Some say they have never heard him sing, while others shake their head and walk away. Do we take time to listen for the soloist? A trained ear will hear him. Let us look for him.
Haggai was the Lord’s messenger and his message to the people of his day was “…I am with you, saith the Lord.” Haggai 1:13, KJV He is with us, it’s true. I saw him one day as a child wept as she recited John 3:16. It wasn’t fear but God moving her one step closer to him.
Special services make it easy to feel God’s presence and for the Christian whose life has been freed of sin, there is a rush of joy wanting to express gratitude to God for taking away the trouble in their heart. The world cannot understand the concept that what makes one holy also makes one happy.
Did you ever wonder if God has moments when he can’t contain his happiness for those who trust him and come to him through his son Jesus Christ? Zephaniah gives us the answer.
“He will rejoice over you with great gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will exult over you by singing a happy song.” Zephaniah 3:17 NLT
Who would have thought that God can be so overjoyed that he bursts into song? The scripture may be speaking about his people Israel, its conversion and restoration and the glorious times which are to follow, but in essence, it is talking about accepting Jesus Christ as Lord.
A shepherd rejoices over finding a lost sheep and a woman rejoices at finding her lost coin, so to, all heaven rejoices over a repentant sinner (Luke 15:10). This is, if we so must rate it, the ordinary joy of heaven. But Zephaniah steps it up to the next level and wants us to know that God becomes involved too. The conversion of the Jews is a subject of peculiar delight and exultation to God himself!
He will save; he will be Jesus; he will answer the name, for he will save his people from their sins. Prior to this, their life is a shadow.
In the original language God is referred to as Yehovah Eloheycha, "The self- existent and eternal Being, who is in covenant with you." What a covenant it is!
No song of lament here, only overflowing pleasure in people finding out who God is. Is it any wonder that as we read scripture and understand its meaning that our enjoyment of God should increase? I am amazed and humbled to know that God actually sings about me.
Lost people returning home mean everything to God and nothing tells it better than the parable of the Prodigal Son and the young man who showed arrogant disregard for his father’s authority as head of the family.
After all the mess the young man’s life culminates, we see his father running to him full of love and compassion. God’s love is constant, patient and welcoming. What did it take to bring you to your senses that you were in need of a Savior? Or what will it take? The son in this story was as lost as the coin and the sheep in the other two parables, but now God puts flesh on the “lost” of mankind.
We want to exclude people who aren’t clean, let someone else take care of the castoffs of society. They deserve what they get. That’s where this guy’s brother was at. Like the older son, it may be a case that you never traveled down a path away from God and don’t see the need to rejoice when a scumbag comes home.
God’s people must not stand aside and above, but must join in heaven’s celebration when those who were lost have been found.
When you read from the gospel of Luke, pay attention to the part about the shepherds, it’s just not a good read, its there for a reason. Shepherds were not allowed in the city. They were outcasts of their day. Many were thieves and untrustworthy. Jesus would come, not to the proud and powerful, but to the outcasts, the humble, those considered “last” on the social lists. It was to these men God brought the first news of his Son’s arrival.
Listen to the music everywhere, the sounds of great joy! Never tire of all the renditions proclaiming the birth of the Savior of the world. When all is silent, listen for the soloist. Do you hear what I hear? A God, a God so full of glory and grace who sings because another one of his children has come home. Was it you?