“In His Chambers”
There are five references to the King in the Song of Solomon. This is the first: “The King hath brought me into His chambers.” “Chambers” is the Hebrew cheder, which denotes the inner apartments, the private parlor of the King. It is a picture of privacy and intimacy, where the Beloved and His Bride enjoy the companionship of one another in an atmosphere of undisturbed love.
Is this the response and answer to the Bride’s request, “Draw me?” She has desired this hallowed communion, and now it has been granted. Is not the longing of every redeemed heart to be drawn nearer to Him whom we love? There are distractions all around in the busy world. There are sights and sounds which would demand our attention, and so, sincerely, the saints sing
Nearer, still nearer, close to Thy heart,
Draw me, my Savior, so precious Thou art.
Fold me, O fold me, close to Thy breast,
Shelter me safe in that haven of rest.
Notice the change in the pronoun. She says, “Draw me,” and adds, “We will run after thee.” The ardent movements of the inividual believer toward Christ have an influence upon others who now also desire the companionship and presence of the King. While it is true, of course, that the Bride enjoys an intimacy which others do not, still, her attachment to the King does draw other hearts to him. It has been pointed out by another that in that other well-known love story, Ruth was not initially attracted to Boaz. It was what she saw of the dealings of the Almighty with Naomi that influenced the girl from Moab and created desires in her heart for the tender El Shaddai, for Bethlehem, and for the people of God.
It is solemn and sobering to think that what I am, and what I do, will have a bearing on other saints. How good it is then that we should ever be in the enjoyment of the King’s presence so that others will be attracted to Him also!
But how then, the exercised younger believer might ask, can I know His presence? How may I know the sweetness of the communion of the inner chambers of the Beloved? In some sense the answer is simple, and yet, in the bustling world in which we live, perhaps it may prove rather difficult. This is a quiet place, the inner apartments, far removed from the restless world around us; but ready access is available to every heart that loves Him through the privilege of prayer and attendance to His Word.
Like the Holiest of all in Israel’s tabernacle, there may indeed be a certain loneliness in that awful presence. With what trepidation the High Priest must have gone within the veil! Thousands of priests on a lower plane than he would draw close to the veil at times but would never see beyond or behind it. It was a solitary privilege granted to one man, once a year, to enter into the glory of the Holiest. But with the believer now it is different. In the sweet privilege of bridal affection we now enter with a holy familiarity, having been invited to come boldly. The spiritual heart may now enter the inner chambers of the King with reverent confidence. This means withdrawal from the world at times, just to commune in quietness with Him. Sometimes it may be just to breathe out our requests to Him, to draw near in our times of need. We do have an invitation to come to find grace at such times.
However, how He must appreciate it when we come there to worship! And what is worship? J. N. Darby’s definition is hard to improve upon. He says, “Worship is the honor and adoration rendered to God for what He is in Himself, and for what He means to those who render it.” It must delight the heart of God when we come near just to speak well of our Beloved, just to say what we have found in Him and what He means to us. This is the privilege of the inner chambers. It is communion with divine Persons.
The blessed quietness of the King’s inner apartments is conducive to meditation, and the Bride says, “We will remember.” So it is that, drawn aside from a busy life and a noisy world, the believer in precious contemplation has time and opportunity to remember. What memories fill our hearts in His presence! Exalted King though He is, we remember the days of His flesh, the lowliness of Bethlehem, the simplicity of His manger-bed, and His swaddling bands. We remember the Boy of Nazareth, living for the Father’s pleasure. We remember the lowly Man of Galilee, who brought fragrance to Cana, to Sychar, to Bethany, dispensing blessing on every hand in His preaching, teaching, and healing. But then, we remember Gethsemane, Gabbatha, Golgotha, and a Garden Tomb. How can we truly remember and not worship?
We will remember Thy love! We have, in wondrous grace, been brought into a circle of love. “The Father loveth the Son” (John 3:35). So it was from eternal ages, the Son in the bosom of the Father. And the Son said, “I love the Father” (John 14:31). Then He said, “The Father Himself loveth you” (John 16:37). And the story continues as He says, “As the Father hath loved Me so have I loved you” (John 15:9). Each individual believer can then say, in the blessed realization of it all, “The Son of God loved me” (Gal 2:20), and together we exclaim, “We love Him because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19). Then at times, when vocabulary fails us, we simply say, “Lord, Thou knowest all things, Thou knowest that I love Thee (John 21:17). A circle of divine love indeed, and in the quietness of the inner chambers of the King we say, “We will remember Thy love more than wine.” His love is sweeter than all the accumulated joys that earth can offer. Those joys are transient. His love abides forever, and we remember.