Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe. Philippians 3:1
The conclusion of our faith is extreme gladness in the Lord. He is our constant reference to bliss. We are unconditionally blessed because we are in the Blessed One; we are unconditionally righteous because we are in the righteous One. We have been begotten as the sons of God because we are in the Son. We are beloved of the Father, unconditionally, for we are in the Beloved. He is our reference; what is true of Him is true of us as well. If we draw our conclusion from this, our mental disposition will be that of infallible joy.
What we are in Christ is surpassingly more glorious that we have ever imagined. We are to be completely satisfied with Him; He is the all-sufficient One and in Him, we are qualified for God’s best. In Paul’s epistle to the Philippians, he mentions that it is not grievous for him to repeat that it is in the Lord, Christ Jesus, that we are to rejoice. Joy is serious business in heaven.
Joy is not due to the absence of adversity; rather, joy is the presence of God. It is the fruit of the indwelling of Jesus Christ. He has enabled us to participate in His joy. If you knew what happened when you rejoice, you will rejoice every day. We share in the blessedness of the Godhead and when we rejoice, it is the expression of our confidence in God. Trusting the Father is the beginning of total and complete rest. You cannot trust God without being joyful. If you choose to remain in a distressed state of mind, it is the evidence that, irrespective of what you may claim, you are still holding on to the circumstances you claim to have trusted God with. The quality of this Christian life you will experience is determined by whether you will trust God or not. Joy is an indicator of our trust.
But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God. Acts 20:24
The Apostle Paul wrote to the Philippians from a wide range of experience. He knew what it meant to experience security as a result of rejoicing in his union with Christ. Concerning the challenges which he knew were ahead of his apostolic ministry, he said “none of these things move me” (Acts 20:24). He had such a resolve because he had committed himself for the sake of serving others with the knowledge of Christ. Like the Apostle Paul, we all have a course predetermined by the Father for us to run. We ought to be making evident progress in our course and it will require joy to make progress in the midst of opposition.
The term “joy” is translated from the Greek word “chara”, which is the same root terminology as the term “charis”, from which is translated the term “grace”. Grace refers to all that the Godhead has freely conferred unto us by joining us in union to Christ Jesus. “Chara” refers to that attitude, mental disposition and even the emotion of possessing all. In Christ, we have all-sufficiency. We lack nothing. The believer in Christ has no unmet needs, irrespective of the bank statement or bills. In Christ Jesus, you are blessed; you always have all; you are always above all. You have been so fully supplied by His grace that you are able to participate in every good work.
When we express that certainty of what Christ has bestowed to us in grace, it is called rejoicing; but, that nature within through grace is what is called joy.
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