The song ‘The Lord of the Dance’ was Mark’s inspiration for the family service last night. The song talks about Jesus being the Lord of the Dance: Lord at creation, bringing hope and joy and life to all when on earth and Lord even through death and resurrection. Hebrews 12:2 tells us that it was for the joy set before Christ that He endured the cross, scorning its shame. Jesus is our model for joy.

Dancing is mentioned in many places in the Bible. Mark spoke on 4 texts:

(1) 2 Samuel 6:14
This passage talks about David dancing before the Lord with all his might. Matt Redman has written a song called ‘Undignified’ on this passage. Clearly, David’s joy at all that God was doing spilled over into dancing. The passage speaks of exuberance, joy, and a wildness that is perhaps unsettling for many of us.
Matt Redman, ‘Undignified’

(2) Psalm 30:11
This says “You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy.” Life is not always easy and although we associate dancing with joy, that is not to say that life is always easy. Nonetheless, this psalm talks about the transformation God can bring into our situations: weeping comes, but is replaced by joy (Ps 30:5); wailing is replaced by dancing. We may have to wait for this transformation, but we can be confident that God will hear our cries and will come to our aid.

Chris Tomlin’s song ‘You Lifted Me Out’ is based on this psalm: Chris Tomlin, ‘You Lifted Me Out’

(3) Psalm 149:1-3
Praising with dancing is encouraged in these verses. So often, we are embarrassed by the exuberance of dancing and feel that that is not very British! But God is worthy of all our praise and we should not be held back by embarrassment, fear of what others will think of us or be half-hearted in our expressions of praise.

(4) Ecclesiastes 3:4-5
There is a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance. Joy is available from God for us at all times, but again, there are times and seasons in our lives. We should not be afraid of the difficult times, but can be sure that God will bring us through and will fill us with joy.

Songs on the subject of dancing & joy!
Matt Redman, ‘For Your Glory’
Matt Redman, ‘Dancing Generation’
Phil Wickham, ‘Joy’