Our God reigns

How lovely on the mountains are the feet of Him
Who brings good news, good news
Proclaiming peace, announcing news of happiness
Our God reigns, our God reigns

Our God reigns, our God reigns
Our God reigns, our God reigns

You watchmen lift your voices joyfully as one
Shout for your King, your King
See eye to eye the Lord restoring Zion
Your God reigns, your God reigns!

Waste places of Jerusalem break forth with joy
We are redeemed, redeemed
The Lord has saved and comforted His people
Your God reigns, your God reigns!

Ends of the earth, see the salvation of your God
Jesus is Lord, is Lord
Before the nations He has bared His holy arm
Your God reigns, your God reigns!

Anyone remember this song? It isn’t that long since we last sang it at our church. Search it up on Youtube if you need a reminder. It’s weird, I remember it as being totally rousing – but all I really remember is the chorus. Our God reigns. Yes, I can sing that loud and with conviction. I can relate to that. But the words of the rest of it? Watchmen and Zion and waste places of Jerusalem…hard to see what that has to do with me.

These words have everything to do with the world of Nahum, a world in which Zion has been devastated, Jerusalem laid waste, where God’s people are in desperate need of saving and comfort. The surrounding nations have been exploiting them and treating them with disdain and cruelty for years.

This is a song to rally God’s people – these people who have been watching and waiting and hoping for God to act for years. They’re desperately in need of good news.

How lovely on the mountains are the feet of Him
Who brings good news, good news

We’ve heard these words before in the book of Isaiah –

How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!’   Isaiah 52:7

And here in the book of Nahum, we hear them again –

Look, there on the mountains,
the feet of one who brings good news,
who proclaims peace!  Nahum 1:15

Nahum has good news to bring. The very specific enemy of God’s people is to be punished by God Himself. How long have God’s mistreated people waited to hear this good news!

Whatever they plot against the Lord
he will bring to an end. Nahum 1:9

They will be consumed like dry stubble. Nahum 1:10

Although they have allies and are numerous,
they will be destroyed and pass away. Nahum 1:12

Speaking directly to Nineveh, God has these words to say –

You will have no descendants to bear your name.
I will destroy the images and idols
that are in the temple of your gods.
I will prepare your grave,
for you are vile.  Nahum 1:14

And this is what He has to say to His people –

Now I will break their yoke from your neck
and tear your shackles away.  Nahum 1:13

God is coming to free His people. He will save them; He will comfort them; He will liberate them from all that is holding them back.

The people have no idea when and how this deliverance will take place. But this is God’s promise and God is faithful and God will not let them down. So even in the midst of oppression and suffering, the people can cling to this good news of peace and happiness. The victory will be God’s, of that there is no doubt.

Nahum encourages the people to praise God as if this deliverance has already taken place – to worship God in gratitude for what He is going to do as if He has already done it. That takes some faith, that’s for sure. To believe in that which has not yet happened.

We are called to do the same. Whatever oppression we are facing in our own lives – in our country, our home, our workplace, our school, our church… – we are called to believe in the good news of God, that He will set us free and rescue us. He will liberate us from all that is ensnaring us – that may be physical or mental or emotional.

So whilst the ancient context of that modern song (fairly modern!) is alien to me, the yearning and hope and desire are not. That yearning to see peace and happiness in my own life. That longing for restoration of self and relationships. That desire for joy, that hope of comfort. That hunger for God’s salvation and deliverance and liberation.

I may not be feeling that right now. In fact, I’m not. I know I’m not. But the God in whom I am placing my hope and faith is faithful. He will not let me down. He will do all that He has said. I don’t know when or how. Some of the situations – internal and external – that I find myself in feel pretty impossible to break free from. But this is God we’re talking about. Nothing is impossible with God.

Our God reigns.

Do you hear that?

Our God reigns.

This is the hope to cling to today, the promise to claim.

This is the truth.

Our God reigns.

Full stop.



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