The Verse of the Day for May 16, 2016 is taken from Zephaniah 3:17 in the Amplified Bible:
The Lord your God is in your midst, A Warrior who saves. He will rejoice over you with joy; He will be quiet in His love [making no mention of your past sins], He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.
Throughout the Old Testament, God speaks of taking delight or finding pleasure in His people. God reminds Israel of His of ultimate desire that they abound in His goodness and know that He will rejoice over them:
Deuteronomy 30:9 (AMP)
Then the Lord your God shall make you abundantly prosperous in everything that you do, in the offspring of your body and in the offspring of your cattle and in the produce of your land; for the Lord will again delight over you for good, just as He delighted over your fathers,
The Expanded Bible says it this way:
The Lord your God will make you ·successful [prosperous] in ·everything you do [ all the work of your hands]. ·You will have many children, your cattle will have many calves, and your fields will produce good crops […in the fruit of your womb, in the fruit of your livestock, and in the fruit of your land], because the Lord will again be ·happy [pleased; delighted] with you, just as he was with your ·ancestors [fathers].
God expresses his desire that His people to be redeemed and restored, as Isaiah 62 speaks of God’s covenant with His people. Though Israel is in captivity at the time of the writing of this passage, God promises to keep speaking and working until His purposes for Jerusalem are fulfilled. Jehovah speaks favorably of His people in a most endearing manner in Isaiah 62:4-5 (AMP)
It will no longer be said of you [Judah], “Azubah (Abandoned),”
Nor will it any longer be said of your land, “Shemamah (Desolate)”;
But you will be called, “Hephzibah (My Delight is in Her),”
And your land, “Married”;
For the Lord delights in you,
And to Him your land will be married [owned and protected by the Lord].
For as a young man marries a virgin [O Jerusalem],
So your sons will marry you;
And as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride,
So your God will rejoice over you.
Isaiah 65:19 in the Wycliffe Bible expresses a similar affection for Jerusalem:
And I shall make full out joying in Jerusalem, and I shall have joy in my people (Yea, I shall rejoice over Jerusalem, and I shall have joy over my people); and the voice of weeping and the voice of cry shall no more be heard therein.
Jeremiah 32:41-42 in the Wycliffe Bible reiterates this same message of God’s delight in His people:
41 And I shall be glad on them, when I shall do well to them; and I shall plant them in this land in truth, in all mine heart, and in all my soul. (And I shall be happy over them, when I shall do good things for them; and truly, with all my heart, and with all my soul, I shall plant them in this land.)
42 For the Lord saith these things, As I brought on this people all this great evil, so I shall bring on them all the good (things), which I shall speak to them (that I have promised them).
Not only does God express His delight and take pleasure in His people in Zephaniah 3: 17 but elsewhere in the Old Testament as well.
The Verse of the Day blog entry posted a year ago included this original poem:
Song of the Lord
The Lord your God in your midst;
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness;
He will quiet you with His love;
He will rejoice over you with singing.
Zephaniah 3:17 (NKJV)
Be well assured that the Lord, your God, in your midst is mighty;
He has always been there, even in times when you could not see.
His strength never fails—His love prevails through all eternity.
Have no fear, only persevere. Rest in Him, for He will save.
To know the fullness of His great love, look at all that He gave.
Now you are free, released you from every snare that seeks to enslave.
Know your triumphant end; He will rejoice over you with joy.
Your gracious Father has given all things richly to enjoy.
Recall the Word of Life planted in your heart as a young boy.
He will complete what He began, and you will rest in His love.
Cast off all your cares and set your affection on things above,
He is able to do above all that you can ask or think of.
Weep no more, but know that He will joy over you with singing.
Celebrate a bountiful harvest with sheaves you are bringing.
Drink from the fountain where unspeakable joy is springing.
Listen to the Song of the Lord. . .
We close with a song inspired by Zephaniah 3:17: