“The Lord your God is in the midst of you, a Mighty One, a Savior (Who saves)! He will rejoice over you with joy; He will rest (in silent satisfaction) and in His love he will be silent and make no mention (of past sins or even recall them); He will exult over you with singing” (Zephaniah 3:17, AMP).
Zephaniah and Jeremiah began in the same year. Both prophesied during the reign of Josiah. Hezekiah had been succeeded by his son Manasseh. What followed was fifty-five years of some of the darkest history of Judah, followed by two more years of dark history by Manasseh’s son Ammon. After Ammon’s death, Josiah took the throne at age eight. Things in Judah were not good when Zephaniah prophesied. Moral corruption was widespread; luxury and extravagance were everywhere. What was offered to Jehovah was little more than idolatry. In the midst of all the judgment that Zephaniah gives he now comes to say how God feels about His people when they return.
Notice first, “The Lord God is in the midst of you, a mighty one who saves.” God now reigns as their king. Their salvation is assured. What a comfort! How encouraging. They had come from judgment, now to salvation. Zephaniah says the enemy has been cast out and judgment taken away and the people rejoice (3:14-17). Why did they rejoice? God saves. Can we not see the great joy of our salvation? Can we not see that we being captive to the evil one, have been redeemed by A Mighty Savior? Can we not see that when He redeems us he is in our midst? He is with us! The evil one is cast out. He is defeated. By Whom? A Mighty One, A Savior! That should give us great faith and great courage.
Second, notice how God feels about His redeemed, “He will rejoice over you with joy; He will rest (in silent satisfaction) and in His love he will be silent and make no mention (of past sins or even recall them)…” God rejoices over you with joy! He rests in silent satisfaction. When you know you have done something well, you breathe a deep sigh of great satisfaction. Picture God looking at His redeemed with great joy and taking a deep breath and giving a great sigh of satisfaction over you. He rests in the silence of His love and makes no mention of past sins. We might mention them and others may never let us forget them but He doesn’t even mention them. He has forgiven them to the uttermost. How does that make you feel as His child?
Third, “He will exult over you with singing.” Awesome! God rests in the silence of His love, with deep satisfaction over you and He exults with singing. The word “exult” means God jumps up and down with excitement and sings. This expresses the love, esteem and value God has of His children. Think about it! You! You! His children! God jumps up and down and sings because you are His. What a picture! The next time you think about how hard it is to live righteously remember how God views you.
Any time one is saved it is by the “Mighty One, A Savior, the Lord is with you.” When God saves you, He rests in silent satisfaction and silent joy. He makes no mention of the sins that led you away from Him; He jumps up and down with joy, singing about you, His child. That will lift you up!
By Rickie Jenkins