Temple Baptist Church - 9-22-2013
Introduction: My theme verse is Proverbs 4:23, which says, “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.”
A. This morning, I want to deal with one of my favorite verses: “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.”
1. I love this verse! I love to laugh, joke around, and have a great time. You can ask my wife, I meet no strangers. One of my sons said, “One day, Dad is going to get maced!” That may be but, in a world full of trouble and worry, laughter is essential for survival.
2. For the most part, I have found people to have a sense of humor and laughter is good for the soul. I lady in the checkout line at Wal-mart (I was picking at her) said, “Never lose your joy. I lost mine a few months ago.” She was referring to the death of her husband but what she said stuck with me. People need to laugh.
3. Remember the words: “Smile a while and give your face a rest.” It takes a lot few muscles to smile than to frown and frowning will give you a headache!
B. “Merry:” to cheer up; to be glad; to have joy; to brighten up. There are three verses dealing with a “merry heart” that I want to look at for a few minutes:
1. A Merry Heart Maketh A Cheerful Countenance – Proverbs 15:13 - Most people today look like a mule that has been eating saw briers! Everywhere you go in this world, you see sad faces, hear cursing and complaining! People are dissatisfied and disgruntled. This should not be the lot of the child of God. We should be a satisfied, happy people. We are someone going somewhere!
2. A Merry Heart Maketh A Continual Feast – Proverbs 15:15 - Enjoyment of life! We are so blessed and yet people are still not satisfied and often live lives of quiet desperation! A feast is a merry event! I remember the old family reunions back in the 50’s and 60’s when our family would come from all over and spend the day together eating, pitching horse shoes, and just sitting around catching up on family news. It was a day looked for with great anticipation. We had a ball.
3. A Merry Heart Doeth Good Like A Medicine – Proverbs 17:22 - A smiling face or “drieth the bones?” Can you imagine a medicine prescribed for you with all good and no bad side effects? Today, they send you several pages of what may happen to you if you take the meds prescribed.
C. “Medicine:” to cure. Most medicine prescribed today is for treating your symptoms and does little to cure your problems. The Bible word for medicine means to cure your problem.
1. It has been said .. that 50% of the people in the hospital are suffering from what is called "E.I.I." "EMOTIONAL INDUCED ILLNESS". (Worldly physicians always recommend Prozac, Paxil, lithium, etc. to help with these “emotional imbalances.” I am not saying that all of the uses for these products are bad but, many times, they are used as a cover up for the real problem.)
2. Jesus is the Great Physician.
3. This proverb states that a merry heart is good for us like a medicine.
(a) A medicine soothes.
(b) A merry heart soothes us and our attitude & anxiety is reduced.
(c) A medicine reduces pain.
(d) A merry heart reduces the pain of hurt feelings, failed expectations and misunderstandings.
(e) A medicine makes one feel better, especially when infection is removed.
(f) God’s prescription for your heart problem isn’t just to smile and ignore your problem but to smile in spite of it.
(g) You are either happy and healthy or depressed and dried out!
D. Depression is distressing, damaging and deadly to you and those whom love you.
1. Sadness can become sickness
2. Anger can become acid in the soul
3. Bitterness can become brokenness and barrenness in the life
E. Learn to enjoy life! Learn to enjoy the goodness of God in the land of the living! Yes, there is a lot wrong in this world but there is also a lot that is right and it is important to meditate on the good things rather than the bad things.
Philippians 4:6-8 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. (7) And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (8) Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
HOW TO HAVE A MERRY HEART
1. A Merry Heart Comes Through Conversion – You will never be happy until you know Christ.
Philippians 3:7-14 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
a. Saved - Psalms 9:14 That I may shew forth all thy praise in the gates of the daughter of Zion: I will rejoice in thy salvation.
b. Sanctified - Psalms 32:11 Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart.
c. Safe - 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. A Merry Heart Comes Through Contentment – 1 Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.
a. Content With Your Lord - Psalms 97:12 Rejoice in the LORD, ye righteous; and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness. (The Lord has been so good to me!)
b. Content With Your Bible - Psalms 119:162 I rejoice at thy word, as one that findeth great spoil.
c. Content With Your Wife - Proverbs 5:18 Let thy fountain be blessed: and rejoice with the wife of thy youth.
d. Content With Your Possessions - Heb 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.
Luke 12:15 And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.
3. A Merry Heart Comes Through Commitment – trusting the Lord in every part of your life. (Whatever my lot thou hast TAUGHT me to say, “It is well, it is well with my soul!”)
2 Timothy 1:12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.
Psalms 37:5 Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.
a. He Is Our Defense - Psalms 5:11 But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee.
b. He Is Our Strength - Psalms 28:7 The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.
c. He Is Our Help – Psalms 63:7 Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice.
d. He Is Our Rejoicing - Philippians 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.
4. A Merry Heart Comes Through Consecration - Matthew 10:39 He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it. lose life and find it – most people never find their lives because they never lose their lives! “Let me lose my life and find it, Lord, in thee!”
a. Consecration To Service - Luke 9:23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
b. Consecration To Sanctification - Psalms 1:1-3 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
c. Consecration To Souls – to be soul conscious to not to be self-conscious - John 4:35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.
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?
Luke 15:4-7 What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it? And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost. I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.
Conclusion: God wants you to be happy in this life even though it is full of troubles and sorrows.
You will never be happy until you are converted!
You will never be happy until you are content!
You will never be happy until you are committed!
You will never be happy until you are consecrated!