week3_13-nativity

John 15

I have told you these things so that you can have the same joy I have and so that your joy will be the fullest possible joy.

The reason God has come to us in Jesus is to let us know how glad he is to be with us. How glad he is to be our God. Our adoring Father in heaven. This is a definition for joy. Gladness. Joy is about relationship. Glad to be with God relationship. Glad to be with each other in relationships.

When we are glad to be together we share joy.

 

How do I know “joy” is the reason God sent Jesus? Because God says so. Or at least the angel he sends says so.

Christmas Eve. Middle of the night. An angel from the heavenly dimension appears to the shepherds. The veil between heaven and earth is lifted. God’s light shines on the shepherds and weighs them down with his power. The angel speaks…

“Don’t be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy, which will be for all people…” (Luke 2)

The good news is that great joy has come. God is glad to be with us and is choosing to live with us as one of us. Jesus is here!

“… Today your Savior was born in the town of David. He is the Messiah, the Lord.”

How else do we know the reason Jesus comes to us is to bring joy?

Because Jesus says so. He gives joy as the reason he teaches.

I have told you these things so that you can have the same joy I have and so that your joy will be the fullest possible joy (John 15).

But wait…Joy is the reason God comes as Jesus? I thought it is for forgiveness of sin. It is. Are you glad your sins are forgiven? I sure am. But, joy is so much more than simply forgiveness of sin. Joy is why we are created in the first place and why we live and why we will live with God forever.

For God so loved the world…

We are created to have the same joy Jesus is experiencing right now seated on the throne of heaven.

How do I know this? Because the Bible says we are with Jesus right now.

Your old sinful self has died, and your new life is kept with Christ in God (Colossians 3).

ME

If we are glad God is with us and if Jesus wants us to be filled with gladness, how did Christians get stereotyped as so somber?

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Joy is a key theme in the life of Jesus and his teaching. Yet, we rarely speak of this in the Christian community. According to brain science, a high-joy environment is absolutely necessary for healthy brain growth. Considering a baby grows 2/3 of their brain in the first 90 days, dare I say, from the beginning, we are designed to be filled with joy.

As Christians, we are uniquely called to be the world’s “joy starters.” How?

First podcast in a series of how we can make progress in becoming the kind of people Jesus has in mind…

 

 

 

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