And the one on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, this is the man who hears the word, and immediately receives it with joy; Matt 13:20
The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in the field, which a man found and hid; and from joy over it he goes and sells all that he has, and buys that field. Matt 13:44
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Phil. 4:4
But the fruit of the Spirit is, JOY… Galatians 5:22
We are challenged by the concept of joy in the New Testament. What is joy and what is the cause of joy? The Greek word states simply that joy is gladness. However, the challenge comes by the source of our joy. What is the source of joy for you in your life?
1. Jesus expresses that a man finds a treasure and is filled with joy. Jesus here is speaking of the gospel which a person may find, and through the gospel obtain salvation from Jesus. This is joy! (Mat. 13:44-46)
2. Paul speaks of joy that is based in the Lord. Paul’s relationship with Jesus had progressed to the point that his joy did not contain roadblocks. He rejoiced all the time…in the Lord (Phil. 4:4). We find him in Acts 16:25 praying and singing hymns of praise to God. Paul’s joy was not based on circumstances, but in the Lord.
3. Jesus experiences great joy by suffering and dying on the cross. What was His joy actually based upon? He was the source of man’s salvation. This gave Him great joy (Heb. 12:2). Our God is the supreme example of giving. His giving gave Him joy.
4. As bizarre as it comes to our ears, suffering for the Kingdom is a cause for joy. Yes, this is true. James tells us that trials and suffering are a cause for joy. These items cause us to rely on Jesus for strength and the build our character with those items of James 1:2f.
5. Can our joy be misplaced and come from wrong sources? Yes. Often times we receive a majority of our joy from the world. When we receive our joy from the world only, we are in for a downfall and for disappointment. You may already be experiencing disappointment and simply not admitting it to yourself. He who made us expresses that our joy truly and primarily is gained by being in Him.
Where is the source of your joy? Our source book (The Bible) tells us plainly and repetitively where it should be. Are you listening? The fruit of the Spirit; an outgrowth of the Spirit is…joy. By Andy Burns