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Song of Songs 8:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— Oh that thou wert as my brother, That sucked the breasts of my mother! [When] I should find thee without, I would kiss thee; Yea, and none would despise me.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— O that thou [wert] as my brother, that sucked the breasts of my mother! [when] I should find thee without, I would kiss thee; yea, I should not be despised.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— “Oh that you were like a brother to me Who nursed at my mother’s breasts. [If] I found you outdoors, I would kiss you; No one would despise me, either.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— O that thou [wert] as my brother, that was nourished at the breasts of my mother! [when] I should find thee without, I would kiss thee; yes, I should not be despised.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— Oh that thou wert as my brother, That sucked the breasts of my mother! Should I find thee without, I would kiss thee; And they would not despise me.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— Oh that thou hadst been a very brother to me, who had sucked the breasts of my own mother,—Had I found thee without, I had kissed thee, Yea, folk would not have despised me!
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— Who doth make thee as a brother to me, Sucking the breasts of my mother? I find thee without, I kiss thee, Yea, they do not despise me,
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— Who shall give thee to me for my brother, sucking the breasts of my mother, that I may find thee without, and kiss thee, and now no man may despise me?
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— O that thou [wert] as my brother that sucked the brests of my mother, [when] I should find thee without, I would kisse thee, yet I should not be despised.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— I would that thou, O my kinsman, wert he that sucked the breasts of my mother; when I found thee without, I would kiss thee; yea, they should not despise me.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— O that thou [wert] as my brother, that sucked the breasts of my mother! [when] I should find thee without, I would kiss thee; yea, I should not be despised.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
O that 5414
{5414} Prime
A primitive root; to give, used with great latitude of application (put, make, etc.).
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
(4310) Complement
An interrogitive pronoun of persons, as H4100 is of things, who? (occasionally, by a peculiar idiom, of things); also (indefinitely) whoever; often used in oblique construction with prefix or suffix.
thou [wert] as my brother, 251
{0251} Prime
A primitive word; a brother (used in the widest sense of literal relationship and metaphorical affinity or resemblance (like H0001)).
that sucked 3243
{3243} Prime
A primitive root; to suck; causatively to give milk.
<8802> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Participle Active (See H8814)
Count - 5386
the breasts 7699
{7699} Prime
Probably from H7736 (in its original sense) contracted; the breast of a woman or animal (as bulging).
of my mother! 517
{0517} Prime
A primitive word; a mother (as the bond of the family); in a wide sense (both literally and figuratively); (like H0001).
[when] I should find 4672
{4672} Prime
A primitive root; properly to come forth to, that is, appear or exist; transitively to attain, that is, find or acquire; figuratively to occur, meet or be present.
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
thee without, 2351
{2351} Prime
(Both forms feminine in the plural); from an unused root meaning to sever; properly separate by a wall, that is, outside, outdoors.
I would kiss 5401
{5401} Prime
A primitive root (identical with H5400, through the idea of fastening up; compare H2388 and H2836); to kiss, literally or figuratively (touch); also (as a mode of attachment), to equip with weapons.
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
thee; yea, x1571
(1571) Complement
By contraction from an unused root meaning to gather; properly assemblage; used only adverbially also, even, yea, though; often repeated as correlation both... and.
I should not x3808
(3808) Complement
lo; a primitive particle; not (the simple or abstract negation); by implication no; often used with other particles.
be despised. 936
{0936} Prime
A primitive root; to disrespect.
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Song of Songs 8:1

_ _ He had been a brother already. Why, then, this prayer here? It refers to the time after His resurrection, when the previous outward intimacy with Him was no longer allowed, but it was implied it should be renewed at the second coming (John 20:17). For this the Church here prays; meanwhile she enjoys inward spiritual communion with Him. The last who ever “kissed” Jesus Christ on earth was the traitor Judas. The bride’s return with the King to her mother’s house answers to Acts 8:25, after the mission to Samaria. The rest spoken of (Song of Songs 8:4) answers to Acts 9:31.

_ _ that sucked ... mother — a brother born of the same mother; the closest tie.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Song of Songs 8:1-4

_ _ Here, I. The spouse wishes for a constant intimacy and freedom with the Lord Jesus. She was already betrothed to him, but, the nuptials being yet not solemnized and published (the bride, the Lamb's wife, will not be completely ready till his second coming), she was obliged to be shy and to keep at some distance; she therefore wishes she may be taken for his sister, he having called her so (Song of Songs 5:1), and that she might have the same chaste and innocent familiarity with him that a sister has with a brother, an own brother, that sucked the breasts of the same mother with her, who would therefore be exceedingly tender of her, as Joseph was of his brother Benjamin. Some make this to be the prayer of the Old Testament saints for the hastening of Christ's incarnation, that the church might be the better acquainted with him, when, forasmuch as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he should also himself likewise take part of the same, and not be ashamed to call them brethren. It is rather the wish of all believers for a more intimate communion with him, that they might receive the Spirit of sanctification, and so Christ must be as their brother, that is, that they might be as his brethren, which then they are when by grace they are made partakers of a divine nature, and he that sanctifies, and those that are sanctified, are both of one, Hebrews 2:11, etc. It becomes brethren and sisters, the children of the same parents, that have been nursed at the same breast, to be very loving to and tender of one another; such a love the spouse desires might be between her and her beloved, that she might call him brother. 2. She promises herself then the satisfaction of making a more open profession of her relation to him than at present she could make: “When I should find thee without, any where, even before company, I would kiss thee, as a sister does her own brother, especially her little brother that is now sucking the breasts of her mother” (for so some understand it); “I would use all the decent freedom with thee that could be, and should not be despised for it, as doing any thing unbecoming the modesty of my sex.” The church, since Christ's incarnation, can better own him than she could before, when she would have been laughed at for being so much in love with one that was not yet born. Christ has become as our brother; wherever we find him, therefore, let us be ready to own our relation to him and affection for him, and not fear being despised for it, nor regard that any more than David did when he danced before the ark. If this be to be vile, I will be yet more vile. Nay, let us hope that we shall not be despised so much as some imagine. Of the maid-servants of whom thou hast spoken I shall be had in honour. Wherever we find the image of Christ, though it be without, among those that do not follow him with us, we must love it, and testify that love, and we shall not be despised for it, but catholic charity will gain us respect. 3. She promises to improve the opportunity she should then have for cultivating an acquaintance with him (Song of Songs 8:2): “I would lead thee, as my brother, by the arm, and hang upon thee; I would show thee all the house of my precious things, would bring thee into my mother's house, into the church, into the solemn assemblies (Song of Songs 3:4), into my closet” (for there the saints have most familiar communion with Christ), “and there thou wouldst instruct me” (so some read it), as brethren inform their sisters of what they desire to be instructed in. Those that know Christ shall be taught of him; and therefore we should desire communion with Christ that we may receive instruction from him. He has come that he might give us an understanding. Or, “My mother would instruct me when I have thee with me.” It is the presence of Christ in and with his church that makes the word and ordinances instructive to her children, who shall all be taught of God. 4. She promises him to bid him welcome to the best she had; she would cause him to drink of her spiced wine and the juice of her pomegranate, and bid him welcome to it, wishing it better for his sake. The exercise of grace and the performance of duty are spiced wine to the Lord Jesus, very acceptable to him, as expressive of a grateful sense of his favours. Those that are pleased with Christ must study to be pleasing to him; and they will not find him hard to be pleased. He reckons hearty welcome his best entertainment; and, if he have that, he will bring his entertainment along with him. 5. She doubts not but to experience his tender care of her and affection to her (Song of Songs 8:3), that she should be supported by his power and kept from fainting in the hardest services and sufferings (His left hand shall be under my head) and that she should be comforted with his love — His right hand should embrace me. Thus Christ laid his right hand upon John when he was ready to die away, Revelation 1:17. See also Daniel 10:10, Daniel 10:18. It may be read as it is Song of Songs 2:6, His left hand is under my head (for the words are the same in the original) and so it expresses an immediate answer to her prayer; she was answered with strength in her soul, Psalms 138:3. While we are following hard after Christ his right hand sustains us, Psalms 63:8. Underneath are the everlasting arms. 6. She charges those about her to take heed of doing any thing to interrupt the pleasing communion she now had with her beloved (Song of Songs 8:4), as she had done before, when he thus strengthened and comforted her with his presence (Song of Songs 2:7): Let me charge you, O you daughters of Jerusalem, and reason with you, Why should you stir up, and why should you awake, my love, until he will? The church, our common mother, charges all her children that they never do any thing to provoke Christ to withdraw, which we are very prone to do. Why should you put such an affront upon him? Why should you be such enemies to yourselves? We should thus reason with ourselves when we are tempted to do that which will grieve the Spirit. “What! Am I weary of Christ's presence, that I affront him and provoke him to depart from me? Why should I do that which he will take so unkindly and which I shall certainly repent of?”

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Song of Songs 8:1

O that — The church here expresses her desire of a stricter union, and closer communion with Christ. Without — In the open streets.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Song of Songs 8:1

O (a) that thou [wert] as my brother, that was nourished at the breasts of my mother! [when] I should find thee outside, I would kiss thee; yea, I should not be despised.

(a) The Church called of the Gentiles speaks thus to the Church of Jerusalem.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
that thou:

Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Haggai 2:7 And I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall come: and I will fill this house with glory, saith the LORD of hosts.
Zechariah 9:9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he [is] just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.
Malachi 3:1 Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.
Matthew 13:16-17 But blessed [are] your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear. ... For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous [men] have desired to see [those things] which ye see, and have not seen [them]; and to hear [those things] which ye hear, and have not heard [them].
Luke 2:26-32 And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord's Christ. ... A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.
Luke 2:38 And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.
Luke 10:23-24 And he turned him unto [his] disciples, and said privately, Blessed [are] the eyes which see the things that ye see: ... For I tell you, that many prophets and kings have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen [them]; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard [them].
1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
Hebrews 2:11-12 For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified [are] all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, ... Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee.


Isaiah 66:11-12 That ye may suck, and be satisfied with the breasts of her consolations; that ye may milk out, and be delighted with the abundance of her glory. ... For thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will extend peace to her like a river, and the glory of the Gentiles like a flowing stream: then shall ye suck, ye shall be borne upon [her] sides, and be dandled upon [her] knees.
Galatians 4:26 But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.

find thee:

John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
John 3:13 And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, [even] the Son of man which is in heaven.
John 8:42 Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me.
John 13:3 Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God;
John 16:28 I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world: again, I leave the world, and go to the Father.
Hebrews 2:9-14 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. ... Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;
Hebrews 9:26-28 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. ... So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

I would:

Song of Songs 1:2 Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth: for thy love [is] better than wine.
Psalms 2:12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish [from] the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed [are] all they that put their trust in him.
Psalms 45:10-11 Hearken, O daughter, and consider, and incline thine ear; forget also thine own people, and thy father's house; ... So shall the king greatly desire thy beauty: for he [is] thy Lord; and worship thou him.
Luke 7:45-48 Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet. ... And he said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven.
Luke 9:26 For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and [in his] Father's, and of the holy angels.
Luke 12:8 Also I say unto you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man also confess before the angels of God:
John 7:46-52 The officers answered, Never man spake like this man. ... They answered and said unto him, Art thou also of Galilee? Search, and look: for out of Galilee ariseth no prophet.
John 9:25-38 He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner [or no], I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see. ... And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.
Galatians 6:14 But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.
Philippians 3:3 For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.
Philippians 3:7-8 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. ... Yea doubtless, and I count all things [but] loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them [but] dung, that I may win Christ,


Psalms 51:17 The sacrifices of God [are] a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
Psalms 102:16-17 When the LORD shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory. ... He will regard the prayer of the destitute, and not despise their prayer.
Mark 12:42-44 And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. ... For all [they] did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, [even] all her living.
Mark 14:6-9 And Jesus said, Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me. ... Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, [this] also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her.

I should not be despised:
Heb. they should not despise me,
Isaiah 60:14 The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee, The city of the LORD, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.
Luke 10:16 He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me.
Luke 18:9 And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:
1 Corinthians 1:28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, [yea], and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:
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Chain-Reference Bible Search

Ps 2:12; 45:10; 51:17; 102:16. So 1:2. Is 7:14; 9:6; 60:14; 66:11. Hg 2:7. Zc 9:9. Mal 3:1. Mt 13:16. Mk 12:42; 14:6. Lk 2:26, 38; 7:45; 9:26; 10:16, 23; 12:8; 18:9. Jn 1:14; 3:13; 7:46; 8:42; 9:25; 13:3; 16:28. 1Co 1:28. Ga 4:26; 6:14. Php 3:3, 7. 1Ti 3:16. He 2:9, 11; 9:26.

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