“Do not awaken or stir up love until it is ready.”
Morning Reading – Song of Songs 3 (see reading below)
“All who hate Wisdom love death.”
Midday Reading – Proverbs 8 (see reading below)
“For they preferred human praise to the glory of God.”
Evening Reading – John 12:37-50
Song of Songs 3
On my bed at night I sought him
whom my soul loves—
I sought him but I did not find him.
“Let me rise then and go about the city,
through the streets and squares;
Let me seek him whom my soul loves.”
I sought him but I did not find him.
The watchmen found me,
as they made their rounds in the city:
“Him whom my soul loves—have you seen him?”
Hardly had I left them
when I found him whom my soul loves.
I held him and would not let him go
until I had brought him to my mother’s house,
to the chamber of her who conceived me.
I adjure you, Daughters of Jerusalem,
by the gazelles and the does of the field,
Do not awaken or stir up love
until it is ready.
SOLOMON’S WEDDING PROCESSION
Who is this coming up from the desert,
like columns of smoke
Perfumed with myrrh and frankincense,
with all kinds of exotic powders?
See! it is the litter of Solomon;
sixty valiant men surround it,
of the valiant men of Israel:
All of them expert with the sword,
skilled in battle,
Each with his sword at his side
against the terrors of the night.
King Solomon made himself an enclosed litter
of wood from Lebanon.
He made its columns of silver,
its roof of gold,
Its seat of purple cloth,
its interior lovingly fitted.
Daughters of Jerusalem,
and look upon King Solomon
In the crown with which his mother has crowned him
on the day of his marriage,
on the day of the joy of his heart.
Does not Wisdom call,
and Understanding raise her voice?
On the top of the heights along the road,
at the crossroads she takes her stand;
By the gates at the approaches of the city,
in the entryways she cries aloud:
“To you, O people, I call;
my appeal is to you mortals.
You naive ones, gain prudence,
you fools, gain sense.
Listen! for noble things I speak;
my lips proclaim honest words.
Indeed, my mouth utters truth,
and my lips abhor wickedness.
All the words of my mouth are sincere,
none of them wily or crooked;
All of them are straightforward to the intelligent,
and right to those who attain knowledge.
Take my instruction instead of silver,
and knowledge rather than choice gold.
[For Wisdom is better than corals,
and no treasures can compare with her.]
I, Wisdom, dwell with prudence,
and useful knowledge I have.
[The fear of the LORD is hatred of evil;]
Pride, arrogance, the evil way,
and the perverse mouth I hate.c
Mine are counsel and advice;
Mine is strength; I am understanding.
By me kings reign,
and rulers enact justice;
By me princes govern,
and nobles, all the judges of the earth.
Those who love me I also love,
and those who seek me find me.
With me are riches and honor,
wealth that endures, and righteousness.
My fruit is better than gold, even pure gold,
and my yield than choice silver.
On the way of righteousness I walk,
along the paths of justice,
Granting wealth to those who love me,
and filling their treasuries.
“The LORD begot me, the beginning of his works,
the forerunner of his deeds of long ago;
From of old I was formed,
at the first, before the earth.
When there were no deeps I was brought forth,
when there were no fountains or springs of water;
Before the mountains were settled into place,
before the hills, I was brought forth;
When the earth and the fields were not yet made,
nor the first clods of the world.
When he established the heavens, there was I,
when he marked out the vault over the face of the deep;
When he made firm the skies above,
when he fixed fast the springs of the deep;
When he set for the sea its limit,
so that the waters should not transgress his command;
When he fixed the foundations of earth,
then was I beside him as artisan;
I was his delight day by day,
playing before him all the while,
Playing over the whole of his earth,
having my delight with human beings.
Now, children, listen to me;
happy are they who keep my ways.
Listen to instruction and grow wise,
do not reject it!
Happy the one who listens to me,
attending daily at my gates,
keeping watch at my doorposts;
For whoever finds me finds life,
and wins favor from the LORD;
But those who pass me by do violence to themselves;
all who hate me love death.”