“The Lord your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”
Zephaniah 3:17 NKJV
Written by the minor prophet Zephaniah who prophesied during the reign of King Josiah, the Old Testament book of Zephaniah largely deals with judgment and the second coming. In fact Zephaniah mentions the “day of the Lord” more than any other Old Testament book. But all the prophesy of woe and destruction for the ungodly in the last days isn’t the only theme present in this otherwise short book. Starting in chapter 3:8, Zephaniah turns to encourage the faithful and speaks of God’s restoration of His people. As believers in Christ who was sent to reconcile us, this is the best news we could possibly hope for.
When I was young, one of my most vivid memories was my mother singing lullabies to get me to calm down. I can recount many songs she used to sing, but my favorite was, “Hush, Little Baby.” Her soothing voice still echoes in my head. Even more recently, my wife and I would sing the same song to all all three of our children when they were fussy and it brought back many memories of my own childhood. There’s just something about the voice of a parent that seems to calm a child down.
Every time I read this verse, I’m reminded that God the Father sings over His redeemed in the same way that we parents sing to our own children! He sings His lullaby of mercy and peace, comfort, quiet, and most importantly His salvation and reconciliation.
Whenever we are afraid, God is in our midst. When we need strength, God-the Mighty one will save. When we are stressed out, God will quiet us with His love. When we feel abandoned and unloved, God rejoices OVER us with His own lullaby.
I found this quote below to be immensely helpful in understanding the depth of God’s love for us. God loves His children more than anything else (even creation) and our only response is to obediently offer our sacrifice of praise to Him.
If God sings, shall not we sing? He did not sing when he made the world. No; he looked upon it, and simply said that it was good. The angels sang, the sons of God shouted for joy: creation was very wonderful to them, but it was not much to God, who could have made thousands of worlds by his mere will. Creation could not make him sing… When all was done, and the Lord saw what became of it in the salvation of his redeemed, then he rejoiced after a divine manner. (Spurgeon)
In closing here are a few questions to ponder:
What does His song sound like to you? Is it loud and authoritative? I’m sure it is; He is a Mighty Warrior and the One who literally spoke out of His mouth and creation of formed. However, more than likely, the Lord’s voice to us is that quiet lullaby that reminds us that he takes great delight in His people. He rejoices OVER us; He longs to commune WITH us. It baffles my mind, but I’m thankful for this assurance.