Weekly, God’s people are to gather together and sing his praises. Psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs are utilized to encourage adoration, confession, thanksgiving, supplication, education, memorization, and spiritual recommitment. Faithful worshipers see God as the audience and the congregation as the performing choir, and with excellence and passion much is to be made of God’s name, character, glory and pleasure. From the beginning, proper worship has included instruments, solos, choirs, and congregational songs. Therefore, it is nothing new to hear Zephaniah encouraging God’s people to make much of their Lord through song:
Sing aloud, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel! Rejoice and exult with all your heart, O daughter of Jerusalem! The Lord has taken away the judgments against you; he has cleared away your enemies. The King of Israel, the Lord, is in your midst; you shall never again fear evil. (Zephaniah 3:14-15)
God is honored by singing. God is honored by shouting. God loves to see his people rejoicing and exulting with all their heart. And how does he respond to the harmonic adoration of his people? He too joins in with songs of love and affection, and the focus of his love songs are his radiant bride:
On that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: “Fear not, O Zion; let not your hands grow weak. The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing. (Zephaniah 3:16-17)
Oh how the Savior loves his bride! He chooses us and writes our name in his special book. He dies for us. He preaches to us. He calls, courts and convinces us. He justifies us. He fills us with his Spirit and begins the lifelong process of conforming us to his image. And while, from the throne above, he prays and intercedes for us, he also exults over us with singing — loudly!
Therefore friends, do we see how God’s work of salvation results in a musical love-fest between Jesus Christ and his church? So let us rest in his work, rejoice in his salvation, and respond with doctrinally correct, holy and reverential, excellent and beautiful, passionate and loud singing. Let’s practice every day this week. Don’t waste your drive or your hot water — turn your car and your shower into a musical sanctuary. Each day this week, give him the praise and adoration he deserves, and then on Sunday when we gather together as God’s holy family, we will be well-prepared to lift our voices with our brothers and sisters and sing excellently to him who eternally sings over us.
Today, he sings over us. Muse on that truth for a while, and then make music to your Savior.