Seven ways in which the song shows love isn’t all you need:
1. Romantic love isn’t for everyone (2:7, 3:5, 8:4). The passion of that desire is so strong that only a fool would set the fire ablaze before the right moment. The song comes as a warning against anything that arouses the passion when it won’t be consummated. You’ll be no less complete as a person if you don’t get married. In a sense, Jesus is the most ordinary person to have walked the earth.
2. Perfect love in a garden only gets 67% (7:11-13). The writer knew there had only ever been one perfect couple and one perfect garden. No couple’s experience today could match that. In the song, God is absent from the garden.
3. The city turns our dreams to nightmares (5:7). The dream turns into a nightmare. The watchmen find the woman when she goes to find her man. It’s an all too real experience for many.
4. Your lover will be a pain in the feet (5:3). Living with other people and the demands of romance are challenging because you’re sinners. We all need to be realistic about our expectations. The problem can only be solved in another life.
5. Your lover will be just the same as all the rest (5:9). We choose to make our spouse special. Our lovers aren’t heroes. They’re flawed.
6. Your lover may well betray you. (6:8-9, 8:12). In some ways, Solomon represents the perfect lover. The woman feels like a queen. It’s wrong to state your joy on them being faithful as they may fall. As may you.
7. Love isn’t stronger than death (8:6-7). Romantic love doesn’t survive the grave. Every couple is torn apart, one way or another.
Song of Songs is a great celebration of romantic love. It says that it’s not all you need and warns against idolising it. Hints towards a better rescuer. All the hopes, dreams and longings can only be fulfilled through Jesus.