The Joy of the Lord 12/12/2023

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by Robin McKinley

What is our source of joy? We read about it, and we talk and sing about it. The Bible says the joy of the Lord is our strength. We also find joy listed under love in the fruit of the Spirit. 

The night Mary gave birth to Jesus, angels visited shepherds as they kept watch over their flocks. They came announcing the Lord’s birth and revealed the source of our joy.

(The angel) said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! Luke 2:10  

After talking to Herod, the wise men continued their journey to see the newborn King of the Jews. Filled with joy, they continued to follow the star.

When they saw the star, they were filled with joy!  They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Matthew 2:10-11 

Jesus brought joy not only to the world but to His Father as well. We can read about this at the Lord’s baptism and at the top of the Mount of Transfiguration. 

  • After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him.  And a voice from heaven said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” Matthew 3:16-17  
  • But even as he spoke, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy. Listen to him.” Matthew 17:5

We can’t forget about the joy the women experienced at the tomb when the angel declared Jesus had risen.

The women ran quickly from the tomb. They were very frightened but also filled with great joy, and they rushed to give the disciples the angel’s message. Matthew 28:8

Jesus made this same joy available to us today. At the beginning of 1 John, we can read about how to experience the full and complete joy of the Lord. 

We are writing these things so that our joy can be complete. 1 John 1:4 CEB

You can sense the joy in John because, in this epistle’s first three verses, he made three proclamations.  

  • We proclaim to you the one who existed from the beginning, v.1 
  • Now we testify and proclaim to you that he is the one who is eternal life. v.2  
  • We proclaim to you what we ourselves have actually seen and heard. v.3

Then, in verse 5, John made a declaration.

This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. 1 John 1:5 

Why did John consider it important to go from talking about life to bringing up light now? I think we’ll see why in verse 7.

If we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin. 1 John 1:7

In verse 9, John tied everything together: fellowship, life, light, and forgiveness of our sins. Look what he said.

If we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. 1 John 1:9 

It started when the angels lit up the sky and told the shepherds, “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. 

Merry Christmas, and remember, because of the birth of Christ, your joy can be complete. 

About the Author: 

Pastor RobinRobin, with his wife Cindy, became children’s evangelists early in their ministry. They ministered to children full time for 8 years. During that time they developed several children’s stories which were told with visuals and puppets.

Robin recently turned two of those stories into children’s books. One is called “The Contest,” a book about the Fruit of the Spirit, and the other is called “Twas the Night of Christmas”.  He has also authored 5 volumes of devotional books called, 3 Minutes Alone with God. Each entry is a product of his personal biblical Journaling.

These and his other writings are available on his website called Christian Perspectives at When you visit this site, you can sign-up for newly written devotions as they come out which will be emailed to you.

Presently Robin is the pastor of Calvary Christian Center in Pottstown, PA. He is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God. He and his wife make their home in Birdsboro, Pa. He also serves as the president of the local ministerium. He and Cindy have two married sons and four grandchildren.

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