Are you a Door or a Wall?
“8 We have a little sister,
and her breasts are not yet grown.
What shall we do for our sister
on the day she is spoken for?
9 If she is a wall,
we will build towers of silver on her.
If she is a door,
we will enclose her with panels of cedar.
10 I am a wall,
and my breasts are like towers.
Thus I have become in his eyes
like one bringing contentment.
11 Solomon had a vineyard in Baal Hamon;
he let out his vineyard to tenants.
Each was to bring for its fruit
a thousand shekels[t] of silver.
12 But my own vineyard is mine to give;
the thousand shekels are for you, Solomon,
and two hundred[u] are for those who tend its fruit.
13 You who dwell in the gardens
with friends in attendance,
let me hear your voice!” Song of Songs 8:8-13 NIV
While this series has been about love, sex, marriage, and God, in Song of Songs 8, we take a moment to turn our attention to the friends of Abishag. Different translations attribute verses 8-9 to her friends or to the brothers of Abishag. While the NIV identifies those speaking as her friends, (as you can see above) I’d suggest that it is her brother’s speaking to Abishag since the text refers to her as “a little sister.”
If this is the brothers, or friends however, the point of this is that as a young woman, when she was nearing puberty, Abishag was blessed with older brothers (or friends) who protected her chastity.
Be a Wall
If she was a wall or a young woman who protected her chastity, they would build on her towers of silver. This meant that they would compliment and encourage her. Here is a word to elder brothers and friends. Protect your younger sisters. Look out for her. If a guy wants to take her out on a date and you know his character is not good, it is your job to protect her. Help empower her to be wall that will not settle for compromise but will bring honor to the Lord.
Don’t be a Door
On the other hand, she could have been a door. A door is boy crazy and open to whomever comes her way. If she were a door the brothers (or friends) would have had to “enclose her with panels of cedar.” In other words, they would not let her cultivate a relationship with a man of bad character. They would do their best to protect her. This was not because the brothers were mean spirited or unloving toward her. It was because they were protecting her from sexual pressure when she was a young woman so that as she grew, she could make wiser decisions herself.
Of course the number one protector is dad, but in Abishag’s case, dad was not there. He had either died or left (the text is silent about which it is). As dads and as big brothers (or even as friends as the NIV puts it), it is our duty to protect our younger sisters. We need to support our sisters in following God and seeking His very best for their lives. We need to be good dads and good brothers so that the young sister’s around us don’t need to go out to find the love they don’t get at home.
Abishag chose not to be a door, but a wall that was single by choice. She kept boys who were friends at a distance. She protected her heart from becoming attached to a man she shouldn’t be in a relationship with. Did she want to be with a man? Of course she did. She remained committed however, to wait for the right time and the right person.
She worked hard to be the person that the person that she wanted to be with, wanted to be with. By the way, that is how we should live our single lives. We need to work hard to be the person that the person we want to be with, wants to be with.
Support the sisters around you in being pure. Support them in following God. Don’t encourage them to be doors that people walk through. Encourage them to be walls that live for and trust for God’s very best.
Holy Spirit, help me to be a good big brother to the sisters around me and to encourage them to be WALLS for you rather than doors. Help me to lovingly support Your best in the sisters I know. Amen.