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and pertinent to our subject. • Can the leopard
change his spots ?' which, when compared with what is said of the Fair One, there is no spot in
thee,' affords a direction to retire from, and keep out of, all such spotted company, such as are spots and blemishes *, 'spots in our christian meet• ings $, thus to have no unnecessary communication with these leopards, whether spotted with heresy or immorality in faith or practice, but to shun and avoid them as much as we can, and thereby • keep ourselves unspotted from the world *.'
VER.9.-Thou hast ravished my heart, my sister, my
spouse ; thou hast ravished my heart with one of thine eyes, with one chain of thy neck.'
Here is another endearing appellation, and used for the first time, xnnx, ahthi, my sister, but after this frequently repeated, and I shall have occasion to consider it with due attention. Thou hast ravished my heart, uns34, lebabtani, Heb. Erapdrwoas, LXX. abstulisti cor meum, Arias Montanus, vulnerasti cor meum, Jerom; all marking a strong impression on the 35, leb, the heart, which our translation has elegantly and properly expressed by ravishing, and thereby painted the Beloved's feelings in most delightful colours. But by what means is this strong, this delightful impression
* Jerem. xiii. 28. 3 St Jude, 12.
2 2 St Peter ii. 13. 4 St James i. 27.
wrought? From his own blessed mouth we have it,
I Heb. xii. 2.
2 Chap. i. 15.
3 Ver. 10.
heart, as he does by the pen of our bard', “My • son, give me thy heart;' and that not only from sovereign or paternal authority, but even upon the footing of equity and gratitude, when by the same pen
here, he declares his own heart to be so warmly affected, and wrought upon by our weak and imperfect expressions! Is not this dealing with us as rational beings, possessed indeed of dignified faculties, and, in prophetic style, literally draw• ing us with cords of love, and bands of a man?" Can the most philosophic reason wish for more?
Ver. 10.-How fair is my love, my sister, my spouse !
horo much better is thy love than wine, and the smell of thine ointments than all spices !
A similar address occurs in the beginning of our Song; and though there coming from the mouth of the fair one, and here from the Beloved, the same explication will serve for both. The wine and the ointments are the Beloved's free gift; and from that gratuitous donation, become the spouse's property, exciting, augmenting, and adding value to her loves; (79717, dudike, thy loves, plural), her various displays of it in faith, obedience, dependance, gratitude, and rendering all acceptable to him from, or because of, the merit, not of her faint though sincere exertions, but of his own powerful and holy impressions.
* Prov, xxiii. 26.
2 Hosea ix. 4•
VER. 11.--Thy lips, O my spouse, drop as the honey
comb; honey and milk are under thy tongue, and the smell of thy garments is like the smell of Lebanon.
We have seen what the lips mean, and what their functions are. They are here exhibited in a character somewhat different from the former description of them, but as from the same hand, so we may believe with the same view. Here they are said to drop honeycomb, (as is not in the original, and neither the LXX. Jerom, nor the Vulgate have it). The word metonymically rendered honeycomb is nos,, naphth, from Du, nuph, the root always used for what is called, in the Levitical dispensation, the Wave-offering, on which so much stress is laid'. This naphth, in the sacred intendment of it, the lips drop groen tethaphne, (* will drop, or let them * drop '), from :3, neph, drop or distil, which is frequently applied to speech”. And so from the typical use of the naph, and the metaphorical application of the dropping,' the office assigned to the lips here, may be analogous to what is said of them ?, as above, and the one text will explain and
I Exod. xxix. 24. 27. Levit. X. 15. Numb. vi. 20, &c. and is applied, in the general sense of offering, to gold, Exod. xxxv. 22. xxxviii. 24. and to brass, xxxviii.
29. 2 Job xxix. 22.‘ my speech dropped upon them.' Ezek. xx. 46. xxi. 2. Set thy face and drop (thy word) towards, &c. Micah ii. ii. • I will prophecy,' Heb. drop-he shall even be the prophet,' Heb. dropper, &c.
3 Heb. xjii. 15.
confirm the other, Honey and milk are under thy tongue--55190's, leshunke, lingua tua, the organ that frames the words, and is often, as here, joined with, and in distinction from, the lips. The delectable nutritive qualities of honey and milk are well known, and · flowing with milk and honey' is the current peculiar recommendation of the promised land. The prophet Ezekiel makes an addition to this', - the land that I had espied for them,
(had given them, v. 15.) flowing with milk and • honey, which is the glory of all lands: Which, if predicated of the milk and honey, as our connection of the clause runs, and as perhaps is commonly understood, would enhance the value, both real and emblematical, of the milk and honey, by such a lofty epithet. Yet from the construction in the Hebrew, 197995, tzcbi eia, ornamentum decor ipsa, there is more ground to attribute it to the land itself, the holy land, which is meant under this word tzebi, by Jeremiah “, “ the tzebi, glory, beauty of • the hosts of nations;' and by Daniel ?, - toward the
pleasant land ;' and“,' the glorious land,' ands, • the glorious holy mountain;' and which indeed might very justly be stiled the 'glory of all lands, as it was long honoured with the residence of the 97179 753, Chabod Jehovah, the typical glory in the midst of it, and at last had the glory of having the 2 D2
* Chap. xx. 6. 3 Chap. viii. 9.
2 Chap. iii. 19.
4 Chap. xi. 16. 4. 6 Compare Psalm xlviii. 2.
5 Ver. 45.