God’s Book of Joy

“Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.” Psalm 1:1-2

OUR PURPOSE: God is infinitely glorious. All that God has done in creation and redemption was done to enable us see and savor His glory. God speaks by the Holy Spirit and through the written Word to enable us to enter into the joy of the Lord. Therefore, it is the purpose of this session to help us to see that the greatest motive for devotion to God’s Word is not duty but delight. The Bible is a book of joy. May God give us a new joy as we devour his Word.

I. A Man of One Book— Homo unius libri

“I have thought I am a creature of the day, a passing through life as an arrow through the air. I am a spirit, coming from God, and returning to God; just hovering over the great gulf; a few months hence and I am no more seen; I drop into an unchangeable eternity! I want to know one thing— the way to heaven—how to land safe on that happy shore. God himself has condescended to teach the way: for this very end he came from heaven. He hath written it down in a book. O give me that Book! At any price, give me the book of God! I have it. Here is knowledge enough for me. Let me be homo unius libri [a man of one book].” – John Wesley

II. Two reasons why the Book of God brings his people great joy

A. It electrifies the head. Psalm 39:3; 111:2; Col. 2:2-3; Psalm 139:17

B. It satisfies the heart. Jer. 15:16; John 15:9-12; 16

III. Four Reasons why we should devote ourselves to the BOOK

“Even today I live every moment with the Bible. It is my constant companion. As a believer for fifty-six years, I have tested God’s Word and found it true. In more than five decades I have not encountered one situation in which I have not been able to turn to God’s Word for comfort, wisdom, guidance, joy, and blessing. At eighty-one years of age, I would rather have the Bible on my shelf and in my heart than any other book written in history because it contains the message of God. It is a love letter to me and to all other human beings who are created in His image. Not only have I been enriched through the reading of the Bible, but I have also seen it change the lives of a multitude of people.” – Bill Bright, Founder of Campus Crusade for Christ

A. That Book is PURPOSEFUL: It magnifies God’s glory to his creation.

Question: What is the chief end of man?

Answer: To glorify God and enjoy him forever.

1. His Book reveals God’s grand purpose for creation and redemption.

a. His creation reveals his glory. Psalm 19:1; Isaiah 40:25-26

b. His people are called for his glory. Isaiah 43:6-7

c. His jealousy protects his glory. Isaiah 48:1

d. His wrath declares his glory. Romans 1:18-20

e. His grace brings praise for his glory. Ephesians 1:11-12

f. His followers do all for his glory. 1 Corinthians 10:31

2. His Book reveals that the way God brings glory to himself is by bringing joy to his people.

“The end of creation is that the creation might glorify God. Now what is glorifying God but a rejoicing at that glory that he has displayed? The happiness of the creature consists in rejoicing in God, by which also God is magnified and exalted.” – Jonathan Edwards

a. He delights in his people. Zephaniah 3:17

b. He searches the earth for those he can bless. 2 Chronicles 16:9

c. He pursues us with goodness and mercy. Psalm 23:6

d. He is pleased to give us the kingdom. Luke 12:32-33

e. He commands us to taste and see that he is good. Psalm 34:8

f. He commands us to rejoice in Him. Philippians 4:4

g. He is the treasure that causes us to sell all so that we may have him. Matt. 13:44

“God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him.” – John Piper

B. That Book is POWERFUL: It applies God’s Glory to His people.

1. God’s Word is the most powerful force in the universe: Isaiah 55:10-11

It Creates: Psalm 33:6; Sustains: Hebrews 1:2-3; Purifies: John 15:3; Saves: Eph. 1:13; Sanctifies:

John 17:17; Multiplies: Acts 12:24; Overcomes: 1 John 2:14; Lives: Hebrews 4:12-13.

2. God’s written Word has the same power to create and redeem as God’s spoken Word.

Psalm 19:7-11 It revives the soul; it makes wise the simple; it brings joy to the heart; it radiates light to the eyes; it births eternal reverence; it satisfies the soul; It warns of the dangers of sin; it leads to great reward.

3. The words of Christ have the power to create faith in those who hear. Romans 10:17

4. God speaks today through His Word to make powerful and joyful servants of Christ. 2 Tim. 3:16-17

C. That Book is PERSONAL: It satisfies our deepest desire for fellowship with God.

“God’s purpose in revelation is to make friends with us. It was to this end that he created us rational beings, bearing his image, able to think and hear and speak and love; He wanted there to be genuine personal affection and friendship, two-sided, between Himself and us… he speaks to us simply to fulfill the purpose for which we were made; that is, to bring us into a relationship in which He is a friend to us, and we to Him, He finding joy in giving us gifts and we finding ours in giving Him thanks.” – J. I. Packer

1. We are created in God’s image so we can know him and enjoy him forever. Genesis 1:26

2. We are redeemed so that we might enjoy the fellowship that was denied us by our sin.

1 Peter 3:18 3. We are friends with Christ and he shares his secrets with us through his words. John 15:14-15

4. We are enlightened so that we see the glory of God in the face of Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:4

5. We devour God’s words so we may discover more reasons to rejoice in Christ. Col. 2:2-3

D. That Book is PRACTICAL: It arms and fortifies our hearts for our daily battle for joy.

“Though the covers are worn, and the pages are torn, and though places bear traces of tears; yet more precious than gold, is the book worn and old that can shatter and scatter my fears.” – Anonymous

1. It enables us to defeat the enemy of our faith. 1 Peter 5:8

2. It protects us against the deceptive lies of the enemy. Matthew 4:4

3. It lays down a pathway so that we may avoid the enemy’s traps. Psalm 119:11

4. It gives a place to stand in the midst of the storms of life. Matt. 7:24-25

5. It gives us hope to persevere in the drawn out battles for faith. Romans 15:4

6. It enables us to overcome the problems of life for the glory of God. Psalm 50:15

“If I were the devil, one of my first aims would be to stop folk from digging into the Bible. I should do all I could to surround it with spiritual equivalent of pits, thorns, hedges, and man traps to frighten people off.” – J. I Packer