Thine head upon thee [is] like Carmel
Set with hair, thick and long, as Carmel with plants and trees. Now Christ is the church's Head in various senses; he is her federal and representative Head in eternity and time; her political Head, as a King to his subjects; an economical Head, as the husband to the wife, as parents to their children, and a master to servants; and, as such, may be compared to Carmel; for the multitude dependent on him, whom he represents, and is connected with under various relations; for his height, being higher than the kings of the earth, and all other heads; and for fruitfulness, all the fruits of the church, and of all true believers, coming from him. Some render the word, "as crimson", or "scarlet" F2; which may set forth his royal dignity and majesty, this colour being wore by kings and great personages; or the ardent love of Christ to his body, the church, and the members of it; or his bloody sufferings for them; and the hair of thine head like purple;
purple coloured hair has been in great esteem. Of this colour was the hair of King Nysus, according to the fable F3; and so the hair of Evadne, and of the Muses F4, were of a violet colour; the hair of Ulysses is said F5 to be like to the hyacinth flower, which is of a purple or violet colour; and Milton F6 calls the first Adam's hair hyacinthine locks; and here, in a figurative sense, the second Adam's hair is said to be like purple. By which believers that grow on Christ, the Head of the church, nay be meant, who have their dependence on him, and their strength and nourishment from him; see ( Song of Solomon 4:1 ) ( 5:11 ) ; and these may be said to be like "purple", because of their royal dignity, being made kings unto God by Christ; and because of their being washed in the purple blood of Christ; and because of the sufferings they endure for his sake; and especially such may be so compared, who have spilt their blood and laid down their lives on his account; the king [is] held in the galleries;
the same with the Head of the church, the King of Zion, and King of saints, whose kingdom is a spiritual and everlasting one: and by the "galleries" in which he is held may be meant the ordinances of the Gospel; where Christ and his people walk and converse together; where he discloses the secrets of his heart to them, leads them into a further acquaintance with his covenant, and the blessings and promises of it; and from whence they have delightful views of his person and fulness; see the King in his beauty, and behold the good land which is afar off: the same word as here is rendered "rafters", and by some "canals", in ( Song of Solomon 1:17 ) ; (See Gill on Song of Solomon 1:17). Now Christ being said to be "held in [these] galleries" may signify his fixed habitation in his house and ordinances; where he has promised to dwell, and delights to be; and where he is as it were fastened to them, and hatred in them.
F2 (lmrkk) "veluti coccinum", Pagninus, Vatablus, Mercerus; "simile est coccineo", Junius & Tremellius; "est ut coccus", Piscator; so Ainsworth; "sicut carmesinum", Schindler.
F3 Ovid. Metamorph. l. 8. Fab. 1. v. 301. De Arte Amandi, l. 1. & de Remed. Amor. l. 1. v. 68. Hygin. Fab. 198. Pausan. Attica, p. 33.
F4 Pindar. Olymp. Ode 6. Pyth. Ode 1. v. 2.
F5 Homer. Odyss. 6. v. 231. & 23. v. 155.
F6 Paradise Lost, Book 4.