I am dark, but lovely, O daughters of Jerusalem, Like the tents of Kedar, Like the curtains of Solomon. (Song of Songs 1:5 NKJV)
Our girl has spent the evening in the Kings courts, and experienced His personal care for the very first time. Now she knows what Isaiah learned in the year that King Uzziah died.
Leonard Ravenhill, the wonderful revivalist from the last century, often preached a sermon from this text (Isaiah 6) using the outline Woe, Lo, Go. (You can download a copy at SermonAudio.com. It is wonderful.)
Woe is me! For I am undone. (vs 5) When I get into the presence of the Lord the first thing that strikes me is how I really don’t belong here. I am filthy, dirty, DARK and unfit for the Kings Presence.
Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged. (vs 7) The blood of Jesus purges opens the way for me to enter this place, and not be consumed.
Go, and tell this people. (vs 9) Intimacy leads to productivity.
So lets look at our maiden. She spends the evening in the Kings presence and when she gets home she begins to examine herself. One look in the mirror is all it takes to see she is earthy – from working out side – from the years in the hot sun of the Middle East.
She is dirty from ‘everything under the sun.’ This is the phrase Solomon used in Ecclesiastes to talk about the worlds influence. Jesus told Peter to sit still while He washed his feet. Peter did not need a bath – just the cleansing from the dust of the roads of life.
Then she remembers His words to her – He says I am lovely – I picture this like in West Side Story – “I feel pretty,” and our dark beauty dances about the dressing chamber remembering her evening with the King.
The tent so Kedar were made of dark animal skins and dotted the white sands of the wilderness, and the curtains of Solomon were pristine and clean, and highlighted the windows of the most beautiful palace perhaps of all time.
Dark and dusty on the outside, beautifully adorned on the inside.
So it is with us. Any time spent with our own introspection will turn up dirt, things we know we need to change, places we know we need to do better, things that would try to stir up shame.
Then you take the bread and cup of God’s love and see that He has made you lovely and perfectly acceptable in His sight – no not just acceptable – desirable! You are the apple of God’s eye, the rose of Sharon, the lily among thorns. You are His passion.
O the joys of the presence of the Lord!
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