Wednesday, July 11, 2018
Zephaniah 3:14 – 17 14Sing, O Daughter of Zion; shout aloud, O Israel! Be glad and rejoice with all your heart, O Daughter of Jerusalem! 15The LORD has taken away your punishment, he has turned back your enemy. The LORD, the King of Israel, is with you; never again will you fear any harm. 16On that day they will say to Jerusalem, “Do not fear, O Zion; do not let your hands hang limp. 17The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.”
Have you rejoiced in the Lord yet today? If not, you’re out of touch with what God is doing, because He is rejoicing over you! The verses above are one of my favorite passages of scripture. In it we discover the reciprocity of rejoicing. As we consider the Lord – His nature, character, and works – we are to be glad and rejoice with all our heart. As I read these verses I do not see this as a private celebration. It appears to me that the rejoicing is very public and very loud. The oppression of the enemy is public. The effects and consequences of sin are public. The Redeemer went public. The price for sin was paid in public. The celebration of freedom should be public. Shout aloud for all to hear, O Children of God! Be glad and rejoice with all your heart.
While we rejoice here on earth, there is a reciprocal rejoicing taking place in heaven. It too is public, for all the angels and saints to hear. The Lord your God, the King of Israel, has taken great delight in you. He has brought peace to your life through His love. He is rejoicing over you with singing!
Imagine the scene around the throne. Let’s try to put the limitlessness of eternity into a human moment and imagine that God is doing one thing at a time instead of managing all things together at one time. He has just looked at your life right now. He sees the decision you are struggling with. He sees the pain you are experiencing. He sees the pride you take in who you are. He sees what you have accomplished. He sees every aspect of your life. But He looks beyond all of that, pushing it aside as unimportant and irrelevant to the one thing He wants to see – your heart. There, He sees Jesus your Savior and Lord, who by the power of the Holy Spirit has taken up residence in you for all eternity through your faith in His sacrifice on the cross. There, He sees your new name that He has given you, which has been written in the Lamb’s book of life. There, in your heart, He recognizes you as His child, and He begins to sing.
The attention of all of heaven is turned to the throne because God is singing. It’s a song of unrestricted joy. The song immediately stimulates participation in praise from all who hear it. The words of the verses are uniquely expressive of your life, but the chorus is identical to what is sung about all of us. In my imagination the chorus goes like this:
By my might I saved you
I have taken away your sin
The enemy’s been defeated
My life now dwells within
Your fear of harm is over
Rest quietly in my love
I delight in you with singing
Hear me rejoicing from above.
Every moment of every day, God is rejoicing over your life with singing. Stop and listen…can you hear the song? It’s important that you do, because His rejoicing is the source of our rejoicing. Join in the singing. Then the reciprocity of rejoicing will be underway – He is rejoicing over us, and we are rejoicing in Him.
Let your rejoicing be heard!