Joy for All People

Bible:

Ascribe to the Lord, O families of the peoples,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength!
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
bring an offering, and come into his courts!
Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness;
tremble before him, all the earth!

Say among the nations, “The Lord reigns!
Yes, the world is established; it shall never be moved;
he will judge the peoples with equity.”

Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice;
let the sea roar, and all that fills it;
let the field exult, and everything in it!
Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy
before the Lord, for he comes,
for he comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness,
and the peoples in his faithfulness. Psalm 96:7-13 ESV

I saw in the night visions,

and behold, with the clouds of heaven
there came one like a son of man,
and he came to the Ancient of Days
and was presented before him.
And to him was given dominion
and glory and a kingdom,
that all peoples, nations, and languages
should serve him;
his dominion is an everlasting dominion,
which shall not pass away,
and his kingdom one
that shall not be destroyed. Daniel 7:13-14 ESV

Reflection:

It was almost Cindy’s birthday, and her parents wanted to give her a birthday party. They asked her what kind of party she wanted. She could have a small party with just a few of her best friends, or she could have a big party at the park and invite everyone in her class, all the kids in her neighborhood, and anyone who wanted to come. Cindy thought about it for awhile, and she decided to have the big party. Everyone could play in the park and there would be a picnic lunch and some cake for everybody. It would be more fun, and she wouldn’t have to worry about anyone feeling left out. Even the kids she didn’t know very well could come and enjoy themselves at her birthday party.

Sometimes we only want to have people we really like come and be with us and celebrate special times with us. But Psalm 96 talks about a big celebration where people from all over the world are included. This psalm first talked about how there is only one God, and the gods other people worship aren’t true and can’t help them. Now it invites all nations and families of people to come and join God’s people in worshiping the true God. When people from all over the world come to join in praising God, it’s a time of great joy. This psalm gives a picture of so much joy that even sea is roaring with happiness, the fields of grass and flowers are rejoicing, and the trees of the forest are singing.

There is only one way for people all over the world to come to God, and that is through Jesus. Jesus came to us as a man, but after he died to pay for our sins he rose again and returned to heaven to rule with his Heavenly Father. Jesus wants people all over the world to be part of his kingdom, and invites and welcomes everyone. The kingdom of Jesus is one of great joy, and the joy is multiplied when we see all kinds of people come to know his love. The best part is, his kingdom will last forever!

Prayer:

Dear Jesus, thank you for bringing us into your kingdom. Please bring more people from all over the world to join in our happiness. Amen.

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