- Joy is something altogether different from happiness. The word “happiness” in Latin is Fortuna. This is where the English word “fortune” comes from. For many people, happiness truly is dependent upon their fortunes or circumstances.
- As Christians, we are not to live pursuing the fickle state of happiness, but rather, we are to live in a constant state of joy. In fact, the apostle Paul encourages us, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice” (Philippians 4:4).
- The word “rejoice” can best be understood as a call to “return to the source of our joy”. So, for the Christian, true joy comes not from what we experience in life, but from our relationship with the Giver of abundant life (John 10:10).
- Nehemiah 8:10 declares, “the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Do you feel weak and overwhelmed by life today? Look to the Lord. He is the source of all joy.
- Psalm 16:11 says of the Lord, “You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” These aren’t subjective experiences we hope for, but objective realities to be found in a relationship with the Lord.
- Furthermore, we are told in Philippians 3:1-9 that rejoicing in the Lord is a “safeguard”. From what? From false religions and systems of works based righteousness. These pursuits are joy robbers as they offer no ultimate assurance of salvation. Paul says real spiritual joy is only found through faith in Jesus Christ.
- Are you looking for something more than mere happiness? If so, trust in the Lord. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope” (Romans 15:13).
For more information on the Christian’s basis for joy, please check out the Apologetics Study Bible for Students, available in our online store.