Temple Baptist Church - 6-30-2019
John 15:11; Nehemiah 8:10
A. What was the joy of Christ? I want to look at the best definition that I have ever seen, and it comes from your Bible.
Habakkuk 3:17-19 Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: (18) Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation. (19) The LORD God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds' feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places. To the chief singer on my stringed instruments.
1. In these verses, we find both the “Cause” and “Effect” of the Christian’s Joy.
2. As is the case many times in the Bible, we find the order reversed. Rejoicing, the Effect, before Joy, the Cause.
3. In Verses 18-19, we find the Cause of Joy:
a) The God of my Salvation. True Christian Joy comes from God in the form of Eternal Salvation.
b) The LORD God, my Strength. True Christian Joy is maintained in the spiritual Strength that comes from God, not circumstances.
4. In Verses 17-18, we find the Effect of Joy:
a) Though things go wrong, and they do; though life is hard and it is:
b) Rejoicing comes from our inner fountain of Joy.
5. There was a day when praise and rejoicing were spontaneous, not “worked up.” “Popcorn Testimonies” have become a thing of the past. We need to get our Joy back and Rejoicing will follow without having to be stirred.
6. We live in days when pastors feel the necessity to stir our emotions with fleshly music and preaching as to produce rejoicing. Thus, they become Entertainers, not Preachers. Rejoicing should be a spontaneous result of Joy, not the cause of Joy.
7. The hymns of the Faith no longer cause Rejoicing, so the modern day “church” is now in the “Entertainment Business” in stead of reproving, rebuking, and Exhorting with all longsuffering and doctrine. Modern day preaching and music reflect the world because most professing “Christians” are more worldly than spiritual.
B. Both rejoicing and joy are to be despite our circumstance, not because of them! Most Christians live in discouragement with little joy. Why? The answer is simple.
1. Because Of Our Sinfulness - Matthew 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. (God’s people are not drunks and harlots, but sin creeps in and we now walk at a guilty distance from God and the joy is gone.)
2. Because Of Our Situations - Matthew 14:30 But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me. (God’s people have their eyes upon the “wind and waves” of circumstance and not upon Christ. When Peter looked up instead of looking down, he saw the Lord of the “wind and waves” and once again walked on the water.)
C. Many Christians live in defeat with no joy at all.
1. For The World, Joy Is Found In Circumstances – Luke 12:16-21 And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.
2. For The Christian, Joy Is Found Despite Circumstances - 2 Corinthians 7:4 Great is my boldness of speech toward you, great is my glorying of you: I am filled with comfort, I am exceeding joyful in all our tribulation.
2 Corinthians 8:2 How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.
Colossians 1:11 Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;
1 Thessalonians 1:6 And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost:
D. Loss of joy comes through:
1. Losing the freshness of our salvation.
2. Losing the burning love for our Saviour.
3. Losing the excitement of our service.
WHERE THE CHRISTIAN FINDS HIS JOY
1. Christian Joy Is Found In Salvation - 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.
Psalms 35:9 And my soul shall be joyful in the LORD: it shall rejoice in his salvation.
Psalms 51:12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.
Psalms 132:16 I will also clothe her priests with salvation: and her saints shall shout aloud for joy.
Isaiah 12:3 Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.
2. Christian Joy Is Found In The Holy Ghost - Romans 15:13 Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.
Joy Is Not Found In The Things Of The World - Romans 14:17 For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.
3. Christian Joy Is Found In God’s Word - Nehemiah 8:9-12 And Nehemiah, which is the Tirshatha, and Ezra the priest the scribe, and the Levites that taught the people, said unto all the people, This day is holy unto the LORD your God;mourn not, nor weep. For all the people wept, when they heard the words of the law. Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength. So the Levites stilled all the people, saying, Hold your peace, for the day is holy; neither be ye grieved. And all the people went their way to eat, and to drink, and to send portions, and to make great mirth, because they had understood the words that were declared unto them.
4. Christian Joy Is Found In Church - Psalms 42:4 When I remember these things, I pour out my soul in me: for I had gone with the multitude, I went with them to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holyday.
a. The Joy Of Singing - Psalms 95:1 O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.
Psalms 95:2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.
Psalms 98:4 Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise.
b. The Joy Of Praise - Psalms 27:6 And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the LORD.
5. Christian Joy Is Found In Worship - Nehemiah 12:43 Also that day they offered great sacrifices, and rejoiced: for God had made them rejoice with great joy: the wives also and the children rejoiced: so that the joy of Jerusalem was heard even afar off.
6. Christian Joy Is Found In Hope - Psalms 30:5 For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.
7. Christian Joy Is Found In Eternity - Jude 1:24 Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,
8. Christian Joy Is Found In Sinners Saved - Luke 15:10 Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.
9. Christian Joy Is Found In A Finished Course - Acts 20:24 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.
10. Christian Joy Is Found In The Saviour - 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:
Psalms 16:11 Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.