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Friday, June 12 2015

Song Of Solomon 2: Solomon's Lilies

"I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys. As the lily among thorns, so is my love among the daughters"

The Messiah's "Ye cannot serve God and mammon," with Solomon as the centerpiece of the teaching, is one of the most famous of His lessons. But what exactly is "mammon"?

The English-language word "mammon" originated from a Greek word, which itself originated from a Babylonian word, that referred to personified wealth. How is wealth "personified"? In the New Testament era, the time in which the Messiah made the statement, "Mammon" was the name of a major Syrian idol that represented the lust for worldly riches. The term is used in Christian teaching to describe making an idol out of the acquisition or possession of worldly wealth e.g. the common term "the almighty dollar" is blasphemous because "The Almighty" is a designation that belongs to God alone.

Ladies and Lilies Solomon had great wealth all of his life but it only became unrighteous when Solomon made it into mammon - just another of his many idols. Rather than a means for a purpose, it was made into a vain purpose for itself.

Some have also misused the lesson as an excuse not to work i.e. "Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?" But the point of the lesson was to obey God's Law, first and foremost, to which "What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?" will be taken care of by "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you." How? Because the first part of the Fourth Commandment of God's Law is to work six days, then to rest on the Sabbath (see The Christian Work Days, The Christian Sabbath and When Did The Ten Commandments Begin?).

"6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

6:25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? 6:26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? 6:27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?

6:28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: 6:29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 6:30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? 6:31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 6:32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. 6:34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof." (Matthew 6:24-34 KJV)

Solomon's attitude toward wealth later became as perverted as his attitude toward women i.e. his "700 wives" and "300 concubines." Women became "mammon" to him just as much as gold did - a perversion that was committed in the same way by the Israelites when they left Egypt with the gold that was owed to them for their time of slavery - but which they used to make a golden calf idol at the very foot of Mount Sinai.

At the time of the writing of Song of Solomon however, Solomon seems to have not yet entered the later time of his life when his "all is vanity" attitude reduced him to a despondent and confused old man. Song of Solomon was the time when Solomon's "lilies" were in full bloom (see Why Is Song of Solomon In The Holy Bible?).

"2:1 I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys.

2:2 As the lily among thorns, so is my love among the daughters.

2:3 As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste. 2:4 He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love. 2:5 Stay me with flagons, comfort me with apples: for I am sick of love. 2:6 His left hand is under my head, and his right hand doth embrace me. 2:7 I charge you, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, by the roes, and by the hinds of the field, that ye stir not up, nor awake my love, till he please.

2:8 The voice of my beloved! behold, he cometh leaping upon the mountains, skipping upon the hills. 2:9 My beloved is like a roe or a young hart: behold, he standeth behind our wall, he looketh forth at the windows, shewing himself through the lattice. 2:10 My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. 2:11 For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; 2:12 The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land; 2:13 The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.

2:14 O my dove, that art in the clefts of the rock, in the secret places of the stairs, let me see thy countenance, let me hear thy voice; for sweet is thy voice, and thy countenance is comely. 2:15 Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes.

2:16 My beloved is mine, and I am his: he feedeth among the lilies. 2:17 Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, turn, my beloved, and be thou like a roe or a young hart upon the mountains of Bether." (Song Of Solomon 2:1-17 KJV)

Fact Finder: What significance did lilies have to the Temple?
See The Lilies Of The Covenant


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This Day In History, June 12

918: Aethelflaed (or Ethelfleda), a rare female Anglo-Saxon ruler of Mercia in England, died. The daughter of Alfred The Great, she helped her brother Edward The Elder, king of the West Saxons, conquer the Danish armies occupying eastern England.

1346: Charles IV of Luxembourg was elected Holy Roman Emperor in Germany (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).

1381: During the Peasants' Revolt (also called Wat Tyler's Rebellion) in England, the rebels arrived at Blackheath where they looted the town and burned libraries. The rampage was inspired by the "sermons" of the communist preacher (see also Which Way Is Right And Left?) John Ball and led by the anarchist Wat Tyler (a former roofer, using tiles as was common in the day - hence the origin of the family name Tyler).

Wat Tyler's Rebellion 1418: An insurrection put Paris under the control of the Burgundians.

1442: Alfonso V of Aragon was crowned King of Naples.

1653: The Battle of the Gabbard began during the First Anglo-Dutch War.

1665: England established the first municipal government for New York City. After the departure of the Dutch, the English renamed the city of "New Amsterdam" as "New York." The entire area was transformed from "New Netherlands" to "New England."

1667: The first blood transfusion was carried out by Jean-Baptiste Denys, personal physician to King Louis XIV of France, on a 15-year-old boy using blood from a sheep.

1811: The Earl of Selkirk was granted a vast area of territory in what is now Manitoba, Minnesota and North Dakota. Selkirk paid 10 shillings ($2.50) a year in rent on the land, which covered an area 5 times bigger than his native Scotland. As part of the rental agreement, Selkirk had to provide the Hudson's Bay Company with 200 servants a year and develop an agricultural colony.

1812: Napoleon invaded Russia.

1849: The gas mask was patented.

1860: The State Bank of the Russian Empire was established (Russia didn't begin its experiment with communism until the early 1900s; it lasted for about 70 years before socialism bankrupted Russia).

1867: The Austro-Hungarian Empire was formed.

1897: Swiss cutlery maker Carl Elsener patented his penknife, later to become known as the Swiss army knife.

1898: During the Spanish-U.S. War, the independence of the Philippines was declared by General Emilio Aguinaldo, leader of the revolutionary movement. The Philippines thereafter became an imperial colony of the U.S. rather than Spain.

1900: The Reichstag approved a second new law allowing the expansion of the German navy, making it one of the world's largest.

1917: King Constantine of Greece stepped down in favor of his son, Prince Alexander.

1944: Chinese Communist leader Mao Tse-tung announced that he would support Nationalist leader Chiang Kai-shek in the war against Japan.

1967: The U.S. Supreme Court declared all U.S. state laws against interracial marriage to be unconstitutional.

1967: Russia launched Venera 4. Upon arriving at Venus (the pagan name that humans have given to the planet), it will became the first space probe to enter another planet's atmosphere and return data.

1978: David Berkowitz, the "Son of Sam" killer in New York City, was sentenced to 365 years in prison for six killings.

1991: Mount Pinatubo began erupting in the Philippines after 4 centuries of dormancy.

1994: Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman were murdered at her home in Los Angeles. O.J. Simpson was later acquitted of the murders by a jury of his "peers."



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