Sources of Joy
I. Joy is a choice and not necessarily a feeling
A. Often in the Christian life, we are waiting for a feeling
B. Christians often pray for something that simply requires a choice
1. We pray Lord, humble me when the Word says Humble yourself under the mighty hand of God…
2. We say, Lord, give me joy when the Word tells us that joy was deposited in our lives the moment we were born again as one of the fruits of the Spirit
II. Most of what God gives us has already been placed within us
A. God has already given us all things that pertain to life and godliness
B. God has already given us access to the divine nature through the promises of the Word of God
C. God has already placed within us a well of salvation from which to draw
1 Peter 3:8-10: Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous,
not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing.
For he who would love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking deceit
Psalm 34:12-13: What man is he that desires life, and loves many days, that he may see good?
Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile.
III. The power to live a long life is within you
IV. Controlling what proceeds from the mouth
A. The world speaks negatively about others because of bitterness, jealousy, envy and strife
B. Christians often get caught up in speaking negatively
1. They often speak against the pastor
2. They often speak against an evangelist
3. They often speak against others in leadership
C. A Christian's candle never burns brighter because they blow out everyone else's
D. One of the greatest things a believer can do is look for the good in others
V. Eight commands (not suggestions) found in I Peter 3:8-10
A. Be of one mind
B. Have compassion
C. Love as brethren
D. Be tenderhearted
E. Be courteous
F. Do not repay insults
G. Refrain your tongue from evil
H. Speak no guile
Psalm 37:8-9: Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.
For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth.
shall be cut off: die early
shall inherit the earth: a Hebrew idiom for living a long time and enjoying every day
VI. Cease from anger
A. We are not told to taper off from anger
B. We are told to stop anger
C. We have the power to cease from anger
1. Because of the Holy Spirit living within
2. Because of the Word of God
VII. Despite circumstances and emotions, Christians should choose to follow God's Word and depend upon His Holy Spirit
A. Contentment is a choice and not a feeling
B. Contentment is learned
Philippians 4:11: Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.
C. Joy is a choice and not necessarily a feeling
James 1:2: My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
VIII. All believers are surrounded by temptations, tests, and trials, but the choices made are most important
Philippians 4:4: Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say rejoice.
I Thessalonians 5:16: Rejoice evermore.
IX. Speak joy
A. Instead of being controlled by negative attitudes of people surrounding you, speak joy
B. Instead of being controlled by circumstances, speak joy
C. Often people feel better about themselves by negatively speaking about others
1. Those who are negative will lose the few friends that they have
2. No one wants to be with those who speak negatively about others
D. When those surrounding us are bitter, angry or putting others down, we can choose joy
X. The Healing Power of Joy
1. Joy is probably the greatest healer
2. Joy will keep us in the best of health
3. If we learn to walk in joy, our body has the potential and power to heal itself of many diseases
Example: Reader's Digest shared a true story about a man who was lying in a hospital dying of cancer. He asked his wife to rent 3 Stooges movies. The man, not knowing Jesus or the power of the Holy Spirit but applying a scriptural principle, was healed of cancer.
Proverbs 17:22: A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit dries the bones.
4. When we choose joy in our lives we actually bring health to our bodies
Proverbs 15:13: A merry heart makes a cheerful countenance: but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.
Proverbs 18:14: The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit who can bear?
5. When infirmities come into the body, the attitude that we choose actually weighs more on health than the diet and exercise that we attribute to good health
6. Our attitude has everything to do with long life on the earth
Nehemiah 8:10: 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.
7. It is a choice to move from sorrow to joy
8. Joy is a magnet that will draw other people
9. Life can be breathed into any situation through the joy of the Lord and the power of the Holy Spirit
XI. Sources of Joy
John 15:10-11: If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.
These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.
commandments: a reference for the Word of God
A. Obedience to God's Word is the first source of joy
Proverbs 13:15: Good understanding giveth favor: but the way of transgressors is hard.
1. Transgressors does not necessarily only refer to sinners
2. Transgressors can also refer to Christians who transgress the promises of God
3. When we say yes to the promises of God, great joy results
Psalm 19:8: The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart…
Psalm 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.
4. When Mary said yes to the promise of God in Luke 1:38, great joy arose within her as expressed in Luke 1:46-55
B. Maintaining fellowship with God
I John 1:3-4: That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.
And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.
1. Fellowshipping with other Christians produces joy
2. Fellowshipping with God the Father produces joy
3. Fellowshipping with the Lord Jesus Christ produces joy
4. Sin separates us from fellowship with Godand joy is lost
Psalm 51:8 & 12: Make me hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.
Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.
5. David lived with no joy because of his sin with Bathsheba and the sin of murder for over a year
6. After David repented, his joy was restored
C. Answered Prayer
John 16:24: Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.
John 15:11: These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.
I John 1:4: And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.
1. There is joy in stepping out on the Word of God
2. There is exceeding joy when our prayers are answered
3. The epitome of the Christian life is stepping beyond your needs and asking God to bless others
Colossians 1:3-4: We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you,
Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all saints.
4. The time we should especially be praying for others is when they are walking strong in faith and love because that is when Satan really attacks
5. We should be praying for God to send laborers into the End Time harvest
6. God wants us to get to the point that our daily life is filled with prayers for others
D. Worship produces joy
Psalm 20:5: We will rejoice in thy salvation, and in the name of our God we will set up our banners: the Lord fulfill all thy petitions.
Isaiah 12:3: Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.
Psalm 16:11: Thou wilt show me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.
1. We should be spending time every day in the presence of God through worship
2. We do not have to wait until we are with the Lord physically to have joy
3. We can have fullness of joy on earth by entering into His presence daily
4. In His presence is fullness of joy
E. Praying in tongues produces joy
Romans 14:17: For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.
Isaiah 28:11-12: For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people.
To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.
Jude 20: But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost.