What is the biblical basis for the idea that worship brings joy to God?
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closed as off-topic by David♦ Oct 13 '15 at 11:35
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After several searches through various translations, I was unable to find any verse that specifically states that our worship brings God "joy". However, this doesn't necessarily mean that it doesn't bring Him joy. The overwhelming weight of Scripture implies that our worship (more specifically, our proper worship) pleases Him.
Whether this indicates "joy" specifically is up for interpretation. I personally believe it does, based on many things, but at least partially because He is angered when we worship anything else. He is "a jealous God"
I may be guilty of anthropomorphism here, but the fact that worshiping other gods seems to imply that God wants (and deserves) all our worship. That tells me that our worship pleases Him.
In fact, idolatry angers God, again and again in Scripture we see this. The opposite of anger is joy, so, it seems to me that our proper worship must bring him joy. Even if that's not specifically stated, it seems strongly implied.
On the other hand, worship and sacrifice do not please Him if offered with the wrong motivation, heart, and love. He is more interested in our love, obedience, and faith than in the "things" we give. Offerings are meaningless in and of themselves.
The same goes with phony worship.
So I'd put forth that, proper worship, from a contrite heart, one that truly loves and is honoring God brings Him joy, while empty, meaningless worship (just going through the motions, or doing so in an attempt to please Him, rather than simply because you love Him so much that you want to worship out of an expression of the love in your heart) does not.
So it looks like the answer to your question is implied rather than directly stated. God hates half-hearted worship, so by implication enjoys whole-hearted worship.
I would like to point you to Zephaniah 3:15-17.
What a beautiful piece of Scripture! He rejoices over us with singing and shouts of joy!
Jeremiah 33:9 says:
This does not clearly say praise brings joy, but God associates his own joy, praise, and glory together. Then in verse 11 the prophet quotes the praises that the people will give to God, praises which will bring joy, praise, and glory to God:
These scriptures show that the praise of the people are a part of what causes God joy, but all of this will happen after the people are cleansed of sin, and that is the key. People who praise God with washed and repentant hearts, those praises bring joy to God!