Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Christian’s Joy

Temple Baptist Church - 3-19-2017
Habakkuk 3:17-19


A.  Joy and happiness are two entirely different things.  Happiness is based upon happenings while joy is often despite circumstances.  Let me give you some Biblical examples.

1.  God the Father’s joy was found in the sacrifice of His only begotten Son! Isaiah 53:10-11  Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.  (11)  He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.  (I am sure that God was not happy watching sinners beat and crucify His Son.  The Father’s joy was found in His love for sinners like you and me!  I will never fully understand that joy but I take joy in it.)

2.  God the Son’s joy was found in the shame and reproach of the cross!  Hebrews 12:2  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher ofour faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.  (I am sure that Jesus was not happy with the shame and reproach that He endured.  I am sure that He was not happy that He became sin for us.  His joy was found in His love for the Church that He purchased.  I will never fully understand that joy but I do take joy in His Church.)

3.  The Sinner’s joy is found in the finished work of Calvary!  Galatians 6:14  But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.  (Because of the great load of sin that he bore.  I do not relish the thought that my Lord had to suffer so because of my wickedness but I am sure glad that He did.)

4.  The Saint’s joy is found in the soon appearing of the Lord, our Saviour!  Titus 2:13  Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;  (It does not make me happy that sinners will perish but it is with Great joy that I will be with Him for all of eternity.)

B.  Too many Christians live lives or gloom and sorrow.  They recite Murphy’s Law more than they quote the Bible.  When you ask, they can give you a list of everything bad that has ever happened to them.  Many times, you do not even have to ask!

C.  Yes, sometimes the provision will be slim.  The crops will fail and there will be no “herd I the stalls!”  Joy should not depend upon what we have physically, but in what we have spiritually.

D.  I want to look at several things found in these verses that only the child of God can fully understand.

1.  THE PARADOX OF THE SAINT’S JOY – Habakkuk 3:17-18  “although…yet”

            a.  A Joy that does not depend upon our circumstances.

            b.  A Joy that does not depend upon our surroundings.

            c.  A Joy that does not waver because He does not waver.

            d.  A Joy that does not change because He does not change.

            e.  A Joy despite life’s ups and downs!

f.  A Joy the world does not understand and, unfortunately, many of God’s children do not seem to understand.

2.  THE PROBLEM OF THE SAINT’S JOY – Habakkuk 38  “rejoice in the Lord”

a.  Too many time, God’s children try to find their joy in the things of this world - Mark 8:34-35 And when he had called the peopleunto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. 35 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.

b.  We are in Jesus Christ, therefore, we should find our life in Him - Colossians 3:3-4  For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.

3.  THE PERSON OF THE SAINT’S JOY  - Habakkuk 3:18  “Yet I will rejoice in the Lord”

a.  The Bible says, in 1 Peter 1:8, “Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.”

                        1)  Joy in someone we have never seen.

                        2)  Joy based on our faith in God’s Word.

            b.  The darling Son of God!

            c.  Our wonderful Saviour!

            d.  Our soon coming Lord and King!

            e.  Our beloved Bridegroom!

            f.  The Lover of my Soul!!!

            g.  Life was miserable until I met Him and I am forever changed!


a.  The Joy of being saved and knowing it! - Luke 10:20 Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.

2 Timothy 1:9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,
Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

b.  The Joy of Christian fellowship! - 1 John 1:3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.  (What a thrill to know and love God’s people!)

c.  The Joy of faith! - 1 Peter 1:8 Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:  (Believing that God can do the impossible!)

d.  The Joy of soul winning! - Psalms 126:5-6 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. 6 He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.

1 Thessalonians 2:19 For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming?

e.  The Joy of faithfulness! - Acts 20:22-24  And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there: 23  Save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me. 24  But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.  (Many never know this joy because of their unfaithfulness!)

Matthew 25:21 His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.

f.  The Joy of hearing His Voice! - Revelation 1:10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet,

Revelation 1:12a  And I turned to see the voice that spake with me.  (He walks with me and talks with me.  He tells me I am His own!)

g.  The Joy of His presence! - Hebrews 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.

Daniel 3:24-25 Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonied, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counsellors, Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? They answered and said unto the king, True, O king. 25 He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.

2 Timothy 4:17 Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and thatall the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.

Acts 27:23 For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve,

h.  The Joy of His appearing! - Colossians 3:4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.

i.  The Joy of seeing His face! - Job 33:26 He shall pray unto God, and he will be favourable unto him: and he shall see his face with joy: for he will render unto man his righteousness.

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