“Sing, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel; be glad and rejoice with all the heart…the king of Israel, even the LORD, is in the midst of thee…The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; He will save, He will rejoice over thee with joy; He will rest in His love, He will joy over thee with singing” (Zeph. 3:14-17).
The majority of the book of Zephaniah rumbles with judgment and doom, but it culminates with joy and deliverance. The prophecy builds to a crescendo at the end, as within the kingdom of heaven on the earth there will be cause for great joy. The reason for their joy is that “the King of Israel, even the Lord” is in Israel’s midst. Christ’s personal presence among Israel in the kingdom on earth, reigning over them as her King, will be the cause for their greatest joy. Because of this, Israel is told to sing, shout, be glad and rejoice with all her heart.
Paul tells the Church, the Body of Christ to “Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice” (Phil. 4:4). The Lord is the reason for our joy and gladness. We too sing because of the Lord. Colossians 3:16 tells us to be “singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” We sing to the Lord out of our joy because of Him and all He has done for us.
Within the kingdom on earth, Israel is told also that the Lord will rejoice over them. “He will rest in His love,” speaks of a still, silent joy by the Lord for Israel, but then He will break the silence with singing in His joy over His people!
The Lord loves us, the Body of Christ, just as much as He loves Israel. Out of His infinite love for you and me, He rejoices over us also with a joy so strong that it would cause Him to sing over us. It reminds us how the love of Christ “passeth knowledge” (Eph. 3:19). The Lord loves us so deeply that He willingly gave His life on the Cross for our sins. When we place our faith in Christ and that He died for us and rose again, we are saved, and we rejoice in the Lord always who fully purchased our salvation. But our Savior also rejoices over us that we belong to Him eternally. The voice of God that created all things, stilled the storm, and will raise the dead at the Rapture; that voice sings over His deep joy for His redeemed. One day in glory we will hear the God who sings.
To the Reader:
Some of our Two Minutes articles were written many years ago by Pastor C. R. Stam for publication in newspapers. When many of these articles were later compiled in book form, Pastor Stam wrote this word of explanation in the Preface:
"It should be borne in mind that the newspaper column, Two Minutes With the Bible, has now been published for many years, so that local, national and international events are discussed as if they occurred only recently. Rather than rewrite or date such articles, we have left them just as they were when first published. This, we felt, would add to the interest, especially since our readers understand that they first appeared as newspaper articles."
To this we would add that the same is true for the articles written by others that we continue to add, on a regular basis, to the Two Minutes library. We hope that you'll agree that while some of the references in these articles are dated, the spiritual truths taught therein are timeless.