Is it possible for a Christian to rejoice always?

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Rejoice in hardships

Among all of God’s apostles, Paul wrote much about how to rejoice in hardships although he seemed to have cause for nothing but sorrow. For him, however, sorrow and joy are not mutually exclusive alternatives, for he knew well how to rejoice amid trials and persecution.

Paul wrote to the Church of Corinthians, “sorrowful, yet always rejoicing” (2 Corinthians 6:10). The apostle rejoiced in God’s providential leading. This attitude reflected the mind of Christ. And Paul encouraged the believers to press on “rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer” (Romans 12:12 also  Hebrews 2:10–18).

Paul’s spirit of victory is probably best seen in the book of Philippians, whose key word is “rejoice.” Yet, when he wrote that book he was in prison, forsaken, alone, and in danger of immediate death. He wrote, “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4, 11).

God’s gift of joy

The Lord not only supports the soul in the time of trial but bestows the spirit of joyful triumph and fills the heart with assurance and hope. The Lord promised the faithful ones, “those in Zion who mourn. I will take away the ashes on their head, and I will give them a crown. I will take away their sadness, and I will give them the oil of happiness. I will take away their sorrow, and I will give them celebration clothes. He sent me to name them ‘Good Trees’ and ‘The Lord’s Wonderful Plant'” (Isaiah 61:3).

The Christian can rejoice in trials because the Lord is always the same (Malachi 3:6; Hebrews 13:8; James 1:17), His love, His consideration, His power, are the same in times of hardships as in times of success. Christ’s ability to grant peace to the mind does not depend on external circumstances; so the heart which is focused on Him can constantly rejoice.

Contentment

A life of contentment and joy is the Christian’s inalienable birthright. To be saved from the power of death and the clutch of Satan, to be “more than conquerors through him that loved us” (Romans 8:37), to be saved “to the uttermost” (Hebrews 7:25)—all this is reason enough for a life of happiness and praise.

God can give us the power to overcome every temptation and sin. For the One who loved us enough to die for us is even now living in our hearts to continue the work of our redemption (Galatians 2:20). We can do all things through Him who empowers us (Philippians 4:13). Paul was filled with this great power that it led him to exclaim, “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57).

Therefore, the true Christian can always rejoice in a good conscience, in a pure and noble mind, in divine favor, and in the redemption of his brethren (Hebrews 12:2). He has learned to be content, whatever he may be called upon to endure for God’s love endures forever (Philippians 4:11).

In His service,

BibleAsk Team

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