“Fruit of the Spirit—The Joy of Christ”
Dan Brooks, Pastor
Introduction: Read Galatians 5:22-23
I. The Joy of God
A. Creation causes God to rejoice.
1. Ps 104:31 May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in his works
B. The Servant causes God to rejoice
1. Is 42:1 Behold my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights; I have put my Spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the nations.
2. In Christ, God finds His pleasure.
C. The Son causes God to rejoice.
1. See Matt 3:17 This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.
2. What does God see in Christ that gives Him such unparalleled pleasure?
a. Col 2:9 For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily
b. Heb 1:3 He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature
II. The Joy of Christ
A. Jesus Christ rejoices in the successful work of His Father.
1. Lk 10:21-23 In that same hour he rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows who the Son is except the Father, or who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.” Then turning to the disciples he said privately, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see!
2. rejoiced in the Holy Spirit: (ἠγαλλιάσατο)
a. “From ágan (n.f.), much, and hállomai (242), to leap. To exult, leap for joy, to show one’s joy by leaping and skipping denoting excessive or ecstatic joy and delight. Hence in the NT to rejoice, exult. Often spoken of rejoicing with song and dance”
b. So the Lord is “full of joy” as the KJV has it.
3. What makes Him full of joy?
a. The success of the Father in overthrowing darkness.
i. The disciples saw demons subject to His authority (17).
ii. I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.
iii. Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you.
iv. Many of these disciples would suffer and give their lives in future ministries!
v. Jesus sees beyond the immediate day when demons are cast out. He sees to the day that as Col 2:15 describes He will disarm the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him [or in it, the cross].
vi. He sees beyond the cross to a day that has not yet come, but is predicted in Revelation 12:8-12
vii. Re 12:7-12 Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them!”
viii. Jesus sees beyond the short-term success the seventy have just experienced and sees the successful establishment of his kingdom.
b. The success of the Father in growing disciples.
i. In the same hour He rejoiced in the Holy Spirit (21)
ii. He expresses gratitude to His Father, who is the Lord of heaven and earth, that He has hidden these things [particular truth] from the wise and understanding and revealed it to little children.
iii. He is rejoicing in things hidden and things revealed!
iv. He sees the perfect will of the Father unfolding in the lives of these disciples whom he likens to children!
v. They are discovering the true identity of Jesus Christ.
vi. Many of us take this for granted because we have known the identity of Jesus Christ since our childhood. But that is a testimony to the fact that you would not have known unless the Son had chosen to reveal Himself to you.
vii. At the moment they are enamored with spiritual power, but they recognize the source of that power: the demons are subject to us in your name.
viii. 23-24 “Blessed (happy) are the eyes that see what you see! For I tell you that many prophets and kings desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.”
4. Point: Seeing the successful plan of the Father to reveal His identity to disciples and to delegate His authority to them so that they might be successful in their ministry is the great joy of Christ’s heart.
a. What a thought!
b. Question: How do you think Jesus Christ feels when in your quiet time early in the morning you grasp something of what God is doing in the world to advance His kingdom and you get really charged out of it?
c. Don’t you think His joy is just as full?
d. Don’t you believe that He continues to pray things just like Luke 10:21-23 over you and me and every other believer on planet earth this morning?
B. Jesus Christ rejoices in the successful work of salvation.
1. Heb 12:1-2 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
a. Looking to Jesus: (ἀφοραο) “The word ‘looking’ is aphorao (ἀφοραο) ‘to turn the eyes away from other things and fix them on something.’ The word also means ‘to turn one’s mind to a certain thing.’”
b. What do we see in Jesus as we look at Him?
iii. Endured the cross:
iv. Despising the shame:
v. Seated at the right hand of the throne of God
vi. . . . We’ve left out a most important part . . .
vii. Who for the joy that was set before Him
2. Joy served as one of the great motivations of Christ through His suffering at the cross.
a. Ill.: I am always amazed at the human capacity for seeking moments of joy. Perhaps nothing illustrates this better than the endless pursuit of sports trophies. Athletes will train for years, disciplining themselves in diet and exercise for a moment of joy.
i. Most of us are content to watch as spectators and from a distance share in their joy.
ii. Who here did not watch with fascination as Michael Phelps swam his way into Olympic history in Beijing. The particular moment that stands out in my mind is the 100 meter fly when he nipped Milorad Cavic of Serbia at the wall, beating him by 1/100 of a second.
iii. Do you remember the look on his face when he realized he had won? And how many of you, like me, jumped from your seat in front of the television and shouted with astonishment and amazement and joy at what you had just witnessed?
b. Ill.: The mother who gives birth to a child.
i. After nine months of pregnancy, during which her body undergoes physical changes and intense strain, her life and likely her health will never be the same. And were men to survive the physical pain of child-birth and recovery that women endure, there would be far fewer children born than there are.
ii. Jn 16:21 When a woman is giving birth, she has sorrow because her hour has come, but when she has delivered the baby, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world.
iii. I am amazed at how many mothers say, “I would do it again if I could.”
3. χαρᾶς: joy, gladness, great happiness
a. Something was set before Him which moved Him to endure the excruciating agony of the cross.
b. A prospect of such weight and substance was set before Him that in comparison the temporary shame and dishonor of false accusations and execution on a Romans cross were things to be held as worthy only of contempt.
c. Joy was set before Him, but not joy of a trivial or fleeting kind. Joy that could never be diminished, never replaced by something of superior substance or value.
4. What joy was set before Him?
a. Certainly there was the joy of healing hundreds and hundreds of sick and infirmed people during His ministry.
b. Certainly there was the joy of miraculously feeding thousands of hungry people.
c. Certainly there was the joy of exorcising demons in demonstration of His sovereign authority in the spirit realm.
d. Certainly there was the joy of watching his disciples grow, of seeing people like Mary Magdalene, Matthew, and Zacchaeus transformed.
e. There was the joy of preaching the Gospel of the kingdom wherever he went.
f. But the joy set before Him was not limited to the earthly ministry because it was something that stood on the other side of the cross.
5. Jud 24 Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy.
a. Jesus Christ the great champion of redemption, the Lion from the tribe of Judah, the Lamb who was slain, will assemble a host of people from the nations. Their number will be so large that no man can number them, people from every tongue, tribe and family of the earth.
b. The unparalleled joy of our Savior will be to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy.
c. And as the assembly is presented, one thing will be overwhelmingly apparent: every single one of these people is blameless!
i. ἀμώμους: spotless, without blemish
ii. The Lamb without blemish has saved and preserved a people without blemish.
d. Point: This particular moment is what was always in view!
i. Eph 1:4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him.
ii. See also Eph. 1:4; 5:27; Col. 1:22; Heb. 9:14; Jude 1:24; Rev. 14:5.
e. What does Christ’s joy look like?
i. Is 62:5 For as a young man marries a young woman, so shall your sons marry you, and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.
ii. Zep 3:17 The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.
Zodhiates, S. (2000, c1992, c1993). The complete word study dictionary : New Testament (electronic ed.) (G21). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.
Wuest, K. S. (1997, c1984). Wuest’s word studies from the Greek New Testament : For the English reader (Heb 12:2). Grand Rapids: Eerdmans.