The Old Orchard by George H. Morrison

The Old Orchard
George H. Morrison
Song of Solomon 2:5

When I was in Mentone in the south of France last year, there was one eminent man who was often in my thoughts. It was Mr. Spurgeon, that honored minister of Christ, who in his years of weakness lived much at Mentone.1 I used to look at the hotel he stayed in, and think of his courage when everything was dark. I used to think of the little companies who would gather there, while he broke the bread and preached the Word to them. So he, being dead, yet lived in grateful memory, for never surely have we had in England one who preached with greater power or fullness the unsearchable riches of Christ Jesus. Well, the other evening, turning over some old pamphlets, I chanced to light on an address by Mr. Spurgeon. It was an address delivered at Mentone to a little company upon this chapter. And in the course of it, and in a single sentence, he threw out a hint upon these words of ours, which has been working in me ever since, so that I have no help but to get it uttered. That is why I have chosen this strange text, and not at all because it is a strange text. What, think you, is at the heart of it, giving it a spiritual significance? Well, this is what Mr. Spurgeon found in it, in his own imaginative and illuminative way, and you will see its force at once when I suggest it to you.

The speaker in this exquisite chapter is a beautiful and simple country maiden. The home of her childhood has been a country home; her lot has been cast in sweet and pleasant places. Over her head the apple trees are bowing, rich in their wealth of blossom in the spring. Under her feet there is no marble pavement, but God's embroidery of the green grass. And it is there, where life is pastoral, and habits are simple, and eyes are big with innocence, that her mysterious lover woos and wins her. I call him mysterious, because, foreshadowing Christ, he is no peasant, but a prince disguised. He is the son of a king, although she knows ...

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