I can still hear the echo from the refrain of this triumphant Christmas carol, "Joy to the World," "Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy…" Why do so many of the carols and the old hymns that we dearly love to sing repeat their refrains over and over again?
I believe that God designed music to be that way because that is how He designed much of life. We need to be continually reminded of the joy; of His love and compassion.
The seasons, take their turn flowing one into another, and yet they are back again the following year.
The moon goes through eight phases every month, only to repeat itself again and yet again.
The tides of the ocean take their cues from the moon; and while there are many different kinds of tides, they repeat with the cycle of the moon.
God has set things up in life so that we will remember, remember Him and remember one another. That is why I believe we have birthday's, (personal birthday's as well as the birthday of our great nation) anniversaries, and holidays--so that we will always remember the significance of what has been given to us.
It started with all of those memorials of long ago that God gave the Israelites, so that they too would remember. These memorials were not just an everlasting promise for the Jewish people though, but to us Gentile believers as well. In Romans 2:28 -29, God explains that true circumcision is of the heart... We all share in the promises of the Abrahamic covenant when we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Will we listen to the Lord Jesus personally, calling each one of us, so that we can eternally share Life's joys with Him?
Galations 3:14-18, as well as verses 28 and 29 of the same chapter, speak to the fact that the Abrahamic Covenant is eternal, and one that was created for both Jew and Gentile to share in, in remembrance of Him.
Sadly, most if not all, of these memorials that God gave the Jewish people to remember,(and the rest of us as well), aren't observed by most Christians today.
There is so much richness to behold, like the unleavened bread with which Passover is celebrated. It signifies His death by the holes embedded into its very tapestry. This is a picture of our Lord's piercings. While in between the holes on the matzo, there are the stripes, by which we are reminded of the beatings He endured for our sake. God iniates these special feast days like Passover; Hanukkah; and the feast of Purim.
Purim is a very special feast day that commemorates how God spared the lives of the Israelites in the book of Esther. An edict had been signed by the king due to the trickery of his right hand man, Haman, who wanted to see the Jews annihilated. This has been happening ever since the days of King Herod...
It is especially important to remember that He never revoked their remembrance. He desires us to partake in these celebrations, to remember His love for us all, displayed by these wondrous miracles. He wants us to remember for His glory; His divine grace, His love, and compassion.
Picture life without birthdays to celebrate, no Christmases or Valentine's Days, never an anniversary to toast, or the colorful sparks of the 4th of July to be exhilarated by. Most importantly though, we'd have no Resurrection Day to remember the joys we've been given as believers.
Every time we relive a memory, we are choosing to remember. How much better it is for us to renew our minds, and not repeat the drudgery of the past by thinking on,"…Whatever is pure, whatever is lovely…" as we're encouraged to do in Philippians 4:8. Let us all repeat His sounding joy!
Author's note: The Holman Christian Standard Bible was my text for all scripture references. The song "Joy to the World" which contains the refrain "Repeat the sounding joy…" Lyrics by: Isaac Watts
Melody by: Lowell Mason
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