Song of Solomon 2:16 “My beloved is mine, and I am his…” Here again the scene changes. Their labor has been completed, and they have gone home to rest. The foxes have been caught; their vineyard is again secured; their relationship is healthy and growing…and now their communion is again pure and sweet…and even deeper. How often in life it is through the struggle of overcoming difficulties that we become more strongly bonded to our mate. Working side by side in the vineyard of life produces a unity that surpasses that of untried love. So it is with the bride, for here is her first exclamation of unquestioned possession.
“My beloved is mine…” Held fast in her arms, she knows He is hers. The LXX version renders “beloved” as “kinsman,” meaning “one near to redeem.” How true this is of our heavenly beloved, who also holds us fast in his arms and ever lives to redeem us. Not only secure in his pronouncements of love, the bride is now secure in her obedience to love. He has claimed her, and she has surrendered to his claim. “My beloved is mine.” He is mine, not only in interest, but in enjoyment; not only in covenant, but also in communion. Wholly mine. Only mine. Forever mine! What a privilege and treasure to hold to one’s breast an earthly beloved who will be ours wholly and only while life shall last! Beyond that, what a sacred privilege to hold and be held in the embrace of love with our heavenly beloved not only for time but for all eternity!
“My beloved is mine…” That he is ours is the free gift of God the Father: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). It is the free gift of the Son: “Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it” (Ephesians 5:25). The Holy Spirit is also given to us as a free gift: “This spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified” (John 7:39).
“My beloved is mine, and I am his…” I am his, by creation, by redemption, by conquest, and by free choice. Some are won easily, as this bride was won. Others are won only after a bloody battle, as so aptly described by Spurgeon:
“What a battle He had with us before we would be won. How long He laid siege to our hearts. How often He sent us terms of capitulation. But we barred our gates and shut Him out. Can you remember that glorious hour when He won your heart? He placed His cross against the wall, scaled our ramparts, and planted on our strongholds the blood-red flag of His omnipotent mercy.
“Yes, we are indeed the conquered captives of His omnipotent love, chosen, purchased, and subdued. The rights of our divine possessor are inalienable. We rejoice that we never can be our own. We desire, day by day, to do His will and to show forth His glory” (Spurgeon, Morning and Evening, Nov. 15).
But, whether with difficulty or easily, all of his beloved ones are won to himself. Won by conquest, but also by free consent. “My beloved is mine, and I am his.” It is a declaration of great joy! He is mine—his gift of himself given freely to me; I am his—my gift of myself given freely to him. This is the sacred pattern for perfect love and marriage from the inception of mankind: “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (Gen. 2:24). This is the example of perfected love throughout history: “Thou shalt not be for another man: so will I also be for thee” (Hosea 3:3). As so beautifully portrayed for us in the Song of Solomon, this is the sacred privilege of marriage—the permanent enmeshing of two lives into one. “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Mark 10:9).