How do you describe the feeling you would get from any of the following becoming true for you?
You’ve now got this really sweet car that will get you all kind of attention?
Os ot that you’ve finally been able to get the house of your dreams now that the market is straightening out?
The high place in society you’ve always dreamed of? You’re showing all those who said you’d never make it.
Would any or all of this make you feel happy? Would they give you joy?
All italics below are mine.
Your answer says a lot about your beliefs and your character. What would you say to someone who says “The joy of the Lord is your strength.”? Nehemiah 8:9
What are you talking about? My strength I built myself. That your response? OR
“Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth, Worship the Lord with gladness, come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God, It is he who made us; and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.” Psalm 100:1-3
A slightly different angle on joy, huh? These Bible verses tell us to have joy because we are his sheep!! Sheep, people!! Sing joyous songs because he made us and we are his. What? I’m my own, I’m not a piece of property. Is that your response?
But that’s not what these verses mean at all. Joy doesn’t come from wealth; “Wealth is worthless in the day of wrath but righteousness delivers from death.” Proverbs 11:4 “When the righteous prosper, the city rejoices; when the wicked perish there are shouts of joy. Proverbs 11:10
“Then Jesus said to his disciples, “I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Matthew 19:23
Hmmm. These things don’t make the big house and fancy car seem like they’ll gain so much in the long run, do they? The day of God’s wrath and judgement WILL come. We’ve all heard the phrase, “you can’t take it with you.” What is the “it” you think they mean in that phrase? It’s wealth that moths eat and that rusts away. Temporary happiness may come from the things at the top of this page. True joy does not.
Joy comes from the knowledge that you are saved by the blood of the crucified Jesus Christ, that you have given your life to Him; He has the throne of your heart, your life. You are His. Joy comes from a relationship of prayer, worship, studying His word, the Bible, and really taking it all in to the center of your being. Joy comes from being in relationships with people who see this truth and live it. Joy comes from the assurance that because of these decisions you will spend eternity in heaven. Now doesn’t that sound better than the temporary happiness of the sweet car and the dream house? I think so.
Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans for a future and a hope.” All Bible quotes from NIV