|Hearing the joyful sound|
''Blessed is the people who know the joyful sound, they shall walk Oh Lord in the light of thy countenance.’’ (Psalms 89:15).
The Bible records a silence of 400 years between the Old and the New Testament writings, Malachi being the last of the Old Testament and Matthew the first of the New.
This silence could either be explained as God’s refusal to speak or His people’s inability to hear His voice. I would like to hold on to the later because God’s mercies are daily renewed to bring man unto Himself.
In God’s seeming silence, it was possible He was speaking to certain individuals who were less prominent to be noted for their devotion to God. For at a point in Israel’s history, the Prophet Elijah thought he was the only one left of God’s devotees. However, God had to reveal to Elijah that He had 7,000 who have not traded their spiritual birth-right for the temporal rewards of idolatry. (1 Kings 18:22; 19:18).
Prolonged silences between God and man have a way of occurring, sadly to man’s detriment. A particular example besides the above is during that of the period of Eli the priest of Israel. God Almighty went silent on His people until the boy Samuel came onto the scene.
‘’And the child Samuel ministered unto the LORD before Eli. And the word of the LORD was precious in those days; there was no open vision.’’ (1 Samuel 3:1).’
In order to rectify or avoid such tragic occurrences, there is the need for a spiritual diagnosis. Using the above example in the days of Samuel, we see that the silence was due to spiritual decadence. Passion for God was non-existent. God’s people went through the motions. Rituals replaced relationship and that eventually led to spiritual deafness and insensitivity, numbing the people of God from hearing His voice. The consequence was spiritual apostasy - a hardening of the human heart and an entrance for the evil one. It meant inability to discern right from wrong nor to receive direction from our merciful God to help rectify their ways.
Having diagnosed the problem, we find a solution or preventative measures to stop the situation re-occurring. The Prophet Isaiah shows us the secret. He says ‘’The Lord GOD hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.’’ ( Isaiah 50:4.)
Intimacy and obedience is what we need to keep us passionate, hearing His voice – the joyful sound. The joyful sound comes to those who wait to listen to the Master and obey Him.
Child of God, seek his face today and listen out for the sound of His voice. It will surely bring a refreshing. Let us follow the psalmist's example – ‘’When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.’’ (Psalm 27:8).
The LORD bless you.