I decided to devote Monday’s to exploring the meaning of words or sayings. Why you ask: because I believe that words matter. Monday’s are usually “any topic goes” kind of day. I’m thinking of so many things that sometimes its hard to keep focused and on track. Alas, I press on with intention. I was recently reminded of Nehemiah 8:10 where we find the origin of the quote “The joy of the Lord is your strength” We all know that people have a tendency to whip out their nifty quotes and proverbs for your every need. Sometimes they’re really genuine and heartfelt but then there are other times when it’s as common as a Whatsapp image with poor graphics. They’re stated verbatim or overstated and sometimes do more harm than good. Even worse if they are slapped on us like a wet band-aid without really understanding the meaning or without care. I’ll be honest I am pretty sure that one of these has been me! I’m learning folks.
Nehemiah 8:10Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)10 Then [Ezra] told them, Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet drink, and send portions to him for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. And be not grieved and depressed, for the joy of the Lord is your strength and stronghold.
The Greek word for the joy of the Lord: chedvâh meaning rejoicing:—gladness, joy.
Another root word Chara means to extend favour, lean towards, be favourably disposed of”) – properly, the awareness (of God’s) grace, favour; joy(“grace recognized”).
This joy which I had previously equated with “happiness” is not merely just that. It’s deeper. The joy of the Lord is something which must be meditated upon, I imagine it is God’s position towards us, its a posture of rejoicing, its a joining of my spirit with His. It is what would make Christ go forward and die on the Cross: for the joy set before him. God through Jesus Christ our Lord extended immeasurable favour to us mankind that we might have life eternally. The joy of the Lord would be our salvation. That we might come to know Him who saved us and in us recognising his grace, leaning on GOD and delighting in Him.
The joy of the Lord is the gladness of heart that comes from knowing God, abiding in Christ, and being filled with the Holy Spirit. (Got Questions)
Will you dedicate your house to the Lord with joy?
Ezra 6:16Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)16 And the Israelites—the priests, the Levites, and the rest of the returned exiles—celebrated the dedication of this house of God with joy.
Psalm 149:2Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)2 Let Israel rejoice in Him, their Maker; let Zion’s children triumph and be joyful in their King!