16 My beloved is mine, and I am his: he feedeth among the lilies.
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.
Here the bride declares her full realisation of her covenant relationship with the bridegroom. He is mine because he has given himself for me (Gal.2:20). I am his because he bought me with his own blood (Rom.14:9). Another way of putting this is, my beloved is for me and I for him.
The lily, white and fragrant, is a picture of the sanctified pure soul of the husband and the lilies the church.
“Cleaving and longing soul what a possession you have! All you love, all you adore, all you admire, all you seek is already your own!…On earth people sigh hopelessly for the object of their desire and it is never theirs. In eternity with shame and confusion they will say regarding all their desires—my beloved is not mine—all I cared for, even died for is lost for ever. Poor, disappointed lost soul!” *
I Cor.13:10 looks to the day when all will be clear, when that which is perfect is come, there is no night there (Rev.22:5). Here she anticipates fuller and brighter manifestation of her beloved, in his presence, uninterruptedly, and for ever. The word “turn” here comes from the root meaning to revolve i.e. encompass me, keep me on every side (Ps.71:21). The mountains of Bether or division speak of separation between bride and bridegroom but as a swift hind he has broken them all down (Zech.4:7) and comes quickly. From her point of view Matt.17:20, II Cor.12:9 and I Cor. 10:13 apply.
Young hart on Israeli coin.
Her prayer is come quickly Lord (Rev.22:20). Come and be with me till the night is gone. The day “break” is literally breathe or blows, perhaps an allusion to the work of the Spirit of God who created the world by breathing and who will one day recreate it in a similar fashion.
*Commentary by Rev. Moody Stuart