Like a deer

Like a deer August 30, 2012

Griffiths again ( Song of Songs (Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible) , 62) on the “gazelle and hind” of the oath in Song of Songs 2:7. He connects this passage to the image of the hart longing for God in Psalm 42

“When the lovers like one another to deer in the Song, this theme lurks in the background: their beauty and agility and passion participates in the soul’s passion for the Lord, and in seeing this the Song’s hearers find its words opening before them into a figuration of the soul’s search fro the Lord. Each of them, in the grace and beauty and energy with which they seek the other, shows the hearer something of what it is like to seek the Lord and be sought by him. Lovers want more than anything else to be face-to-face with one another; just so with our properly ordered desire for the Lord and (it is extremely important to recall) his for us.”

He also points to a connection with Proverbs 5:10, where the intoxicating wife is compared to a hind and fawn:

“These tropes of inebriation and delight in love occur in the Song as well (5:1); but the point of interest here is the characterization of the beloved as a hind and fawn. So to characterize her – as the pair characterize one another in the Song – is to indicate that she is a proper beloved fro her lover, the one he should love rather than dissipating his affectio9ns and himself among the prostitutes. She is for him and he for her.”

Applied to Israel and the church, these tropes indicate that the church corresponds to the divine Lover: “He is her proper beloved, the one toward whom her loves are properly turned and for whom she does and should thirst.”

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