Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Song of Songs: "The most beautiful place in the world is the church of Christ"

Daniel Newman preaching on Song 4:1-5:1
"Christ feasts with his bride in the garden. This is not about me and my personal, private relationship with Christ. This is about the relationship between Christ and the church corporately. We drank wine with Christ and feasted with him at the Lord’s Supper. In the gathering of the church, we hear him speaking words of love to us as his word is read and preached and as we sing. Luther: ‘God meets us at trysting places’ We must take the church seriously"
MP3: Daniel Newman on Song of Songs 4:1-5:1
MP3: Daniel Newman on Song of Songs 5:2-6:3

There might be some obvious problem I'm missing here, but this sermon by Newman is yet another reason why I think you have to read it as a book on Christ and his bride.

My colleague Zac Wyse is rightly writing about the importance of local church membership - I can't help but think that Song of Songs holds a key to growing our affections for Christ's bride, and for wanting to be found in her, and an antitode to a Christianity that is just "me and Jesus" (which makes for an odd reading of The Song) to instead view ourselves as part of the bride loved by the Christ, and to love the Christ who the bride so adores.

See also the wise words of Adrian Reynolds on The Primacy of the Local Church

2 comments:

  1. Amen! Reading the Song was deffo a Bible highlight of 2008!

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  2. I love that you read it and loved it.

    Henry Law writes on Christ's love of the church....

    ""You are all beautiful, my love; there is no spot in you." The Church is thus seen as entirely wrapped up in Him. She is beauteous only in His beauty, and lovely only in His loveliness. "He was made sin for us who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him." There is no spot in the Church, because the blood of Jesus entirely obliterates each stain. Omniscience may look for sins, but no more can they be found. The absence of defect is the result of her being adorned with His perfect righteousness. In this no blemish can exist."

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