What is HIS joy? And what does it mean for it to be my strength? This scripture is often quoted and just as often misunderstood! The people of Israel had just come back from exile in Babylon and they were unschooled in the Law of the LORD. Ezra, the priest, stood in the presence of all those returning and read the law from daybreak until noon. And they began to weep for they knew how far they had fallen from the holiness of God!
But Nehemiah told the people not to grieve for this day they understood their need for God’s holiness, and they were moved by it! This was a joyous thing! And believe me, the LORD was more joyful about this fact than anyone!!! (And He still is, I might add.)
What is the LORD’s joy? The joy set before Christ that gave Him the will to endure the cross? It is none other than redeemed souls for His purposes and glory! And yes, that is strengthening! Why? Because he rejoices over me already, I don’t worry about pleasing Him. All I have to do is respond! And that is freeing.
Celebrate TODAY and be strengthened TODAY, for he rejoices over you with singing and takes great delight in you, my friend! (Zephaniah 3:17)