February 17


"My beloved is. . . the chiefest among ten thousand" (Song of Solomon 5:10).

Throughout the centuries Christians have applied this charming title to Jesus. It is one of the most fitting portraits of our Saviour. Applying the husband/wife motif, the Song of Solomon extols Christ as the bridegroom of the church. As such, He is the "chiefest among ten thousand" and the one "altogether lovely" (Song of Solomon 5:10, 16). The biblical metaphor "chiefest among ten thousand" denotes preeminence. In their jubilant eulogy to David, the women sang, "Saul hath slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands" (1 Samuel 18:7). As a literary device, the phrase "ten thousand" was used in Bible times to denote the superlative.

In all the universe, Christ is indeed the chiefest among ten thousand. He is the incomparable One. He is the incomparable advocate. As the shepherd, He is incomparable. As the great physician, He is without equal. As the teacher come from God, He is inimitable. In His character, Christ is incomparably good and incomparably holy. He is the One altogether lovely. In character, status, and function He transcends all others.

In a flight of inspired eloquence, the apostle Paul describes our "altogether lovely" Saviour as one who is "far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come" (Ephesians 1:21, NIV).

Here is how we may become imbued with the beauty of Jesus: "By having a knowledge of Christ --His words, His habits, and His lessons of instruction-- we borrow the virtues of the character we have so closely studied, and become imbued with the spirit we have so much admired. Jesus becomes to us 'the chiefest among ten thousand,' the One altogether lovely."--Our High Calling, p. 58.

My Prayer Today: Lord, may Jesus be to me the chiefest among ten thousand. Amen.