Song of Solomon 5:10 “My beloved is white and ruddy, the chiefest among ten thousand.” My first meditation on this verse was during a communion service, and I asked the Lord, “How could my Lord be white and red at the same time? It seems contradictory!” Looking up, I saw the communion table spread… a fresh white loaf and red fruit of the vine (actually, we don’t use fermented juice in our church) waiting to become broken bread and poured out wine for us. How could Christ be white and red? Because he is the “bread of life” to sustain us (John 6:35), and the blood of redemption to save us (Luke 22:20). Yes, our beloved Lord is white and red! White—pure and without spot or blemish, but pierced for us; red—the fountain filled with blood to cleanse us from our sins! …As I studied the verse in more depth, I discovered that the Hebrew words rendered “white” and “red” in the King James are translated differently in other passages, and that these variant shades of meaning bring additional depth and perspective to the picture. The word for white is sah in the Hebrew and also carries the meanings “dazzling; radiant; bright.” The word translated “ruddy” is adom. It occurs eleven times as an adjective and is always translated “red” or “ruddy,” although the noun form, “adam” is understood to mean “manly.”
Put together, we have a portrait of the altogether lovely one who is both the Son of God (Matthew 27:54) and the Son of man (Matthew 16:27). As the Son of God, He is pure white, radiant, dazzling… “the bright and morning star” (Revelation 22:16). As the Son of man, He is red-blooded, the epitome and definition of man, and robust…with a ruddy glow of perfect health.
King Solomon probably was dazzling in appearance and ruddy in complexion as was his father, David (see I Samuel 16:12). King Solomon was doubtless the chiefest among ten thousand. “Chiefest” is from the Hebrew dagal meaning “to carry a standard.” King Solomon was a “standard bearer” among the vast armies of Israel. Behold Solomon: King of Israel and model for all Israel! Behold the greater than Solomon, Jesus Christ: King of the Universe and model for all mankind! Truly, he is dazzling and manly—the fairest of ten thousand… the fairest of all!!