5.4 his hand to the latch.... My beloved put in his hand by the hole [of the door], and my bowels were moved for him. --KJV NET Bible translation notes: The noun חֹר (khor, “hole”) is used in OT in a literal and metaphorical sense: (1) literal sense: hole bored in the lid of a chest (2 Kgs 12:10); hole in a wall (Ezek 8:7); hole in the ground or cave used as hiding places for men (1 Sam 13:6; 14:11; Isa 42:23); hole in the ground, as the dwelling place of an asp (Isa 11:8); and a hole in a mountain, as the den of lions (Nah 2:13); and (2) figurative sense: hole of an eye (metonymy of association), that is, eye-socket (Zech 14:12) (HALOT 348 s.v. IIחֹר; BDB 359 s.v. III חֹר). While the meaning of חֹר in Song 5:4 is clear – “hole” – there is a debate whether it is used in a literal or figurative sense. (1) Literal sense: The lexicons suggest that it denotes “hole of a door, that is, key-hole or latch-opening” (HALOT 348; BDB 359). Most commentators suggest that it refers to a hole bored through the bedroom door to provide access to the latch or lock. The mention in 5:5 of כַּפּוֹת הַמַּנְעוּל (kaffot hamman’ul, “latches of the door-bolt”) suggests that the term refers to some kind of opening associated with the latch of the bedroom door. This approach is followed by most translations: “the hole in the door” (JB), “the latch-hole” (NEB), “the latch-opening” (NIV), “the latch-hole” (NEB), “the latch” (RSV, NJPS), and “the opening of the door” (KJV). The assumption that the hole in question was a latch-hole in the door is reflected in Midrash Rabbah: Rabbi Abba ben Kahana said, “Why is the hole of the door mentioned here, seeing that it is a place where vermin swarm?” The situation envisaged by his actions are often depicted thus: In ancient Near Eastern villages, the bolting systems of doors utilized door-bolts and keys made of wood. The keys were often stored either on the outside (!) or inside of the door. If the key was placed on the inside of the door, a small hole was bored through the door so that a person could reach through the hole with the key to unlock the door. The key was often over a foot in length, and the keyhole large enough for a man’s hand. Apparently, he extended his hand through the hole from the outside to try to unbolt the door latch on the inside. He could put his hand through the hole, but could not open the door without the key. (2) Figurative sense: Because of the presence of several erotic motifs in 5:2-8 and the possibility that a double entendre is present (see notes below), several scholars suggest that the term is a euphemism for the female vagina (HALOT 348). They suggest that חֹר (“hole”) is the female counterpart for the euphemistic usage of יָד (“hand”) in 5:4. See A. S. Cook, The Root of the Thing: A Study of Job and the Song of Songs, 110, 123; Cheryl Exum, “A Literary and Structural Analysis of the Song of Songs,”ZAW 85 (1973): 50-51; M. H. Pope, Song of Songs (AB), 518-19. http://net.bible.org/bible.php?book=Sos&chapter=5#n12
5.13 beds of spices... NET Bible translation notes: The term עֲרוּגַת (“garden-beds”) refers to a private garden terrace or garden bed, a rare luxury in Palestine and very expensive to own (Ezek 17:7, 10) (BDB 788 s.v. עֲרוּגָה). The term בֹּשֶׂם (bosem, “balsam”) refers to balsam trees which yielded sweet-smelling oils from which perfumes were produced. The balsam trees should be identified either as Astragalus tragacantha which grew everywhere in Palestine and exude resin from its thorns, or as Commiphora opobalsamum which was not native to Israel but to South Arabia from whence it had to be imported at great cost (2 Chr 9:1) (Fauna and Flora of the Bible, 177-78). She is comparing the beautiful scent of his cologned cheeks to fragrant beds of spice.
5.15 legs like alabaster columns... A similar portrayal of perfect physical symmetry can be found in the description of the Babylonian god Marduk in the Enuma Elish creation epic.
Song of Solomon 6
6.3 I am my beloved's... NET Bible translation notes: This is the second occurrence of the poetic refrain that occurs elsewhere in 2:16 and 7:11. The order of the first two cola are reversed from2:16: “My beloved is mine and I am his” (2:16) but “I am my beloved’s and he is mine” (6:3). The significance of this shift depends on whether the parallelism is synonymous or climactic. This might merely be a literary variation with no rhetorical significance. On the other hand, it might signal a shift in her view of their relationship: Originally, she focused on her possession of him, now she focused on his possession of her.
6.3b grazes among the lilies... NET Bible translation notes: The term שׁוֹשַׁנָּה (shoshannah, “lily”) or שׁוֹשַׁנִים (shoshanim, “lilies”) appears eight times in the Song (2:1, 2, 16; 4:5; 5:13; 6:2, 3; 7:2). Of these five are unequivocally used figuratively as descriptions of a woman or women (2:1, 2), the color and softness of her breasts (4:5), the attractiveness of his lips (5:13), and her waist (7:2). The closest parallel to 6:2 is the description “the one who grazes among the lilies” (2:16; 6:3) which is a figurative expression comparing his romancing of his Beloved with a sheep feeding on lilies. However, this still leaves a question as to what the lilies represent in 2:16; 6:2, 3. The phrase “to gather lilies” itself appears only here in the Song. However, the synonymous phrase “to gather myrrh and balsam spice” is used in 5:1 as a figure (euphemistic hypocatastasis) for sexual consummation by the man of the woman. There are three basic options as to how “lilies” may be taken: (1) The lilies are real flowers; he has gone to a real garden in which to repose and she is picking real lilies. (2) The term “lilies” is a figure for the young woman; he is romancing her just as he had in 2:16 and 5:1. He is kissing her mouth just as a sheep would graze among lilies. (3) The term “lilies” is a figure expression referring to other women, such as his harem (e.g., 6:8-9).
6.4 Tirzah... Although the capital of the northern kingdom of Israel was moved from Tirzah (Tell el-Far’ah) during Omri’s reign, that does not mean it was totally abandoned. It is possible the writer here wishes to avoid comparisons between Jerusalem and Samaria, political rivals, so Tirzah could be a substitute. The name also serves as a pun, based on the Hebrew root rṣh, “pleasing” or “beauty.” This allows the lover to intensify his statement that she is as “beautiful as Tirzah.”
6.6 not one of them is lost... This one causes me to chuckle.
5.5 weep no more... The lion of Judah and Root of David is able. If we remembered how it ends, we would not weep so much.
5.8 golden bowls of incense... I am thinking about why we use incense today (which much be done with caution for hermeneutical reasons) and it is a fascinating metaphor for our prayers.
5.9-10 Another selection from Heaven's chorus book.
5.9 I like the last verses of an old hymn that did not make cut for new hymn books. (after listening to the tune and seeing the length of it, understandably forgotten)
"All Mortal Vanities, Begone"
Words: Isaac Watts, Hymns and Spiritual Songs, 1707.
Our voices join the heav’nly strain,
And with transporting pleasure sing,
“Worthy the Lamb that once was slain,
To be our Teacher and our King!”
His words of prophecy reveal
Eternal counsels, deep designs;
His grace and vengeance shall fulfill
The peaceful and the dreadful lines.
Thou hast redeemed our souls from hell
With Thine invaluable blood;
And wretches that did once rebel
Are now made favorites of their God.
Worthy forever is the Lord,
That died for treasons not His own,
By every tongue to be adored,
And dwell upon His Father’s throne!
5.11 1,000 x 1,000 = a million. Thousands of thousands is a lot of angels!