Song of Songs 1–3

1 The Song of Songs, which is Solomon’s.

2 Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth!

For your love is better than wine.

3 Your anointing oils are fragrant,

your name is oil poured out;

therefore the virgins love you.

4 Draw me after you, let us run.

The king has brought me into his chambers.

We will exult and rejoice in you;

we will remember your love more than wine;

rightly do they love you.

5 I am dark, but still lovely, O daughters of Jerusalem,

like the tents of Kedar,

like the curtains of Solomon.

6 Do not gaze at me, because I am dark,

because the sun has looked upon me.

My mother’s sons were angry with me;

they made me the keeper of the vineyards,

but my own vineyard I have not kept.

7 Tell me, you whom my soul loves,

where you pasture your flock,

where you make it lie down at noon;

for why should I be like one who veils herself by the flocks of your companions?

8 If you do not know, O fairest among women,

follow in the tracks of the flock,

and pasture your young goats

beside the shepherds’ tents.

9 I compare you, my love, to a mare among Pharaoh’s chariots.

10 Lovely are your cheeks with ornaments,

your neck with chains of gold.

11 We will make you ornaments of gold,

with studs of silver.

12 While the king was on his couch,

my nard gave forth its fragrance.

13 My beloved is to me a bundle of myrrh

that lies all night between my breasts.

14 My beloved is to me a cluster of henna blossoms

in the vineyards of En Gedi.

15 How fair you are, my love.

How fair you are! Your eyes are doves.

16 How fair you are, my beloved!

Yes, pleasant!

Our bed is verdant;

17 the beams of our house are cedar,

and our rafters of fir.

Chapter 2

1 I am the rose of Sharon,

the lily of the valleys.

2 As a lily among thorns,

so is my love among the maidens.

3 As an apple tree among the trees of the forest,

so is my beloved among the young men.

In his shadow I sat with great delight,

and his fruit was sweet to my taste.

4 He brought me to the banquet house,

and his banner over me was love.

5 Sustain me with raisins,

refresh me with apples;

for I am faint with love.

6 His left hand is under my head,

and his right hand embraces me.

7 I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem,

by the gazelles or the does of the field,

do not stir up or awaken love

until it pleases.

8 The voice of my beloved!

Look, he comes

leaping over the mountains,

bounding over the hills.

9 My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag.

Look, he stands behind our wall, gazing through the windows,

looking through the lattice.

10 My beloved speaks and says to me:

“Rise up, my love,

my fair one, and come away.

11 For now the winter has past;

the rain is over and gone.

12 The flowers appear on the earth;

the time of singing has come,

and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.

13 The fig tree puts forth its green figs,

and the vines their blossoms;

and they give forth fragrance.

Rise up, my love, my beautiful one, and come away.

14 “O my dove, in the clefts of the rock,

in the secret places of the cliffs,

let me see your face,

let me hear your voice;

for your voice is sweet,

and your face is lovely.

15 Catch the foxes for us,

the little foxes

that spoil the vineyards,

for our vineyards are in blossom.”

16 My beloved is mine, and I am his;

he feeds his flock among the lilies.

17 Until the day breathes

and the shadows flee,

turn, my beloved,

be like a gazelle

or a young stag

on the cleft mountains.

Chapter 3

1 On my bed by night I sought him

whom my soul loves;

I sought him, but found him not.

2 I will rise now and go about the city,

in the streets and in the squares;

I will seek him whom my soul loves.

I sought him, but found him not.

3 The watchmen found me,

as they went about the city.

“Have you seen him whom my soul loves?”

4 Scarcely had I passed them,

when I found him whom my soul loves.

I held him, and would not let him go

until I brought him to my mother’s house,

and into the chamber of her who conceived me.

5 I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem,

by the gazelles or does of the field,

do not stir up or awaken love

until it pleases.

6 Who is that coming up from the wilderness,

like columns of smoke,

perfumed with myrrh and frankincense,

with all the fragrant powders of the merchant?

7 Look, it is the litter of Solomon!

Around it are sixty mighty men,

of the mighty men of Israel,

8 all of them holding swords

and expert in war,

each with his sword at his thigh,

because of terrors by night.

9 King Solomon made himself a palanquin

from the wood of Lebanon.

10 He made its posts of silver,

its back of gold,

its seat of purple;

its interior was inlaid with love

by the daughters of Jerusalem.

11 Go forth, O daughters of Zion,

and see King Solomon with the crown

with which his mother crowned him

on the day of his wedding,

on the day of the gladness of his heart.

Galatians 2

1 Then after fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas and also took Titus with me. 2 I went up in response to a revelation and communicated to them the gospel which I preach among the Gentiles. But privately I communicated to those who were of reputation, in case I might be running, or had run, in vain. 3 But even Titus, who was with me, though he was a Greek, was not compelled to be circumcised. 4 This happened because false brothers were secretly brought in, who sneaked in to spy out our liberty, which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage. 5 We did not yield to subjection to them, not for an hour, that the truth of the gospel might continue with you.

6 But of these who seemed to be something—whatever they were, it makes no difference to me; God shows no partiality to anyone—for those who seemed to be something added nothing to me. 7 On the contrary, they saw that I was entrusted with the gospel to the uncircumcised, as the gospel to the circumcised was to Peter. 8 For He who worked effectively in Peter for the apostleship to the circumcised worked effectively in me toward the Gentiles. 9 When James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, understood the grace that was given to me, they gave to Barnabas and me the right hand of fellowship, that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised. 10 Only they requested that we should remember the poor, which I also was eager to do.

11 But when Peter came to Antioch, I withstood him face to face, because he stood condemned. 12 Before certain men came from James, he ate with the Gentiles. But when they came, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing those who were of the circumcision. 13 And the other Jews, likewise, joined together in hypocrisy with him, so that even Barnabas was carried away by their hypocrisy.

14 But when I saw that they were not straightforward about the truth of the gospel, I said to Peter before them all, “If you, being a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, why do you compel the Gentiles to live like Jews?”

15 We are Jews by nature, and not Gentile sinners, 16 yet we know that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but through faith in Jesus Christ. Even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we might be justified by faith in Christ, rather than by the works of the law. For by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.

17 If, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found to be sinners, is Christ therefore the minister of sin? God forbid! 18 For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.

19 For through the law I am dead to the law, that I might live for God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. 21 I do not nullify the grace of God. For if righteousness comes by the law, then Christ died in vain.