THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT – JOY (4)

Bible Reading: Psalm 45:1-17

I intended to wake up this morning and write on the third aspect of the fruit of the Spirit – peace, but that all changed as I lay in bed. I was suddenly overcome by a deep sense of joy, and the Lord reminded me of a verse in Psalm 45. In the old King James Version Psalm 45:1 reads, “My heart is inditing a good matter”. The word “inditing” is so uncommon that it is does not even figure in my digital dictionary. It is an old English word. The Hebrew is “rachash” and its English meaning is “to gush”. Still a little confused? In the KJV margin there is an alternative meaning, “bubbling” and in the NKJV it is “My heart is overflowing”. Here is uninhibited joy!

Psalm 45 celebrates a royal wedding and is a love song. It is known as a Messianic psalm because it prophetically describes the Messiah’s future relationship to the church – His Bride. Is there any day more exciting than a wedding day when the heart bubbles over with joy?

Sometimes I struggle with the cold, logical, thought through Christianity that seems to be without passion or emotional joy. Where worship is more of a matter of spectating than bubbling over, and the emphasis is more on what Jesus has done for me than focusing on Jesus Himself.

Have you ever been among the passionate fans at a soccer match? Some years ago, I was at the English cup final watching Arsenal, the team I have supported since childhood. When Arsenal scored there was most the passionate moment I have ever known outside of following Jesus. Tens of thousands of Arsenal fans were on their feet in moment with their hands in the air, shouting for joy. A short, stubby man sitting next to me went wild with delight. He turned to me and picked me up off the ground, shouting, “We scored! We scored!” That was real mixture of passion and joy. The next morning, I went to church, and it seemed so quiet, dull and lacking in passion.

God’s people in heaven will join with the angels in joyful and passionate worship of King Jesus. They will sing and dance and shout and Jesus will be the focus of attention. Let’s practice for heaven now on earth!

Questions:

Why do you think it is that people can be some animated and passionate at a soccer match, but not so passionate about Jesus?

What are the pictures of Christ in Psalm 45 and of His Bride, the Church, in Psalm 45:13-17. Compare these verses with the marriage feast of the Lamb in Revelation 19:6-8 & 21:2.

A Prayer:

Lord, stir my heart today. Set me free from a religion that is simply logical and based on human wisdom. Let my heart bubble over with joyful excitement in your presence. Restore to me the joy of your salvation. In Jesus’ Name, Amen