the things concerning the kingdom of God..."
THE KINGDOM OF GOD
JOY OF THE KINGDOM
“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and
peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost”
The Kingdom of God is joy!
Can joy be found in the world today?
Certainly. But just as there
is more than one kind of righteousness and more than one kind of peace, there is
more than one type of joy. A
Swedish massage or the sensual pleasures of sex are examples of physical
joy. There is also a
superficial soulish joy experienced by
every man, woman and child on earth irrespective of whether they be saint or
sinner, moral or immoral, or what god they serve.
It is the joy of children playing, the joy of a loved one coming home,
the joy of a wedding, the joy of a newborn baby, the joy of the amusement park
and the dance floor, the joy of delightful children who are an honor to their
parents, the joy of accomplishment and recognition.
Soulish joy is often a religious
joy inspired by the singing of peppy choruses over and over and the clapping
of the hands. There is nothing
wrong with such joy, but if it can be “worked up” it is soulish, not
spiritual. While such expressions
of praise and thanksgiving may be done “as unto the Lord” they should not be
confused with the joy of the Kingdom of God.
What, I ask, do melodious quartets, robed choirs, sweet-sounding
instrumentals, hand-clapping, foot-stomping, guitar strumming, singing and
shouting and dancing have in common with the transforming glory that radiated
from the countenance of Jesus Christ, the Son of
God, before whose dazzling presence and blazing majesty John the apostle fell
as one dead on the isle of Patmos? While
these manifestations may be wonderful experiences of the soul delighting itself
in the Lord, they are not worthy to be compared with the surpassing glory of joy in the Holy Ghost — the
JOY OF THE KINGDOM! I
think that in the presence of the
supernal and ineffable glory of God’s Christ that John witnessed on the mount
of Transfiguration and on the isle of Patmos, the beat of the music would fall
deathly silent, every tongue would cleave in dumbness to the roof of its mouth,
every song would be mystically hushed, every hand would hang limp, and all faces
would fall as dead men before the wonder of His glory and the majesty of His
power. Silence would mysteriously
impose itself upon the soul and all soulish
joy would appear but crude expressions of unskilled dissonance.
Many good things bring soulish joy to our lives, but none of these have
any relationship to the Kingdom of God. You
see, the Kingdom of God is not merely joy — it is joy IN THE
HOLY GHOST! It is God’s joy.
It is heaven’s joy. It is
divine joy. It is spiritual joy. It
is joy unspeakable and it is full
of glory. We are the people of God, His chosen elect in the earth to
accomplish His Kingdom purposes. We
are the vessels that contain the Spirit of God.
We are the embodiment of God’s Christ.
To have a conscious revelation of what Christ is in us arouses the
consciousness of the Kingdom of God. When
we walk in the Spirit we are walking in the mind of Christ and in the power of
the Kingdom of Heaven! “For as
many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons
of God” (Rom. 8:17). The sons of
God are also called “the sons of
the Kingdom” (Mat. 13:38). When
the Holy Spirit rules us, what other son could we be?
The Spirit of Christ has come to rule our senses and our body.
Christ is being raised up within us as the personality and power of our
lives. We can now live and walk
above every storm and trouble, above all weakness and limitation, yea, above
even sin and death! Tears are wiped
away from off all faces and sorrow and sighing flee away as the Kingdom rules
our lives! It is here that we know
and experience the profound and eternal spiritual
joy that is the Kingdom of God!
Joy is the sentiment and feeling of the man who, by virtue of the
indwelling of divine life, shares the emotions of God Himself.
God is spirit, therefore the
emotions of God are spiritual.
God is the eternal God and His Kingdom is everlasting.
His joy, therefore, is constant, unaffected and unmoved by the changing
course of events, for it has as its source the unchanging God.
The Lord joys in His own perfections, unable as the perfect One to
rejoice in anything less than the perfect.
By spiritual birth and divine nature man is enabled to share the joy God
has in Himself, unmoved by the swirling currents of ever-changing events in the
Often today we see the bumper sticker proclaiming “Happiness is...”
and whatever the natural man relishes is added to those words.
Only with the mind of the spirit may we discern the deep truth that happiness
is the distorted Self’s substitute for joy.
Happi-ness is related to happen-ings.
It depends on the nature of the happenings around man, whether they
please him, suit his fancy, and meet his soulish standards and physical
cravings. If they do, then he is happy.
If they run cross-currents with the desires of the Self, then he futilely
wishes that they would unhappen, and caught in that vice of circumstances he becomes unhappy. As someone has said, “Life becomes a desert following the
mirage of happiness, a fantasy where all people, events, and even God are doing
what the individual man wishes them to do.
Happiness is the ultimate of the distorted ego, the harmonizing of all
the self-willing Self.”
Malcomb Smith has aptly written, “In this futile pursuit (for
happiness) man will change jobs, neighborhoods, countries, wife or husband, and
even his religion. But all that he
finds is a passing emotion described as ‘the passing pleasures of sin’ (Heb.
11:25). Proverbs describes this
kind of happiness as the burning of kindling sticks.
It blazes and then is left as a heap of ashes.
So man lives in the ashes of the brief moments of happiness.
He is bored, complaining and unthankful.
The attitude toward life in the darkness trains men in unthankfulness.
Every detail of life that does not fit into the framework of self is the
subject of complaint. In fact,
complaint becomes the basic language of the lie.
With some it has become their only language and way of life, passing all
moments through the grid of their distorted self, expressed in a tirade of
complaint. The inhabitants of the
darkness are withered humans, mere ghosts of what they were created to be.”
Joy, on the other hand, can only be known through relationship with God.
The sweet singer of Israel intoned it in these words, “Thou wilt show
me the path of life: in Thy presence there is fulness of joy; at Thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore” (Ps. 16:11).
In union with God the sons of God share the joy that God has in Himself!
The Lord never changes or fluctuates in any way.
He IS. “I am that I am.”
Nothing can influence or affect God in any way.
The Lord is never upset, disturbed, frustrated, complaining, or in
despair due to any happening of events. He
is sovereignly in control of all things in the heavens and in the earth, and
works all things after the counsel of His own will.
All things were created by Him and for His pleasure, and all fulfill His
will and accomplish His purpose. In
the unaffected, indestructible, infinite joy of His divine nature He rejoices in
all His ways and works! This is the
joy of the Lord! This is the joy of
the Kingdom of God! As we come into
harmony with the mind of Christ and the will of the Father we learn that God is
always in control, that nothing can happen outside of God’s will, that all our
steps are ordered of the Lord, and that everything God does in us is to further
our growth and development in Him. How
He does this in each of us is His business!
It is more than obvious that if we were perfecting ourselves we would
often choose a different course and with our limited knowledge and immature
wisdom would make a mess of it, protecting those very things that need to be
dealt with and conveniently by-passing the most important lessons to be learned.
But once we truly embrace His way, His will, and His time, we are
undergirded with that eternal joy that endures the cross, despises the shame, and prevails
to be highly exalted, seated with Christ Jesus the Lord on the throne of divine
glory and universal power!
Jesus bequeathed this joy to His disciples.
“These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you,
and that your joy might be full” (Jn. 15:11).
“These things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy
fulfilled in themselves” (Jn. 17:13). The
first thing that strikes us in this passage is the claim of Jesus to the
possession of joy. He speaks not of
the joy that was His in the morning tide of life when He romped with youthful
abandonment over the hills of Galilee, before He set out on His seemingly
impossible mission. Nor was He
looking back to the joy that was His in the early days of His sonship ministry
when eager and enthusiastic multitudes first thronged about Him.
He speaks of joy as a present and abiding possession.
Though He is even now under the shadow of the cross, though suffering and
death are blowing their chill breath in His face, though His whole life now
seems to be falling in ruins about Him, He is yet able to look at it all with
confident eyes and rejoicing heart. He
sees as the Father sees, He knows as the Father knows, for He is the first manifested Son of God. The
song in His heart cannot be hushed! The
joy that has characterized all His yesterdays is with Him still.
And what a deep and satisfying joy that is! It is the joy of sonship to
God! It is the joy of the eternal
Spirit! It is the joy of the
Kingdom of God! It is not the joy
of emotions worked up by singing a chorus twenty-five times amid passionate
exhortations to worship — it is rather joy
rooted in divine calling, divine knowledge, divine purpose, divine will, and
divine nature. The joy of Jesus was
not happiness dependent upon happenings,
or stirred emotions, but a new kind of
joy, a higher dimension of joy, a deeper current of joy, the joy of the Kingdom
The story is recorded of saint Francis of Assisi, how on one winter day
when he and brother Leo were walking along the road to Assisi from Perugia,
Francis called out to Leo in the bitter cold, telling him what perfect joy was not.
“Brother Leo, even if a Friar Minor gives sight to the blind, makes the
lame walk, drives out devils, gives hearing back to the deaf,
and restores speech to the dumb, and what is more brings back to life a
man who has been dead four days, write that perfect joy is not in that.”
Brother Leo in great amazement asked him, “Father, I beg you
in God’s name tell me where perfect joy is to be found!” And
Francis replied, “When we come to the Portiuncula, soaked by the rain and
frozen by the cold, all soiled with mud and suffering from hunger, and we ring
at the gate of our Friary and the brother porter comes and says angrily: ‘Who
are you?’ And we say, ‘We are two of your brothers.’ And he contradicts us saying, ‘You are not telling the
truth. Go away!’
And he does not open for us, but makes us stand outside in the snow and
rain, cold and hungry until night falls — then
if we endure all of those insults and cruel rebuffs patiently, without being
troubled and without complaining, and if we reflect humbly and lovingly that the
porter really knows us, oh, brother Leo, write that perfect joy is to be found
The joy of Jesus’ disciples could never, under any circumstances,
become unjoy, it was more powerful
than all the sorrows that could assault it.
Its source and reality was in the unchanging God.
Their joy was not rooted in their possessions, location, circumstances,
human relationships, or favors bestowed upon them. At times they suffered persecution and loss of all things,
they were hated, maligned, and even put to death.
But they did not retaliate, complain, or go about with a persecution
complex. They did not simply endure
— they rejoiced! “For ye had compassion of me in my bonds, and took joyfully
the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that ye have in heaven (the
realm of the spirit) a better and an enduring substance” (Heb. 10:34).
Ah, these followers of Christ had discovered a new reality, not one of earthly things and values and happenings,
but the life of God Himself and the glory of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth.
This better and enduring substance is Christ raised up within us as our
very own reality! It is not
something out beyond the stars to be obtained after we die, but the heavenly
realites within the spirit in our inner man.
This is the same joy in the Spirit that Habakkuh expressed: “Although
the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour
of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be
cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: YET WILL I REJOICE IN THE LORD, I WILL JOY IN THE GOD OF MY SALVATION!”
(Hab. 3:17-18). Such a lifestyle
and language of joy does not just happen. To
come up on mount Zion, to reign with Christ as the sons of God, is to follow Him
whom God has “anointed with the oil of
gladness above all Thy companions” (Heb. 1:9). This wonderful oil of gladness flows from Christ the Head to Christ the body.
The oil of gladness is the anointing of the joy of the Kingdom of Heaven!
It is the joy that belongs only to the sons of God!
I think that many who read these lines are, through the deep dealings of
the Father, coming to know this joy of the Kingdom in a very real and
precious way. Those who have received the call to sonship, those who have
experienced the strippings and purgings,
those unto whom the Lord Himself has come as a refiner’s fire and as
fuller’s soap, those elect ones who have followed on to know the Lord,
know experientially what I am talking about!
Oh, that men would awaken to the truth that the Kingdom of God is joy in the Holy Ghost! Oh,
that men might see where reality dwells! Oh, that men’s eyes might be opened to see that their
search for joy in the things of the earthly body and the outer world is but to
chase rainbows and grasp the emptiness of bubbles in their hands!
We must beware how we compare the Kingdom of God
with earthly kingdoms, lest we thereby not merely see what blessings are
to be expected in a kingdom, but come to expect blessings of a similar nature in
the heavenly Kingdom. God’s
apprehended ones have come to the place in their experience where they know that
the blessings and benefits of the Kingdom of Heaven surpass those of earthly
kingdoms as the heavens are higher than the earth!
God has now blessed us with all spiritual
blessings in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus!
He is blessing us with blessings of life and immortality, the wisdom of
the Godhead, the knowledge and understanding of heavenly things, the
righteousness of the Holy One, the peace of God that passeth understanding,
authority and power over the nations and all things, and the eternal joy of the
A man may feel that he is safe as to many things, but what can he know of
absolute safety and permanence till he has experienced incorruptible life? What
can he know of any of the blessings of the subject till he becomes subject to
Christ? Is not the liberty, the
security, the plenty we know on earth very shadowy and precarious, until we
possess the eternal reality and substance of these in Christ?
Until we possess that security which has heard the gates of the city of
God shut behind, and has found the feet standing on the heights of Zion; which
can view every circumstance without fear or apprehension, knowing whose will it
is that is done in the army of heaven and among the inhabitants of earth; that
security which is secure in the blessed knowledge that greater is He that is for
us, than all that can be against us; that liberty of the sons of God wherewith
the Son of God makes us free from all that would overcome us or drag us down
from high apprehensions of our calling in God; when He gives us entrance into
the wide and lasting love of God, bringing us to the very radiance of His
countenance and the brightness of His glory; that plenty which is supplied by
the fullness of the Godhead within us, for it is no longer I that liveth, but
Christ that liveth in me; the righteousness, peace, and joy of a Kingdom where
there are no unknown or forgotten masses, but where the King knows all and rules
by personal inward life over each; which provides enlightenment of mind, renewal
of heart, salvation of the soul, quickening of the body, supernatural strength
and every grace that is needed to bring us unto the measure of the stature of
the PERFECT MAN. Ah, this is
the power and glory of the Kingdom of God!
The joy of the Kingdom consummates in the joy of the Son in the sons.
There is a dimension of joy that can only be known by the manifested
sons of God. God has anointed
Jesus with the oil of gladness above all His brethren, but the fullness of His
joy is known by those who are made one in
Him. In this regard Paul
Mueller wrote, “There also is a travail of spirit that relates to the
appearing of Christ to His people. Jesus
said, ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the
world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned
to joy. A woman when she is in
travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered
of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born
into the world. And ye now
therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice,
and your joy no man taketh from you’ (Jn. 16:20-22).
“The sorrow Jesus spoke about in the last verse is the sorrow that
occurs when we are no longer with Him. After
Jesus spoke these words to His disciples, He was later taken by the soldiers to
be crucified. Then He was buried,
and was raised from the dead by the power of God.
The disciples experienced sorrow because He was taken from them.
But Jesus said to them, ‘I will see you again, and your heart shall
rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you.’
Their sorrow was replaced with joy (in part) when the Holy Spirit was
given to them on the day of Pentecost. Even
so do we long for His appearing and His presence.
Although we know He is ever with us, we groan within as a woman with
child during her travail and sorrow, longing to be more fully and completely
joined to Him. And our joy is full
when we experience those brief but wonderful times in His presence.
“But there is coming a greater fulfillment of the joy Jesus spoke
about. Indeed, we look forward to
that glorious morning when we shall be forever joined to the Lord in the glory
of the manifestation of the sons of God. That
will truly be the spiritual experience that will make our hearts rejoice with a
joy no man can take from us. When
that new morning dawns and we are fully born again of the Spirit, we shall
rejoice with His super-abounding joy. We
will remember no more the former times of intense processings
that brought us where we now are in God.
Every test and trial, which we remember now as being very difficult and
trying, will be forever forgotten, to be replaced with a kind of joy which we
have never yet experienced. Then
our times of anguish and sorrow will be replaced with the ‘joy
that a Man is born into the world.’ The
joy of the world is temporary and leads to death.
But the joy of the fullness of the kingdom of God, which we shall share,
will be permanent and will lead us to life everlasting.
When that new creation ‘man’ is born into the world, our service to
the Lord and His kingdom will then be complete.
Then the whole creation will be set free from its severe bondage to
“The new Day of the kingdom of God on earth has already begun! This is the Day of the birth and manifestation of that new
‘man.’ Some of us have already
seen the beginning of this new Day, which began at evening time during spiritual
darkness, and which shall become much more glorious when the morning dawns.
We have also seen the dawn, for Father has given us a foretaste of the
glory and freshness of that new morning to come”
I cannot emphasize too strongly that the joy of the Kingdom of God is not
dependent on outward appearances or circumstances.
“Rejoice, and again I say, Rejoice,” says the apostle Paul.
Paul was in prison when he penned these encouraging words.
“Your joy no man taketh from you,”
Jesus promised, and He was within a few hours of the excruciating agony of the
cross when He said it. But it must
be the real thing and not counterfeit. This
joy of the Kingdom is not an easy-going optimism that refuses to face facts.
It is not the starry-eyed Charismatic joy that thinks there is to be no
more trouble, suffering, or travail, that only health and prosperity and
blessings galore are the right of every child of God.
Kingdom joy is not a pretended mask which hides a sad heart, courageous
as that may be. Nor is it callous
indifference to the suffering around us. It
is the real joy which comes from
union with the Infinite and Eternal and from the deep knowing that all is in our
Father’s loving hands; that, come what may, things have not got out of hand;
that He is working perfectly to bring forth His highest in every situation, and
so it will be whether we understand it or not.
Let us hear with our hearts what the Lord Jesus says of the joy of the
Kingdom of God. “These things
have I spoken unto you, that my joy might
remain in you, and that your joy might
be full” (Jn. 15:11). He
speaks of this joy as abiding —
a joy that
is never to cease or be interrupted for a moment or disturbed by anything.
“As sorrowful, yet always rejoicing,” are the words of the apostle Paul.
These precious golden words teach us how Kingdom joy overrules the
sorrows of this world, makes us sing through tears, and establishes in the inner
depths, even when the outer man is cast down by disappointment or difficulties,
a deep consciousness of a joy that is unspeakable and full of glory.
Only with the pure joy of the Kingdom can the scripture be fulfilled in
us, “Count it all joy when ye fall
into divers temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh
patience” (James 1:2-3). Only
with the living joy of the Kingdom can we “think it not strange concerning the
fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:
but rejoice, inasmuch as ye are
partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when His glory shall be revealed, ye
may be glad also with exceeding joy”
(I Pet. 4:12-13). There can be no
doubt that the saints in Thessalonica had received a foretaste of this Kingdom
joy when Paul wrote to them, “And ye became followers of the Lord, having
received the word in much affliction, with
joy in the Holy Ghost” (I Thes. 1:6).
Some time ago brother Bennie Skinner preached a message on joy so
powerful, so beautiful, that I feel to share a portion of it with you here.
The rest of this teaching will be the words of brother Skinner.
“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and
peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost”
(Rom. 14:17). The Kingdom of God is
not in externals — not in what you eat, what you drink, what you put on, what you take off,
where you go, what you do — but the Kingdom of God is
righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy
Ghost. That should give us a
clue as to how to get joy. Paul
tells us in Galatians 5:22, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy,
peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance...”
If you don’t have joy, guess who can give it to you.
The Holy Spirit! So why don’t you just let go and let that joy that is down
deep within the Kingdom of God within you, come forth! Think about this: Joy is one-third of the Kingdom of God!
So if you think I’m not preaching the Kingdom when I speak of joy,
you’re wrong. Joy in the Holy
Ghost is a third of the Kingdom — for
the Kingdom of God IS righteousness, and peace, and joy!
In the book of Nehemiah we read the story of how the people of Israel
were rebuilding the wall and the city of Jerusalem under the leadership of the
prophet Nehemiah. And he told them,
“This day is holy unto the Lord your God; mourn not, nor weep. Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink
the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this
day is holy unto the Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the Lord is your
strength” (Neh. 8:9-10). And
today, as then, the joy of the Lord is
your strength! The joy of the
Lord is attractive. You like to be
around people who are joyful! You
don’t like to be around complainers, you don’t enjoy being around judgmental, critical people, you would rather not be
around people who are always fearful or worried about something, you don’t
want to be around people who are always down and poor-mouthing about everything —
You like to be around people who are happy!
“Happy is the people whose God is the Lord” (Ps. 144:15).
I don’t think that any of us has even scratched the surface yet of
having the joy of the Lord.
I’m reading a book called IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF JESUS. It is written by Bruce Marchiano, the movie actor.
He is Italian. It’s a great book. It
will touch your heart as it touched mine. He
also plays the role of Jesus in a four-hour film called THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO
MATTHEW. Bruce is a devout
Christian, so are the director and
the people on the set. It is a
wonderful film and I urge you to get it. It’s
expensive, but get it — it’s a treasure. He
plays Jesus, the man of joy!
He found the joy of the Son of God.
He found it by studying the life of Jesus, by acting out the role of
Jesus. He was Jesus in the movie
and it challenged him as he had never been challenged.
He went on his face before God and begged God to let him see people like
Jesus saw them, to let him feel like Jesus felt, to let him have joy like Jesus
had. He sought God for it, and God
gave it to him. I think that is one
of the greatest movies the world has ever known, greater than THE TEN
Did you know the Bible says of the firstborn Son, that as a son He was
anointed with the oil of joy above all His brethren?
(Heb. 1:8-9). How do we
always picture Jesus? We see Him as
the King in His majesty. Everything
is done serenely, with dignity and with order.
His hands are always well manicured, His robe is spotlessly clean, His
sandals unsoiled, His hair meticulously groomed, His demeanor perfectly
controlled. I believe Jesus was
first and foremost a man.
He was brought up in the carpenter shop of Joseph until he was thirty
years of age. He handled rough
timber and worked with crude tools compared to the sophisticated machinery we
have today. It was grime and dirt
and sawdust. He had calluses on His
hands, and He didn’t look anything like the sanctimonious pictures you see of
Jesus. But do you know what they
have left out of Jesus’ life? They
have left out JOY. I believe Jesus
laughed a lot! I believe He smiled
a lot! Oh, I know that He wept and
that His heart broke for people in their sorrows, far greater than we have even
imagined. He saw them as sheep not
having a shepherd. He wept over
Jerusalem, saying, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets,
and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy
children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye
would not!” (Mat. 23:37). He was
a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.
I believe Jesus experienced the whole spectrum of human emotions.
But preeminently I believe He had JOY!
There was something about Him that was joy unspeakable and full of glory.
He was full of the Holy Ghost and joy is a fruit of the Spirit.
The joy of the Lord can be yours in spite of your circumstances, in spite
of your poverty, in spite of marital problems, in spite of bereavement, in spite
of the loss of friends, in spite of all the persecution you get.
Above and beyond it all, you can have the joy of the Lord!
He IS this joy — notify your face! Tell your
face that you have the joy of the Kingdom of God within you and let it reflect
that joy upon your countenance. I
don’t have any use for a spirituality that the body doesn’t get involved in.
If you’ve got the real thing it will affect your body.
We all know the Kingdom affects our spirit, and we know it affects our
soul, but if it affects the spirit and soul, will it not also affect the body? When you truly have joy your whole being will be caught up
into the joy of the Lord.
David prayed in the 51st Psalm, “Restore unto me the joy of Thy
salvation.” He prayed that
because he had sinned against God with Bathsheba.
He took her away from her husband, Uriah, and when she got pregnant he
called Uriah out from the battlefield and tried to send him home to his wife so
he would think the baby Bathsheba was carrying was his own.
That didn’t work, so he sent Uriah to the battlefront, into the heat of
the battle, where he would be killed. He
did get killed, and David took Bathsheba to be his wife.
Then God sent the prophet Nathan to the palace, he shook his bony
prophetic finger in David’s face and
said, “You’re the man who has committed this dastardly act — you’re
the man!” Faced
with his sin, David lost the joy of the Lord’s salvation. He didn’t say, “Restore unto me my salvation,” but he said, “Restore unto me the joy of Thy
salvation.” Sin in your life will
rob you of the joy of the Lord! When
you don’t walk with the Lord, when
you don’t seek the Lord, when you
don’t turn to the Lord, when you
don’t trust the Lord, when you
don’t obey the Lord, you lose your
joy. God never takes His joy from
us, but we can lose it.
The joy of the Lord is your strength!
Do you want to be strong? Then
be filled with joy, for joy is your strength!
What can the devil do, what can sin do, what can the flesh do, what can
the world do to a son of God who is filled with the Holy Spirit and has the joy
of the Lord in his life? Nothing.
NOTHING! You say, “Give me
I need a deep word, I want a deep
revelation.” This IS deep! This is about as deep as it gets because the Kingdom of God is joy in the Holy Ghost!
This is reality. This is where the rubber meets the road.
We’re not interested in
high-sounding phrases, lofty doctrines, or great revelations anymore.
I thank God for revelation, I’ve received abundance of revelation, but
I want what has been revealed TO me to be revealed IN me.
I want what is revealed IN me to be revealed AS me. And joy is part of it. Joy
is one-third of the Kingdom of God! That’s
“Thou wilt show me the path of life: in Thy presence is fullness of
joy; at Thy right hand are pleasures for evermore” (Ps. 16:11).
Do you want to know how to have fullness of joy?
Come to the realization of HIS PRESENCE.
Why don’t people have Kingdom joy?
Because they think God is away off up in the sky somewhere, on some
distant planet, or in an invisible realm someplace other than right here inside
of us. The
Kingdom of God is within you! God
dwells in you! You are the temple of God!
You are the habitation of God through the spirit!
Be aware of the presence of God, sanctify the Lord God in
your heart — and
in His presence is fullness of joy!
Most of us don’t even know yet what real joy is.
We know very little about joy. I’m
not talking about joke-cracking, back-slapping, hilarity.
I’m not talking about fun and foolishness.
I’m talking about real joy.
I’m talking about joy that is joy anywhere, any time, all the time; joy
when you wake up in the morning, joy when you go to bed at night, joy when
everything is going wrong, and joy when everything goes right.
There is a joy in the Lord that no matter what the circumstance is, no
matter how dark or hopeless things appear, no matter how our world seems to be
falling apart, there is a joy in the Lord that undergirds and gives stability in
the face of hell itself. I have to
walk in that joy. I have to
manifest that joy. Because I have
learned that THE JOY OF THE LORD IS OUR STRENGTH!
“Beautiful for situation, the joy
of the whole earth, is mount Zion, on the sides of the north, the city of
the great King” (Ps. 48:2). When
we live in this high realm of the Spirit where we are filled with the joy of the
Lord, we live in mount Zion, we are citizens of that heavenly city and that holy
mountain — and
we are the joy of the whole earth!
There is no people in the whole earth that has joy like the people
that dwells in mount Zion. Mount
Zion is the governmental realm of God. It
is the seat of His sovereignty and His Kingdom.
It is the center of His authority and His power.
Where do you live? What is your
residence? I live at 777 Hallelujah
Avenue. My phone number is Jeremiah
33:3. “Call unto me, and I will
answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.”
I live in mount Zion, so I am the joy of the whole earth!
When I enter a room where everyone is sitting troubled, sorrowful and
dejected, I start talking. I start
radiating. I start shining. In
a little while the whole atmosphere in that room changes because I came in
there. You say, “GOD came in
there.” That’s what I said!
He came in there in me. You
ought to have seen what God was doing in there before I got there! Nothing.
It’s like the old farmer that bought a farm.
The farm was run down and dilapidated, the fences were broken down, weeds
had taken over, everything was in disrepair and disarray, it was in terrible
shape. After three years of toil
and labor the old farmer had everything in beautiful shape.
One day the preacher came by, looked over the farm, and said, “Brother
Brown, the Lord has certainly done a great job on this farm!”
Brother Brown replied, “Yeah, but you ought to have seen it when He had
it all by Himself!” You see,
beloved, God doesn’t do anything apart from us.
We are the temple of God. We
are the priesthood of the Lord. We are the saviours
on mount Zion (Obadiah 21). We
are the kings upon His throne. We
are the body of Christ. We
are the arm of the Lord and the instrument of His hand.
We are the government of God
upon mount Zion — the joy of the
whole earth! We are ordained to fill the whole earth with the joy of the Lord!
There is no other source of joy,
of the Kingdom of God, for the peoples of this earth!
“The fruit of the Spirit is...joy.”
Someone says, “I don’t really have that much joy.
I can’t just conjure up
joy.” Nobody wants you to conjure
up anything. You say, “I can’t
pretend to have joy when it’s not there.”
Nobody wants you to pretend, either.
“I can’t put on a front.” Nobody
is asking you to put on a front. “I
can’t believe I have something I don’t really possess.”
Well, you have joy whether you
believe it or not! It’s deep
within you. Joy is a fruit of the
Spirit, and the Spirit is within you. The
Kingdom of God is within you. The
Kingdom of God is joy.
It’s joy in the Holy Ghost. You
need to get in touch with it through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Cry out to God for joy! It
is at hand. It is accessible. It
is abundantly available. It is in
the Kingdom of God within you. The
promise of God is sure, “To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto
them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for
mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might
be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, THAT HE MIGHT BE
GLORIFIED!” (Isa. 61:3). May God
perfect your joy today!
Directory If you would like to receive
these studies write to: J. Preston Eby All writings are
distributed on a free-will basis. Homepage |
Elwin's Directory | Margit's Directory |
J. PRESTON EBY
P.O. Box 371240
El Paso TX 79937-1240
If you would like to receive these studies write to:
J. Preston Eby
All writings are distributed on a free-will basis.
Homepage | Elwin's Directory | Margit's Directory | Ministry Links