This is uncomfortable for some, as it rides the line between agape and eros love, but I believe God IS Love and Love is God -- this includes every facet of Love; phileo, agape, and eros. We know marriage is itself a picture of Christ and the Church (Ephesians 5:31-32), and therefore the intimacy is a picture of the intimacy with Yeshua. Not sexual, per se, but rather knowing someone deeply, loving them passionately, and finding great joy and ecstasy with the One you love. For the sake of this study, it will be assumed the "man" speaking in Songs is Christ, and the "woman" is His Church.
The first mention of lilies is in Songs 2:1-2:
In these two verses, we learn a wealth of information. First, we have an "I AM" statement, similar to those used in the book of John, when Christ made His parallels to Yahweh and applied them to Himself (I AM the Bread of Life, I AM the Way, Truth, Life, I AM the Door, Before Abraham was, I AM...) Here, He says, "I AM the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys." It is CHRIST, therefore, Who is the Lily. He is our foundation for the Lily throughout the rest of Song of Solomon.
In the very next verse, however, the woman is "AS the Lily among thorns". She is not THE Lily, she is AS the Lily. This distinguishes her from Christ, while also having His righteousness -- the purity of the white flower. She stands out among other women of the world, which are described as "thorns".
Skipping a bit, we come to Songs 6:2:
This verse is FULL of allegory. I could do a whole study on the Beloved's garden from Songs. The "beds of spices" are myrrh and frankincense spoken of at length throughout the book. But interestingly enough, this verse speaks of TWO gardens -- "His garden" -- and "the gardens."
"His garden" is the heart of the believer. The beds of spices are likely the works of that believer in Yeshua's name. And notice what He does afterward -- He feeds in "the gardens and gathers lilies". Through the garden of the believer's heart, Christ comes to feed OTHER gardens, and "to gather lilies", or if you prefer, gather new disciples.
Now, I am of the opinion that there isn't an idle word in Scripture. As the Word of God, it is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword (Hebrews 4:12). Yeshua knew good and well every single word He spoke would one day be written down and studied. I don't believe it is coincidence at all that He spoke of lilies while teaching His disciples not to fret about what to eat or what to wear.
"Consider the lilies, how they grow; they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these." ~~Luke 12:27
Not only is it no coincidence He mentions "lilies", but also "Solomon." This is a clue for the Bride, in my opinion. If the Song of Solomon is allegory between Christ and His Church, we should take a good look at what Christ Himself says about lilies in this verse. Not only would He therefore be talking about the flowers of the field, but about the lilies among thorns, His Bride, His Beloved.
"Consider the lilies..." Look at My Bride. "how they grow; they toil not, they spin not" How they're sanctified, how they work not for their salvation. "yet I say that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these." Solomon, the wisest, wealthiest king who's ever lived, was not clothed in the Splendor that My Bride shall one day be clothed.
This is an amazing text! Was King Solomon made as wise and as wealthy as he was to be an example of the inheritance of the Saints? All the best this world has to offer, wine, women, song, was given to King Solomon. More than any other man who's ever lived, King Solomon had it ALL. And yet, Christ says even the LILIES are arrayed in MORE glory than Solomon could ever dream.
True, on the surface, He is speaking of mere flowers. They don't work for their beauty. They've never had to buy it, never had to earn it. And yet they have it. God gives them the grace to be even more glorious than Solomon. But He's also alluding to the lily in Songs by mentioning Solomon by name.
The very next verse drives the point home in Luke 12:28:
Yeshua clearly wraps up His analogy by bringing it full circle and tying it all up in a pretty bow. If God cares for these flowers, which are here today, and tomorrow are gone, how much more will He clothe you? To God, our lives are but a vapor. Here today, gone tomorrow. Yet even though our lives are so short in comparison to eternity, He cares for us and clothes us -- not only with our worldly needs, but also, our eternal needs. With a Robe of Righteousness of His very Own.
These verses in Luke are, on the surface, about God taking care of our earthly needs. But on a deeper, eternal level, Yeshua is telling us that He clothes His lilies in GREATER splendor than He ever clothed King Solomon -- with His OWN righteousness, His OWN Glory. We must look deeper, beyond the riches of the world and focus on the Treasure of Heaven.
We are His lilies among the thorns of this world. Our hearts are His garden. When His breath blows upon us, the lovely fragrance of our spices flow out to others. Our Beloved comes into His garden and partakes of our pleasant fruit (Songs 4:16). In return, He clothes us with His Righteous Beauty, the very nature of our Glorious God.
He IS the Lily.
We are AS the Lily.