“He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” Zeph. 3:17
Have you ever thought about the emotional life of God? Certainly we are full of emotions, some good, and some not so good. At times our emotions get the better of us and cause us to do things we later regret. Other times our emotions run strong and it is an absolutely wonderful to experience.
But what about God? Some think of God as having a long white beard, dressed in white and perhaps a little stern. Someone to be afraid of or who is unapproachable.
In our verse today we have God described as delighting, loving, and singing! What a contrast to the common image of the divine, especially the singing idea. Where does that come from? Well, it was not humankind who invented music and harmony that delights the hearer.
It was God. He created the musical scale and the mathematics behind great music. He did it for our pleasure as well as His. “The aim and final end of all music should be none other than the glory of God and the refreshment of the soul.” —J.S. Bach
Bach was perhaps the greatest composer in the western world. He dedicated all his music to God. He knew his Bible and he knew that heaven is filled with glorious music. Who can listen to the majestic oratorio of Handel that we call The Messiah and not be profoundly moved by the magnificence of its parts? Did you know that some of the music composed on earth is sung in heaven? Rev. 15:3 speaks of it.
But imagine God singing and what causes Him to sing. We seem to have imagery here that is human rather than divine. How can God have human traits? We struggle to understand this. Is it just rhetoric, a way of describing God, that cannot be really true?
Well, to understand the emotional life of God we must look at Jesus. He tells us that if we see Him we see the Father. In John 15:11 Jesus speaks of His joy and how we can have it ourselves. In Matt. 3:17 we read of God the Father having pleasure in Jesus, and calling Jesus His beloved Son. Well, the love the Father has for Jesus is the same love the Father has for Jesus’ followers. In John 17:23 Jesus speaks of the Father loving us with the same love that He has for Jesus.
This is indeed a staggering thing. To think that we are as loved by the Father as Jesus is.
Dear, so dear am I to God,
Dearer I cannot be;
The love wherewith He loved His Son,
Such is His love for me
How can God then suppress His love for us when He loves Jesus’ people as much as He loves Jesus His own Son? Find comfort today in the midst of your struggles in the thought of how precious you are to God because you believe in His Son the Resurrected One. You bring joy and delight to the heart of God no matter what the world thinks of you.