by the Rev. Henry Huenemann
Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, 0 God, my God (Psalm 43:4).
1Preserve me, O God: for in thee do I put my trust.
2O my soul, thou hast said unto the LORD, Thou art my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to thee;
3But to the saints that are in the earth, and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight.
4Their sorrows shall be multiplied that hasten after another god: their drink offerings of blood will I not offer, nor take up their names into my lips.
5The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot.
6The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage.
7I will bless the LORD, who hath given me counsel: my reins also instruct me in the night seasons.
8I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
9Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope.
10For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
11Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.
The Lord wants a joyful people. He said to his people of old, "Thou shalt rejoice in thy feast, thou, and thy son." If God tells his people to rejoice, they have good reasons to rejoice. When Nehemiah had read the law of God unto the people, and his helpers had caused the people to understand it, "there was very great gladness." Whenever the Word of God is rightly understood, that it is a Word of grace to us, and that God is reconciled to us through the blood of his Son, there always is great joy. The "joy of the Lord is your strength." It makes us strong to endure hardships and tribulations, and it endures for ever. "They that sow in tears shall reap in joy." Though we may have to undergo severe trials of our faith, yet we "rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory." "Your sorrow shall be turned into joy." As believers we always have reasons to rejoice in spite of sorrow and tribulation.
Further, there is fullness of joy for us. "These things write we unto you, that your joy may be full." Christ will present us "faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy." "In thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore." Therefore, "Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice."
O Lord God, help us to realize that we are fully redeemed from all the power of the devil; that full satisfaction has been made for our sins, and that we are justified and glorified. Help us to rejoice in our salvation. May our joy be full, and may the joy of the Lord be our strength. Thus may we in spite of sorrows, tribulations and persecutions sing praises unto Thee, until we come to the inheritance of the saints in light, where there shall be fulness of joy for ever more. Amen.
Scripture in Devotional: Deut. 16:14; Neh. 8:17; 8:10; Ps. 126:5; 1 Pet. 1:8; John 16:20; 1 John 1:4; Jude 24; Ps. 16:11; Phil. 4:4,
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