1:1 “The song of songs, which is Solomon’s.” The book opens with two statements of introduction and explanation. First, this book is “the song of songs,” and second, the book belongs to Solomon. There is no proof given for either statement; you will have to choose whether you will believe or disbelieve what is stated. To say “the song of songs” is declaring that this book is the best…the creme de la creme…the favorite…the finest offering…the greatest song. To introduce the book as “the song of songs, which is Solomon’s” is to declare that this best of all songs belongs to Solomon, and I believe the author is trying to say, “I, Solomon, wrote this song; it is the very best one I have written.”
Now, you are free to disagree with my interpretation. You may believe the author is saying something a bit different. But, please do not doubt that it is “the song of songs”—the chief and best—according to Solomon. Even if you don’t think it’s the best song that was ever written, please at least believe that it truly was the “song of songs” to Solomon, and perhaps to God as well, because every word of the Scripture has been superintended by the Holy Spirit (2 Tim. 3:16-17). Also, please do not be tempted to think that The Song of Solomon really belonged to someone other than Solomon because no one alive personally saw Solomon write it and you have heard rumors raising doubts about its authorship. Start now by accepting the Word of God as truth exactly as it is written!
The Song of Solomon 1:1 is similar to Genesis 1:1 in that certain assumptions are made which must be accepted or rejected. God does not define or prove himself in the first verse of the Bible; he simply states a fact, and we are left with a choice to believe or disbelieve that fact: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” As we study more of the Bible, we discover that God is “light” (John 9:5), “love” (I John 4:8), and the definition of goodness (Ps. 107:1). Also, we are told that the Bible itself as the living Word of God (John 1:14). We are instructed to have faith in God (Mark 11:22), and we are promised that meditating on Scripture will bring us success (Josh. 1:8) and help us find eternal life through faith in Christ, who died for our sins (John 3:16; 6:63, 68-69).
Do you believe that it was truly this good God who was creating heaven and earth in Genesis 1:1? Although we are asked to believe this fact without any proof, as we study the Bible, many mysteries about God unfold until we find ourselves falling in love with our Creator, who is also the king of the universe and the lover of our souls. But, it takes faith to bring understanding.
So it is with The Song of Solomon. At the beginning of this book, a similar assumption is made. It is assumed that we know who Solomon is. He does not say, “King Solomon, the son of David, the wealthiest and wisest king in the world at this time” (I Kings 10:23). He does not give any titles or credentials. He does not prove himself or commend his writing to his readers. He states a simple fact, “This is my best.” In I Kings 4 we learn that King Solomon “was wiser than all men…he spake three thousand proverbs; and his songs were a thousand and five.” Wouldn’t you love to study the best song—the best in over a thousand songs—of the wisest man in the world? Will you believe that The Song of Solomon is his best song?To truly understand the Scripture, you must come with an attitude of faith, for “without faith it is impossible to please him [God]: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him” (Heb. 11:6). Do you lack faith? Do you want a deeper faith? If you want more faith, pray as the father did in Mark 9:24, “Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief,” or as the apostles asked in Luke 17:15, “Lord, increase our faith.” How is our faith increased? By exercise in the Word of God: “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17). If you want a deeper faith, ask God to increase your faith, and then make some time to meditate on the Bible every day, even if it’s only for five or ten minutes.
What is my first hope for this book? That we come to the Word of God in faith, believing that God exists, and that he will reward us for diligently seeking him through the study of his Word…specifically for now—The Song of Solomon. As you study this commentary, certainly test and question my thoughts and ideas, but please do not question the words of Scripture. Perhaps a good prayer for each of us as we pore over God’s Word is: “Lord, please enlighten our hearts so that we will believe you, understand your truth, and be changed by it.”