Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Joy and Freedom:Kingdom of Heaven in Manifestation

This is a photo of a good friend of mine, Bobby Hussey our Children's pastor here at MorningStar, Fort Mill, SC. He is one of the most consistently joyful guys I know. He was so happy as a child that his mother thought there may be something wrong with him, and so, once spanked him just to see if he would cry.

I once heard that joy is one of the infallible proofs of the presence of God. In the New Testament, when Philip preached Christ in Samaria the result of his Gospel was joy, "And there was great joy in that city" (Acts 8:8). In the Old Testatment Nehemiah identified the joy of the Lord as our strength (Nehemiah 8:10).

2 Corinthians 3:17 says "Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty." Joy and freedom are like twins and are two powerful characteristics of the Kingdom of God in manifestation. Our Gospel must produce them, but much of what is proclaimed as gospel is not really good news. Until the gospel you have heard is 'too good to be true' I am concerned you have never really understood the gospel in its fulness.

I have never understood why so many folks were upset when laughter returned to the church. Some said it was unscriptural even when Psalm 126:2 says, "Then our mouth was filled with laughter, And our tongue with singing." The phrase our mouth speaks of a corporate mouth...filled with laughter! I am convinced that a 'religious spirit' has intimidated many in the church out of enjoying both the joy and freedom that Christ Jesus died to give them. It was for the joy set before Him that He endured the cross despising the shame (Hebrews 12:2). We must not let anyone or anything keep us from living in, demonstrating, and promoting the freedom of the Spirit and the joy of the Lord.

1 comment:

  1. I was reading A.W. Tozer recently and he made a statement to the effect that if we are to consider ourselves spiritual descendants to the disciples and Jesus, then we must prove that "this" (our version of the ministry of the Holy Spirit) is "that" (the same as the apostles' Holy Spirit).

    In other words, if the Holy Spirit produced fruit in the way of peace, love, joy, etc in Paul's time, then we should be seeing the same fruit in our ministries and congregations. Good word.