Joy Is An INSIDE Job
Rejoice in the Lord alway [always – pantote] and again I say, Rejoice. – Philippians 4: 4
From the context of this Scripture, you should be able to see that joy is not only available temporarily to the born-again believer who renews his or her mind and walks accordingly, but it is available ALWAYS. Also, notice the word ‘Rejoice’. It is used twice in this verse. It means "to rejoice, be delighted or pleased, to be glad" -- [A Critical Lexicon And Concordance To The English And Greek New Testament -- Bullinger]. If the verse said "Have joy in the Lord", it would have a different meaning. But if you can have joy always, it means over and over again. That’s what it means to REjoice.
We should all understand that the law of believing is one of the most important laws written in the Word of God. [See The Law Of Believing, Parts 1, 2 ,3] The following verse mentions this subject and also the subject of joy.
And having this confidence, I know that I shall abide and continue with you all for your furtherance and joy of faith [pistis – believing]; – Philippians 1: 25
Faith is the word pistis in Greek and it means ‘to believe’. If you believe God’s Word, you will act upon it.
Even so faith [believing], if it hath not works [action], is dead, being alone [by itself]. – James 2: 17
Going back to Philippians 1: 25, we see that we can have joy in believing. JOY is available to every believer who acts upon the Word of God.
I have mentioned that joy is an inside job. What exactly does that mean? Let me use an analogy here to clarify this point for you.
You can wash your hands thoroughly, but you cannot wash your hands throughly. Think about this for a moment. We can clean only the outside surface of the hands by washing them. However, we cannot clean the outside and the inside of the hands. Simple enough? Now there is the world’s counterfeit of joy that is fleeting and it is called happiness. This is mostly an outward appearance of being in a good mood because something good may have happened to you. Happiness is a temporary state of mind – it does not last very long in most cases. We can say that happiness is something that affects mostly the OUTWARD appearance and is temporary. Joy is something that is inside – permanent and not fleeting. You can take this inside job and repeat it over and over again. That is why we, as believers, can rejoice. I have never heard of the term rehappy. Let’s look at the next verse in Philippians.
That your rejoicing may be more abundant in Jesus Christ for me by my coming to you again. – Philippians 1: 26
Here we see the term rejoicing again illustrating the fact that we can have joy repeatedly because it is an INSIDE JOB and is permanent unlike happiness. Is there anything wrong with happiness? No, not at all. However, it is best to be able to combine it with joy. Now you have the full package that God intends for you to have.
In chapter two (2), God working with Paul, inspires him to write the following that pertains to our subject of joy. He is exhorting the believers at Philippi to work together with unity of purpose, with the love of God, likeminded, working with one goal taking priority in their minds and their actions and that is to move God’s Word and not be distracted by worldly desires. Paul is telling these believers how he would feel if they would listen and carry out what he is exhorting them to do.
Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. – Philippians 2: 2
Paul is saying as a leader: ‘If you listen to me, you will fulfil my joy.’ These believers can help Paul experience great joy if they adhere to the revelation that he has received from God. Because if they do, everything will fall into it’s proper place.
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. – Matthew 6: 33
Seek anything else first and everything will be subtracted from you.
There are many ways you can acquire joy and one way is through godliness. Godliness is your true and vital spiritual relationship with God. The more of God’s Word you know and apply, the stronger this relationship will be and the greater joy you will experience in your life. If you would like to learn more about godliness, you can refer to our teaching on that subject.
According as [he by] his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to [his own] glory and virtue. – II Peter 1: 3
When you allow God to work within you, a tremendous thing happens. You will be doing His Will. Don’t you want to do God’s Will? Don’t you think that the Creator of life knows the best way to live it?! He will teach you how to enJOY life to the fullest.
For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. – Philippians 2: 13
Getting into a more advanced understanding of this verse, notice the word ‘will’. I was once taught that this is referring to three (3) of the nine manifestations mentioned in Corinthians: Word of Knowledge, Word of Wisdom, and Discerning of Spirits. These three manifestations are the eyes and the ears of the church. Now take note of the word ‘do’ in the above verse. This is referring to three (3) more manifestations of Holy Spirit: Faith, Miracles, and Gifts of Healings. When you are born again of God’s Spirit, nine (9) manifestations are available to you. Six are mentioned in this verse. Do you want to experience joy? Operate the manifestations of Holy Spirit. God can blow your mind. The other three manifestations of Holy Spirit are Speaking in Tongues, Interpretation of Tongues and Prophecy. I can be in the darkest place, spiritually, and when I speak in tongues, I am immediately at peace. Don’t try to completely understand this with your five senses, you’ll never get it. Believe (i.e. act) and then you will see. God says it - that settles it.
God wanted someone to talk to and to love Him out of free will. God never possesses or controls anyone. He never forces a person to do anything. When you are born again of God’s Spirit, God in Christ lives within you.
In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through [in] the Spirit. – Ephesians 2: 22
I can still remember the first time this verse was explained to me – by whom – where I was – and when. It was almost 37 years ago. That’s how much impact that verse has on me. We were made, formed, and created by God Almighty for this reason. If that doesn’t give you joy in your heart, you’re simply not understanding God’s Word yet. Study, study, study – God will absolutely show you. We were meant to live by God’s Word.
Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear [respect] God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. – Ecclesiastes 12: 13
Isn’t that amazing? For those of us who believe and understand this, we are truly blessed – and yes, full of joy. How can you not be?
What shall we say then to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? – Romans 8: 31
You tell me. If God Almighty is for us, who in the world can be against us? No one. If the present God of this world tries to bother you, you should rejoice. (There’s that word again). It means you are doing something right.
Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. – I John 4: 4
The word ‘them’ is referring to all the negatives – everything that emanates from this present evil world. God’s Word says you have overcome them. Who is the ‘he’ that is in you? It is the Christ in you, the Spirit of God in Christ in you. That’s what is greater. Who is the ‘he’ that is in the world? That’s Satan who presently controls this world. God says you’ve overcome it all. There is only one thing that defeats the god of this world and that is the rightly divided Word of God. That is the only thing that changes people. Speak the Word to people. If they believe it and act upon it, they will change. And they will begin to experience JOY and God will bless you also.
This subject of joy could be taught from an abundance of Scriptures and Biblical accounts. Let us go back to the epistle of Philippians since joy and rejoicing is mentioned quite often. Maybe God did that so I can teach this teaching.
Look at the context of chapter two. It talks about many positive aspects pertaining to guidance and instruction.
That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation [generation], among whom ye shine as lights in the world; – Philippians 2: 15
Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy, and rejoice with you all. For the same cause also do ye joy [do ye also joy], and rejoice with me. – Philippians 2: 17, 18
In verses 17 and 18, joy and rejoicing is mentioned twice. You never see God using the word ‘happy’ or any of its derivatives. When you walk by the Spirit of the true God, then and only then will you experience joy.
Now what happens if someone tries to take away the joy you are experiencing and the devil himself will try to do just that. Let me give you a real life example.
I have certain hobbies and one of them pertains to old jukeboxes. All has been going well with this hobby lately. Combine that with the application of God’s Word and I have joy. Remember this: YOU ONLY GET HURT WHEN YOU ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE HURT. I wrote to a questionable seller on an auction site with a very simple question. He is only about 12 miles away from me. He has an item up for bid that I might be interested in. It’s a manual and he wants near $10.00 to ship it!!! A red light goes on in my head but I feel him out before I get burnt or involved. I ask him if I can pick up the small manual. Now this place ships jukeboxes – I know this for a fact.
It takes about 3 days for him to answer me. He writes: "Sorry, I only ship the small stuff. I would have to charge you extra for the time, etc. Also, everything is prepackaged."
What a mass of organized confusion. The guy really told me he’s a crook and his feedback comments justify it. Sure I was tempted to write back, but the guy is obviously not coming from the right source. There are TWO ways to look at this. Allow the adversary to provoke you and make you write something back. OR let God teach you that this person DID YOU A BIG FAVOR by telling you everything you need to know. Very often, you need to avoid the adversary. Keep away from fellowshipping with darkness. You see, I learned to NEVER get involved with this person in any way. He put it in writing for me. This is the way God can turn any negative into a positive for His people. It can rattle your cage to know that people like this are out there, but they are and always will be until Christ returns. I’m trying to stay on the subject of joy, but I must tell you what God’s Word says about evil people and their works.
But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons. – Colossians 3: 25
You may escape man’s justice, but you cannot escape God’s justice. It doesn’t matter who you are. This auction seller has truly hurt and ripped off many unsuspecting buyers. Do you see how fortunate I am to learn this before there were any entanglements? THAT BRINGS ME JOY. It’s too bad that people CHOOSE the world’s way because they only bring destruction upon themselves. To me, Colossians 3: 25 is one of the greatest Scriptures in God’s magnificent Word. If everyone believed this Scripture and lived accordingly, there would not be one problem on the face of this earth.
There is a major difference between vengeance and self defense. Let God Almighty teach you how to discern the two. Let me say in layman’s terms: The smart man or woman walks away, but it’s a tough pill to swallow. It’s God’s job to seek vengeance, not yours. Let God crush your adversary. Don’t react to the enemy’s methods and devices so you can keep your peace and stay joyful. Thus saith the Lord:
Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. – Romans 12: 19
You do what the Word of God says for you to do and do not fellowship with darkness – stay away from evil people and stay away from anything that even tends to make you negative. [See II Corinthians 6: 14 and Ephesians 5: 11]
Do you know how we are supposed to be living? I guarantee these three (3) Scriptures will blow your mind.
For that which I do I allow not: but what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. – Romans 7: 15, 16, 17
Do you know what the abundant life really is? It is waking up every day and doing exactly what you want to do. Now tell me that is not joy. Once you learn enough of God’s Word, God will then teach you how to live life in the fast lane – how to live life to its fullest. You will stop doing the things you hate to do and start doing the things you really want to do. You can only achieve this with an accurate knowledge of God’s Word. How do I know this? God’s Word tells me.
For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. – Hebrews 4: 12
The Word of God is a critic of the emotions and ideas of the heart. The Word will cut out the old man thoughts and the new man will prevail. God will show you what you want and should be doing with your life. Let me tell you something people, if God Almighty, the Creator of the heaven and the earth, is showing you how to live, believe me, YOU WILL EXPERIENCE JOY. And joy is an INSIDE JOB – it’s permanent. You will have it for all eternity. The accuracy of God’s Word and its magnificence is yours if you so choose. Then no one, I mean no one or anything can take your joy away from you.