Building the Wall of Virginity
Song of Solomon 8:8-10
Church...Sex education is not only a personal issue but also a community wide issue.
Published June 16th, 2017; Updated July 3rd, 2017
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Main point summary
Main point summary
Since living a life of sexual purity results in a marriage of peace, we must individually, and as a community of faith, cast a vision of building walls in a culture where doors are easily opened.
Song of Solomon - A Song of Love, Sex, and Virginity "Let's Get It On" became, and remains to this day, one of Marvin Gaye's most successful singles, as it reached #1 on the Billboard Pop Singles chart on September 8, 1973. It should come as no surprise that this song became such a success since it was written in the middle of the sexual revolution of the 1960's and 1970's. In fact, Marvin Gaye wrote this song as a personal plea to that culture for sexual liberation. Take a look at a few of the lyrics of this #1 hit. " There's nothing wrong with me Loving you, baby no no And giving yourself to me can never be wrong If the love is true Don't you know how sweet and wonderful life can be I'm asking you, baby, to get it on with me " I don't know about you, but every time I have heard this song on the radio, my initial impulse (especially if my five children are with me) is to quickly change the station in hopes not to have to explain to them what those lyrics are actually about! The last thing I need is the shock and embarrassment of hearing my 6-year-old sing the words "Let's Get It On" while dropping him off at Sunday School or accompanying him to his end of the year soccer party! Just as Marvin Gaye had a vision for sexual liberation and freedom, God also has a vision for sexual liberation and freedom. As we will see shortly, true sexual freedom and true sexual liberation leads to peace and harmony in the marriage bed of the married husband and wife. Just as Marvin Gaye wrote a song calling the culture to "Get it On", God also wrote a song calling on his people to passionately "Get it On." And if Marvin Gaye's lyrics cause you to blush, just wait until you read the lyrics that God wrote! God inspired the writer of this beautiful text to write a song the deals with the very thing that God created to be enjoyed - that being love and sex within the context of marriage? Even more fascinating is that Song of Solomon was to be sung within the Israelite community of faith! It was the "Christian" version of Marvin Gaye's "Let's Get It On." There was no trying to quickly turn the radio station to avoid the subject. There is no doubt that children were present as this song was sung. There is no doubt that children and teenagers would have questions. This was God's classroom for sex education! As we take a look at these last few verses of this beautiful song, the writer encourages his audience to focus on something very important - virginity. Now, remember, this text was inspired by God. By way of reminder, these words have been categorized as wisdom literature. They are God's words of wisdom as they relate to love, sex, and sexual purity. With this in mind, the writer ends this song by showing us the importance of not only maintaining sexual purity prior to marriage (and I would add also after marriage) but also our responsibility as fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, and the entire community of faith in educating and casting a vision of sexual purity for our children. With that being said, let us explore the ending of this beautiful song to see what God has to say about our sex lives. Sng 8:8 " We have a little sister, and she has no breasts. What shall we do for our sister on the day she is spoken for? " What we see here is that other people, the Israelite community of faith, notices something very important and then asks a question. The older daughters of Jerusalem recognize that they have a responsibility in protecting and caring for the younger sisters in the community. This care for the younger sister begins way before puberty. They have a vision of purity for the younger sister and so they ask a question. "What can we do for them? How will we look after and care for our younger siblings and raise them until they are given in marriage? Should we not be asking the same questions? What can we do as a family and as a family of faith to cast a vision of sexual purity for our children before they come into full bloom? Sng 8:9 " If she is a wall, we will build on her a battlement of silver, but if she is a door, we will enclose her with boards of cedar. " The older daughters of Jerusalem answer the question they have just asked in verse 8. They know what do do. Their community of faith knew what to do with them when they were younger. Their vision for the younger sister is that the younger sister would be a wall as opposed to a door. They have a vision for all the young women to remain as walls - virgins - until the day that they are given in marriage. Walls are not easily penetrated. Walls keep the foxes from stealing the grapes of sexual purity out of the vineyard (Sng 2:15). On the other hand, the older daughters of Jerusalem have a plan for the younger sister who becomes a door or is on a path to becoming a door. The sisters who are doors are those who have a propensity to sexual promiscuity. They are easily opened. They have either lost their virginity or on a path to losing it. The plan for the community of faith is to "board her up." They will do everything possible to get her back onto the path of sexual purity. The church desperately needs older sisters (and brothers) of the faith! We need these older brothers and sisters to have this kind of vision for our youth! Sng 8:10 " I was a wall, and my breasts were like towers; then I was in his eyes as one who finds peace. " The bride who we would have been introduced to earlier in the song has now returned after having recently gotten married and has something to say about all of this. She, without shame or embarrassment, says, "I was a wall." How great would it be for all of the young men and women of the church to stand up and say, "By God's grace I was (or am) a wall! I was a virgin until the day of my marriage! Even though my fruit was ripe and ready to enjoy, by God's grace I was able to maintain sexual purity for the marriage bed!" Now, look at what the bride says to the younger sister. She tells the younger sister that the result of remaining sexually pure was that of peace in the marriage bed. She says that her husband was able to look at her and see that she had peace. She had a peace in her soul, she had a peace in her mind, and brought peace to their lovemaking. Peace is so important. Why? Sexual sin does not bring peace to any intimate relationship. Sexual sin has the opposite effect. It will always have some kind of negative effect on your marriage that will eventually need the peace of the gospel to bring hope and healing. Final Thoughts What if I'm a door or what if I was a door at one time in my life? Maybe that is the question you are asking yourself right now. If you were a door at one time in your life and God has reached in and saved your soul, you need to know that He has a special ministry and mission for you. You, having experienced His grace and His peace are now able to bring His grace and peace to those who feel the shame and guilt of being a door. You have a great opportunity to bring the invisible presence of Jesus with you into the lives of those who live or have lived with the guilt and shame of being a door. For you know that Jesus is the only Person who can give true and everlasting peace. You know that Jesus would say, "Put your hope in me. Follow me. I am the only One who can rescue you from your sin and the guilt and shame that is associated with it. If you put your trust in me, I do not condemn you. Now go and sin no more (John 8:10-11). And if you are a wall, I would encourage you to wear that badge without shame. Our culture needs to hear your story also! You also have the opportunity to bring the light of Jesus to a dark world! Finally, for all of us, let this reminder of waiting for the consummation of the marriage bed also point us to another kind of waiting. Let this waiting point us forward to the anticipated consummation of our heavenly marriage. Our marriage of the Bride (the church) to her husband Jesus (Revelation 19:7). Let us make ourselves ready in word and in deed to meet our Husband, the Savior of our souls, Jesus Christ.
Song of Solomon 8:8-10
We have a little sister,
We, the daughters of Jerusalem who are the older sisters, have a younger sister,
and she d has no breasts.
and let us explain to you something further about her. She hasn't gone through puberty yet. Her vineyard has not come into full bloom yet.
What shall we do for our sister on the day when she is spoken for?
We, the daughters of Jerusalem want to pose all of you an important question. How shall we look after her and raise her until the day that she is given in marriage? How shall we keep the foxes from seeking in and stealing her fruit when she is of fruit bearing age?
If she is a wall,
If she remains an impenetrable virgin,
we will build on her a battlement of silver,
then we will give her our full support and bestow honor on her up and to the day she is married,
but if she is a door,
Alternatively ... If she is easily penetrated and opened up - if she looses her virginity or on a path to impurity,
we will enclose her with e boards of cedar.
then we will do everything we can to board her up and assist her in remaining pure for the day of her marriage.
f I was a wall,
I, the bride of Solomon, as I look back on my life, was a virgin prior to marriage. I am not ashamed to admit this fact.
and my g breasts were like towers;
Compared to my little sister, I had much larger breasts when I was younger. My vineyard was ready to be harvested. My fruit was ripe and ready to be enjoyed. Even though this was so, I was not promiscuous and I remained pure.
then I was in his eyes as one who finds 1 peace.
the result of maintaining my virginity until I was married was that of blessing and peace. I got married. I made love to my husband which resulted in peace in our relationship and peace in the marriage bed.
Great post,i needed to hear this.
Jason Ogden
Thank you! To God be the glory!
Disclaimer: The opinions and conclusions expressed on this page are those of the author and may or may not accord with the positions of Biblearc or Bethlehem College & Seminary.