Complete Joy

David Gaunt

“As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Now remain in My love.  If you keep My commands, you will remain in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commands and remain in His love.  I have told you this so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”  John 15:9-11

Joy is often too fleeting, or temporary.  But as we look in Scripture, we find that joy is something that God guarantees if we are rightly connected to Him (Galatians 5:22).  The problem lies with our responsibility to maintain that connection (John 15:4-5, 7).

According to Webster’s New World Dictionary, “Joy” is defined as, “1.) a very glad feeling; happiness; delight and 2.) anything causing this.”  According to the Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, “Joy” is defined as, “A delight in life that runs deeper than pain or pleasure.  From a biblical perspective, it is not limited by nor tied solely to external circumstances.  Joy is a gift of God, and like all of His other inner gifts, it can be experienced even in the midst of extremely difficult circumstances.”

I want to challenge you to approach the word "joy" a bit differently.  To see within it the acrostic: Jesus offers you. From the biblical use of the word, joy is ultimately and solely experienced through Jesus, in a personal relationship with Him.

As Jesus explained in John 15:9-11, we choose whether or not we continue to benefit from His love for us (or “remain” in His love).  We do this when we choose whether or not to obey Him.  He wants us to understand this so that we can daily experience His joy in us.

Jesus wants us to experience complete joy.  As you obey Jesus, you will find the joy only He offers to be stirred from within.  Here are just some of the things Jesus offers you:

    • Eternal life when you believe in Him (John 3:16).
    • Forgiveness of all sin when you believe in Him (Acts 10:43).
    • An eternal place to dwell with Him when you believe in Him (John 14:1-3).
    • The Holy Spirit to help you and be with you forever if you receive Jesus (John 14:15-17).
    • His peace when you trust Him and don’t give into fear (John 14:27).
    • A fruitful and eternally impacting life if you keep in fellowship with Him (John 15:5).
    • The ability to sacrificially love others as He has loved you (John 12-17).

As you pursue joy in your life, remember the unique and priceless things Jesus offers you.  Dwell on His words above in John 15:9-11.  See if you can add to the list I started.

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