Song of Songs 6 Dance of Mahanaim


Well-Known Member
Song of Songs 6
1 Where has your beloved gone,
most beautiful of women?
Which way did your beloved turn,
that we may look for him with you?
2 My beloved has gone down to his garden,
to the beds of spices,
to browse in the gardens
and to gather lilies.
3 I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine;
he browses among the lilies.
4 You are as beautiful as Tirzah, my darling,
as lovely as Jerusalem,
as majestic as troops with banners.
5 Turn your eyes from me;
they overwhelm me.
Your hair is like a flock of goats
descending from Gilead.
6 Your teeth are like a flock of sheep
coming up from the washing.
Each has its twin,
not one of them is missing.
7 Your temples behind your veil
are like the halves of a pomegranate.
8 Sixty queens there may be,
and eighty concubines,
and virgins beyond number;
9 but my dove, my perfect one, is unique,
the only daughter of her mother,
the favorite of the one who bore her.
The young women saw her and called her blessed;
the queens and concubines praised her.
10 Who is this that appears like the dawn,
fair as the moon, bright as the sun,
majestic as the stars in procession?
11 I went down to the grove of nut trees
to look at the new growth in the valley,
to see if the vines had budded
or the pomegranates were in bloom.
12 Before I realized it,
my desire set me among the royal chariots of my people.[a]
13 Come back, come back, O Shulammite;
come back, come back, that we may gaze on you!
Why would you gaze on the Shulammite
as on the dance of Mahanaim?[b]

a. Song of Songs 6:12 Or among the chariots of Amminadab; or among the chariots of the people of the prince
b. Song of Songs 6:13 In Hebrew texts this verse (6:13) is numbered 7:1. has quite a lot to offer about the "garden" in verse 1.

My beloved has gone to his garden, to the beds of spices: Previously in the Song of Solomon (Song of Solomon 4:12, 4:16, and 5:1) the image of the garden was used to represent the sexuality of the maiden.​
Yet here that image seems out of place; if the beloved had gone to his garden, then why did it seem that the maiden was still searching for him? It seems best to regard this as a simple reference to a literal garden. The maiden remembered that her beloved would be a familiar outdoor place to feed is flock in the gardens.​
Interestingly, the maiden’s previous search through the city accomplished nothing and in fact only harmed her. Yet when she (in response to the questions from the Daughters of Jerusalem) thought about how wonderful her beloved was and where he might be, she was able to figure it out.​
To feed his flock in the gardens, and to gather lilies: When the maiden thought about where her beloved would be, she remembered that he would be doing his work (to feed his flock) and looking for ways to show his love to her (to gather lilies).​
There are sixty queens and eighty concubines, and virgins without number. My dove, my perfect one, is the only one: This goes beyond the description of the maiden’s beauty recorded in the previous verse. Here he praises the maiden in comparison to other women. It is important – even vital – for a wife to feel not only beautiful but preferred above others in the eyes of her husband.​
Return, return, O Shulamite: The words seem to have spoken by the Daughters of Jerusalem (or perhaps by the beloved and his friends). They appealed to the maiden who seems to be swept away as in a chariot (Song of Solomon 6:12), perhaps both literally and figuratively.​
This is the only verse in the Song of Solomon where the name Shulamite is used. It may indicate someone from the Galilean village of Shunam; or the name may also simply be the feminine form of the name Solomon, indicating their close unity.​
As it were, the dance of the two camps: This statement is difficult to understand. Perhaps it refers to a literal dance, as if the maiden was dancing and calling out to the on looking Daughters of Jerusalem. Others emphasize the idea of two camps and think it refers to the internal battle of the soul and is a mention of the inner battles the maiden has fought and is fighting.​
“Suggestions of some sort of sword dance or celebration of bloody military victory seem out of place here.” (Carr)​
“In v.13 the bride responds to the guests who want to see her. She is modestly reluctant. She questions their desire. If she wonders why anyone would want to see her, she is to get an answer from her lover. The next unit is his description of her charms.” (Kinlaw)​
Here's what I'm seeing here..... I'm seeing a young girl being carried off. I know it was the custom of girls of 12 or 13 to be "wives". The idea was to have as many sons as possible. More sons mean more workers.... more workers means more prophet. So it wasn't a big deal for marriages to take place for political or financial purposes.

Back in Proverbs.... Solomon said he spent a lot of time watching the whores.
Back in Esther.... the women who were in the contest to be the next queen were held in the pool until after they had gone through a monthly cycle at least once..... couldn't take a chance that they were already pregnant before meeting the king

And then things turn funky in verse 16.... there's a dance called the Mahanaim...... and it's called a bloody military dance.....

I don't think they are a couple yet. I think Solomon has been to her door twice but she's managed to stay away. I do not believe he is calling her beautiful.... I think that's just part of the appraisal process..... she's like a sheep ready for sacrifice..... she's tried to escape.... twice.... and the second time she was beaten. Now they're talking about a dance..... a fight...... Can't you just hear Solomon saying.... "stop fighting"?

The commentary says she's special.... IMHO.... she's only special because she's a virgin....

I guess when you are king.... you could have a new virgin every night....