Zeph. 3:14 Sing, O daughter of Zion!
Shout, O Israel!
Be glad and rejoice with all your heart,
O daughter of Jerusalem!
Singing and dancing in a religious gathering; to some that just seems too weird. They can dance at the club, they can do their moves at the wedding celebration, they may even do the victory dance at a football game, but at church?! You can’t be serious!!! Actually, dancing is one of the most spiritual things you can do. It is a display of emotion with your whole body, at the end of the day our strongest feelings go out to our first love. That is exactly the place the Lord wants in all of our lives.
I think of the very first tent meeting we did when we were starting Victory fellowship in New Orleans. Saturday night before we started I was at the church praying and seeking God for the services when this message came to me out of Zephaniah. It was a message about extreme joy, the kind of joy that gets your whole body involved, the kind of joy that causes your feet to get involved in the celebration. Today’s verse was the scripture reference and my message was about reasons to rejoice. In the passage in lists several reasons to dance for joy: 1. the Lord has taken away our judgements. 2. He has cast our our enemies. 3. The Lord is in our midst. 4. We will see disaster no more. We had a great week of meetings and I think there may have been some dancing for joy. Here is a Dick Mills word study on spiritual joy.
“3:18 joy, gil: To joy, rejoice, be glad, be joyful. Gil contains the suggestion of “dancing for joy,” or “leaping for joy,” since the verb originally meant “to spin around with intense motion.” This lays to rest the notion that the biblical concept of joy is only “a quiet, inner sense of well-being.” God dances for joy over Jerusalem and because of His people (Is. 65:19; Zeph. 3:17). The righteous Messiah shall rejoice in God’s salvation with an intensity that the psalmist cannot find words to describe (Ps. 21:1). In turn, His redeemed citizens are joyful in their King; they praise Him with dances, with instruments, and with singing (Ps. 149:2, 3). Although everything is wrong in Habakkuk’s external world, he is leaping for joy over his fellowship with Yahweh.”
So come on, lighten up a little. Put on those dancing shoes. It’s time to rejoice in the Lord.