Summary: In this Psalm, we notice three aspects of this topic of joy and the motivations that can keep us joyful.
Keeping Your Joy Alive
Griffith Baptist Church – 8/3/08
Text: Psalm 40
Main Verse: Psalms 40:8 - I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.
1. God Helps the Troubled – 40:1-3
2. God Helps the Humble – 40:4-5
3. God Helps the Obedient – 40:6-8
4. God Helps the Soul-Winner – 40:9-10
5. God Helps the Weak – 40:11-12
6. God Helps the Needy – 40:13-17
As a third-century man was anticipating death, he penned these last words to a friend: “It’s a bad world, an incredibly bad world. But I have discovered in the midst of it a quiet and holy people who have learned a great secret. They have found a joy which is a thousand times better than any pleasure of our sinful life. They are despised and persecuted, but they care not. They are masters of their souls. They have overcome the world. These people are the Christians—and I am one of them.”
Moody Bible Institute’s, Today In The Word, June, 1988, p. 18
No person, in their right mind, ever lived for sadness, despair or depression
o We all want joy in our lives
o Joy is sustained contentment
o Joy can be found in the midst of hard times and tears
Joy is characterized by:
o Inner peace
o Excitement in serving God – no complaints or harshness
o A desire to put Him first and be used by Him
o A yearning to know Christ more and please Him
By the way, in order to keep your joy alive, you have to have it to begin with.
Do you know Christians can run out of joy? That should never be.
There are too many Christians running around today with no joy or even false joy.
False joy is that pasted on smile you put on your face but inside there is no peace, joy, contentment and so forth.
In this Psalm, we notice three aspects of this topic of joy and the motivations that can keep us joyful.
Transition Statement: First, we need to remember the past and rejoice in what God has done in our lives.
1. Rejoicing In What God Has Done – 1-3
A. He hears the plea of the sinner – 1
i. A.B. Simpson is reported to have said that the gospel ’Tells rebellious men that God is reconciled, that justice is satisfied, that sin has been atoned for, that the judgment of the guilty may be revoked, the condemnation of the sinner canceled, the curse of the Law blotted out, the gates of hell closed, the portals of heaven opened wide, the power of sin subdued, the guilty conscience healed, the broken heart comforted, the sorrow and misery of the Fall undone. Evangelism, A Biblical Approach, M. Cocoris, Moody, 1984, p. 29
ii. Like the humble publican said - Luke 18:13 - And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.
iii. God loves the sinner and desires to save him – 2 Peter 3:9 - The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
iv. Romans 9:15 - For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
B. He rescues us from the judgment of hell – 2a
i. John 3:16 says it all
ii. Hell was created for the devil and his angels (Matt. 25:41)
iii. Those who reject Christ belong to Satan and thus partake in his judgment (Jn. 8:44; 1st Jn. 3:8-10)
iv. Christ came to save us from hell and that judgment that will fall on those who reject Christ.
C. He gives us new direction – 2b
i. A man was watching the news one night when it was reported that a car was going the wrong direction on the freeway. The man knew his wife was on that freeway and became very concerned so called her on her cell phone. She answered and he said, "Dear, there’s one car going in the wrong direction on the freeway." She exclaimed, "One car! There’s hundreds of them!"
iii. God has always been about giving good directions:
a. The children of Israel through the wilderness - Exodus 15:13 – Thou in thy mercy hast led forth the people which thou hast redeemed: thou hast guided them in thy strength unto thy holy habitation