so that you can decide what is best, and thus be sincere and blameless for the day of Christ,
A certain one of them, in fact, one of their own prophets, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” 1
Absalom had made Amasa general in command of the army in place of Joab. (Now Amasa was the son of an Israelite man named Jether, who had married 1 Abigail the daughter of Nahash and sister of Zeruiah, Joab’s mother.)
The fig tree has budded, the vines have blossomed and give off their fragrance. Arise, come away my darling; my beautiful one, come away with me!”
Come out, O maidens of Zion, and gaze upon King Solomon! He is wearing the crown with which his mother crowned him on his wedding day, on the most joyous day of his life! 1
The Lover to His Beloved: Oh, 2 you are beautiful, my darling! 3 Oh, you are beautiful! Your eyes behind your veil are like doves. 4 Your hair is like a flock of female goats descending 5 from Mount Gilead.
The Beloved to Her Lover: Set me like a cylinder seal 1 over your heart, 2 like a signet 3 on your arm. 4 For love is as strong as death, 5 passion 6 is as unrelenting 7 as Sheol. Its flames burst forth, 8 it is a blazing flame. 9
Do not chase after other gods until your shoes wear out and your throats become dry. 1 But you say, ‘It is useless for you to try and stop me because I love those foreign gods 2 and want to pursue them!’
What will you say 1 when the Lord 2 appoints as rulers over you those allies that you, yourself, had actually prepared as such? 3 Then anguish and agony will grip you like that of a woman giving birth to a baby. 4
She did not abandon the prostitution she had practiced in Egypt; for in her youth men had sex with her, fondled her virgin breasts, and ravished her. 1
They offer up sacrificial gifts to me, and eat the meat, but the Lord does not accept their sacrifices. 1 Soon he will remember their wrongdoing, he will punish their sins, and they will return to Egypt.
“The Lord who rules over all says, ‘The fast of the fourth, fifth, seventh, and tenth 1 months will become joyful and happy, pleasant feasts for the house of Judah, so love truth and peace.’
Then the priest will put the woman under oath and say to the her, “If no other 1 man has had sexual relations with you, and if you have not gone astray and become defiled while under your husband’s authority, may you be free from this bitter water that brings a curse. 2