long as I did what He wanted me to do then I had nothing to worry about.
About 3 years saved now.
I Taught the 4 year old's at church Sunday morning for 10 years.
Left my business 2x for mission trips and God miraculously provided when I came back.
I taught 5 x a week plus held a job.
Sunday morning to the kids.
Sunday night with the 5th graders
Friday afternoons at Good News Clubs. Sponsored by Child Evangelism Fellowship.
Friday Nights with the Kids teaching through Pilgrims Progress, I did this 2x
Teaching Monday afternoons at a nursing home. I taught through the Song of Songs once then John, then Romans then back to the Song again! I love the Song of Songs.
I grew up hating God for what happened to me, and now I love Him because He first loved me. My passion is for children to grow up loving God and not hating Him.
My other passion which has become ever greater is to help others see the Love of Christ to His Church in the Song of Songs!!
I would love to help you, just let me know and I will lead you and pray for you.
God demonstrates His love to us in sending His one and only Son to suffer in our place, taking our sins upon Himself so that whoever believes they get to heaven because of what He did for us will not perish but have everlasting life.