1 Chronicles 16:31-33
Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
let them say among the nations, “The Lord reigns!”
32 Let the sea resound, and all that is in it;
let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them!
33 Let the trees of the forest sing,
let them sing for joy before the Lord,
for he comes to judge the earth.
As we continue in our series in the Psalms, I’m reminded of a simple question my inner child has of the Scripture and of God. “Why does creation sing to God?”
God’s creation is an expression of God Himself. In creation, God’s attributes and character are expressed in this way and thus praise Him because God is their sustainer and their creator, the one who gave them life and continues to give them life. Their singing is a response to what God has done for them already.
As creation sings, it is convicting of us as we are also His creation. We as people are created in God’s image, the sacred imago dei, reflecting much more closely God’s character and attributes. We are created like Him, not just in how we look physically, but also in having the ability to create. As God creates, so we are also creators. We do not create in the same way as God Himself out of nothingness, but we mold and cultivate His work. In this, we exercise our will and our creativity to reflect His character through our mind, soul, heart, and strength. This is what it means to embrace and obey the great commandment to Love the Lord our God. The New Testament story of people who are God’s people praising God, but yet rebuked by the Pharisees, only to be rebuked by Jesus Himself, refers to this sense that creation, His people cannot help but praise God for who He is.
38 “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”
39 Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples!”
40 “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.”
This is why singing is so important. Singing is not to be simply an act or a task that we do, but rather is rooted in creation itself. It is an affirmation and confirmation that we acknowledge the Lord in who He is. It is instruments being played rightly. As the cherubim sing to the Lord, and all of Heaven does the same, we as His creation, in recognizing God as supreme and worthy, sing. Creation sings because they acknowledge His sovereignty and His control and providence in life. As His created beings with free will, we do so willingly, by choice to do the same. It’s not enough for God to have people with dour expressions singing out of obligation, but it is an opportunity that God invites us into, to willingly sing, to joyfully sing, to acknowledge and declare that He is our God.
May your times as you meditate throughout this week, be filled with singing. Sometimes struggling, but still joyful. Sometimes tired, but not overcome, with an ever growing trust in the Lord. Acknowledging that no matter the circumstance, good or bad, He is still our God, and we are made in His image.