“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness…”
“Joy” is the second sign of the fruit of the Spirit in our lives. The word “joy” means a state of delight. The Spirit filled believer carries a sense of gladness. Spirit-filled believers living with joy do not depend on circumstances that go their way to keep their equilibrium because they have great confidence in God’s sovereign control of circumstances (Romans 8:28).
Joy is the sense of well-being that God is in control of all circumstances. That is why Nehemiah could say,
“Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10).
Joy is not happiness – the warm bubbly feeling in the self. Happiness depends on circumstances. Joy does not depend on circumstances, for it is the inner animation of the soul that is glad for God’s sovereign working in our souls. It is a sense of contentment in God’s dealings with us.
“These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full” (John 15:11).
“Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full” (John 16:24).
“And these things we write to you that your joy may be full” (1 John 1:4).
Joy is a character quality produced by the Holy Spirit that has a sense of wellbeing, knowing that all is well in God’s sovereign purposes in our lives.
Joy is a character quality produced by the Holy Spirit that has a sense of well-being, knowing that all is well in God’s sovereign purposes in our lives. Joy does not come from living a rosy bed of ease but knowing that God has all things in control. This joy comes from the Spirit-filled life.
“…for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Romans 14:17).
The Spirit filled believer carries joy in difficult circumstances. The fruit of the Spirit called “joy” does not depend on circumstances to orient one’s life. A person with joy is independent of negative circumstances because he knows that God sovereignly controls all aspects of his life (Romans 8:28).
“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls” (1 Peter 1:6-9).
In the face of rejection and hatred of men, Jesus went to the cross with a sense of joy because He knew He was in the plan of God.
“Yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will joy in the God of my salvation”(Habakkuk).
“But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You;
Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them;
Let those also who love Your name
Be joyful in You” (Psalm 5:11)
“Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, you righteous;
And shout for joy, all you upright in heart!” ( Psalm 32:11).
“You will show me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Psalm 16:11).
“Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
And uphold me by Your generous Spirit” (Psalm 51:12).
“…looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12:2).
God expects to fill each believer with joy. Is your heart full of joy? Jesus wants it full, not ½ full. Do you walk around in the Christian life with a full tank of joy? Peter says we can have “joy unspeakable” even in adversity (1 Peter 1:8). God wants us to have persistent and insistent joy (1 Thessalonians 5:16).
“Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4).
God Himself is blessed (1 Timothy 1:11). Since God is blessed, He wants His people to be blessed. A joy-oriented God wants joy-oriented people. If our hearts are without joy, it is our fault, not God’s. There must be something in our soul that short-circuits that joy. We must remove whatever hinders our joy by confessing sin. God will bring upon the television screen of your soul what it is. Come to the place where you can say, “I do not have anything between myself and God.”