Lily of the Valley
Portraits of Christ | Lily of the Valley
I am the...Lily of the Valley. (Song of Solomon 2:1)
The white amaryllis or lily is suggestive of Christ's character in several ways. With it's drooping head, it is emblematic of the One who said, "Learn from Me, for I am meek and lowly in heart." (Matthew 11:29). The title speaks of the beauty of Christ, for Jesus himself told of the lilies adorning the fields, too beautiful to even be compared to Solomon in all his glory. The white flower is symbolic of holiness and purity, and of our Lord who led a life without sin and without blemish.
Finally, it is symbolic of the trials and tests each of us must face. In the deepest recesses of our valleys, when all seems lost and hopeless, there stands a lily, it's radiant beauty giving us a ray of hope that we are not alone, and that God is walking with us.
Matthew Henry writes, "What Christ is pleased to compare himself to; and he condescends very much in the comparison. He that is the Son of the Highest, the bright and morning star, calls and owns himself the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys, to express his presence with his people in this world, the easiness of their access to him, and the beauty and sweetness which they find in him, and to teach them to adorn themselves with him, as shepherds and shepherdesses, when they appeared gay, were decked with roses and lilies, garlands and chaplets of flowers.
"The rose, for beauty and fragrance, is the chief of flowers, and our Saviour prefers the clothing of the lily before that of Solomon in all his glory. Christ is the rose of Sharon, where probably the best roses grew and in most plenty, the rose of the field (so some), denoting that the gospel salvation is a common salvation; it lies open to all; whoever will may come and gather the rose-buds of privileges and comforts that grow in the covenant of grace. He is not a rose locked up in a garden, but all may come and receive benefit by him and comfort in him. He is a lily for whiteness, a lily of the valleys for sweetness, for those which we call so yield a strong perfume. He is a lily of the valleys, or low places, in his humiliation, exposed to injury. Humble souls see most beauty in him. Whatever he is to others, to those that are in the valleys he is a lily. He is the rose, the lily; there is none besides. Whatever excellence is in Christ, it is in him singularly and in the highest degree."