Bible Study Notes:

Spiritual Weapons:

# 11 JOY


These notes are from a transcript of the postings during Bible Study on Thursday Nights at 8 PM at Bible Study Chat at churchusa.com.
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Praise the Lord! Thank you Jesus for such a good group. Bless them all! Father God we bless your Name and give you praise! We rejoice that you've given us your Word to guide us, and our Teacher, the Holy Spirit, to make it real to us. Jesus we glorify your name, our Savior, our Redeemer, our Lord, Head of the Church and our soon coming King! Even so come Lord Jesus. Holy Spirit prepare our hearts to receive the Word with thankfulness and JOY, and help us focus and retain what you give us tonight.

Servant - Holy Spirit we invite you presence in this chatroom and all the hearts represented here teach and touch our hearts this night in Jesus name amen

satan you are a defeated foe, a liar, a worrier, and we bind you and rebuke you and cast you out before during and after this lesson in the mighty name of JESUS.

So Father here we are, sitting at Jesus feet, seeking your FACE and enjoying your presence. We worship you. In Jesus Name AMEN and AMEN

OlePappy - Thank You Father fro joy in Jesus name. AMEN

First, a brief review from last time. For those of you who are new, we're doing a series of lessons on spiritual warfare that grew out of our study of Ephesians 6.

Last time we talked about weapon #10 Holy Anger. Anger is an emotion given to us by God. Like any emotion, it can be used in a right way or a wrong way. We get angry when we don't get "our way", when someone doesn't live up to "our expectations", when someone offends us, and so forth. And we usually "explode" and say or do things we regret later. This kind of anger does not bring about the kind of right living that God desires.

The BEST way to handle this type of anger is to be prepared in advance not to take offense in the first place. That saves A LOT of grief for everyone concerned. But if you do feel yourself beginning to "fly off the handle", calm yourself quickly and deal with the problem in a godly way. Forgive, ask forgiveness and go on.

Then we discussed the topic of Holy Anger or Righteous Indignation. We need to get angry at what angers God - the wiles and stratagems of the devil that is manipulating those who go out of their way to irritate, offend or harm us. As well as the crafty plans the devil has to make US offensive or take offense where none is intended.

When you get a glimpse "behind the scenes" of the spiritual warfare going on in heavenly places, it can not only set you free from strife with your brothers and sisters in Christ, because you understand what is behind it, but can also be your motivation to wage war against your TRUE enemy, satan and his demons.

That brings us to Weapon # 11 - Joy. How is Joy a weapon? The Bible says that "the joy of the Lord is your strength". It gives you power and energy to defeat a particularly devilish weapon: worry and the habit of worry, which is anxiety. Along with that, JOY overcomes grief, which can also drain you of spiritual power and bring about doubt and fear. Let's look at this verse in context.

Nehemiah 8:8-12 They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people could understand what was being read.

Nehemiah said, "Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is sacred to our Lord. Do not grieve, FOR THE JOY OF THE LORD IS YOUR STRENGTH."

The Levites calmed all the people, saying, "Be still, for this is a sacred day. Do not grieve." Then all the people went away to eat and drink, to send portions of food and to celebrate with great joy, because they now understood the words that had been made known to them.

This occurred after the people of God had been returned from exile in Babylon (about 700 BC) and had rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem. The priesthood (Levites) had been re-established and SINGERS had been appointed. The people had been without God's presence for many years, and had been full of grief and worry.

They had not heard the Law, or the Word of the Lord, read and did not understand much about God. But now the Law was read to them, and they received it with great JOY. The JOY of knowing the Lord again overcame their grief.

Notice that the Levites (spiritual leaders) told the people to be still and calmed them BEFORE they were filled with joy. If you are fretting and worrying, it keeps you from being joyful. You must be still, calm down, get rid of that fretting and worrying before JOY can fill you. What is worry?

Ive - Anything that takes peace away is worry.
alex - satan causes us to worry about things when there is no need to
Chogd - the birds of the field need not worry ..God will provide
Athie - Worry is things I can not see or understand

What is worry? It is lack of trust in God, trying to figure out your own problems, and borrowing trouble from tomorrow. How do I know this? When Jesus talked about NOT worrying in Matthew 6:25-34, He starts by saying "Therefore". Therefore refers to the remarks He had just made about storing up treasure in Heaven. He said in Matthew 6:21 " For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." How do you QUIT worrying? Focus on Heaven! Let your spiritual eyes be filled with light!

Jesus concludes in Matthew 6:23 by saying: "Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof." (KJV)

The Amplified reads: "So do not worry or be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will have worries and anxieties of its own. Sufficient for each day is its own trouble."

alex - so then worry is lack of trust in God and his ability to take care of our problems

Right alex, and "borrowing trouble from tomorrow". When you borrow trouble from tomorrow, you fill your heart with anxiety and worry and care and the devil can defeat you. Jesus said NOT to worry about tomorrow, each day has troubles of its own. So when you DO worry about trouble that hasn't happened yet, you are borrowing trouble from tomorrow. What does Peter say about this?

1 Peter 5:6-7 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast ALL your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Should you humble yourself under a load of worry and care? NO! We should humble ourselves under God's mighty hand. How many of your worries and anxieties are you to cast upon the Lord? ALL of them. Cast ALL your anxiety on him because he cares for you How many are YOU to carry? NONE of them.

Servant - His word says that he cares for us
Ive - It's easier said than done, putting your cares upon the Lord
alex - we should always be smarter than the serpent and plan ahead.......this isn't worry but common sense

When we FOCUS on the world instead of our Lord, it might seem difficult. But when we focus on Jesus and cast our cares - literally through them on HIS back - on Him, we get a totally different perspective. Casting our cares on Him actually is really simple - the problem is LEAVING them there - after casting our cares on Jesus, don't pick them up and start carrying them again.

THEN Peter says to resist the devil and he will flee from you. I Peter 5:8-9:Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

James gave us similar advice: James 4:7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

jabberbox - that is really hard to do , leaving your cares behind and letting Jesus have it.....

Notice that you are to submit yourself to GOD and not submit yourself to worry! Can you resist the devil when you are full of worry? No, because satan has put something in you that HE can work with - material on the inside that can and WILL defeat you, and that is worry. How does JOY defeat worry? Does any body have any ideas on that?

naomi - if you are joyful you don't have time to worry
Seeking Heart - Just think about that : if you are full of joy, your spirit is rising. and your soul is singing, if you worry, then your soul isn't singing but worrying
alex - if we trust in the Lord than we have joy and cannot worry because we have put it in His hands
OlePappy - yes, alex and walk away and not look back at what we leave in God's hands

Good answers - joy cancels worry, or pushes it out of our lives. How does JOY defeat worry? Joy is borrowing from the future too, but not a negative thing, it's a positive thing that gives you strength. How do I know that? The writer of Hebrews says that Jesus, for the JOY that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame.

Hebrews 12:2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the JOY set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

What was this JOY Jesus looked forward to? It was the JOY of bringing forth the plan of salvation, of bringing many children into the kingdom, of ripping the devil of all his claws, teeth, fangs and power, of grasping the keys of death and hell, in short, of redeeming mankind and all creation. Hallelujah!

So what gave Him the strength and ability to endure the cross, not to worry about suffering and pain, to press through until He cried, "It is finished"? The JOY set before Him! Glory to God! Thank you Jesus! And this same JOY is available to us as well. Whenever we need strengthening for endurance, we can just grab some of that JOY set before us and overcome like Jesus did.

How do I know that there is JOY set before us as well? The writer of Hebrews again tells us:

Hebrews 12:18-19, 22 You have not come to a mountain that can be touched and that is burning with fire; to darkness, gloom and storm; to a trumpet blast or to such a voice speaking words that those who heard it begged that no further word be spoken to them…

BUT you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in JOYFUL assembly…

The writer of Hebrews tells us that we have not come to a mountain that cannot be touched full of GLOOM, as it was when Moses was given the Law, but we have come to a city made and built by God full of angels in JOYFUL assembly. Heaven is not filled with worry, anxiety, doubt and fear, but JOYOUS praise to God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Chronicles 16:27 "Splendor and majesty are before him; STRENGTH AND JOY IN HIS DWELLING PLACE." Where is God's dwelling place? Heaven! Glory!

And what is available for our warfare from God? Strength and JOY! And we can appropriate, or take and make use of, that JOY here on earth - for the JOY set before us, the JOY awaiting us in Heaven, part of our inheritance that cannot fade away. We can "borrow" some of that now, enough to completely FILL us, and we can be strengthened and energized for endurance. It is joy unspeakable and full of GLORY.

iamclay - Joy is a fruit of the Spirit.

Or as the NIV puts it: 1 Peter 1:8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with AN INEXPRESSIBLE AND GLORIOUS JOY, for you are receiving the GOAL of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

Praise the Lord - and where is the ultimate GOAL of your faith located? In Heaven, with Jesus where we will have a glorified body and spend eternity with Him in everlasting joy!

iamclay - For one thing, I don't believe that the devil will hang around a joyful Christian.
MKforJ - I think that praise can be used in spiritual warfare.

Good point clay! He can't stand it when we're full of joy cause he can't inject gloom and doom in there! LOL

Proverbs 10:28a says "The prospect of the righteous is joy, but the hopes of the wicked come to nothing." What are your prospects in Jesus? What is the end result of our right living with God? JOY!!! We CAN'T lose!

Isaiah has always been one of my favorite books, and in research for this study, I realized why - it is positively filled with JOY.

Isaiah 35:10 And the ransomed of the LORD will return. They will enter Zion with singing; EVERLASTING JOY will crown their heads. GLADNESS AND JOY will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.

naomi - I Thessalonians 5:18 give thanks in all circumstances because this is God's will for those in Christ Jesus

What flees away in the presence of joy? Sorrow and sighing. How long does JOY last? FOREVER. Isaiah repeated this entire verse in 51:11, and mentioned "everlasting JOY" again in 61:7. Anything that is repeated again and again in scripture is something God wants us to take notice of!

Did you notice that it says "everlasting joy shall be upon their HEADS"? Why your head? For two reasons: that's where people were always anointed in the Bible. And because it's your HEAD that causes you so much trouble - you know, running all those "WHAT IF" scenarios around - worry, worry, worry.

Isaiah also says that "My servants will sing out of the JOY of their hearts" (Isaiah 65:14) and "You will go out in JOY and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands."(Isaiah 55:12)

alex - when you trust in the Lord you have joy.......trust in the Lord is a spiritual weapon because the enemy knows he is dealing with one who is on Gods side and that is more than they can handle......the enemy would rather has us doubting and weak

Are you beginning to feel joyful yet? Brothers and sisters, if these verse aren't energizing you, your battery must be dead! Glory! Or you've allowed worry and grief to invade and make themselves at home. That's why you're having a pity party instead of a joyous celebration! Cast out those "party poopers" in Jesus Name!

MKforJ - Joy is that Jesus never leaves us. He's always there no matter what we are feeling. We can give Him praise for that.

Remember what we said at first - JOY is a weapon against worry and grief. IF you are filled with joy, can you hide it? NO. In the verse above, our JOY even causes nature to rejoice - the mountains and the trees rejoice with us! Again, Isaiah says "Then you will look and be radiant, your heart will throb and swell with JOY; the wealth on the seas will be brought to you, to you the riches of the nations will come." (Isaiah 60:5)

If you are filled with joy, your face will show it - it will make you RADIANT or shining. And it will cause you to prosper as well. Why settle for grief and worry when your face can be radiant with joy? Hallelujah! Why settle for sorrow and sighing, when you can be singing with JOY? Is this a "no-brainer" or what?

So what's the difference between JOY and happiness? I mean, the goal of everyone on this planet is to be HAPPY, isn't it? Isn't that what we work and strive for? Isn't why we accumulate wealth and material things - to make us happy? But happiness is DEPENDENT on happenings, circumstances, what goes on around us.

If our happenings, happenstance, the things that happen to us by chance, are pleasant, then we FEEL happy. But how many knows that satan can manipulate both circumstances AND our feelings to make us feel lousy and rob us of happiness, filling us with doubt, worry, anxiety, fear, and depression? You know what I'm talking about, you've been there.

naomi - that's what I need to learn how to be joyful no matter what the circumstances
iamclay - We have the victory in Jesus. Is that cause for joy or what ?
MKforJ - I think that if we have joy, we don't always have happiness. Joy is a fruit of the spirit. Happiness is something we talk about and it means a lot of different things to different people.

So God didn't leave our JOY to chance, did He? It is a supernatural anointing or gift from our Father that is applied to our spirits and then flows into our minds and emotions, strengthening and energizing us. It does not depend upon our happenings, happenstance, chance or circumstances. It flows to us from eternity, from Heaven, where JOY is a constant state of being!

Speaking of Jesus, it says in Hebrews 1:9 "You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by ANOINTING you with the OIL OF JOY."

Now in the Old Testament, people were anointed with oil for special purposes, such as being appointed a king. Anointing is a sign of what the Holy Spirit does in a believer.

iamclay - Our one and only source of joy is Jesus. The closer we get to Him, the more our joy is made full.
OlePappy - we all have our bad times...It is something when you learn to overcome those times with God's Joy...you get it by asking Him for it!....God will give it to you

Who gives this anointing of JOY? The Holy Spirit.

Thessalonians 1:6 You became imitators of us and of the Lord; in spite of severe suffering, you welcomed the message with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.

Jesus was full of joy through the Holy Spirit and gave thanks to God: Luke 10:21 At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth …"

Paul spoke about JOY coming from the Holy Spirit in Romans 14:17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit,

Joy is one of the fruits of the Spirit, that is, a natural outcome of walking in the Spirit: Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Galatians 5:25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Part of keeping in step with the Spirit is to be filled with JOY! See you didn't think being a Christian was any fun, did you?

Ok, so joy is a result of believing on Jesus, a gift or anointing of the Holy Spirit, AND a fruit of walking in the Spirit - Hey it looks like you can't miss! You get JOY coming and going! Praise the Lord!

Homer - what do we need to do to activate the fruit of the spirit in our lives? all of them?
ron50 - to be filled by keeping in step with the Spirit

Homer, what do you think?

Homer - don't know, never been told or taught about how to have the fruit of spirit only been told what they are
Chogd - Amen OT, the benefits of our trust in Jesus.
iamclay - When we have the Holy Spirit within we have the fruit of the Spirit.

What is fruit? It is something produced as a tree buds, blooms and matures and produces fruit. In other words, it is a natural outcome of what a fruit tree does - grow.

Chogd - of accepting Jesus into our hearts and being filled with the Holy Spirit
Seeking Heart - you have to feed it before it grows?? right?
iamclay - Right, chogd, when we accept Christ into our lives, we become the temple of the Holy Spirit.

So as we grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, reading and OBEYING the Word, praying and keeping in step with the Spirit, the fruit of the Spirit will be produced in our lives. As we live and walk with Jesus we will become more and more like him. As you walk in the Spirit, and are led by the Spirit, He will produce the fruit in you - as you grow and mature. Keep seeking God's will in your life.

ron50 - is Joy a reward for obedience?
iamclay - Perhaps joy is a result and not a reward.
ron50 - and as a result then God gives us Joy

Of course, part of the process, like pruning in a fruit tree, is to put off those things that are works of the flesh mentioned in Galatians 5:19-21 immorality, idolatry, rage, jealousy, etc.

So you can be full of JOY no matter what is happening around you. People can be stressed out because of the economy - but you don't have a care or worry about it, because God has promised to take care of you according to HIS riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Hallelujah!

The doctor can give you a bad report, but you don't have a care or worry about it, because Jesus is your healer. There is no sickness where you are going. Health and wholeness flow to you from the throne of God. And if it's time to go home, then you will walk right into JOY, so what have you to fear?

When Paul wrote to the Galatians who were involved in strife and worry over doctrine, what did he ask them? Galatians 4:15a What has happened to all your joy? All kinds of joy-robbers can surround you, and if your joy seems depleted today, well, just borrow some from the future, because Heaven has enough JOY for today, tomorrow and all eternity! Praise the Lord!

Father God, pour your oil of JOY on us today. Let the anointing of JOY flow to us from Heaven. Wash out the fear, worry, and grief that are trying to overtake us. Make us victorious in Jesus Name! AMEN and AMEN

Well, we could spend weeks and weeks talking about JOY verses. There are over 200 in the Bible! When you are feeling down or worried, look some of them up. Better still, look them up NOW, write them on index cards, plaster them all over your home, and when worry and grief come knocking at your door, stick a JOY CARD in their face, and say "No thanks, devil, you ain't abiding here!" Glory! Get radical with JOY!

Well, glory! Shout a little saints! Let that anointing of JOY well up inside and make you radiant. We can take a break and let you leap for JOY if ya need to. Praise the Lord for His everlasting JOY!

OK, remember we're talking about spiritual weapons, so how do you use JOY as a weapon against the enemy? I'm glad you asked that question, because I'm gonna tell ya.

First let's look at what the devil has designed worry or care to do to you. Pastor Dave Roberson of the Family Prayer Center in Tulsa Oklahoma in his October 1998 newsletter has this to say about casting your care upon Jesus as we've looked at in I Peter 5:6-9.

"So, the reason God told us to get rid of the care is because it is the care that makes us devourable [by the devil]. If you can somehow manage to cast all of your care over onto Him, then you will have exercised one of the highest forms of resisting the devil. "

"When it comes to warfare, you are up against a tactical genius whose most powerful weapons are deception and care. To show you just how deceptive he is, he knows that you know that he is involved in things like drug addiction, prostitution, and gambling, and that you will probably stay far away from those things."

"But, when it comes to fear, worry, torment, and care, he will march right into a person's home and take over. He is able to do this because it is hard for us to believe that to resist the care is to resist the devil."

"Whenever we see someone destroyed by drug addiction or a discarded alcoholic sleeping in a gutter, we shake our heads and think how horrible! But, when it comes to care, worry and fear, we let the devil in, sit him down, and, if that's not enough, go on to entertain him."

"There is nothing the devil would like more than to keep us involved in a battle with the circumstances revolving around the daily affairs of this life. But, the real battle is never won by fighting the SYMPTOMS of the problem but the problem itself."

"As long as the devil can keep us tied up fighting with the problem on a surface level, then we are easy to manage. Believe me, he has enough problems in store for us that we can easily worry ourselves completely to death."

"Right here is where we need to launch our war. Here is where we need to expend our energy…"

Pastor Dave recommends using weapons of peace and love against the enemy to fight worry. And we'll study those later. But JOY is also effective against the tactics of the enemy. When worry comes knocking at your door, get out your oil of JOY and drown it! Don't let it in and fix it supper. Kill worry with JOY!

Chogd - amen OT that's hitting the nail on the head

The problem is the devil trying to devour you with cares and worries. We need to resist THAT head on... And if worry makes you DEVOURABLE by the devil, "what a tasty tidbit you are Ms. Worry Wart!", then JOY makes you inedible! LOL The devil will not be able to eat you up with care or worry, because he can't gnaw through the coating of JOY.

Remember that the devil prowls about LIKE a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour. When you borrow trouble from tomorrow, you fill your heart with anxiety and worry and care and the devil can defeat you. What does Peter say about this?

1 Peter 5:6-7 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast ALL your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

THEN Peter says to resist the devil and he will flee from you. I Peter 5:8-9:Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

Chogd - get right in his face and let him know that you have Jesus in your Heart and all of your worries are overcome with JOY!!!!!
alex - he is also very subtle and will drag us into thinking things are ok when we know in our hearts they aren't

Amen chogd! JOY and worry cannot co-exist! Be filled with the Joy of the Lord, which is your strength, and worry has no where to stay! The bottom line is: YOU DECIDE which one will fill you - JOY or worry.

Chogd - dinner huh... kick the door closed right in his face.....

Well, that's nice to say, but how do you do that? If you are in the habit of worrying all the time, how do you stop? How do you get the worry out and the JOY in? Any ideas? Have you ever worried about how much you're worrying? LOL

As the apostle Peter said, first humble yourself before God - put Him first in your life, and trust that He will do what He says He will do. He said, "I'll never leave you or forsake you". And "If God be for us WHO CAN BE AGAINST US?"

alex - TRUST IN THE LORD..............and order satan out of your life in Christ's name......very satisfying when you know he has to flee
Athie - To receive Joy It is a fruit of the Holy Spirit. So be filled with the Spirit

If we REALLY put our lives in God's hands, He will not only take care of us but also take the care OFF of us. If He's taking care of us, why should I worry? If GOD can't handle it, I sure can't!

Like Peter said, Cast ALL your cares on Him for He cares for you. Don't keep any so you'll have something to do while burning dinner. Give them ALL to Him. Then we are told to RESIST the devil and he WILL flee - no ifs, ands, or buts. He's outta here!

So you might say something like, "Worry I come against you and cast you out of my life in Jesus Name. Father God, anoint me with your oil of JOY and fill my heart with gladness. AMEN!"

Now if you are really in the habit of worrying, you may have to do this many times before you get the victory. But don't give up! Another thing that helps is to get index cards as I said before and write JOY verses on them and plaster them all over the house. There are over 200 in the Bible, so buy several packs of index cards. If you're serious about keeping JOY, put it all around where you can see and meditate on these promises.

alex - satan isn't enjoying this teaching one bit........lol

Learn to identify worry before it settles in... Think about what you say that shows you are worried. How about "Take care"? "Be careful" What other phrases do we use that show we are full of worry or care?

Chogd - that might work around here, some of us worry enough for everyone.......

How about "What IF?" You know all those death and doom scenarios we all dream up that always have UNhappy endings? LOL See I've been here, too! Replacing these negative thoughts with positive ones takes effort. But what does Paul say to think about instead?

Philippians 4:8 Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things.

Athie - Think on that is good. If we have good thoughts there is no room for worry
Savior's Servant - he says to praise Jesus :-D

When you meditate on all the GOOD things in Christ Jesus, especially when you think about the JOY set before you, then worry hasn't a hook to hang it's hat on!

JOY is available to any believer. When we are born again, the Holy Spirit gives us a new human spirit that is able to commune with God and to develop spiritually. And the Holy Spirit comes to take residence within us.

Chogd - I always try to focus on the coming kingdom and the Joy of eternity with the Father

And He brings JOY with Him. We can choose to walk in that JOY or let worry rob us of it. As we walk in tune with the Holy Spirit, the fruit of joy is produced in us. Kinda like adding joy to joy, if you know what I mean.

alex - things of this world are very temporal but we have live in it and Christ showed us the way to be happy and prosper
Chogd - and getting through each day remembering Jesus on the cross of Calvary shedding His Blood for us sinners

And as we let the Holy Spirit fill us, then we overflow with the anointing of JOY. So this is how it works JOY => JOY => JOY!!! Now this is what the devil wants to do worry => fear => depression => defeat. So you decide which kind of "math" you like better!

JOY makes you laugh at the devil. Psalm 52:6-7 The righteous will see and fear; they will laugh at him, saying, "Here now is the man who did not make God his stronghold but trusted in his great wealth and grew strong by destroying others!" This Psalm is not only talking about our earthly enemies, but the devil behind them who trusts in his wealth and strength in destroying others. But we've "read the last chapter of the Book" and know his defeat is certain. Therefore we can laugh at him now. hahahahaha!

Chogd - dead to sin --alive in Christ

Proverbs 31:10, 25 A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies… She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.

Why can the wife of noble character "laugh at the days to come"? Because God is her refuge and she trusts in Him, she has no fear of the future. The devil may have plans laid to try to destroy her, but with God she is ready for anything.

Savior's Servant - self sacrifice to Jesus=joy, happiness, etc. all of the above! :-D
Athie - So, Father give us Joy to over flowing so we might teach others Joy

Have you ever tried just laughing at the devil when he tries to bring worry your way? Just let the JOY of the Holy Spirit well up and overflow, and have a hearty laugh at all his silly plans. Believe me, the devil will pack up his worry bag and scat!

Quin Sherrer in "A Woman's Guide to Spiritual Warfare says: "Laugh in the biblical sense includes the meanings "to mock, to play, to make sport, to deride, to laugh to scorn"

Psalm 59 5-9 O LORD God Almighty, the God of Israel, rouse yourself to punish all the nations; show no mercy to wicked traitors. They return at evening, snarling like dogs, and prowl about the city. See what they spew from their mouths-- they spew out swords from their lips, and they say, "Who can hear us?" But you, O LORD, laugh at them; you scoff at all those nations.

Quin Sherrer relates this story about laughing at the devil: "Anne, a young Bible school graduate, felt God's call to go on an African mission outreach, but she had no money for the trip. When she and her prayer partner prayed, the friend saw a vision of two bags falling at Anne's feet with the needed two thousand dollars. Uncontrollable laughter hit Anne."

"I am going to laugh my way to Africa," she told her praying friend.

"In just two days all the money came in unexpected ways--including a check for one thousand dollars. Anne later told Quin, "I laughed at the devil while I was waiting for the money, because I knew he wasn't going to steal it and keep me from going on God's mission. I also laughed with joy over what God was going to accomplish" "

"Anne has since served the Lord in several nations, depending entirely on his provision, which comes in unexpected ways. Every time the devil tries to discourage her by saying, "The money's not coming," she laughs out loud "Oh yes, it is, Devil," she says. "My God shall supply all my needs." She then laughs her way to Korea or Japan or Malaysia, just as she did to Africa."

Now you might not want to go to Korea or Japan, but you might need to go to Kmart and buy some shoes. And the devil will say, ain't no way it's gonna happen.

But just drench yourself with JOY and say, "That's funny, because the WORD says that God shall supply all my needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus." hahahahahaha Now some will tell you this isn't dignified, but hey it works.

alex - and others look at you and wonder "how can this person be so calm and self assured".....this draws people to Christ when we exhibit this JOY

Psalm 126:1 When the LORD brought back the captives to Zion [or restored the fortunes of], we were like men who dreamed [or brought back to health]. Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, "The LORD has done great things for them."

Right alex, like I said gloom and doom don't appeal to anyone - well normal people anyway. But when they see our JOY, they're gonna say, hey, they have something I don't! They don't worry and fret ... What's up with them?

Israel is celebrating the year of Jubilee - it has been 50 years since their nation was restored to them AGAIN (this psalm was written when they were returned from captivity in Babylon about 700 BC). Jubilee is the year of restoration - and many pastors are proclaiming this message.

And restoration brings joy and laughter. Jesus is our Jubilee. He bought us back from the devil and restored to us all we had lost, if we would just receive it. And when we are full of joy and laughter others will know of it and GIVE GOD the credit for it! What a witness joy is!

Gloom and doom Christians don't win people to Christ. Life is bad enough, who needs a religion for cryin out loud that makes you feel worse? Daily Jesus heaps blessings upon us. Be thankful and full of joy!

Psalm 126:3 The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy.

Psalm 126:5-6 Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy. He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him.

Sometimes it does seem like we have to start in tears before we get to the joy part! But notice even if you are weeping now, you WILL return with songs of joy, carrying your harvest!

Paul wrote in Philippians 4:4: "Rejoice in the lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!"

Rejoicing is pulling out the weapon of JOY and using it! Quit grumbling and worrying, release your grief to the Lord, and use your weapon of JOY against the enemy today! Laugh your way to victory in Jesus Name!

Praise the Lord everybody for JOY! When you feel worry knocking on your heart's door, meet it with the oil of joy! It will flee from you in Jesus Name!

Father God thank you for the awesome arsenal of weapons you have given us against our enemy and all of his puny powers. Thank you for JOY, eternal gladness welling up in our hearts and driving out worry and grief. We praise you! AMEN

OlePappy - I've got joy joy joy down in my heart, down in my heart today The joy of the Lord is my strength!
Athie - Thanks OT I think I will just carry a bucket of Joy across the street tomorrow. We do need to spread Joy.

Remember happiness is nice, but JOY is eternal! The problem is: a lot of this you WON'T understand until you receive Jesus as Savior and Lord, and start reading the Bible and obeying it. It's foolish to the "natural" mind and the dead spirit.

Homer - Jesus said when we love someone in his name we are loving him. Jesus said when we touch someone in his name we are touching him

Father God we lift up your children to you right now and come against worry, doubt and fear, be gone in Jesus Name! We ask you Father to bring forth JOY in their life and produce spiritual fruit as they obey and trust in you. AMEN

Remember, whenever God gives us a revelation, the devil tries to steal it from us. Guard your hearts and meditate on what you've learned!
And put it into practice.

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Original lesson 10/29/98
Revised: May 02, 2001