Refuting the Trio view
Over the years there have been many views as to how to interpret Solomon’s Song of Songs. Allegorical and figurative or historical and literal. Is there 2 main characters, the wise loving king Solomon and the bride. Or are there three main characters like in the trio view where you have, a flattering evil Solomon, the bride and her true shepherd lover.
This post will briefly go over the most popular Jewish and Christian allegorical views (which I reject) and then go over the two main literal, historical views and which one I believe is correct. First the Allegorical views.
The Allegorical views
There are many Allegorical views the most popular are the Jewish and Christian views.
An Allegory view assumes that the real meaning is not at the surface level. Meaning when the Song mentions “Solomon” it doesn’t mean Solomon but either God or Jesus in an allegorical view. And when Solomon wrote it he didn’t mean he intended the Jewish audience to interpret it literally but figuratively.
The Jewish view. If you were a Jew they thought the Song was an allegory and not an illustration of God’s love to Israel. They would put God in the place of Solomon and then explain the text in a way that God did something similar with the people of Israel. God was in a covenant relationship with Israel that had some similarities between the covenant relationship a man is with his wife. God often uses marriage language when speaking to and about Israel like God being their “Husband” Jer. 3:14,
Since the Jew saw God as their Husband then the husband in the Song must be God and not literally “Solomon”, for every Scripture has a higher meaning (they believe).
My view on the way of this matter is that The Solomon’s Song of Songs is a Love Poem “Love” 8:6. Its a love poem set in a marriage context. The love Song is not about a Father’s love to a son, but of the intimate, unquenchable fire of the love of a suffering husband to a wife, a friend to an enemy 5:16, a King to a slave (redeeming love), a shepherd’s love to a follower. The love of Israel’s Messiah to his people for Solomon was a Messiah of Israel. This love is seen in the Song and in Kings. The love of a high priest for Solomon “burned incense” in the temple 1 Kings 9:25. All these “loves” are seen in the Song to one degree or another, thus illustrating the Loves of Solomon. Song 1:2 for your “loves” YLT 1:2, are more delightful than wine. His love to his people, his wife, God and His enemies the Gentiles. Since the woman in the Song is a sunburnt Gentile and Solomon loves her then here we see the love of a holy king of peace to his enemy despite outward appearances but inwardly she had true “love” in her heart. She had no common love like that of everyone in the world but she had a “special love” in her heart because of God’s special love to her in the person and work of the coming Christ, her Husband whom she was always united to. Because God’s special love to her in Christ united Himself to her, before the foundation of the world for God’s love always was toward the couple. Toward the two that were one. God in the person of the Son always was in His Mind one with Christ. The t
If you were a puritan you generally thought that when the man was talking that it wasn’t Solomon but Jesus and that the bride wasn’t a real woman but meant believers of all ages.
I reject both allegorical views. The Song is an illustration of God’s love to Israel and an illustration or reflection of Christ’s love to the church or Christ’s love to each believer, but not an allegory, you can’t substitute or take out Solomon and put Jesus into the text, but you can and should see Solomon as a type of Christ and argue from the type to the Anti-type.
Refuting the Trio view part 1
Here is a popular literal historical commentary on the trio view of the Song of Songs. Below in red is what I think of it. I do hold a literal historical view but not the literal historical trio view.
Although I completely reject it. The Jehovah’s witnesses have a good video here explaining the trio view. Watch the video here.
Here is Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines on the Old Testament in black, my writing is in red.
We have here a precious love story. It involves three characters: a lovely maiden, forced to work by her family (1:5–6; 2:15); her beloved, undoubtedly a neighbor lad who has won her heart, who is also a shepherd (1:7) (Read 1 below); and King Solomon, who is known for his attraction to beautiful women (1 Kings 11:3) (Read 2 below). While on one of his trips to examine his lands (where do they get this info, they totally make it up to fit their view), Solomon meets the lovely maiden and takes her to his palace. There she can think only of her beloved back home (1:1–2:7 (she thinks of her beloved Solomon, the one she loves). She tells the women of the harem (“daughters of Jerusalem” in 2:7, 3:5, 8:4) not to try to persuade her to forsake her true love(not “forsake, but not to arouse or awaken her love until she desires“). In 2:8–3:5 she recalls her beloved and even has a dream about him. Solomon visits her (3:6–4:16) to try to win her love, but she cannot forget her beloved back home (This statement just totally shocks me, her beloved Solomon outright calls her his “bride” 6x in Chapter 4 alone proving that she is his bride and not some other spherpherd boy, and where do they get the fact that he is a boy?). Her beloved sees her in a dream (5:1–6:3). Again, the king tries to win her (6:4–7:9) (this is a deserved praise and not flattery) , but the maiden refuses (7:10–8:3) . She is not impressed with the king’s wealth, spices, lands, or flattery. Finally, true love wins out and the maiden is set free. She flees to her beloved (8:4–14) and is restored to her family again. (she doesn’t flee for she was always with Solomon, they have to make up that she flees)
Of course, this interpretation does not put Solomon in a very good light. But he was not faithful when it came to marital matters, and certainly it is not wrong to see him as a type of the world, trying to woo the believer away from her true love. This will become clearer as we examine the different interpretations and applications of the story. (Solomon was faithful when young, but not when old, the woman in the Song is his first true love.)
The Song of Solomon magnifies and sanctifies married love. God made both male and female and it was He who “invented” sex. The love of a man and wife ought to be a beautiful experience, as described in this book, but sin can destroy this beautiful gift. In the Book of Proverbs, Solomon warns against sexual sins; in Song of Solomon, he extols the beauty and joy of married love.
(This view puts sex and faithfulness as the main point of the Song and missed the true intent of Solomon which was to illustrate love in Marriage. And also the oneness that ensues when two people have true love in their hearts Songs 8:5-7.)
Wiersbe, W. W. (1993). Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines on the Old Testament (So). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.
My view disagreeing with the words of the above commentary.
- “who is also a shepherd” In Song 1:2-4 it is clear that the woman loves and wants to be kissed and married to “the king” 3 verses later in 1:7. She speaks to the “one she loves” who is a shepherd. Since the one she loves is “the king” he is also a shepherd. Solomon was also a shepherd, the greatest shepherd of sheep Israel has ever had
“I also owned more herds and flocks than anyone in Jerusalem before me.”
- Above when they say Solomon is “know for his attraction to women” the quote 1 Kings 11:3 which they fail to see the next verse 1 Kings 11:4, which has Solomon going astray when he was “old“. Solomon is the exemplary husband to his first wife but fails when he is old.
Other Scholars who reject the trio view.
Refuting the trio view part 2
The Keil and Delitzsch commentary doesn’t agree with the trio view either.
F. Delitzsch (1813–1890) is perhaps the foremost expositor of the two-character dramatic interpretation. Delitzsch was reacting against the violence done to the text in the three-character drama and had no doubts about the validity of his interpretation. Commenting on his initial 1851 monograph on the Song, Delitzsch wrote: “I certainly succeeded in finding the right key to the interpretation of this work” (Delitzsch, 4). His interpretation is careful throughout. He is determined to destroy the three-character drama (or as he and others call it, the “shepherd hypothesis”). On Song 5:7, he observes that the woman seeks her beloved not in the open field, nor in the villages, but in the city. This is “fatal to the shepherd-hypothesis,” he claims (Delitzsch, 96). If not fatal, it at least scores a point.
(The Keil and Delitzsch commentary refute the trio view often in their commentary and for real good reasons. I only quoted one of many.)
Refuting the trio view part 3
Worthy Praise or Sinful Flattery?
If the woman is worthy of the praises then it is not flattery and the trio view or shepherd view falls completely apart.
My issues with the trio view are many but I will focus on a few. First, those who hold that Solomon is sinfully wooing the bride away from her true shepherd lover think that anytime their is a compliment of the bride in the Song that it is not a legitimate praise of the brides inner or outer beauty. Depending on the context but each time he compliments her, they say, he is trying to steal her away from the supposed 3rd character of the Song, the shepherd, with flattery.
With flattery the motive would be evil. With a legitimate or worthy praise the motive is love. It would be to much to go at length here to explain each praise and why the bride is worthy of them but I will briefly explain the “mare” compliment or flattery which ever way you look at it.
I strongly believe you can’t read Solomon’s later sinful life into his early years as a king unless the Song itself talks about it!!
The first praise is that Solomon compares her to a mare in battle. Fearless, swift and beautiful in her pursuit of a closer more intimate relationship with himself. This is both a praise of her inner beauty and outer beauty. Her character is swift and wastes no time in her pursuit of Solomon and she is fearless. These are character attributes that the bride is worthy of. She said “Let us hurry” in 1:4, therefore the swift behavior.
She was fearless in her pursuit. And she is “the most beautiful woman” 1:8, therefore she is worthy of the “mare” compliment in 1:9 that the one she loves gives her. All the other praises of her excellent character are not flattery because she had a superlative unquenchable “love” in her heart Song 8:6-7. The bride is also worthy of all the wonderful praises of her head, body, hair, cheeks, lips, breasts, stomach, thighs and feet because she is externally “the most beautiful woman”. Which shows Solomon’s admiration of the inner Beauty of God reflected in the external beauty of his wife!
My main objection to the shepherd or trio view is that Solomon is praising his noble and beautiful wife because she is worthy of it and not flattering her away from her supposed true shepherd lover. Solomon is both the king and a shepherd she loves. Many think that Solomon was a sex hungry king with lots of women in his harem so they read his sinful hunger for women into the text of his early life and into the Song. I see no evil flattering Solomon in the Song only a wise man praising his wife as he ought to as it says in
28 Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many women do noble things,
but you surpass them all.”
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
So those who hold the shepherd or trio view say Solomon is flattering the women and not giving her legitimate compliments or praises.”
The first reason I reject the fact that Solomon was adulterous at the time of the writing of the Song of Songs is because of 1 Kings 11:1-4. It states that Solomon didn’t go astray until he was “old“. The word for “old” here means a bearded man or elder. Which has to put him at about 50 years old when he went adulterous.
Another reason I believe Solomon had an excellent character was because the Song itself says so. The woman wanted “the king”. Solomon was “the king“. She wanted him because he name was like perfume poured out, which is why all the single ladies wanted to marry him. He had and excellent character. To have a name like perfume poured out is to have an excellent character. A man who slept with lots of women would not have an excellent character. Even David was seriously disciplined by God when he slept with Bathsheba.
“Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth—
for your love is more delightful than wine.
3 Because of the savour of thy good ointments your name is as ointment poured forth, therefore do the virgins love thee!
4 Take me away with you—let us hurry!
Let the king bring me into his chambers.” Solomon’s Song of Songs 1:2-4
Another verse that states that the bride’s husband had an excellent character above any other husband is Song 5:9-10, where her beloved is “Chief among ten thousand” and is a “beloved above all other beloveds“. This is easy to understand if you take into account that Solomon
- Had unmeasurable wisdom. 1 Kings 4:29
- “Love God” 1 Kings 3:3
- Was a “child” when he was anointed king, compare 1 Kings 3:7
- Solomon also had two crownings or anointing 1 Chronicles 29:22. One anointing in Song 1:2-3 and another on the same day of his wedding Song 3:11. Since he is acknowledged as king on the same day of his wedding this puts Solomon, the king as being very young (Age 12-18) and not old and adulterous when he got married in the Song!
- Solomon’s character is flawless in the Song, but not in his whole life. Solomon was not flawless his entire marriage for the Song doesn’t record the whole life and marriage of Solomon’s first wife. The Song only records portions of Solomon’s relationship with his bride.
- The first two days of their meeting Chapters 1 and 2
- The wedding day Chapter 3
- The wedding night Chapter 4 and 5
- The night and day after their wedding Chapters 6 and 7
- Sometime after the marriage when they are completely one. Chapter 8
So the timeline of Solomons Song of Songs is a recording of 4 consecutive days from Chapter 1-7. Chapter 8 has up to 3-4 different scenes that could have happened in either one day or up to 4 different days. So you have 4 days in a row starting with his anointing and their first date on day one, day two they are engagement, day 3 is the wedding and wedding night, Day 4 is the day after their wedding or one day sometime after their wedding then the last chapter 8 concluding the Song. Solomon only chose to write about what was pertinent to the purpose of the Song, which was to illustrate true love in marriage and how two enemies become one in love.
So on day one you have a child king anointed and courting Chapter 1, On day two they get engaged in chapter 2:16, then the wedding and honeymoon all in chapter 3 and 4 on the third day. Chapter 5,6 and 7 is when the honeymoon is over and chapter 8 concludes everything. So really you only have the first week of Solomons kingship when he was a “child” 1 Kings 3:7 in view for the first 7 chapters!
The Song makes Solomon out to be the perfect exemplary husband for the first week of his being king and one day sometime later. The whole of Solomon’s life has him faithful and “loving God” in the beginning 1 Kings 3:3 and spiritually adulterous when he was “old”.
The three-character theory is artificial. According to that approach, for example, chapter 7 describes an attempt by Solomon to seduce the girl and her rebuff of his advances. This would mean that the poetry of 7:1–9a, spoken by the man, was not genuine love but cheap enticement. The girl, moreover, in saying, “Come, my lover, let us go to the countryside” (7:11), was not speaking to the man with her but to an absent lover. This can hardly be the intended meaning.
Garrett, D. A. (1998). The Poetic and Wisdom Books. In D. S. Dockery (Ed.), Holman concise Bible commentary (p. 254). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.
I believe in the two character, historical, literal interpretation because clearly 1 Kings 11:4 tells us that Solomon was fully “devoted” to the LORD until he was “old”. Therefore Solomon was faithful until the end of his life or she died before he got “old”.
I strongly believe you can’t read Solomon’s later sinful life into his early years as a king unless the Song itself talks about it!! Does the text of the Song have Solomon sinfully flattering or praising the woman? If you read the text in context, by itself without reading into it an evil Solomon, you will find that the woman is worthy of the praises. If you read in context that the woman is worthy of the praises then Solomon is doing something noble and not evil when her praise her inner and outer beauties. If you think before reading the text that Solomon is an evil woman hungry king then its easier to see that the words he says would be flattery and not a legitimate praise.
Plus, how can you get away from Song 1:3 where “the king” has a name like perfume poured out! If Solomon was after lots of women then he would not have a good reputation but a bad one. All the women wanted him because of who he was as Israel’s Messiah and his character. Solomon even had unmeasurable wisdom which made him a “beloved above all other beloved’s” and literally “chief among ten thousand” other husbands Song 5:9-10. It is highly unlikely that a shepherd boy would be literally a beloved above all other’s and chief among ten thousand other husbands, yet it is more likely that Solomon who had unmeasurable wisdom AND “loves God” 1 Kings 4:29 would be “chief among ten thousand”.
Its also interesting to note that when you look at the Youngs literal translation of Song 1:7 you get no language that speaks of the one she loves as being a shepherd of sheep which is the main text supporting the trio or shepherd view. So if there is no shepherd of sheep in 1:7 then you have no shepherd view. I don’t know Hebrew well enough to conclude this though.
“Declare to me, thou whom my soul hath loved, Where thou delightest, Where thou liest down at noon, For why am I as one veiled, By the ranks of thy companions?” Song 1:7
Authors refuting the shepherd trio view
“The first act of the melodrama, which presents the loving relationship in the glow of the first love, now opens, 1:5, 6, are evidently the words of Shulamith. Here one person speaks of herself throughout in the singular. But in vv. 2-4 one and several together speak. Ewald also attributes vv. 2-4 to Shulamith, as words spoken by her concerning her shepherd and to him. She says, “Draw me after thee, so will we run,” for she wishes to be brought by him out of Solomon’s court. But how can the praise, “an ointment poured forth is thy name,”—an expression which reminds us of what is said of Solomon, 1 Kings 5:11 [1 Kings 4:31], “and his fame was in all nations round about,”—be applicable to the shepherd? How could Shulamith say to the shepherd, “virgins love thee,” and including herself with others, say to him also, “we will exult and rejoice in thee”? on which Ewald remarks: it is as if something kept her back from speaking of herself alone. How this contradicts the psychology of love aiming at marriage! This love is jealous, and does not draw in rivals by head and ears. No; in vv. 2-4 it is the daughters of Jerusalem, whom Shulamith addresses in v. 5, who speak. The one who is praised is Solomon. The ladies of the palace are at table (vid., under v. 12), and Solomon, after whom she who is placed amid this splendour which is strange to her asks longingly (v. 7), is not now present. The two pentastichal strophes, vv. 2-4, are a scholion, the table song of the ladies; the solo in both cases passes over into a chorus.” K and D
Song 3:2. How could this night-search, with all the strength of love, be consistent with the modesty of a maiden? It is thus a dream which she relates. And if the beloved of her soul were a shepherd, would she seek him in the city, and not rather without, in the field or in some village? No; the beloved of her soul is Solomon; and in the dream, Jerusalem, his city is transported close to the mountains of her native home.
But Schlottm. agrees with us in this, that the marriage which is here being prepared for was the consummation of the happiness of Solomon and Shulamith, not of another woman, and not the consummation of Solomon’s assault on the fidelity of Shulamith, who hates him to whom she now must belong, loving only one, the shepherd for whom she is said to sigh (Song 1:4a ), that he would come and take her away. “This triumphal procession,” says Rocke,57 “was for her a mourning procession, the royal litter a bier; her heart died within her with longing for her beloved shepherd.” Touching, if it were only true! Nowhere do we see her up to this point resisting; much rather she is happy in her love. The shepherd-hypothesis cannot comprehend this marriage procession without introducing incongruous and imaginary things; it is a poem of the time of Gellert. Solomon the seducer, and Shulamith the heroine of virtue, are figures as from Gellert’s Swedish Countess; they are moral commonplaces personified, but not real human beings. In the litter sits Shulamith, and the appiryon waits for her. Solomon rejoices that now the reciprocal love-bond is to find its conclusion; and what Shulamith, who is brought from a lowly to so lofty a station, experiences, we shall hear her describe in the sequel.
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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.
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