The Joy of the Lord

“1-3 The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners; to proclaim the favorable year of the Lord and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who  mourn, to grant those who mourn in Zion, giving them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting.  So they will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.

4-9 Then they will rebuild the ancient ruins, they will raise up the former devastations; and they will repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations.  Strangers will stand and pasture your flocks, and foreigners will be your farmers and your vinedressers.  But you will be called the priests of the Lord; you will be spoken of as ministers of our God. You will eat the wealth of nations, and in their riches you will boast.  Instead of your shame  you will have a double portion, and instead of humiliation they will shout for joy over their portion.  Therefore they will possess a double portion in their land, everlasting joy will be theirs.  For I, the Lord, love justice, I hate robbery in the burnt offering; and I will faithfully give them their recompense and make an everlasting covenant with them.  Then their offspring will be known among the nations, and their descendants in the midst of the peoples.  All who see them will recognize them because they are the offspring whom the Lord has blessed.”

~Isaiah 61:1-9

In the fullness of heaven’s joys we shall receive more than double for all our services and sufferings.  I have been in the midst of a revelation of God’s joy lately.  The past few weeks it’s as if this well of overflowing, abundant, fountain of joy is just flowing out of my heart, mind, and spirit.  It’s truly overwhelming and a bit humbling.

Verses 1-3 were repeated by Jesus in the synagogue He grew up in after he was baptized by John the Baptist.  How amazing is that to know?  The first thing Jesus did was go proclaim the favorable year of the Lord and liberty to the captives of sin!  He took them from their desolate state, just like Zion in Isaiah, and made them oaks of righteousness to be known among the nations as blessed by the Lord.  He replaced their mourning with the Joy of the Lord!

The mourners in Zion were the powerless, the have-nots, people without a place to fall back in the world, the weak, the captive, the bound, and the believer in the midst of hardships.  If your life is in ruin, or if you feel your spirit is an abandon wreck, and you are grieving and mourning your loss, cling to this hope-only people who know how to truly grieve will know the true joy that comes from God!  “Those who are in sorrow are blessed, they will be comforted.” ~Matthew 5:4

Embrace the joy of the Lord today!

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