Be Joyful and Rejoice in the Lord!

Posted: 1st November 2012 by Sam McDonald in Topical

You know I really struggle with what to talk about when Pastor Scott gives me the opportunity to speak here Thursday nights. So, the first thing I do is worry about it for a few days, and then when the worrying doesn’t quite do it for me, I pray about it for a few days, then I worry and pray. You say Sam if your praying about it don’t worry just go with what the Lord gives you. Well that would be just great if He didn’t always put right in front of me my own struggles as Christian! The first time I was up here I talked about us being a pillar with Jesus Christ as the foundation and to be honest most of the time I struggle with being that pillar. The last time I was up here I talked about good Christian conduct. And again a lot about my struggles conducting myself as a good Christian. I’m starting to feel like this is one big confession booth! So after a lot of worry and prayer tonight’s message is no different, I’m just going to stand up here and talk about me!
Tonight our subject is Be Joyful and Rejoice in our Salvation!
So, I thought it would be appropriate to share with you a 30 min portion of my everyday life.
So the other day I’m driving to work its a 30 min drive, and I’m thinking to myself I can do this no problem, I’ve done this 4,500 times its only 30 min. not to mention it’s a great time to spend with God. So I’m singing songs of praise and worship, which I’m sure if you were with me you’d be asking me, are you sure that’s praise to the Lord Sam? Ok, so I’m not a Jay White or a Cyndi Gertinburger. By the way how about those two and the dew et they sang on resurrection Sunday?
So here I am thinking about God and what He wants me to do for the day, and what I can do for the Lord today. I’m really rejoicing in the Lord and the day He has made. You know one of those normal North Idaho day’s, the rain coming down dogging pot holes, you know the routine. But like I said I’m there man, no one around just me, praising God, and I’m sure Gods looking down on me saying good job Sam, what a guy, I need more people just like you! (joke)Then BAM without notice or warning it happens!
My peaceful drive to work has been compromised. No, a deer didn’t jump out in front of me, I didn’t hit an Elk or a Moose, I didn’t even hit a huge pot hole and have the front end of my car come apart, and I didn’t crash. No it was much worse than all of that.
Yes, you guessed it, a car pools out in front of me at Trestle Creek. No they couldn’t wait 15 seconds for me to go past, they just had to pull out, and to top it off they seemed to have miss placed the gas pedal! AAAA I can’t believe it, this person just ruined my whole day! So much for praising God and Rejoicing in the Lord! Now I have to complain about this guy all the way to work, thanks a lot for that! Then I start asking God for help. God could you please just have them pool over so I can get around? And I know what God’s answer is because when we get to the long straight away’s where I can pass, there is always someone coming the other way!.
Ok I don’t think I’m really that bad, but I’m sure Eydee would probably tell you different; now that we commute to work together. But really has anyone else ever done this? Here I am praising the Lord and in one breath and in the next I’m cursing someone because their interrupting my life. Why are we like this? Why do we let the littlest things take away from our relationship with God. Because you know that’s what we’re doing right. It could be anything, you could be in Wal-Mart shopping, praising God and Rejoicing in the Lord, Oh thank you Lord for Ketchup your so awesome God, we have all this food, we cant afford , but it’s here. And then you get to the dreaded checkout line! At this point your still praising God maybe singing songs to yourself or if your Allen your whistling (out load). And before you know it the checker is telling the person in front of you their whole life story! And you go from praising God to, can’t they make a date and go talk about this some other time? I’m in kind of a hurry here, can we move it along.
You know what’s sad? We all do this, and it’s over the littlest things. But They’re people out there that have real trials, real struggles, real hurts and real pain and they don’t have the Lord! They don’t have the slightest idea who Jesus is or what He did for them no clue at all. And then on the other hand here we are, we know the Lord, we know what He did for us, we have salvation. And yet we don’t take full advantage of what He has to offer us. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that when times are bad we just completely quite rejoicing in the Lord and praising God. Actually I think its quite the opposite. How many of you here when times are tough just give it to the Lord and Praise God? Really, I mean we have people stand up every Sunday and either give praise to the Lord or ask for prayer, giving it to God, and asking us to give it to God with them. But that’s not what I’m talking about here, that’s not what I struggle with. What I’m talking about those little times in our lives, the times that make up our lives, because to be honest a lot of us don’t have big trials in our lives. A lot of us, we just live peaceful quiet lives, So you would think that it would be easy for us to be praising the Lord all the time. Well unless you have teenage girls! I’m sure there are some exceptions.
So here’s the thing. Who does it hurt if I want to curse someone to myself while driving to work? Who does it hurt if I want to complain to myself about the checker at Wal-Mart? They cant see or hear my thoughts. No it doesn’t hurt them. You know who it hurts. It hurts you and me and most importantly it hurts our relationship with the Lord. Because when we’re complaining we’re certainly not rejoicing. Right? You know what I’m talking about right? When your mind gets so consumed with what someone or something is doing to you at that time. I’s all you can think about. That’s how it is for me anyway. And have you ever noticed how it’s easier and easier to get up set over smaller and small things when your in this state of mind not praising God, not being thankful. Like here I am the guy has pulled out in front of me can’t find the gas peddle, ok I’m fine I’ve had my fit now I’m going to just get back to thinking about God. And then guess what he finds his gas peddle and speeds up! You think I’d be happy about that oh no, now I have to be upset because he’s driving to fast. At this point this guy cant do anything right! Is it because of him. NO its because I don’t have my eyes on the Lord. I’m thinking about me, and only me. I’m done rejoicing in the Lord at that point! Has anyone here ever felt like that? You guys are probably thinking to yourself, we should start a little driving prayer group for Sam… I’m really going somewhere with this ok…
Now most of you have been here for Pastor Scott’s study about salvation and can we loose it. And I think we can all agree that once you have salvation you can’t loose it right? Once you have faith in your heart and God looks down and say’s here you go Sam, here is My Holy Spirit to teach you the truth, that’s it your saved man. There’s no turning back now, right? We talked about this. We talked about being adopted into the Kingdom of God. We talked about how once you had that heart changing experience there is no returning your ticket, no never mind God I was just kidding. None of that.
But here’s the thing, Although we can’t give it back we do have a choice of what we want to do with that salvation once we receive it, once we’re adopted into the kingdom. So, tonight I don’t want to focus on the outward Christian that we are, I want to focus on that inward Christian that leads to that outward Christian. Because, that inward Christian can lead to an outward Christian that is loving, caring, helping, leading others to Christ and having other people saying, “I want that”. Whatever that person has in their life show me. Or, that inward Christian can lead to an outward Christian that is scared, worried, complaining, the never happy kind of Christian that other people say, “if that’s being a Christian I’ll stick to my own plan because I don’t want any of that.
And I personally think it all comes down to one thing.
I think it comes down to Rejoicing in the Lords salvation. Not just rejoicing in the Lord and I don’t mean to say JUST Lord, because isn’t it enough that Jesus went to the cross for us? Isn’t it enough that He was beaten and spit on? And that’s just the beginning of what He did for us. Jesus endured the wrath of God for me! For my stupid mistakes, for my sins, my shortcomings as a human being. Jesus Saved me from the depths of Hell and He delivered me to My Heavenly Father! Is that something to rejoice about? You better believe it is. When I was putting this message together I was praying that Lord if there is anything you want me to see here, let me find it. If there’s something you want me to learn Lord let me learn it. Because when you do something like this you really have to dig deeper. So beside learning that I have zero patients while driving or in Wal-Mart. I learned this, that Salvation has more then one meaning. I learned that when someone in the bible is rejoicing in their salvation, they know exactly why they’re rejoicing. They knew that they had been saved and delivered. Saved from what? Death, Hell, Eternal separation from God, witch by the way I believe would be Hell. Delivered to what? God! Our Heavenly Father. At that very moment you receive salvation you are saved and delivered.
If you look up the word Salvation in the Webster it says this….
SALVATION, n. L. salvo, to save.
1. The act of saving; preservation from destruction, danger or great calamity.
2. Appropriately in theology, the redemption of man from the bondage of sin and liability to eternal death, and the conferring on him everlasting happiness. This is the great salvation.
Godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation. 2Cor. 7.
3. Deliverance from enemies; victory. Ex. 14.
But I think the Easton’s Bible Dictionary describes it best.
This word is used of the deliverance of the Israelite from the Egyptians (Ex 14:13), and of deliverance generally from evil or danger. In the New Testament it is specially used with reference to the great deliverance from the guilt and the pollution of sin wrought out by Jesus Christ, “the great salvation”
So you say wait a min Sam, I get that it means saved, and I get that it means delivered, but didn’t you just read that you’re deliverance is from the guilt and pollution of sin? And didn’t you say early that we are saved from Death, Hell, and Eternal separation from God? And that we are delivered to our Heavenly Father? That’s exactly what I said. That’s what really made me look at this and this is the point I want to make, this is what makes this so important.
We could have just been saved right? We could have been just delivered right? We could have just been saved from sin and pollution and God could have went on His merry way. We could have been delivered from the guilt and pollution of sin and God could have went on His merry way Right? Well Thank God we have a wonderful and merciful God. That didn’t JUST save us. He Delivered us. He didn’t just take us a way from it. What does it mean to be delivered? It means your taken somewhere and put there! When we received our Salvation God took us and put us! He took us from or destination of Hell and He put us in His Loving presents. How about we rejoice over that? How about we let that consume our every thought.
Lets look at some more people rejoicing in their salvation
What about Hannah in
(1Sa 2:1)
And Hannah prayed and said: “My heart rejoices in the LORD; My horn is exalted in the LORD. I smile at my enemies, Because I rejoice in Your salvation.
It wasn’t enough for Hanna to say “My heart rejoice in the Lord” no she also rejoiced in His Salvation! She was rejoicing because she was SAVED, DELIVERED, delivered from what? From death! Delivered to what? Life!
So is our salvation something we should only rejoice in sometimes? Paul thinks we should be rejoicing always.
(1Thessalonians 5:16)
Rejoice always,
(1Th 5:17)
pray without ceasing,
(1Th 5:18)
in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
(1Th 5:19)
Do not quench the Spirit.
Do you think there is a chance I was quenching the Spirit while driving to work praising the Lord and then turn and curse someone because they got in my way? I dont think the Holy Spirit appreciated being interrupted. Because if I hadn’t interrupted the Holy Spirit it may have went a little more like this. No problem man thanks for slowing me down a bit. Now I have a little more quiet time to just rejoice and give thanks and praise to the Lord. Or to the cashier at Wal-mart, take your time, I’m praising God. Sometimes I’m sorry we have such a polite God. He just sits back and say’s oh you want to talk, this should be good. I don’t think we realize what we’re giving up when we go from rejoicing to complaining.
I’m not saying that we’re bad Christians when this happens, I’m saying we’re missing out on what is a true blessing. I mean think about it, God says to rejoice always right? So if we’re not rejoicing the chances are we’re complaining, or finding something to be upset about. And I’m not saying because things aren’t going exactly as you may have planned in your life that your not rejoicing in the Lord. Paul says in 2nd Corinthians
(2Co 6:10)
as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.
If we’re praying we’re rejoicing, if we’re giving it to the Lord, we’re rejoicing, If we’re loving on a brother or sister in the Lord we’re rejoicing, if we’re helping a stranger in a time of need we’re rejoicing. We rejoice all the time! except when we’re not! Remember it’s the little times of not praising God that add up.
Another verse Psalms 35:9
And my soul shall be joyful in the Lord; IT SHALL REJOICE IN HIS SALVATION.
This is all inward stuff man! My soul, my heart! That’s what it’s all about, that’s what determines the kind of outward Christian we are. Because it does come out. You might not think it does but it does. You might just drive a little closer to that car, you might give a sigh out load at the checker at Wal-mart. You might get home and complain to your wife or husband about all the terrible people. But we don’t have to do or be like that. What if we all decided today that no mater what we’re going to praise God every second of everyday. What is stopping us from doing that? Here’s the answer…. US is stoping us. What else could it be? Is it the Holy Spirit in a bad mood? Did the Holy Spirit wake up on the wrong side of the bed? Is He just feeling a little feisty? I don’t think so! Is it Satin? I guess it could be, but there’s a better chance that its US not letting the Holy Spirit lead us. Again I think it comes down to us rejoicing in our salvation.
Pastor Scott said last week if you see a lot of something in the bible then you better believe it’s important. Did you know that the word rejoice is in the bible 188 times and Salvation is in the bible 156 times? So I believe rejoicing in our salvation is very important. I believe it has a lot to do with the type of Christian we are. Thank about it if we’re not rejoicing in our Salvation, what is there to share with a non believer? How are you going to share your faith if your not rejoicing? Oh hi I’m a Christian, do you want to be one to? Or are you going to be like, Man I was saved by the blood of Christ! I was dead but now I’m alive man! I was sentenced to an eternity in Hell, but my saviour Jesus Christ set me free and delivered me to and eternal life with Him. I’m a Christian do you want to know Christ too? I mean that’s what we have to hang our hat on! Salvation! From death to Life! We’re not dead and we never will be dead! That’s something to rejoice about right?
Let’s look at another verse..
How about this one…
Isaiah 61:10
I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, My soul shall be joyful in my God; For He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments, And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
Cool!! I mean Really how cool is that? “He has clothed me with garments of salvation.” why would we not remember this every second of everyday? Why would we let some petty little thing take that place in our heart, even if it is only for a minute or two? Think about it. That’s what’s in your heart at that time that moment. God see’s that and I’m telling you it hurts your relationship with God. I said YOUR relationship with God, not God’s relationship with you. God is always going to love you be there for you take care of you, and help you. It’s me and you that steps away and let’s a moment of anger or disappointment or frustration take the place of praising God and having that relationship with Him. Even if it is for just that very moment. But remember what I said earlier, it’s about the moments that make up our lives, all the little moments that we don’t let the Holy Spirit lead, all those moments that we take control. Does anyone here have those moments, I do, And I’m sad to say I have them often, way more often then I would like. And the funny thing is I’m in control of that! Not the person that cuts me off, not the checker at Wal-mart, not my wife or my kids or my parents.. I’m in total control weather I rejoice always or not rejoice always. To rejoice or not to rejoice. Haven’t I heard that somewhere before? I know that we will alway’s have those little moments in our life when we take our eyes off of Jesus. But if we could even cut a few of them out of our lives, how much more would we be praising God and rejoicing in our Salvation? How would that change us as a Christian? What would that make your outward Christian look like?
I’ll end with this verse from Psalms.
(Psa 13:5)
But I have trusted in Your mercy; My heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.
Trust in Gods mercy and rejoice in His salvation. Because when we excepted Christ He saved us and put us. He saved us from a firey death and delivered us to our Heavenly Father. From death to life. If we can just keep our focus right there. We will always be rejoicing in the Lord. Amen?