FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT series - JOY
13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. 14 For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” 15 If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.
16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
The JOY of the LORD is YOUR Strength.
And Nehemiah continued, “Go and celebrate with a feast of rich foods and sweet drinks, and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the LORD is your strength!”
Ownership – HIS JOY not OURS
John 15:11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!
Biblical joy—the true joy—comes from filling the “spiritual void” with good relationships, primarily an intimate relationship with the One who is pure joy. Jesus put it this way: “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit” (John 15:5). That fruit includes much joy!
HAPPINESS HAPPENS BUT JOY ABIDES
Happiness is Based on HAPPENINGS
The Bible speaks much more often of joy than of being happy.
“Hap” means chance and is the root of several words— happen,
happening, haphazard (dependent on mere chance), hapless,
happenstance (a chance circumstance) and happy.
Happiness is a glad feeling that depends on something good happening. God wants you to experience happy times (as long as God approves of what is happening).
But His greater desire is that you have unconditional joy. Jesus said His joy would “remain in you” and “your joy no one will take from you”
Look at this...
5 “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. 6 Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. 7 But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!
8 When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.
9 “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. 10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!
HOW TO CREATE AN ATMOSPHERE FOR JOY TO ABIDE?
According to Galatians 5 JOY is something that is grown …..patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
Fruit is the natural produce of something that is healthy
“Fruit” is produced by a tree based on its nature and life within, but can and must be cultivated to bear fruit or much fruit
Contrary…..‘A machine in a factory works, and turns out a product, but it could never manufacture fruit. Fruit must grow out of life, and, in the case of the believer, it is the life of the Spirit (Gal. 5:25).
When you think of “works” you think of effort, labor, strain, and toil; when you think of “fruit” you think of beauty, quietness, the unfolding of life.’
Jesus came to give us “LIFE” and life abundant. Not a works program.
1. GET PLANTED
22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace,
SIMPLY PUT: “A Tree will not grow if it is not Planted...No planting No fruit.”
7. “But blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the Lord their hope and confidence. 8. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit.
2. STAY PLANTED – THE REMAINING PRINCIPLE
John 15:7 – remaining in him and His words remaining in you
REMAINING in HIM is characterised by a deliberate decision to NOT GO!
Tempted to walk away
Life gets a bit tough
Your feelings running out of control sometimes
Want to take the easy way out
Opting for excuses
Instead REMAIN - Choosing to obey
His WORD REMAINING in you – Trusting His Word through every circumstance
Your feelings may contradict His Word
Your circumstances may not always line up with His
However His WORD is not subject to your feelings and
His WORD is Truth, despite your feelings and
Hide the Word on your Heart ......
Confess the Word
Obey the Word
Live it out
You go in via His Word and His Word comes out via you.
3. RE “THE JOY”
Phil 4:24.. Rejoice in the Lord ALWAYS and again I say REJOICE..
• RE–JOICE Re–theJoy • Go over the Joy
• Your looking back helps you to MOVE forward. **
4 Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! 5 Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon. 6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. 8 Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honourable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.
Isaac Watts wrote “Joy to the World”
Vs 2 Joy to the earth, the Saviour reigns!
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.
17 Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines;
even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren;
even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, 18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation! 19 The Sovereign Lord is my strength! He makes me as surefooted as a deer, able to tread upon the heights.
4. WELCOME THE TESTS - GO TO THE HILLS
Cyclist – The real test of a cyclist is whether you can endure the hills.
The hills represent that TEST of your health and growth, just the same as TESTINGS and trials do.
“The Joy of the Lord is your STRENGTH....Deeper JOY, greater strength...
James 1:2 Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.
Corinthians 8:2 (NLT) 2 They are being tested by many troubles, and they are very poor. But they are also filled with abundant joy, which has overflowed in rich generosity.
You can be in physical pain, poverty, poor, homeless, but it doesn’t have to affect your JOY. Because you Joy is not dependant upon your circumstance but is dependant upon your God
Augustine writes....Joy not only does not come from favourable human circumstances but is sometimes greatest when those circumstances are the most painful and severe.
2 Cor 6
3 We live in such a way that no one will stumble because of us, and no one will find fault with our ministry.
4 In everything we do, we show that we are true ministers of God. We patiently endure troubles and hardships and calamities of every kind.
5 We have been beaten, been put in prison, faced angry mobs, worked to exhaustion, endured sleepless nights, and gone without food.
6 We prove ourselves by our purity, our understanding, our patience, our kindness, by the Holy Spirit within us, and by our sincere love.
7 We faithfully preach the truth. God’s power is working in us. We use the weapons of righteousness in the right hand for attack and the left hand for defence.
8 We serve God whether people honour us or despise us, whether they slander us or praise us. We are honest, but they call us impostors.
9 We are ignored, even though we are well known. We live close to death, but we are still alive. We have been beaten, but we have not been killed.
10 Our hearts ache, but we always have joy. We are poor, but we give spiritual riches to others. We own nothing, and yet we have everything.
Christian, no Joy no strength. The unspoken weapon of the Christian army is Joy. Lets put on the full armour of God, however let us understand where and whom our strength is found.
A person full of Joy is rarely offended.
A person full of Joy loves to worship.
A person full of Joy sees God in every circumstance
A person full of Joy is highly infectious
A person full of Joy loves to sing
A person full of Joy is a threat to the kingdom of darkness
A person full of Joy is tenacious in battle
A person full of Joy continues to love
A person full of Joy has many friends
A person full of Joy attracts the attention of God
A person full of Joy counts it a privilege to serve
A person full of Joy is a Joy to be with
A person full of Joy is strong because the Joy of the Lord is there Strength.