Inexpressible joy

To Follow Jesus

My (Shayne McCusker) notes on Every Day with Jesus, written by Selwyn Hughes; revised and updated by Mick Brooks, published by CWR.

September/October 2014 Issue – ‘Property of Jesus’

The text set for today’s reading and meditation:

1 Peter 1:1-19 (NIV-UK): “Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ: To God’s elect, exiles, scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade.

This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.

In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith – of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire – may result in praise, glory and honour when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”

Don’t you agree – this is another exceptional set of verses, which can only be a great encouragement – to us. We – who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood.

We can depend on the perfection of God’s choice, in regard to who He saves – it’s a most humbling thought to think that we have done nothing to deserve the salvation of our souls. And, our frail nature – by itself – cannot destroy the genuineness of our faith, because we have the assurance that our inheritance in heaven is totally and completely shielded by God’s power.

Now, just that truth should generate joy, in the hearts of all, who follow Jesus.

Selwyn says in today’s study: “Those who are branded with the joy of Christ are not only truly joyous, but sometimes hilariously joyous. … It is a sad reflection on today’s Church that exuberance and devotion are regarded as things that cannot flow together. They can.”

It’s a pity, that in some cases, excessive exuberance has been allowed to become disruptive because the behaviour has crowded out, all other forms of devotion. There is a need for balance – a balance, which allows for both inexpressible joy and reverence for our Holy God, in an atmosphere where the peace of Christ prevails.

Your view?