Topic: God’s Love. The Divine Romance. Category: Love of God>
Bible Scripture: Song of Songs 2:8-14 and Ephesians 3:14-21.
Listen to the full sermon.
Everyone loves a good story. A true life story full of drama, expectation, fulfilment and love. God has a story and each one of us is intricately woven into His eternal tapestry of love. We are created unique, in colour and splendour, a tender thread crafted by our Creator. He is kind and considerate, encouraging and affirming, responsive and continually pursues us in love.
Through literary flair shaped by culture, our creator communicates to us in words filled with emotion and passion. His longing for each individual is deep, intimate and personal. As we are the object of God’s yearning, He continually woos us and reaches into our hearts. We are His fair one, His true love and He invites us in.
a song of love and romance
Song of Songs 2:8-14 The voice of my beloved! Behold, he comes Leaping upon the mountains, Skipping upon the hills. My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Behold, he stands behind our wall; He is looking through the windows, Gazing through the lattice. My beloved spoke, and said to me: “Rise up, my love, my fair one, And come away.
For lo, the winter is past, The rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth; The time of singing has come, And the voice of the turtledove Is heard in our land. The fig tree puts forth her green figs, And the vines with the tender grapes Give a good smell. Rise up, my love, my fair one, And come away! “O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, In the secret places of the cliff, Let me see your face, Let me hear your voice; For your voice is sweet, And your face is lovely.”
the voice of love and romance
The voice of ‘my beloved’ in the text brings the happiness of heaven into the heart of His fair one, His love. The more she heard his voice, the more she longed for him.
It is a wonderful thing to hear the voice of love.
In the beginning, before time began, the voice of God was heard as He walked through the garden in the cool of the evening. He was pursing the first man and woman in love. Desiring to care for them, provide for them and make a way for them to be able to receive His love. He continued to pursue them even after they had chosen to be one with both good and evil. Even after rejecting His words and causing great pain, He called after them in love and personally covered their shame.
God chose to give all of Himself to His own creation, to all humanity in sending His beloved Son Jesus. When He became flesh and walked the earth as a man, His eternal voice that spoke the universe into existence continued to achieve great things. He stilled the tempest, cast out demons, brought calm to the storm, peace into chaos, sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf, healing into broken hearts, life to the dead and much more. But the one thing in amongst it all, was that He revealed the heart of God the Father and His desire for us. He said these words, ‘Come Follow Me.’ Follow Me to the place in My Father’s heart. To His love so deep for Me and you. Follow Me to the place from where I came.
the heart of love and romance
Jesus leads us to the heart of God the Father. He came from the Father’s heart, from the depths of His great love in grace and truth to us.
God’s heart and word is the same for us today. He so desires us and His heart is that all would come to Him and be free. He beckons and calls us through today’s text. The Spirit of the Lord is saying, ‘rise up my love, my fair one and come away with me.’
Let us continue in the Song of Songs.
Song of Songs 2:8 The voice of my beloved! Behold, he comes Leaping upon the mountains, Skipping upon the hills.
Her beloved longs for her and comes leaping upon the mountains and skipping upon the hills. His heart is so full of love and filled with expectation and excitement for his true love. She knows how much her beloved loves her. The depths of His love and the joy of his love for her fills her heart.
God is continually revealing His great love toward us. He has shown us that nothing can hold Him back from coming after each individual. There is no blockage that He can’t clear and no mountain He can’t move.
His love that beats so strong, filled with excitement for us, finds a way where there is no way. Noting absolutely nothing is impossible to Him.
In Jesus He gave everything of Himself for us. He laid aside His glory and stooped down into our darkness. Where He experienced the full human condition and faced opposition, ridicule, unbelief, false perceptions, lies, betrayal, humiliation, injustice, death and torture from the very ones He came to save.
Jesus bursts forth in love and romance
He leaped over the hills and removed all obstacles for us to believe and receive Him. Jesus burst forth from the grave of offences, injustice and rejection. He defeated them all. He is alive and eternal, the beloved Son of God, who willingly chose to become the Son of Man.
Back to the Song of Songs where the fair one continues her love song.
Song of Songs 2:9 My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Behold, he stands behind our wall; He is looking through the windows, Gazing through the lattice.
Her beloved looks through the window, gazing through the lattice.
God is His great love looks through the lattice of our hearts and invites us, saying. ‘Rise up my love, my fair one and come away with me.’
God chose us before He created us and gives each one a free choice to receive Him and His love or reject Him and His love. Everything was brought into existence by His will. Yet He never forces His will on anyone for His love is so great. He reveals his love, He gently beckons, He softly woos.
God pursues in love and speaks to the will, ‘rise up my love, my fair one and come away with me.’
When we say yes to Jesus, receive Him as our Lord and saviour, His love is complete. He makes His home with us and we with Him. Each day is a journey together in His intimacy, love and acceptance. As we surrender to Him, He fills our hearts with more of His love. Through our transformed heart full of His love, we can respond with words full of covenant and commitment saying, ‘be united with me, my love, my beloved, my Lord.’
He speaks and beckons us deeper.
the love and romance of spring
Song of Songs 2:10-11 My beloved spoke, and said to me: “Rise up, my love, my fair one, And come away. For lo, the winter is past, The rain is over and gone.
God whispers, winter has passed, the rain is over, a new season has come. A new life begins, together, united with Him.
Song of Songs 2:12 The flowers appear on the earth; The time of singing has come, And the voice of the turtledove Is heard in our land.
God calls us to the garden of His heart to walk with Him. He is committed to us and walks with us through the seasons of this life. Through the highs and lows, the storms and fair weather, no matter the circumstances and where we are at with Him, He is there.
Having said yes to Jesus, we journey together in a royal relationship of divine romance. By His Spirit in love, truth and power, He forms flowers in our heart, out of both the soft and hard places.
He gives us His beauty in exchange for our ashes. A royal robe for our filthy rags. A ring on our finger shining, glistening, representing our identity in Him. His name that is above all names He gives to us.
In knowing we are most loved by Him, spring breaks out in our hearts. Like a tropical forest after the monsoon rain, new tender shoots push through. As an open field basking in the sun brightly coloured flowers burst forth from within. With His love so deep continually filling our hearts, we break out in song and give thanks to the one who has done it all.
We are His pearl of great price, the greatest treasure of God’s heart. We are His and He is ours.
rise up my love
Song of Songs 2:13 The fig tree puts forth her green figs, And the vines with the tender grapes Give a good smell. Rise up, my love, my fair one, And come away!
The gardener of our heart gives eternal life and endless love. He continually reaches into the depths of our soul, longing for a response. He doesn’t need to be loved or have a response from us as He is in a perfect love relationship within Himself. Father, Son and Spirit the three are one.
Yes perfect love, pure love His love, God is love and He so desires us. He longs for us and by His Spirit out of the revelation of His great love and transformed heart, we can long for Him.
He declares our beauty and His voice is so sweet, tender and loving.
Song of Songs 2:14 “O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, In the secret places of the cliff, Let me see your face, Let me hear your voice; For your voice is sweet, And your face is lovely.”
Such a deep selfless love. With His voice He leads us to a place of rest beside the still waters. A place that is intimate, quiet, refreshing and personal. He nourishes and cherishes every moment with us.
He continues to speak light, love and life into our hearts. Jesus the Son of God gives us everything that He has been given by our Father in heaven.
The king of all Kings adorns us with His royal splendour. Out of His great love He gives us His crown of victory and honour, position and identity, equality and respect.
come away with me
God clothes us in the finest of linen. Washed clean and beautiful with His robe of rightness, equality and justice. He continually fills us with His glory, His presence.
By His Spirit He dwells within every disciple. He anticipates with delight the day when we shall see Him face to face, in all His glory and splendour. He will present us collectively and individually as His glorious church, who He has raised up and made holy and blameless. We are the centre of His thoughts and the object of His purpose. God chose us and calls us by name.
No matter where we are on our journey with Him, He calls us out individually and collectively and says, Rise up, my love, my fair one, And come away.
He is saying by His Spirit to come away to that secret place deep in His heart. Where we can live out of that place of knowing Him and certainty in His great love for us. Receiving more of Him, surrendered to His perfect will, living in the reality of a continual love feast with Him.
There is always more with God individually and collectively. Each day is a new day to receive fresh from heaven and live out of His place of intimacy and rest. Resting in His great love and desire for us. Safe and secure with His peace regardless of circumstances. Knowing that it is in His faithfulness that we can trust.
Only God can ignite our hearts and bodies to continually receive such love and live in the reality of that place that we have deep in His heart. From that same place that He sent His Son to us.
this is the divine romance
To know and experience His love so strong, His delight so high, His commitment so deep. To live in that reality each and every day. This is the will of God.
Let us conclude with a prayer from the Apostle Paul who had a very deep revelation of God’s great love and His divine romance.
Ephesians 3:14-21 For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.