The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing. Zephaniah 3:17 NIV
Please take a moment of your time to think deeply about this verse. The Lord rejoices over us. Notice which words are not used. God did not appreciate or like. This is a much stronger word. We are a cause for the Almighty God to rejoice. And even more unbelievable, the Creator sings over us. Take another moment. The Mighty Warrior expresses joy because of His people.
Music has such an incredible effect on people. Albert Einstein declared, “If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music.” The great American poet, Maya Angelou wrote, ““Music was my refuge. I could crawl into the space between the notes and curl my back to loneliness.”
Researchers have found numerous health benefits to music. Music can meaningfully reduce the perceived intensity of pain. It can improve both biking and running performance. Listening to classical music has been shown to effectively treat insomnia in college students, making it a safe, cheap alternative to sleep-inducing meds. Listening may reduce stress, help relieve depression, and improve cognitive performance.
We also read that the Mighty Warrior saves us. Originally written to Israel, we know that Yahweh included us in His plan of salvation by sending His Son.
We have to always consider verses in context and think about the audience and the writer. God’s singing parallels the singing of His chosen people in Jerusalem.
Sing, Daughter Zion; shout aloud, Israel! Be glad and rejoice with all your heart, Daughter Jerusalem! Zephaniah 3:14 NIV
The people of Jerusalem worship God in song and then the Lord sings over His people. The Great I Am rejoices with His people, and the Father loves when His children praise Him.
In Psalm 150 the Israelites praised the Lord in a variety of ways with diverse musical instruments. There is no one right way to praise God and no one single correct worship style. The people didn’t have pianos, organs, guitars, keyboards, or drums. Any instrument can be used for the worship of God. People praise God with different instruments and languages throughout the world. The main focus in a service is not the music or the sermon. The most vital aspect of a service is that we are encountering the Lord. The heart of worship, the heart of life, is to love God and to love people.
Not only was music an integral aspect of ancient Israel’s worship, spirit-filled Christians worshiped the Almighty with song.
18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, 20 always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 5:18-20NIV
And in eternity there will be a concert because we and the angels will adore and worship the Lord. Music is vital to our relationship with God. Worship is our response to the Trinity, the Godhead. We also proclaim the mighty deeds done by the Lord.
Prayer: Mighty Warrior, thank you for rejoicing over people. We love because you first loved us. We have the blessing of music and are privileged to worship you. We are grateful that you have performed mighty deeds and the Holy Spirit lives in us. Amen.