Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Joy, 5of7

~ Christ’s Joy and His Sorrow ~

Christ’s Exceeding Sorrow (in view of the Cross)  ~  “Then they came to a place which was named Gethsemane; and Jesus said to His disciples, ‘Sit here while I pray.’  And He took Peter, James, and John with Him, and He began to be troubled and deeply distressed.  Then He said to them, ‘My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death.  Stay here and watch.’  He went a little farther, and fell on the ground, and prayed that if it were possible, the hour might pass from Him.  And He said, ‘Abba, Father, all things are possible for You.  Take this cup away from Me; nevertheless, not what I will, but what You will’” (Mark 14:32-36). 

Christ’s Exceeding Joy (in view of His glory)  ~  Jesus Christ in giving the parable of the lost sheep said, “And when he [the shepherd] comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’  I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance” (Luke 15:6-7).  Jesus also said, “Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents” (Luke 15:10).  “Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Savior, Who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever.  Amen” (Jude 24-25). 

Observation  ~  Our Lord and Model Jesus Christ was willing to sacrifice the temporary to gain the permanent.  We are asked to do the same—“to die daily” to our own selfish interests and instead “take up our cross daily” in light of eternity.  Someone has summarized the path to JOY this way: 
Jesus First,
Others Next, and
Yourself Last.

~ Robert Lloyd Russell, ABUNDANT LIFE NOW

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