And Wisdom Wore a Veil (Song 1:7)

Which things we speak, not in the words that man’s wisdom teaches,
but which the Holy Spirit teaches; comparing spiritual realities
with Spirit-taught words
1 Cor. 2:13

Mystery and intrigue – the Song of Songs is rich with both, but for some reason it seems especially so right now, and it’s likely not coincidental.  There is both a hunger and a thirst and a certain wisdom the Lord’s bride needs to have if she is to go on with Him relationally in this world.
——- Tell me, the one who my soul loves.  Where do you graze?
——- Where will you lay down at noontime? Why should I be one who is veiled
——- wandering beside the flocks of your companions?
 Song 1:7

In the last post we felt, with the Shulamite bride, the deep yearning in the wilderness to bridge the distance between her and the Beloved.  It is here that she sends a message to him asking a few beautiful, and subtle questions.
Do you notice the use of shepherding language in them?  Solomon was born in royalty and he wasn’t a shepherd nor a sheep, at least not directly.  My sense is there is more to this than meets the eye and that by writing this way the message was protected for the King’s understanding only.  If on route to him the note was intercepted by the wrong person, the reader would think a woman is asking to meet with a shepherd instead of the King, and that she is available to him at noonday!  Which was not unusual; shepherds and field hands alike took long siestas from the oppressive heat of the sun, and women and families would meet up with them at this time.

Walking in the Wisdom of Love

The manner in which the Shulamite communicates shows wisdom and a respect for her intimate fellowship with the King.  It was the same wisdom that Solomon had, as well as the personification of wisdom in Jesus Christ who wrapped Kingdom truth in parables.  And to walk in this wisdom means to embrace a love that will not be understood by most people. It is a unique quality of the wisdom of God that it seeks to reveal itself to hungry hearts, but manages to hide from everyone else.

  • There is a wisdom that we are speaking to those who are mature enough for it. But it is not the wisdom of this world or of this world’s leaders, who are in the process of passing away. On the contrary, we are communicating a mystery, even the secret wisdom of God which has been hidden until now but which, before history began, God had decreed for our glory. 1 Cor. 2:6-7

The Veil of Misunderstanding

Deeper still, as much as this great love is largely not understood it is also misunderstood.
—- Why should I be one who is veiled wandering beside the flocks of your companions…
At the time the Song was written it was suspect behavior to be a veiled woman wandering alone near men.  This is clearly seen in the story of Tamar in Genesis 38.  She was not a prostitute, but intentionally veiled herself at a shepherd camp to coercively receive from Judah the perpetration of seed which was rightfully hers by law, and incidentally in doing so saved the line to the Messiah from extinction.¹
I’m not sure how much this story was in the Shulamite’s mind in how she crafted her note, especially since Solomon’s affection for his bride was anything but restrained.  However there may be some evidence of playful teasing in her very unusual choice of Hebrew that is translated “Why should I be.”  It is extremely close to the name of Solomon.  At first glance it can be read two ways, either, “Why should I be like this,” or, “Solomon, I will be like this.”
Was this language intentional as well?  The mystery never ends!

No Fear in Love

Regardless of how we understand the nuances of the words in the Song, the love this woman has for the King is greater than a desire to “save face.”  Later in the story we see her boldly out on the streets looking for him, and sadly, she is beaten up by the watchmen of the city for doing this, and her veil taken away.²

Wisdom cries out in the street!  Prov.1:20

Do you remember another woman who had a deeply fervent love for a King? ³  It compelled her to enter into a room full of religious men to tenderly minister to Him, and in one swoop several commonly accepted taboos were broken, and many more were offended.

Jesus understood.  The majority didn’t.  This is the wisdom of love.

Wisdom is the principal thing, therefore get wisdom;
yes, though it cost you all that you have.  Prov 4:7


¹ Gen. 38 & Ruth 4:12 / ² Song 5:7 / ³ Luke 7

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  1. Dear Pamela
    Yes, true wisdom starts with a person, our dearest Lord Jesus. He is the wisdom of God, the Wisdom the world cannot receive or comprehend for that matter!
    Blessings XX

    1. Oh Mia, thank you. That is so deeply the Truth, and the only Truth, and it is why the Bride is so associated with this lack of comprehension with Him.

  2. We are veiled and often we ponder just as our Shulamite friend did,

    “Why should I be one who is veiled wandering beside the flocks of your companions…”

    This veiling is from Him, and as His bride we resonate with this story, and see our position with The King as she did with her king. Yes we Love, but it must be tempered in wisdom…the wisdom of His Love.

    This post is very timely, for we see His veiled message clearly through His eyes of Love.

    As the beautiful reference at the end of this post brings us the ‘incident’ that has the tagline…

    “Truly I tell you, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”

    1. Beautiful comment, Jim.

  3. Pam, God has certainly given you a heart that desires to navigate through the surface of this story, cultivating the underlying personal heart beats of the characters within! Not in a soap opera way but in an Intimate Kingdom way. You bring the intimacy of life from the depths of it! Press on!

    1. Dear Paul, I appreciate your comment very much. It is almost like the ‘heartbeat’ of the characters is the beat of the Song.

      It makes me remember your own quote here, about parables:

      “It is one thing to know the analogy of a parable. Even the demons get that. It is quite another to let go of your own understanding, that the Holy Spirit may impart the love and life of these thoughts.”

      P.S. You got to watch out for me… I saved that from your FB page :)

    • Marsela Sava on 01/09/2014 at 4:25 am
    • Reply

    Your posts are very insightful sister, thank you!

    The Shulumite seeks rest only in the presence of her Beloved, He makes His flock rest at noon. There was no rest in her life before ” the sun has burned me” and she fears to wander among other shepherds in Israel. She would belong only to Him. Can’t we identify with her? The Lord Jesus is the Good Shepherd, He alone makes us lie down in in green pasture, and leads us beside the still waters. Only He restores our soul. Because of His great love, her heart instructs her to seek Him and Him alone!

    1. Thank you Marsala, as always. Love!

  4. Pamela, I love this series! I am looking forward to the day when the veil of misunderstanding is taken away completely. This statement from your post really jumped out to me:

    “Jesus understood.  The majority didn’t.  This is the wisdom of love.”

    I’m so glad that He understands His love that He caused to dwell within us.

    1. Me too, Jamal, me too.

  5. i long for the day when our Groom removes our veil & kisses us full on the mouth! The time is drawing nearer.

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