What is essential for us to have Christ’s joy in us? When we look to Christ we see that He had joy as He obeyed His Father’s commandments. The path to joy for Jesus is the same path to joy for us. We too can flourish in the delights of the Father’s love as we obey Him. And as 1 John 5:3 tells us, to obey His commands is no longer a burden because we have been born again. We are now yoked to Him who bears our burdens and His yoke is easy, and His burden is light.
This excerpt was taken from the full sermon, “What Does Fellowship With God Look Like? (Part 2)“.
If I’m going to make a partial stab at what it is that Jesus says that is so key to us having His joy, I would just have you take a look at John 15:10 which comes right before 15:11 where He says, “These things I have spoken to you that My joy may be in you…” Now I recognize “these things” may go beyond the verse that was just spoken before it, but certainly the verse spoken just before it would be inclusive in these things. Notice what it says. “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love. Just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.” You see, we’re talking about abiding in the circle of love. “These things I have spoken to you that My joy may be in you and your joy may be full.” I don’t think any of us questions that the richest, deepest, most profound joys in this world are attached to love. I think we all know that. But notice, the very joy of Christ that He Himself had sprang out of obedience to His Father’s commandments which centered Him squarely in those bright rays of the love of the Father. To delight in the Father, He also had communion and fellowship with Him in the Father’s will. He delighted in His will. He so delighted in the Father and delighted in everything that the Father delights in and everything that the Father loves. That’s what the commandments are all about. It’s the will of God. It’s what God delights in. It’s what is consistent with His own character and His own love, His own beauty, His own holiness. The path to joy for Jesus is the same path to joy for me. He flourished there in the delights of His Father’s love through obedience. And so I’m called to abide in the radiance – all this glow of Jesus’ love by the same thing. And you know what the world does, they view Christianity: Oh, it’s this dry and dreary thing. Just a list of rules – that’s all Christianity is. No, it’s not. It’s about being drawn into this very circle where the love of Christ just radiates and permeates and surrounds. And lest you fall into this idea that it’s gray, joyless rule-keeping, it’s not; it’s a world of love. Listen, when Jesus came along, He said, “My yoke is easy.” Really? A yoke sounds hard. I’ve got a picture in my mind of cattle yoked, going across a hot field, dusty, all day long. I don’t like yokes. Let’s just inquire, Lord, why is Your yoke easy? Well, because you’re yoked to Me. And I’m only going to take you near the still waters and the green grass. And I’m going to smother you with My love. Anything that I call you to as far as hardship here, it’s momentary light affliction and then it’s going to be all glory. It’s good. “My burden is light.” Why? Because My love is going to be there supporting you all the way through it. You know, John says it this way: he says that “this is love, that we keep His commandments and His commandments are not burdensome.” Well, no. Anytime you find a Master who floods His servants with love, following His desires are not hard. Yeah, if they’re tyrants; if they’re like the devil, but that’s not it. The joy of Christ arises, His joy came from being loved by the uttermost supreme of all Beings. He was one with His Father. One in purpose. This is the realm into which Christ bids us.