27 Now at the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem they sought out the Levites in all their places, to bring them to Jerusalem to celebrate the dedication with gladness, both with thanksgivings and singing, with cymbals and stringed instruments and harps.
31 So I brought the leaders of Judah up on the wall, and appointed two large thanksgiving choirs. One went to the right hand on the wall toward the Refuse Gate.
42 The singers sang loudly with Jezrahiah the director.
43 Also that day they offered great sacrifices, and rejoiced, for God had made them rejoice with great joy; the women and the children also rejoiced, so that the joy of Jerusalem was heard afar off.
I hope you can follow through the thoughts of these verses. They are not in sequence as there are lists of people who were involved in this great dedication celebration. However, I want you to see that when people dedicate themselves to God, to His word and to the worship of His name that there is great joy.
Imagine a city with a choir so big that it can be split in half and put on corresponding walls. Imagine this choir singing praises to God together, rejoicing in unisons and harmonies to Him, and the joy of the singing was so loud that it was heard miles away. This joy this day was not because their city team won the championship but because their God had worked in them and through them and they were committing themselves and their lives to Him.
There have been times in my life when I have been in the presence of great joy. These were times when the people of God were unified in purpose and goal and gave of themselves totally to accomplish God’s purposes. In fact, as I read these verses this morning my first thoughts of great joy were last night. When we had our VBS wrap up and saw what God had done through our efforts dedicated to Him there was great rejoicing. When we realized that we had 67 children come last night there was great rejoicing. When we saw God turn dark skies clear just in time we rejoiced. When we knew that all of these children heard the gospel of God, salvation through Jesus Christ, we rejoiced. When we met many parents who came for the first time and were thrilled to see our excitement for the Lord and for their kids for Christ, we were thrilled with great joy.
For all of you who cannot come but are praying for VBS, rejoice with us.
We still have three more nights of VBS. Tonight Ben will be presenting the Helmet of Salvation. Pray for children who have heard about their need of salvation to come to faith in Him tonight. Pray for parents to come to love our church and want to come with their families to our Sunday service. God, through His Holy Spirit, is doing His work and we are rejoicing with great joy already.
Have a great day in the Lord, PS