Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.…
The gospel takes hold of every string in human nature. The beginner only plays on the central octaves of the pianoforte, while the master hand makes the seven octaves discourse music in their turn. Joy is soul elation, or the feeling of extreme pleasure. There are certain conditions when that string is touched by the hand of truth.
I. THE JOY OF CONVERSION. Relief from the burden of sin, and finding the pearl of great price. After Philip explained the matter, the eunuch went on his way rejoicing. No one can contemplate the fact that Christ is slain for His sins, and is risen for His justification, without experiencing a sense of happiness (Acts 8:27-40). See also the account of the conversion of the Philippian jailer, and Lydia. Joy from a sense of safety is not the highest type, but very real.
II. THE JOY OF CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP. When friends meet, there is a reciprocal feeling of esteem (Acts 2:40-47). Two old Peninsula veterans accidentally met after a separation of twenty years. Words could not depict the beaming faces. It was the joy of esteem. Whenever the apostles met their brethren there was joy: Paul, the prisoner, was full of happiness in anticipating to see the Philippians again.
III. THE JOY OF SERVICE. God loves a cheerful giver. There was great joy when David collected the funds for the building of the Temple (1 Chronicles 29:9). Greater still was the joy of the redeemed in building the walls of Jerusalem (Nehemiah 12:43). God must be served with gladness.
IV. THE JOY OF PROSPERITY. The Christian has no prosperity apart from the kingdom of Christ (Luke 15:10). The father made a feast because the lost had been found. The visit of Philip to Samaria was blessed abundantly. "There was great joy in that city" (Acts 8:8). The gospel is "good tidings of great joy to all people." The more souls are saved the more the joy of the Church (Luke 10)
V. The joy of special revelation. There are moments of supreme happiness given to all good people, such as the time of the Transfiguration. The happiest moment in the life of the Christian is the last, when the servant is dismissed his present service in peace, and advancing towards the crown. One word of caution — see that the right motive produces joy. There are superficial influences of a charming nature, but without depth or worth. "Our rejoicing is this, the testimony of our conscience." When conscience says, rejoice, we are safe. It is a joy that will continue evermore.
Parallel VersesKJV: Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.