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Sweeter than wine

Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth— for your love is more delightful than wine. Song of Songs 1.2

In a society saturated with broken families, sexual confusion and confrontational discourse, Solomon's Song of Songs calls us back to a healthier, more innocent and unashamed way of relating. Expressed in the form of an ancient Middle Eastern love poem, this is one of two books in the Bible which does not mention God explicitly, yet is imbued with his presence. The squeamishly inclined may prefer to interpret its contents as an allegory from start to finish (of God's love) but it may be truer to the original composition to understand it for what it is: a celebration of marital love whose qualities as a lyrical reflection of God's love for Israel/ Christ's love for the Church has earned it its place in holy scripture.

As such, not only do believers need to be refreshed by its teaching but, for all the reasons mentioned above, it has a message for the world and for society in every age. God made us as we are: with 5 senses and a desire for engagement - with our fellow creatures and with our Creator. There is a time and a place but, in that zone, we can give full expression to our feelings without embarrassment. And there is a place for everyone in a healthy marriage because relationships should be generous and hospitable, deserving the support of friends and family , providing space for children, neighbours even strangers. Of such relational building blocks are civilised societies made.

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