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The Joy of the Lord (2 of 4)
Luke 1:47, 48
Joy...what a word. We sing songs about it every year. Like...
- Joyful, Joyful, We adore thee - and
- Joy to the World
Indeed, Christmas should be a joyful time. Not because of the presents, not because of the trees, no, not even the food, although that makes most any preacher joyful, but because Christ brought us supernatural joy and planted it in our hearts.
Open your Bibles with me to the first chapter of Luke. Luke chapter one and lets read these two verses together. Verse 46 and 47 say,
Luke 1:46-47 (NASB95)
46 And Mary said: "My soul exalts the Lord, 47 And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.
She goes on to give thanks for God's consideration of her and of His promise to Israel. But whenever you see the word rejoice it means to "have joy in". God was the focus of her joy. God had visited her and her people.
If we skip down to verse 68 we see that Zacharias the father of the newborn John the Baptist breaks into prophecy and proclaims,
Luke 1:68 (NASB95)
68 "Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, For He has visited us and accomplished redemption for His people,
Redemption was the hope of Israel's depressed state. As we learn through our studies later that redemption is also the hope of the world's depressed state.
In Luke 2:14 we read,
Luke 2:14 (NASB95)
14 "Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased."
When Christ becomes our redemption we have peace between God and ourselves rather than destruction which was the inevitable result of mans sin.
Principal Rainy, of whom a child once remarked that she believed he went to Heaven every night because he was so happy every day, once used a fine metaphor about a Christian's joy. "Joy," he said, "is the flag which is flown from the castle of the heart when the King is in residence there."
So it is with great joy we come into this Christmas sea ...
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