We must never lose sight of the joy that is to be ours as the people of God. While Satan and his forces will do everything in their power to rob us of the joy of being in Christ, God’s word gives us a number of remarkable assurances that should ever lift us up when we are down and out. Christians have—
THE JOY OF SALVATION. As we trust and obey God, we do not have to lose the joy of our salvation (Psalm 51:12), but can live happily, obediently and peacefully (Psalm 119:165; 2Tim. 2:10). “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full (John 15:11). Now that’s joy-filled fellowship!
THE JOY OF LISTENING TO THE MASTER. “Did not our heart burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:32). Although Jesus is not physically present with us, He does speak to us today, and He speaks through His word (John 12:48; 1 Peter 1:23-25). How we need to listen to what our Savior says!
THE JOY OF SERVICE. “But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy” (Acts20:24) Serving Christ gives one a sense of joy and satisfaction that is unsurpassed by anything else (Galatians 5:6; Philippians 3:8,10).
THE JOY OF GOD’S WORD. “Your words were found, and I ate them, and your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; for I am called by Your name, O Lord God of hosts” (Jeremiah 15:16). There is a contentment and excitement found in the diligent study of scripture which leads to greater joy as God’s child (cf. Matthew 13:44-46).
THE JOY OF VICTORY. In our hearts, we know victory is certain as we trust in the King (1 John 5:4; Romans 8:37-39). Just as in the day of Nehemiah, there should be such shouts of joy for the victory God gives that our joyfulness can be heard “afar off” (Neh. 12:43).
THE JOY OF SUFFERING—“rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name” (Acts 5:41). Although this is seemingly a very unpopular theme, it’s a privilege and joy to suffer for the One who suffered on the Cross for us! (Philippians.1:29; 1 Peter 4:14-16).
THE JOY OF DRAWING NEAR TO GOD. “In Your Presence there is fullness of joy; in Your right hand are pleasures for evermore” (Psalm 16:11). Anything that can draw us closer to God should give us joy! (cf. Heb. 4:16; 10:22-25).
Perhaps 1 Peter 1:8-9 expresses it best of all when it speaks of the joy of glory by saying, “you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.” If Christians don’t have reason to rejoice, who does?