He Will Delight…

In Zephaniah 3:16-17 we read, “On that day, it will be said to Jerusalem, ‘Have no fear, O Zion, do not let your hands fall limp. The Lord your God is in your midst – a mighty Savior! He will delight over you with joy. He will quiet you with His love. He will dance for joy over you with singing.’” And in Psalm 66:4 we read, “All the earth bows down to You, and sings praises to You. All sing praises to Your Name. Selah”

The Lord spoke to Moses on Sinai in much the same way that He did with the apostle John on Patmos regarding history future, the Lord takes Moses to history past. As John observed what would happen in the unfolding of time, Moses looked back to the beginning of time, and the beginning of a song: a song that is still being sung today.

Genesis chapter 1 is Hebrew poetry; specifically, it’s a song. We have the beginning of each verse, “and God said,” and we have the refrain, “there was evening and morning…” The song begins by telling us that “in the beginning” God created life from nothing (Gen. 1:1; cf. Heb. 11:3). The Holy Spirit fluttered like a dove over the still void and empty nest (Gen. 1:2); and God began to speak, by His Word, what was conceived in His mind.

The Word would speak, and because He has agency/authority (John 1:1-5), as He spoke the Holy Spirit fluttered – knit – the matter (devar/word) together.

Within the Godhead, the Father, Son and Spirit sang to, delighted in. and loved each other as community; and as creation was ordered in community, the Lord delighted in it, and He saw that it was good. With each new day the Lord was speaking community among different kinds into being, delighting in the relationship of that community.

Finally on the sixth day, the Lord, by consultation within the Godhead, created man (Adam) in their image and likeness (Gen. 1:26), to be His image bearer in creation, and experience community with Him and human kind (Gen. 3). He delighted in our formation. He delighted in the work of His hands in forming Adam, but was heart broken by sin.

Why are we so moved by the sight and sound of nature? While I love cities and towns, and all they have to offer, I am most at peace and inspired in nature, exactly where this thought was conceived. We are so moved because nature is still singing its praise to the Lord, as noted above. We are drawn to it, not just on a level of heart and mind, but of soul, the very formation of who we are.

Yet, we are locked out of the fullness of that song in the natural man – of the creational chorus singing praises to the Lord. The song of creation is praising God, and saying “Our God delights in us!” But the natural man cannot sing this. Why? (Ro. 8:5-8).

The Gospel of John echoes the gospel of Genesis, “In the beginning was the Word. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. All things were made through Him, and apart from Him nothing was made that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overpowered it” (Jn. 1:1-5).

The Word of God – the Son – took on the matter that came to be through Him (Col. 1:16), and he became flesh, the final Adam (I Cor. 15:45). He enfleshed all the types in history past that Moses was shown on Sinai recorded in the Torah; as Messiah said, “He wrote of me” (Jn. 5:46-47). With His advent, Heaven delighted over Him, the Father delighted over Him, and creation obeyed Him; but fallen man denied him, rejected Him and buried Him.

This was the deconstruction of Messiah Yeshua/Jesus. When Messiah was nailed to the Cross, He, as the Word spoke, but nothing happened: “My God, My God!” No answer from the Father or Spirit for the first time in eternity. On the Cross He was made void, and He was emptied. He sought the Presence of God, but the Holy Spirit did not flutter over Him, as He did at His baptism (Matt. 3:16).

Yeshua, the Word of God, had to be deconstructed so that we could be reconstructed (II Cor. 5:21). In Him you have, or you can be, been reconstructed, born-again, and the Lord will sing over you, as Zephaniah wrote, and He sings “Tov Ma’od!” “Very Good.” Then, as the Lord delights in our recreation, we praise Him.

The ache of our heart is to hear from our Father “very good, I delight in you my child.” Until we hear that, we are void and empty, but He reformed us, though His Son, Yeshua; and He, the Word made flesh, speaks into that void and fills it up: “I came that they may have life and life abundant!” (Jn. 10:10).

When Messiah was deconstructed to open the way for our reconstruction, He did so for us to enter into the community of creation praising the Lord, as we can now cry out, “Our Father delights in us, He loves us!”

My friends, remember the words of the prophet when you are feeling down and out, overcome and undone, “He will dance for joy over you with singing,” as He delights in His Son and us, the Bride.

Be well. Shalom.

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