The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name. Acts 5:41
Peter and some of the other apostles had been preaching the gospel all over the city of Jerusalem. The Sanhedrin were upset about this and brought them in for questioning. After giving the apostles a severe beating they were released with a warning to stop speaking in the name of Jesus. As the disciples left, they were rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer disgrace for the name of Jesus and so they continued to talk about Jesus to everyone they met.
Disgrace or humiliation is something most people do not like to have done to them. When a person is disgraced it is often done publicly and it harms their name or reputation in the wrong way. They are often made to appear as though they are wrong or had done something wrong, when they are completely innocent of any wrong doing.
Often when a person is disgraced publicly, they retaliate with a lawsuit against the person who did the disgracing. They want revenge against the person who has done wrong to their name and caused them social harm.
The apostles had been physically and publicly beaten for talking about Jesus. The only people who were beaten like that were those who had done something wrong. The apostles had not done anything legally wrong, other than upset the leadership of the temple, and that was not a legal thing.
Yet, despite being beaten, they rejoiced. They rejoiced in being beaten. They did this because they felt as though it was an honor to be beaten for Jesus.
Believers today need to keep this attitude in mind. Being humiliated because one has done the right thing for Jesus, is not a bad thing. It is being a testimony of the dedication and love for Jesus. It is an example of who Jesus is.
Think about how much Jesus was beaten and humiliated for you. He suffered and died on a cross, which was a curse from God for you. No man can do more than that to you for believing and talking about Jesus.
Rejoice when people ridicule you for believing in Jesus. Your words, actions and reactions are being a witness of your love for Jesus. It is showing who Jesus really is. Have the right attitude in suffering.
I pray today that you will be a bold witness of who Jesus is; that you will not fear any ridicule for believing in Jesus; that God will strengthen you in times of suffering for Jesus; and that you will be the right witness in suffering for Jesus.
“In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” Luke 15:10
Jesus told several parables about something being lost and getting found. When the lost item is found, there is always a lot of rejoicing. With each of the parables He stated that the angels are in heaven are rejoicing over the one person who repents.
People lose things all the time, keys, wallets, cell phones, and many other little things. Getting stressed about losing something, they often make frantic searches to find the item. The higher the value and importance of the item, the more people will search for it.
The longer the item remains missing, the more frantic the search becomes. Sometimes, people will give up hope of finding the item and quit searching for it. They will then try to replace it with a new item.
Once that item is found, most people will rejoice with great deal of rejoicing. The longer it had been missing and the higher the value, the greater the rejoicing will be.
In this same way, all of heaven rejoices over one person who turns to God and repents of his sins.
There are times, however, when believers will see a person repent of his sins, but they do not believe it. There is no rejoicing, but lots of questioning. It is believed that the person was so bad, that there is no way he could be saved or have repented. This is especially true when looking at people who are famous.
Believers are to be filled with God’s love, which hopes and trusts all things. Love will believe that a person is saved when they claim to repent and follow Jesus. Love will rejoice with great rejoicing over hearing that, instead of questioning and doubting.
Jesus had the goal of seeking out the lost and saving them. You must also have that same goal.
And when Jesus finds that lost and they are saved, He, along with all of heaven, rejoice. You must also rejoice when you hear of someone turning from sin and this world to follow Jesus.
Be willing to encourage them and build them up, rather than doubt and cut them down.
If all the angels in heaven rejoice, why can you not rejoice over someone being saved?
I pray today that you will see people with God’s love and eyes; that you will seek to find the lost for God; that you will rejoice over those who turn to Jesus; and that you will encourage those who turn to Jesus.
“Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and the day that is coming will set them on fire,” says the LORD Almighty. “Not a root or branch will be left to them. But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays. And you will go out and frolic like well-fed calves.” Malachi 4:1-2
As Malachi finishes his book and the end of the Old Testament comes, he talks of a day that is in the coming. It will be a day when God places a final judgment upon all people. Those who are wicked and refuse to follow Him will be destroyed in fire, with nothing left. Those who revere Him will have a time of rejoicing and healing.
In the day-to-day living of most people, there is not a lot of hope. There is pain, sickness, death, despair and no real life to live. Those who do not know Jesus Christ have no real hope or purpose in this world. What they do not know is that God will have a day of punishment for them. There will come a day in which they will be destroyed, along with Satan, in a lake of fire, cast out of God’s presence for the rest of eternity.
Those who know Jesus Christ and are following Him, revering God’s name will have a different thing to look forward to. Today there is pain, sickness and trouble for everyone, but there will be a day of redemption. The day that Jesus returns and judges the world, will be a day of rejoicing for all believers.
On that day all sickness and death will be removed. There will be no more pain and suffering. When that occurs, every believer will be jumping around and frolicking like a well-fed calf. There will be a lot to rejoice over.
As a believer all sickness and trouble will be gone. Holding onto the faith in Jesus will be rewarded. All the striving to follow after God with all of your heart will be rewarded beyond your greatest dreams. It will be worth everything that you had to go through in this challenging life.
Look at your own life and see what you can expect when Jesus returns. Are you revering God’s name? Or are you rejecting Him?
I pray today that you will know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior; that you will live for God in every area of your life; that Jesus will bring a reward for you when He returns; and that you will be a witness to the world of what Jesus has done and will do.
Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior. Habakkuk 3:17-18
After Habakkuk has several questions of complaint to God and he hears God’s answers, he comes to the conclusion to rejoice in God. Despite the fact that the nation is being overrun, people are dying, crops and cattle are being destroyed, he finds joy in God.
Life as a human being can be very challenging at times. There are times when it seems that everything that can go wrong, does go wrong. It also appears for some that the time of going wrong never seems to come to an end. Multiple problems keep rising faster than any are being solved.
During these times, some believers may feel as though God has left them. They become depressed and frustrated that God is allowing all those “bad” things to happen. They feel as if there is no hope left in this life.
While many may feel this way, it is not the truth. God is still in control and is orchestrating everything that is occurring for a reason.
Just as Habakkuk turned his eyes towards the Lord, so you must turn your eyes upon Jesus. You must look to Him for strength in the hard times. In light of eternity and the salvation Jesus will provide, having no food, no job, and no way to provide for yourself is very minor problem. Food for your soul is more important than food for your body. Having a great job and security is not as important as having your soul made right with God.
It is great to have things in this life, but they can also get in the way between you and God. Find your joy in God. He is the only one who will last for all eternity and will never leave you. When things are going bad, find joy in the hope Jesus provides.
Rejoice in the salvation Jesus is giving you. Rejoice in the love God has shown you. Let your heart sing for joy in the Lord as the world tries to tear you down.
I pray today that you will know the joy of the Lord in your life; that you will know the joy of the salvation God provides; that you will rejoice in God’s provision for your life; and that you will only look to God for your joy and provision.
Because you rejoice and are glad, you who pillage my inheritance, because you frolic like a heifer threshing grain and neigh like stallions, your mother will be greatly ashamed; she who gave you birth will be disgraced. She will be the least of the nations–a wilderness, a dry land, a desert. Jeremiah 50:11-12
God had used Babylon to punish Israel for the sin of following false gods. In the process of punishing Israel, Babylon rejoiced and was glad at what they were doing. They took great joy in punishing Israel. Since they chose to rejoice in striking Israel, God said they would be disgraced as a nation.
When someone does something wrong, people like to see justice done. The more public the wrong was or the more damaging the wrong was, the more justice that people want to see happen. People love to see the hammer thrown down on the person who has committed a great crime. They rejoice to see it happen.
This type of rejoicing also occurs inside the church. When a person has fallen into some great sin, people cry out for justice and rejoice when it happens. People are quick express their joy at the destruction of someone who has done wrong.
God weeps when there has to be punishment. He does not want to have to punish any person. He only does it because that is what is necessary.
Think about being a parent. Very few parents rejoice at having to punish their child for doing something wrong. It breaks their heart to have to punish at all. In the same way, when punishment has to occur on someone, do not rejoice.
God has infinite love for every person. When punishment occurs, it breaks His heart. Your heart should break in the same way. The person being punished is only having it happen because of some bad choices. You have made bad choices in your own life. Would you want people to rejoice at your punishment?
Jesus came to this world out of love for all. He came to save them, not punish and rejoice over the death of people. Punishment is done as a need, not as a joy.
Seek to redeem people, rather than just punish. Love those who have done wrong and point them in the right direction. Do not just crush them and then rejoice.
I pray today that you will know God’s love for people; that your heart will break as God’s does for the fallen; that you will seek to redeem the lost for God; and that God will use you to restore people to Him.
As a young man marries a young woman, so will your Builder marry you; as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride, so will your God rejoice over you. Isaiah 62:5
Isaiah is telling the people that God rejoices over the city of Jerusalem. Even though He had it destroyed for a time, God was in the process of rebuilding it. Jerusalem is portrayed as a bride, and God is seen as the bridegroom, even though God had built Jerusalem.
God was excited at the thought of marrying His bride–Jerusalem, just as a young man is excited and rejoices when he is about to marry his bride.
Jesus expanded the love of God and the term of bride to include more than just the Israelites and Jerusalem. Those terms now include every person who believes in Jesus, which is the church.
In life, many people do not believe that any person, much less God, could possibly love them enough to want to marry them. They see their own faults and cannot believe anyone would want them, including God. People in this world often see themselves as a dirty, worthless, un-loveable person.
Many women see themselves in that way, and often wonder or don’t even believe that someone can really love them, or would want to marry them. There are also many men who feel the same way about themselves. They go through life feeling as though no woman would ever love them enough to marry them.
While this happens in the physical world between men and women, it also happens in the spiritual world with God. People feel God cannot love them or want them because of all the bad things that they have done in their past.
This is not true. Israel had a lot of bad faults and had walked away from God, yet God still loved Israel.
Regardless of what you have done in the past, you can be made clean by the blood of Jesus. You are able to put on the spotless, white robe that He provides.
God made you and knows all your faults, even better than you do, yet, God wants you as His bride. He rejoices over the thought of having you as His bride, just as a young man rejoices over his bride when he is ready to get married.
Look forward to that wedding day in heaven. Rejoice with God as He rejoices with you. Get yourself ready for that wedding.
I pray today that you will allow Jesus to clean up your life; that you will be prepared to be married to God; that you will know God’s great love for you; and that you will rejoice with God in your relationship with Him.
Welcome. My blog is a place where readers will find writings of personal experiences, thoughts, and the peace that the Lord provides throughout my walk. I intend to bring inspiration and insight, as well as providing a very personal and transparent view into my life, in order to help others see their own lives in a different perspective. I strongly believe that we all need a different view at times, in order for our own personal growth to take place.
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