I am come into my garden, my sister, [my] spouse
This verse should rather have concluded the preceding chapter, being Christ's answer to the church's request, which was speedily and exactly granted as she desired; which shows it was according to the will of Christ, and of which he informs her; for sometimes he is present, when it is not known he is: of the titles used, see ( Song of Solomon 4:8 Song of Solomon 4:9 ) ; and of Christ's coming into his garden, ( Song of Solomon 4:16 ) . What he did, when come into it, follows: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice:
to make an ointment of, and anoint his guests with, after invited, as was usual in those times and countries, ( Luke 7:38 Luke 7:46 ) ( Mark 14:3 ) ; "oil of myrrh" is mentioned, ( Esther 2:12 ) ; These may designs, either the sufferings of Christ; which, though like myrrh, bitter to him, are like spice, of a sweet smelling savour, to God and to the saints; the fruits of which, in the salvation of his people, are delightful to himself, and which he is now reaping with pleasure: or the graces of his Spirit in exercise in them, in which Christ delights; see ( Song of Solomon 4:13 Song of Solomon 4:14 ) ; and testifies by his presence; and having got in his harvest, or vintage, as the word F17 used signifies, he makes a feast for himself and friends, as was the custom of former times, and now is; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey:
bread with honey, as the Septuagint version, dipped in honey, or honey put upon it; see ( Ezekiel 16:13 ) ; or the sugar cane with the sugar, as Jarchi, approved by Gussetius F18: the meaning may be, he plucked up a sugar cane and ate the sugar out of it, which is called by Arrianus, (meli kalaminon) , as Cocceius observes; or rather a piece of an honeycomb, full of honey, just taken out of the hive, had in great esteem with the Jews; see ( Luke 24:42 ) ; the word for "honeycomb" properly signifies wood honey, of which there was plenty in Judea, ( 1 Samuel 14:25 ) ; though this was in a garden, where they might have their hives, as we have. By which may be meant the Gospel and its doctrines, sweeter than the honey and the honeycomb; and, being faith fully dispensed, is pleasing to Christ; I have drunk my wine with my milk;
a mixture of wine and milk was used by the ancients F19; and which, Clemens Alexandria says F20, is a very profitable and healthful mixture: by which also may be intended the doctrines of the Gospel, comparable to wine and milk; to the one, for its reviving and cheering quality; to the other, for its nourishing and strengthening nature; see ( Isaiah 55:1 ) ; and (See Gill on Song of Solomon 4:11), and (See Gill on Song of Solomon 7:9). Here is feast, a variety of sweet, savoury, wholesome food and drink; and all Christ's own, "my" myrrh, "my" spice, &c. as both doctrines and graces be: with which Christ feasts himself, and invites his friends to eat and drink with him: eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved;
the individuals, of which the church consists, are the "friends" who are reconciled to God by the death of Christ, and to himself by his Spirit and grace; and whom he treats as such, by visiting them, and disclosing the secrets of his heart to them, ( John 15:14 John 15:15 ) ; and "beloved", beloved of God, and by Christ and by the saints there is a mutual friendship and love between Christ and his people: and these he invites to eat of the provisions of his house, of all the fruits of his garden, to which they are welcome; and of his love and grace, and all the blessings of it, which exceed the choicest wine; and of which they may drink freely, and without danger; "yea, be inebriated with loves" F21, as the words may be rendered; see ( Ephesians 5:18 ) . With the eastern people, it was usual to bid their guests welcome, and solicit them to feed on the provisions before them; as it is with the Chinese now, the master of the house takes care to go about, and encourage them to eat and drink F23.
F17 (ytyra) (etrughsa) , Sept. "messui", V. L.
F18 Comment. Ebr. p. 179, 337.
F19 "Et nivei lactis pocula mista mero", Tibullus, l. 3. Eleg. 5. v. 34.
F20 Paedagog. l. 1. c. 6. p. 107.
F21 (Mydwd wrkvw) "et inebriamini amoribus", Mercerus, Schmidt, Cocceius, so Ainsworth.
F23 Semedo's History of China, par. c. 1. 13.