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  • Writer's pictureThe Bald Believer

He Smelled Like Myrrh

Song of Solomon 1:12–17 12While the king sitteth at his table, My spikenard sendeth forth the smell thereof. 13A bundle of myrrh is my wellbeloved unto me; He shall lie all night betwixt my breasts. 14My beloved is unto me as a cluster of camphire In the vineyards of En-gedi. 15Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; Thou hast doves’ eyes. 16Behold, thou art fair, my beloved, yea, pleasant: Also our bed is green. 17The beams of our house are cedar, And our rafters of fir.


Years ago, at a place of past employment, all the ladies in our office were bragging on another fella, gushing over how good this guy smelled. I was a little jealous, so I asked, “Hey, what about me?” I have always made some decent cologne a part of my budget and wanted some recognition for my efforts.

They all laughed and in unison responded, “you just always smell like hand sanitizer”.

So, it seems that all I have spent to smell good was nullified because I am a germaphobe. I suppose that we all have a distinctive aroma, I wanted mine to be something better but hey, at least ya know I’m clean, right?

The bride in Solomon’s song tells us something about the smell of the man she loves.

Song of Solomon 1:13 A bundle of myrrh is my wellbeloved unto me; He shall lie all night betwixt my breasts.

I have been told that in Bible times in was common to wear a pouch of a sweet-smelling substance around one’s neck. This bride compares her groom to such a necklace. I must admit that I am not totally sure what she is saying. Is she telling us that he will lay his head on her chest? Is she alone but will wear such a necklace that has smells like him and be comforted thereby?

The one thing I know is that this dude doesn’t smell like hand sanitizer, he smells like myrrh!

Song of Solomon 3:6 Who is this that cometh out of the wilderness like pillars of smoke, Perfumed with myrrh and frankincense, With all powders of the merchant?

Song of Solomon 5:13 His cheeks are as a bed of spices, as sweet flowers: His lips like lilies, dropping sweet smelling myrrh.

She said, “A bundle of myrrh is my well-beloved unto me” because her man smelled like myrrh.

Now, here is an interesting truth, the groom in the Song of Solomon is a picture of our Lord.

So, guess what?

While walking on the earth my Jesus had a distinctive scent, he smelled like myrrh!

Mt 2:11 tells us how the wise men brought gifts to celebrate the newborn King and what were those treasures?

Gold, Frankincense, and... do you remember that last one?

Yep, it was myrrh!

As a baby, our Lord smelled like myrrh!

While on the cross there was that familiar aroma again.

Mark 15:23 And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not.

It seems that the scent of myrrh was always around this man, at his birth, and at his death.

Even at his burial, our beloved was bundled in myrrh.

John 19:39 And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight.

Myrrh and my Lord, they seem to just go together don’t they?

What exactly is myrrh anyway?

According to one Bible dictionary,

“the gum yielded by a thorny tree (Balsamodendron myrrha) found in Arabia which grows eight or nine feet high. The tree has a wood and bark which emit a strong odor; the gum which exudes from the bark is at first oily, but becomes hard by exposure to the air.”[1]

Do you see how fitting it was for this to be associated with our Savior?

To have myrrh, a tree had to be cut and bleed and the hardened resin had to be beaten to produce the precious powder.

Without bleeding and beating there could be no sweet aroma from the tree.

No wonder my Lord had this scent, it was an illustration of his purpose to suffer, shed his life-giving blood, and die to give us life.

Like the lady in Solomon’s song, I can say, “A bundle of myrrh is my well-beloved unto me”

Reading for 12/16/20

[1] Shepherd, T. J. (1880). In The Westminster Bible Dictionary (p. 362). Philadelphia: Presbyterian Board of Publication.

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