THE NAMES OF GOD #1

ABRAHAM’S SEED. “Now to Abraham were the promises spoken, and to his seed. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ” (Gal. 3:16). The promise God made was to Abraham and his seed. The seed of Abraham is specifically identified as Christ. Paul pointedly affirmed that the original term “seed” was in the singular, not plural. The reference was not to the people of Israel, but to Christ who entered the human family through the lineage of Abraham, through Judah, through David, and finally through the virgin Mary, who brought the Savior into the world.

“And the angel of Jehovah called unto Abraham a second time out of heaven, and said, By myself have I sworn, saith Jehovah, because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son, that in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heavens, and as the sand which is upon the seashore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.”

If the promise had used the plural seeds, the Jews could have appropriated the term to themselves, and claimed that the promise found its ultimate fulfillment in them. They would have placed themselves as the fountain of God’s blessings to all humanity. But the singular seed deprives them of such a haughty claim. God’s blessings would flow through Christ, not through the Jews. God’s promises to Abraham could not be fulfilled until the Promised Seed came into the world. He must complete his earthly mission before the blessings could flow to lost mankind.

“But we behold him who hath been made a little lower than the angels, even Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that by the grace of God he should taste of death for every man. For it became him, for whom are all things, and through whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the author of their salvation perfect through sufferings” (Heb. 2:9-10).

ADVOCATE. “My little children, these things write I unto you that ye may not sin. And if any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 Jn. 2:1). If a child of God commits sin, John reminds us that we have an Advocate who is with the Father. The term “advocate” is a word for lawyer (attorney), who represents another in court. The word “have” is in the present tense, which means we have an ever-present Advocate.

“But he, because he abideth for ever, hath his priesthood unchangeable. Wherefore also he is able to save to the uttermost them that draw near unto God through him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. For such a high priest became us, holy, guileless, undefiled, separated from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; who needeth not daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people: for this he did once for all, when he offered up himself. For the law appointeth men high priests, having infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was after the law, appointeth a Son, perfected for evermore” (Heb. 7:24-28).

This Advocate is “with” the Father; he is always present to offer us proper and constant representation. He is never in need of intercession for himself or else he could not influence the Father favorably in our behalf. He himself is a sinless Advocate: “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (Heb. 4:l5).

The word Advocate is the same in the Greek as Comforter. Christ is presently doing his work in Heaven in our behalf as he acts as mediator between mankind and God. The Holy Spirit did his work on earth as he revealed, confirmed, and recorded the inspired word.

Tom Moore
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

Advertisements
Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment

LET THE BLESSINGS FLOW

There was a beautiful lake that lost its zesty freshness. The water formerly had been clear. It was alluring to animals and people alike. But it became covered with a green scum. The farm animals became ill from drinking the water. Finally, someone came by the lake who understood the problem. Debris collecting from the hard spring rains had stopped up the dam and prevented the free flow of water, not into the lake, but out of the lake. The spillway was cleared, and soon the lake was fresh and clean again. The flow in and out was necessary to keep the water pure!

Doesn’t the same principle apply to you and me as human beings? The blessings of life flow to you and me, but we fail to realize that most of these blessings are not meant just to flow to us, but through us, for the good of others around us, especially for those in need.

“So then, as we have opportunity, let us work that which is good toward all men, and especially toward them that are of the household of the faith” (Gal. 6:10). “See that none render unto any one evil for evil; but always follow after that which is good, one toward another, and toward all” (1 The. 5:15).

Let the blessings of God flow through you to others.

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.

Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment

LIGHT IN THE CHURCH

Several centuries ago in a mountain village in Europe, a wealthy nobleman wondered what legacy he should leave to his townspeople. He made a good decision. He decided to build them a church building. No one was permitted to see the plans or the inside of the church building until it was finished. At its grand opening, the people gathered and marveled at the beauty of the new church building. Everything had been thought of and included. It was a masterpiece.

But then someone said, “Wait a minute! Where are the lamps? It is really quite dark in here. How will the church building be lighted?” The nobleman pointed to some brackets in the walls, and then he gave each family a lamp, which they were to bring with them each time they came to worship.

“Each time you are here'” the nobleman said, “the place where you are seated will be lighted. Each time you are not here, that place will be dark. This is to remind you that whenever you fail to come to worship, some part of God’s house will be dark”

That’s a powerful story, isn’t it? And it makes a very significant point about the importance of our commitment and loyalty to the church. The poet Edward Everett Hale put it like this:

I am only one,

but still I am one.

I cannot do everything,

But still I can do something;

And because I cannot do everything

I will not refuse to do the something I can do.

What if every member of your church supported the church just as you do? What kind of church would you have? What if every single member served the church, attended the church, loved the church, shared the church, and gave to the church exactly as you do? What kind of church would you be?

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”

Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment

HAVE YOU TAKEN INVENTORY LATELY?

A story is told of a young boy’s very first job in a small town general store. This was the day before supermarket chains at least it was in his community. At age thirteen he was hired as a handy boy. He would sweep the flour, bag items for customers, put up stock. On one particular Saturday, the boy recalled, he heard the owner say to one of the clerks “It’s that time of the year again, it’s time to take inventory.” This was a word that had not yet entered into his vocabulary. When an opportune moment arrived, he went up to the kindly older man and asked, Sir, what is an inventory? Patiently the owner explained that it was a time when you made a list of everything that you had – from groceries on the shelves to wrapping paper and string. Still somewhat puzzled, the young boy then asked, Why?

“Well, responded the owner, it is easy to forget exactly how much you have each year. Every now and then you have to take an inventory just to see what all you have.”

This, to me, pretty well sums up what a part of life is all about. We need to ask ourselves the question: Have I taken inventory of my life lately? Have I made an effort to count all the things that I do have in life instead of complaining about the things that I don’t have. It is a good exercise especially when we are of a mind to brood or whine in self-pity. Have you taken inventory lately?

What I am suggesting here is not some shallow “count your blessings” platitude. But from time to time, or better yet – often, in a genuine kind of a way, we need to sit down and do some talking to ourselves about all of the gifts and opportunities and challenges that God has given each one of us. Perhaps there is a deep underlying wisdom in the old hymn that says: “Count your blessings one by one, and you might be surprised what the Lord has done.”

To the Almighty may our “voice of thanksgiving to be heard, And tell of all thy wondrous works” (Psa. 26:7). “It is a good thing to give thanks unto Jehovah, And to sing praises unto thy name, O Most High” (Psa. 92:1).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and sings it back to you when you have forgotten how it goes.”
Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment

THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT – LONGSUFFERING

INTRODUCTION

In discussing “the fruit of the Spirit” – the nine graces listed in Galatians 5:22-23 are often divided into three groups:

  1. The first group contains those graces which turns one’s thought toward God…
    • Love (for love is of God)
    • Joy (for we rejoice in the Lord)
    • Peace (for from God comes the peace that surpasses understanding)
  2. The second group contains those graces that directs our attention to our fellowman…
    • Longsuffering
    • Kindness
    • Goodness
  3. The third group of graces refer more directly to oneself…
    • a Faithfulness
    • Gentleness (meekness)
    • Self-control

Having examined those graces in the first group (love, joy, peace), we now come to the first one in the second group – the graces that direct our attention to our fellowman – the first is…

  1. The grace is longsuffering (“patience” in the NAS; ESV)
  2. The Greek word is mak-ro-thu-mia (makrothumia)
    • Literally, it means being “long-tempered” (the opposite of short-tempered)
    • It is defined as “patience, forbearance, longsuffering, slowness in avenging wrongs” – Thayer
  3. “Longsuffering is that quality of self-restraint in the face of provocation which does not hastily retaliate or promptly punish. It is the opposite of anger and is associated with mercy, and is used of God.” – Vine

If God is longsuffering, we should not be surprised that those who are “walking in the Spirit” will also be longsuffering!

As we begin to understand longsuffering, let us begin by looking at some… 

DISCUSSION

EXAMPLES OF LONGSUFFERING

  1. The longsuffering of God
    • God has been longsuffering toward man
      • God was longsuffering in the days of Noah… 1 Peter 3:20
      • God was longsuffering in His dealings with the nation of Israel… Nehemiah 9:16-21
      • And God is longsuffering today as well
      • 2 Peter 3:7-9
      • 1 Timothy 1:15-16
    • What is the purpose of God’s longsuffering?
      • That we might have salvation! … 2 Peter 3:15
      • That we might be led to repentance! … Romans 2:4
      • God is longsuffering so those who fear Him and keep His commandments might delight in His lovingkindness, even though they have sinned…
      • Psalm 103:8-18
      • A beautiful description of the longsuffering of God
  2. The longsuffering of David
    • Is best seen in his dealings with King Saul
      • Saul had made several attempts to kill David
      • David had several opportunities to kill Saul
      • In the cave… 1 Samuel 24:1-22
      • In the camp… 1 Samuel 26:1-25
    • Out of respect for the Lord’s anointed king (Saul), David demonstrated the true meaning of longsuffering: “slowness in avenging wrongs”
  3. So from both God Himself, and one who was “a man after God’s own heart” (1 Sam 13:14), we learn what the quality of longsuffering involves.
  4. Now let’s consider its necessity in the life of the Christian…

THE NECESSITY OF LONGSUFFERING

  1. We need to be longsuffering if we wish God to be longsuffering with us…
    • As Jesus illustrated this in “The Parable of the Unmerciful Servant” (note particularly Matthew 18:32-35)
    • Compare also the following verses: Colossians 3:12-13
    • Christ has forgiven us
    • Therefore, we must be longsuffering and willing to forgive one another!
  2. We need to be longsuffering if we wish to maintain the unity of the Spirit…
    • A task we face, in keeping with a walk that is worthy of our calling… Ephesians 4:1-3
    • Without longsuffering, the sins we commit against one another will quickly destroy the unity for which Christ died!
  3. Longsuffering is necessary for preachers and teachers of the gospel…
  4. Paul charged Timothy to be longsuffering… 2 Timothy 4:2
    • Paul demonstrated longsuffering, and Timothy followed his example… 2 Timothy 3:10
    • No servant of the Lord can faithfully correct those in opposition, without the quality of longsuffering (patience in the NKJ) … 2 Timothy 2:24-26 
  5. So to be “useful for the Master, prepared for every good work” (cf. 2 Tim. 2:21), and even to ensure God’s longsuffering toward us (cf. Mt. 18:35), we need to develop the virtue of longsuffering. Here are a couple of thoughts on how…

DEVELOPING LONGSUFFERING

  1. Through love…
    • It is love that suffers long” … 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a
    • Unless we love those who have wronged us, there will not be sufficient motivation to bear with them – to be longsuffering
    • Therefore love (active good will) is fundamental to being slow to avenge wrong, and therefore longsuffering
  2. We develop longsuffering by growing in love…
    • 1 Thessalonians 4:9 … we are taught in the Scriptures to love
    • 1 John 3:16 … love must be seen in action
    • Therefore, if we will learn what the Scriptures teach us about love and put what we have learned into practice we will grow in longsuffering!
  3. We can also develop longsuffering through prayer…
    • Colossians 1:9-11 – Paul evidently believed prayer would help the Colossians to have “all patience and longsuffering with joy
    • God who is longsuffering
    • Psalm 145:8
    • If we will rely on God He will strengthen those who desire to be like Him!

CONCLUSION

  1. God has certainly revealed Himself to be longsuffering, as David wrote in his psalm… Psalm 86:15
  2. For those who desire to be truly His children, and led by His Spirit, they will want to become like Him, as David wrote just a few verses before… Psalm 86:11
  3. The way of the Lord is truly one involving longsuffering, and it will be a quality evident in the lives of those who bear the fruit of the Spirit!
  4. May the Lord help us to be longsuffering with those around us! May we also be careful to respond to the Lord’s longsuffering toward us in the proper way… Romans 2:4-6
Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment

THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT – PEACE

INTRODUCTION

Another grace experienced by those whose lives are in tune with the Spirit of God is that of peace (Gal. 5:22).

  1. That the Spirit of God should induce peace in the children of God should be understandable in light of the fact that…
  2. Their heavenly Father is “the God of peace” (1 The. 5:23)
  3. Their Lord Jesus Christ is called “Prince of peace” (Isa. 9:6)

But one might ask…

  1. What is this peace enjoyed by those who walk in the Spirit?
  2. How does one come to have this peace?
  3. How we can be sure to preserve this peace, and enjoy it to its fullest extent?

As we continue our study of “The Flesh and The Spirit,” and especially as we focus on “the fruit of the Spirit” (Gal. 5:22-23), we now turn our attention to the subject of peace…

DISCUSSION

DEFINING “PEACE”

  1. Peace is sometimes defined in negative terms
    • As though peace were simply the absence of conflict
    • For example:
      • “The only condition of peace in this world is to have no ideas, or, at least, not to express them.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes
      • “He knows peace who has forgotten desire” – The Bhagavad Gita
  2. A biblical definition of peace includes positive elements
  3. The Greek word is eirene, which is defined as:
    • “peace between individuals, i.e., harmony, concord” – Thayer
    • “…the tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and content with its earthly lot, of whatsoever sort that is” – Thayer
  4. So rather than simply an absence of conflict, the peace God provides is…
    • A condition positive in nature
    • In which there is active fellowship, harmony and concord between individuals
  5. Having defined peace as a blessing that ought to be desired and enjoyed by all, let’s consider what the Bible has to say about...

THE SOURCE OF THIS PEACE

  1. It comes from Jesus, who came to bring peace…
    • Isaiah 9:6-7…It was prophesied He would be the “Prince of peace”
    • Acts 10:34-36…When He came, He came preaching peace
  2. Indeed, He offers peace:
    • That the world is not able to give… John 14:27
    • That one can possess even in the midst of tribulation… John 16:33
  3. The peace Jesus brings involves:
  4. Peace with God…Romans 5:1-11
    • Which comes when we are “justified by faith” … Romans 5:1
    • Which is accompanied with rejoicing and love, even in tribulation… Romans 5:2-5
    • Which is made possible by the loving sacrifice of Jesus’ blood… Romans 5:6-9
    • And continues by virtue of His resurrected life
    • Romans 5:10-11
    • Hebrews 7:25
  5. Peace with man…Ephesians 2:11-22
    • Jew and Gentile, once alienated from one another, can be at peace in Jesus Christ… Ephesians 2:11-14
    • Made possible through the same act which makes peace with God: the death of Jesus Christ!… Ephesians 2:15-16
    • Thus, Jesus has come preaching peace to all mankind… Ephesians 2:17
    • The wonders of this peace are described as Paul continues…
    • A peace that allows access by one Spirit to the Father… Ephesians 2:18
    • A peace where all can be fellow-citizens with the saints… Ephesians 2:19a
    • A peace where all can be members of the family of God… Ephesians 2:19b
    • A peace where all can be a temple in the Lord, a habitation of God in the Spirit… Ephesians 2:20-22
  6. Peace with self
    • Peace within one’s own self is mostly a byproduct…
    • Of being at peace with God
    • Of being at peace with those around us
    • So when Jesus brings us peace with God and man – peace within naturally follows!
    • But there is a peace, one that blesses the soul from within…
    • It comes from God
    • It surpasses all understanding
    • It serves as a fortress to guard our hearts and minds – and it comes through Christ Jesus!… Philippians 4:7
    • When one is in Christ Jesus, enjoying the blessings of justification, along with reconciliation with both God and man, peace is a natural byproduct.
  7. But is there anything we can and should be doing to preserve the peace we have from God in Christ Jesus?

PRESERVING OUR PEACE

  1. Maintaining peace with God and self requires…
    • Keeping our minds set on God…Isaiah 26:3
    • Loving God’s word, and heeding His commandments
      • Psalm 119:165
      • Isaiah 48:18
      • John 14:23
    • Being diligent in prayer…Philippians 4:6-7
    • Filling our mind with spiritual thoughts
      • Philippians 4:8-9
      • Romans 8:5-8
  2. Maintaining peace with one another requires…
    • Being at peace with God first…Proverbs 16:7
      • How can we hope to make peace with others when we are not at peace within?
      • Making peace with God gives us the peace within whereby we are in a better position to make peace with others!
    • A concentrated effort to “pursue” peace…1 Peter 3:8-12
      • Peace must be sought and pursued… 1 Peter 3:11
      • Peter mentions some of the qualities necessary… 1 Peter 3:8-9
    • Being of one mind
      • Having compassion for one another
      • Love as brothers, tenderhearted, and courteous
      • Not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but responding with a blessing
      • Only then can we expect to “love life and see good days”!… 1 Peter 3:10
    • Please note that the pursuit of peace does not require compromise of truth
      • For the wisdom that is from above is “first pure, then peaceable…” (Jam 3:17)
      • But if we wish to bear the fruit of righteousness, it must be “sown in peace by those who make peace”! (Jam. 3:18)

CONCLUSION

  1. Let us never forget that Jesus, as the Prince of peace…
    • Came preaching peace
    • Died on the cross to make peace possible with God, man, and self
    • Is the conduit through which God now grants peace to man, as pronounced the night He was born… Luke 2:11-14
    • Indeed, the element of peace is a key feature of His kingdom…Romans 14:17-19
  2. We should therefore “let the peace of God rule in our hearts” … Colossians 3:15
  3. And allow Jesus to give us His peace as expressed in this prayer… 2 Thessalonians 3:16
  4. Do you wish to ensure that the Lord is always with you, that you might experience that “peace which surpasses all understanding”?
    • Then heed what Jesus Himself said to His disciples shortly before ascending into heaven
    • Matthew 28:18-20
Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment

THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT – JOY

INTRODUCTION

Those who are influenced and directed by the sword of the Spirit will produce “the fruit of the Spirit” in their lives…Galatians 5:22-23

  1. We noted in our previous study that there is not a plurality of fruits, but one fruit
  2. Yes, only one fruit that is made up of several interrelated graces or virtues, all of which will be manifested if one is truly walking in the Spirit

Prominent, of course, will be the virtue of love, which we observed…

  1. Was defined as active good will, that which seeks the highest good of others
  2. It is best exemplified by Jesus Christ, who through His example has taught us what love really is
    • John 15:13
    • 1 John 3:16
  3. Agape must be the “universal motive” for all that we do… 1 Corinthians 16:14

As noted in Galatians 5:22, the fruit of the Spirit also involves joy…

  1. It is interesting to note the relationship between the Holy Spirit and joy in several passages:
  2. Romans 14:17… The kingdom of God is “joy in the Holy Spirit”
  3. 1 Thessalonians 1:6… The Thessalonians had received the word “with joy of the Holy Spirit”
  4. And of course, our text in Galatians 5:22
  5. Therefore, one who is led by the Spirit, and walking by the Spirit, will be someone filled with much joy in his or her life!

But what is joy?

  1. How can Christians be filled with joy?
  2. As we seek to produce the fruit of the Spirit in our lives, let’s take a closer look at joy…

DISCUSSION

THE DEFINITION OF JOY

The Greek word is “chara”

  1. Which Thayer defines as chara“joy, gladness”
  2. Vine adds “delight”
  3. By one count the word is used 60 times in the New Testament

The verb form of “chara” is “chairein”

  1. Which is most often translated “to rejoice”
  2. It is used 72 times in the New Testament

Closely related is the word “charis”

  1. Which is the word most often translated as “grace”
  2. Vine defines grace in the objective sense as “that which bestows or occasions pleasure, delight, or causes favorable regard”
  3. Therefore grace is what produces joy!

The connection between grace and joy

  1. One’s joy is directly proportional to the grace one has received, or at least to the perception of grace that one has received
  2. Receive a small gift, and your joy might be minimal
  3. Receive a large gift, and your joyous reaction is greater
  4. When Christians’ don’t have much joy in their lives, something is wrong: “If you have no joy in your religion, there’s a leak in your Christianity somewhere.”
  5. Here is one explanation why Christians may be joyless: “The reason why many poor souls have so little heat of joy in their hearts, is that they have so little light of Gospel knowledge in their mind. The further a soul stands from the light of truth, the further he must needs be from the heat of comfort.”

The joy of the Lord is abiding

  1. The Lord certainly does not want Christians to be joyless…John 15:11
  2. The joy He gives is “inexpressible and full of glory,” able to sustain us in the worst of circumstances…1 Peter 1:6-8
  3. Unlike the “passing pleasures of sin” (Heb. 11:25) which are fleeting
  4. Even the good things in life eventually prove to be “vanity” (Eccl. 2:10-11)
  5. Therefore He has made it possible for the Christian to say with Paul:Rejoice in the Lord always: again I will say, Rejoice” (Phil. 4:4)

A failure to remember those things graciously given us which make for joy in our lives can explain why some Christians do not have the degree of joy (gladness, delight) they should have.

  1. But Christians have every reason to be joyful.
  2. We just need to remember what it is that produces joy.
  3. Let’s review just a few…

SOURCES OF JOY FOR THE CHRISTIAN

  1. Joy is a consequence of faith
  2. Joy comes from having a confident trust (faith) in God…Philippians 1:25
  3. Without faith in God and Christ, we cannot experience abiding joy
  4. Why is faith essential to joy?
  5. It dispels the attitudes that prevent joy from occurring
  6. Such as worry (cf. Mt 6:25-30), doubt and fear (cf. Mt 14:27-31)

Since joy is based upon faith, this emphasizes the importance of the Word of God in producing joy…

  1. For faith comes from the Word of God… Romans 10:17
  2. The Word of God produces faith
  3. In turn faith produces joy… Romans 15:13
  4. The very teachings of Jesus are designed to give us joy… John 15:11; 17:13
  5. Thus, we see the need to read and study the Bible daily!

Joy is also the result of obedience

  1. Obedience to the Word of God fosters joy in the hearts of the obedient
  2. Notice the conversion of the Samaritans… Acts 8:5-8
  3. Also, the conversion of the Ethiopian eunuch – Acts 8:35-38
  4. And the conversion of the Thessalonians… 1 Thessalonians 1:6
  5. Conversely, disobedience dispels joy and produces fear!… Hebrews 10:26-27
  6. Could lack of joy be an indication of lack of obedience on your part?

Joy is based upon forgiveness

  1. The guilt of sin is a major reason why many people lack joy
  2. Awareness of such guilt causes stress, unhappiness, and worry
  3. Even as Paul illustrated in describing the condition of one struggling with the problem of sin… Romans 7:22-24
  4. But where there is forgiveness, there can be joy!
  5. Consider the 32nd Psalm of David
    • He introduces his theme by speaking of the “blessedness” (or joy) of one whose sins are forgiven…Psalm 32:1-2
    • He describes how the guilt of his sin affected him inwardly… Psalm 32:3-4
    • But at last he confessed his sin and was forgiven… Psalm 32:5
    • He describes the joy that the righteous (i.e., the forgiven) can experience… Psalm 32:10-11
    • The correlation between forgiveness and joy is also seen in Psalm 51:7-12
    • Today, those in Christ can enjoy forgiveness of sins and the joy that follows… Romans 5:1-2, 10-11
  6. If you have not yet received the forgiveness found only in Christ, there is no way to experience the abiding joy that comes only “in the Lord

Joy also comes from Christian fellowship

  1. It is a joy just to “see” such fellowship
  2. Paul experienced joy by witnessing love and fellowship in Philemon… Philemon 7
  3. He also found great joy in learning of the restoration of brethren… 2 Corinthians 7:7
  4. How much more, the joy of “experiencing” such fellowship!
  5. Paul rejoiced in the fellowship he had with the Philippians… Philippians 4:10
  6. John spoke of the joy that comes of Christian fellowship reunited… 2 John 12
  7. Are you developing and nurturing the kind of Christian fellowship that adds to our joy?

Joy comes from Christian service

  1. There is the joy of spreading the gospel
    • Barnabas rejoiced in the conversions at Antioch… Acts 11:20-23
    • The Christian Jews delighted to hear of the conversion of the Gentiles… Acts 15:3
    • There is great joy in seeing the spiritual progress of others
  2. This was a frequent source of joy to Paul
    • Romans 16:19
    • Colossians 2:5
    • 1 Thessalonians 3:6-9
  3. John wrote that this was the highest form of joy… 3 John 4
  4. One reason this is true is that those whom we have brought to Christ…
  5. Will not only be a source of joy for us now
  6. But especially in the day of Christ!… 1 Thessalonians 2:19-20
  7. Jesus also spoke of the “blessedness” (i.e., joy) of giving to others…Acts 20:35
  8. All those who are willing to become involved in serving the Lord, whether it be through teaching or the giving of one’s time, energy or money, will experience joy from such service!

CONCLUSION

The wonderful joy of the Lord is open to all who would receive it through such things as:

  1. Faith in Christ
  2. Obedience to His Will
  3. Forgiveness through His blood
  4. Fellowship with His disciples
  5. Service in His Kingdom
  6. And it is the kind of joy that can sustain us through life, as Nehemiah told Israel… Nehemiah 8:10

Certainly those who are born of the Spirit, who are walking in the Spirit, and are being led by the Spirit will be involvedin all these things, and as a consequence will bear the fruit of the Spirit which includes “joy”

Why not begin experiencing this joy today by…

  1. Obeying the gospel of Christ
  2. Receiving the forgiveness of sins through the blood of Christ
  3. Participate in the fellowship of Christian love as you work toward bringing others to salvation in Christ… Acts 2:38-42
Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment