Archive for September, 2015

Walking in the light

September 29, 2015

John 3--20-21John 3:20-21, the Verse of the Day for September 29, 2015, speaks of those who prefer to walk in darkness rather than to walk in the light. To understand more fully those whom the passage refers to, we add verse 19 to the selected verses for today.

John 3:19-21 [Amplified Bible]

19 This is the judgment [that is, the cause for indictment, the test by which people are judged, the basis for the sentence]: the Light has come into the world, and people loved the [c]darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. 

20 For every wrongdoer hates the Light, and does not come to the Light [but shrinks from it] for fear that his [sinful, worthless] activities will be exposed and condemned. 

21 But whoever practices truth [and does what is right—morally, ethically, spiritually] comes to the Light, so that his works may be plainly shown to be what they are—accomplished in God [divinely prompted, done with God’s help, in dependence on Him].”

Regarding darkness and light, 1 John 1:5 offers this reminder:               

“God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all.”

1 John 1:5 tells us:

This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

Wherever you find darkness you do not find God. Believers are, thus, encouraged to walk in the light in 1 John 1:7 where the Amplified Bible renders the verse this way:

But if we [really] walk in the Light [that is, live each and every day in conformity with the precepts of God], as He Himself is in the Light, we have [true, unbroken] fellowship with one another [He with us, and we with Him], and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin [by erasing the stain of sin, keeping us cleansed from sin in all its forms and manifestations].

The exhortation to walk in the light is the inspiration, in part, for the following:

Walk in the Light

Walk in the light, the beautiful light.

Come where the dew drops of mercy shine bright,

Shine all around us by day and by night—

Jesus, the Light of the World.

Traditional Gospel Song

Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying,

“I am the light of the world. He who follows Me

shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”

John 8:12 (NKJV)

We begin when we come to Him who alone is the Light

And repent, following a new path immediately.

We will forsake the world and leave behind the chains of night

And consecrate ourselves to God, set apart wholly

To worship the Lord freely with clean hands and a pure heart,

Formed for His glory, as we develop a strong prayer life.

The Word of God rooted within us will never depart.

We will study the Word of Truth, the lamp that lights our way:

No longer blind but with enlightened eyes we now can see.

We vow to be a voice for God and stand out from the crowd.

We are true servants of the Light, despite the endless strife.

We will make a joyful noise and sing His praises out loud.

Looking in the mirror of the Word, we see God’s design.

Now is the time to arise and let our light so shine

We close with Bill and Gloria Gaither presenting the African Children’s Choir singing a medley “Walking in the Light”:

First things first

September 27, 2015

Matthew-6-33From Matthew 6:33 comes the Verse of the Day for September 27, 2015

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

In light of the Gospel of Matthew’s portrayal of Jesus as the King, the expression “the kingdom of God” is used four times in the first book of the Gospel writers: Matthew 12:28; 19:24; 21:31, 43. In its simplest form, the term is translated from the Greek word basileia, referring to the reign, rulership, authority or dominion of a king.

In the Old Testament the Hebrew word malkūt generally refers to the authority or rule of the heavenly king. The Psalmist declares: “They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom, and tell of thy power.… Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endures throughout all generations” (Psalm 145; 11, 13) “The Lord has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all” (Psalm 103:19). Ultimately, this sovereign rule of God, which Jesus Christ initiated with his earthly life and ministry, will be fulfilled when “the kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ” (Revelation 11:15).

The Verse of the Day and other references to the Kingdom of God remind us that we are . . .

Living in the Realm of the Kingdom of God

For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink;

but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.

Romans 14:17


In this place of transition where God seals covenants,

We find the comfort that we seek and the sweet release

Of the Jubilee extended to His bondservants.

Though turmoil surrounds us, we are kept in perfect peace

With a blessed assurance that we are ever secure,

Abiding under the shadow of the Almighty,

But we must wait with patience and not faint but endure.

While pressing toward the mark for the prize triumphantly,

We are living in the realm of the Kingdom of God,

As we submit our lives to Kingdom authority

And respond to each fiery trial with the Word of God.

No longer in bondage, we are redeemed and set free.

“It is written”: the true standard where we always find

Strength to triumph, transformed in the spirit of our mind.

Matthew 6:33 is offered as a familiar hymn: Seek Ye First the Kingdom of God

Ron Kenoly also provides a lively reminder that “Righteousness, Peace and Joy in the Holy Ghost” are essential elements of the Kingdom of God.

Judgment tempered with mercy

September 26, 2015

Hebrews 10--30The Verse of the Day for September 26, 2015 describes one of the amazing facets of “the living God” who is serves as Judge in Hebrews 10:30-31:

For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

The passage is rendered this way in the Amplified Bible:

Hebrews 10:30-31:

30 For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine [retribution and the deliverance of justice rest with Me], I will repay [the wrongdoer].” And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” 31 It is a fearful and terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God [incurring His judgment and wrath].

In recognizing the truth that God is the ultimate judge of humanity, we also recognize that He is also a God who tempers judgment with mercy in Lamentations 3:22-23:

22 It is of the Lord‘s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.

23 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.

Nowhere is the righteous judgment of God balanced with His mercy and lovingkindness more brilliantly displayed than in this passage from Psalm 103:6-14

The Lord executes righteousness
And justice for all the oppressed.

He made known His ways [of righteousness and justice] to Moses,
His acts to the children of Israel.

The Lord is merciful and gracious,
Slow to anger and abounding in compassion and lovingkindness.

He will not always strive with us,
Nor will He keep His anger forever.
He has not dealt with us according to our sins [as we deserve],
Nor rewarded us [with punishment] according to our wickedness.
For as the heavens are high above the earth,
So great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear and worship Him [with awe-filled respect and deepest reverence].
As far as the east is from the west,
So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
Just as a father loves his children,
So the Lord loves those who fear and worship Him [with awe-filled respect and deepest reverence].
For He knows our [mortal] frame;
He remembers that we are [merely] dust.

We close with a reading from Psalm 103 by Hillsong

The great reward of waiting with patience

September 25, 2015

Hebrews-10--36-39The Verse of the Day for September 24, 2015 is found in Hebrews 10:35-36 (NLT):

Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise:

This passage reminds us of the importance of patience, a character trait that should be in evidence as we learn to wait. A previous blog entry which brings this to mind is revised and reposted below:

Associated with waiting on the Lord is the character trait of patience or endurance or perseverance, steadfastly bearing up under and remaining faithful while waiting. Patience or perseverance, a fruit of the spirit, should be evident in our lives, as we wait on the Lord. When we examine one of the words for “patience,” hupomone, we see a compound word derived from hupo, meaning under and meno, meaning “to stay, remain, abide,” literally abiding under. The verb hupomeno means to stay under (behind), i.e. remain; figuratively, to undergo, i.e. bear (trials), have fortitude, to persevere — abide, endure, (take) patient(-ly), suffer, tarry behind.

The root idea of the noun hupomone is that of remaining under some discipline, subjecting one’s self to something which demands the yielding of the will to something against which one naturally would rebel. It means cheerful (or hopeful) endurance, constancy — enduring, patience, patient continuance (waiting). It is a bearing up in a way that honors and glorifies our heavenly Father, not merely to grin and bear it.

Hupomone is used 32 times in the New Testament and is translated: endurance seven times; patient enduring once; perseverance twenty-one times; and steadfastness three times. James 5:11 provides an excellent example of both the verb hupomeno and the noun hupomone in a particular individual who embodies the character trait of patient endurance. The King James Version offers this rendering containing a familiar phrase that encompasses a character trait most often associated with Job:

The Book of Job is a classic example of the principle of first usage and first spiritual principle, which highlights as particularly important the first time that a concept is mentioned in the Bible. It is believed by E.W. Bullinger and other Bible scholars that the first book written was the Book of Job, believed to be composed by Moses. Job, whom Chuck Swindoll described as a “man of heroic endurance,” was, indeed, a real person, and his story is one of the first demonstrations of many spiritual principles. One of the foundational spiritual principles that the Book of Job demonstrates is that God is “full of compassion and tender mercy” and that he rewards those who demonstrate “patience.” A number of years ago I composed this poem with Hebrews 10:36 as its part of its epigraph or brief introduction:

A Prayer for Patience

“My suggestion for people in a season of birth or upgrade

is to write out a prayer for patience and pray it every day.”

Graham Cooke


For you have need of steadfast patience and endurance,

so that you may perform and fully accomplish the will of God,

and thus receive and carry away [and enjoy to the full] what is promised.

Hebrews 10:36 (Amplified Bible)

We look back and pause and then look ahead to see

Clearly who God is and who He wants us to be.

We still journey down the road less travelled by

And pray that patience may serve as our trusted ally.

We must say “No” to the pressures of this life

And say “Yes” to the rest God gives, despite the strife.

As we stay our minds on Him, we abide in peace.

When we praise God, works of the enemy decrease.

May we remain and not fall by the wayside as some

But like Job wait until at last our change shall come.

Patient endurance seems delayed for some reason,

But fruit abounds to those who wait in this season.

We pray that in this time of transition and shift

That we embrace waiting as a wonderful gift.

Although it is said that “Patience is its own reward,” God also rewards patience, as soclearly demonstrated at the end the Book of Job. Recall Job 42:10:

And the LORD turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before.

In reality when we respond to God in faith, we find that “without faith it is impossible to please God. For he that comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” Indeed, we see that the Lord is “merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.” Verse 11 of Psalm 103 also states, “For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward those who fear Him;”

Not only is patience its own reward, but God also honors and rewards our patience, as we patiently wait on Him.

Karen Clark Sheard and Donnie McClurkin offer a stirring rendition of a song that reminds us that the essence of patience is learning to “Wait on the Lord.”

Send the rain: the former and the latter

September 20, 2015

Joel_2-23The Verse of the Day for September 20, 2015 makes reference to the former rain and the latter rain, expressed in Joel 2:23 in the Amplified Bible:

So rejoice, O children of Zion, and delight in the Lord, your God; For He has given you the early [autumn] rain in vindication And He has poured down the rain for you, The early [autumn] rain and the late [spring] rain, as before.

Rain is the life source for an agricultural people whose lives are dependent upon crops. In the Land of Israel God, indeed, sends rain in due season in two specific forms: the former rain and latter rain. In the Middle East, the former rain occurs in October or November, accompanying the planting of crops, while the latter rain occurs in the spring, around March or April, just before the harvest. Old Testament Prophets Jeremiah, Hosea, and Joel also speak of both seasons of rain:

Jeremiah 5:24

Neither say they in their heart, Let us now fear the LORD our God, that gives rain, both the former and the latter, in his season: he reserves unto us the appointed weeks of the harvest.

Hosea 6:1-3 (NKJV)

Come, and let us return unto the LORD: for he has torn, and he will heal us; he has smitten, and he will bind us up.

After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.

Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the LORD: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.

The same message from Joel 2:23 is echoed on the Day of Pentecost, when Peter addresses the multitude in referring to the Prophet Joel:

Acts 2:16-18 (NKJV)

But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;

And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men    shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:

And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:

To appreciate the promise of God who will send the latter rain when He pours out of His spirit upon all flesh, think of what happened when God first opened the windows of heaven and “poured” out the rain. Genesis 7 gives the account of Noah and the ark when the heavens opened, and it rained for forty days and nights. In the last days when God opens the windows of heaven to pour out of His spirit on all flesh, do you think the outpouring will be any less great than the first time God poured out? God predates Morton salt whose motto is “When it rains, it pours.”

Anyone who is spiritually observant can sense that a great outpouring of the Spirit of God is, in truth, already taking place. In a similar way, one can tell when a torrential downpour is about to occur. The essence of what is about to take place spiritually is seen in the lyrics to a popular ballad from bygone days, “Soon It’s Gonna Rain”:

See how the wind begins to whisper.

See how the leaves go streaming by.

Smell how the velvet rain is falling

Out where the fields are warm and dry.

Soon it’s gonna rain, I can see it

Soon it’s gonna rain, I can tell

Soon it’s gonna rain, what are we gonna do?

To answer the question posed at the end of the song, here is my advice: “Pray and get ready for rain!” As Zechariah 10:1 exhorts:

Ask ye of the LORD rain in the time of the latter rain; so the  LORD shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field.

The Book of James also reminds us the importance of prayer in conjunction with the harvest.

James 5:7 (NKJV):

Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waits for the precious fruit of the earth, and has long patience for it, until he receives the early and latter rain.

James goes on to illustrate what can happen when a man of God prays:

James 5:17-18 (NKJV)

Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.

And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.

God still answers prayer. His desire is to bless more than ours is to ask. Let us continue to pray for rain, the latter rain, an abundance of spiritual outpouring, which God promised to send before the abundant harvest toward which we are steadily moving. “Pray, the Latter Rain is on the way!”

We conclude with William Nelson, who offers this passionate plea: “Send the Rain.”

Walk in love, as Christ also has loved us

September 17, 2015

Ephesians-5 1-2Taken from Ephesians 5:1 (NKJV), the Verse of the Day for September 17, 2015, offers this exhortation, more fully expressed in verse 2 as well:

Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.

The Amplified Bible puts it this way:

Ephesians 5:1-2:

Therefore become imitators of God [copy Him and follow His example], as well-beloved children [imitate their father]; and walk continually in love [that is, value one another—practice empathy and compassion, unselfishly seeking the best for others], just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and sacrifice to God [slain for you, so that it became] a sweet fragrance.

A previous blog entry included the following comments which have been revised and re-posted:

As believers we are to be imitators or mimics of God, our Father. In a similar manner to a young boy who wants to walk in his father’s shoes and wear his father’s hat, we are to be followers of God. Our lives are to be filled to overflowing with love. Our lives should be a reflection of the saying, “Like father, like son.”

This passage from Ephesians 5 also brings to mind 1 John 4:16, expressed in the Amplified Bible this way:

16 And we know (understand, recognize, are conscious of, by observation and by experience) and believe (adhere to and put faith in and rely on) the love God cherishes for us. God is love, and he who dwells and continues in love dwells and continues in God, and God dwells and continues in him.

In 1 John 4:8 we find an expression of who God is:

He who does not love has not become acquainted with God [does not and never did know Him], for God is love.

For Christian believers nothing is more satisfying than to know that God is love and that God loves us. We can thus, follow Christ’s example as we offer our lives as sacrificial expression of our devotion to God.

Here is a poetic expression related to our discussion:

Walk in Love: Our Best Defense

Don’t bite the bait,

Don’t take offense.

Walk in the love of Jesus Christ

It’s your best defense.

Scripture Memory Song

Always attacking, the Accuser stalks his prey,

Relentless in maligning Saints, both night and day.

Fiery darts of wicked words hurled in endless assaults

Deflect his evil deeds to magnify our faults.

He sets the traps, lures of the Spirit of Offense.

To counteract, we walk in love, our best defense.

He tries to trip us up, to be a stumbling block,

But we are ever vigilant around the clock.

Although we strive to reach the highest good,

Our motives are questioned; we are misunderstood.

Despite life’s challenges, we seek to rise above.

Though deeply wounded when betrayed, we still walk in love.

The thief comes to offend, falsely accuse and betray,

But we conquer through Christ, each time we trust and obey.

The accompanying video illustrates what it is like to be “Imitators of God”

In pursuit of wisdom

September 16, 2015

James_3-13 James 3:13 (NKJV), the Verse of the Day for September 16, 2015, asks a question and provides the answer:

[Heavenly Versus Demonic Wisdom] Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom.

In light of the topic of wisdom, this verse also brings to mind a series of teachings posted as blog entries entitled “Words of Wisdom”—a daily dose of “words to the wise.” Here is one of the entries modified and re-posted below:  

The Psalmist offers this exhortation:

So teach us to number our days that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.[Psalm 90:12 KJV]

As life-long learners, ever-eager students in the University of Life, we are continually learning more about God and our relationship with Him, particularly in terms of applying principles of wisdom, for each day abounds with opportunities to learn and grow.The following poem mentions wisdom in light of seeking the Spirit of Wisdom:

In Pursuit of Wisdom

If you seek skillful and godly wisdom as you would silver

And search for her as you would hidden treasures;

Then you will understand the [reverent] fear of the Lord  

[that is, worshiping Him

and regarding Him as truly awesome]

And discover the knowledge of God.

Proverbs 2:4-5 [Amplified Bible]

We chase an enemy, motivated to win,

To relentlessly follow and then overtake,

As a hunter reads footprints and tracks down his game,

So your fragrance arouses us as we awake.

This desire, a fire, flames the passion deep within.

Though we have felt your touch and kissed your lips before,

As lovers pursues their beloved, so do we

Yearn to be with you and to know you even more,

Assured that all who pursue you shall also find.

As the sun rises to follow its daily course,

Zealously we seek you with our heart and soul and mind,

As one traces a winding river to its source.

As one forsakes all to pursue a priceless treasure,

So we seek the spirit of wisdom’s good pleasure.

The last line of the poem brings to mind another song that captures the essence of that for which we are seeking: “Seekers of Your Heart” rendered by Steve Green, Sandi Patty and Larnelle Harris.

He who abides in love abides in God

September 15, 2015

1 John 4--16

The Verse of the Day is found in 1 John 4:16 (NKJV):

And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.

The Amplified Bible expresses the verse this way:

16 And we know (understand, recognize, are conscious of, by observation and by experience) and believe (adhere to and put faith in and rely on) the love God cherishes for us. God is love, and he who dwells and continues in love dwells and continues in God, and God dwells and continues in him.

In 1 John 4:8 we find an expression of who God is:

He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

Rendered in the Amplified Bible this way:

 He who does not love has not become acquainted with God [does not and never did know Him], for God is love.

For Christian believers nothing is more satisfying than to know that God is love and that God loves us, and nothing can separate us from that love.

Hillsong offers this reminder that “Our God is Love.”

In John 15:5, 8 (NLT) we find parallel scriptures used by Jesus, who speaks of a parable where he uses this comparison:

“Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.

This reference relates the parable of the vinedresser, the vine, the branches and the fruit. That is, it explained how the Twelve were to produce a spiritual harvest for God.

The passage from John 15 records how Jesus, during the evening when he was betrayed and captured, said to the eleven apostles who remained at the table with him (Judas had departed and gone to betray the Lord), that his Father was a “vinedresser” (grape farmer), or “husbandman” as some translations have it, and that he, Jesus, was “the true vine”, and that those apostles were “branches” who were attached to Jesus, the Vine. In order to be fruitful the branches must “abide” in the vine. When the branches remain intact with the vine, God is glorified as the branches bear much fruit. When thinking of fruit, the fruit of the spirit comes to mind, and what is the principal fruit of the passage from Galatians 5:22-24? Love, as the Scriptures also remind us.

The accompanying photos show a fruitful vine from a vineyard that illustrates the parable where Jesus describes himself as “the true vine.” We conclude as Laurie Sterling offers another musical rendition of this metaphor: “You are the Vine.”

Put off, put on, put away

September 13, 2015

1 Peter 3_8The Verse of the Day for September 13, 2015 is found in 1 Peter 3:8 (NKJV):

[ Called to Blessing ] Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous;

The verse is rendered this way the Amplified Bible:

Finally, all [of you] should be of one and the same mind (united in spirit), sympathizing [with one another], loving [each other] as brethren [of one household], compassionate and courteous (tenderhearted and humble).

The Verse of the Day brings to mind a similar exhortation, poetically expressed this way:

We put off the old, put on the new, and leave the past behind.

We follow Christ and are renewed in the spirit of our mind.

As believers, we are encouraged to change of our minds and develop new thinking patterns. We are to put off the old man and to put on the new man, as we put away lying or any other ungodly practices. Instead of continuing in the direction that habitually takes us away from presence of the Lord, Colossians 3:12 -14 in the Amplified Bible offer this reminder:

12 Clothe yourselves therefore, as God’s own chosen ones (His own picked representatives), [who are] purified and holy and well-beloved [by God Himself, by putting on behavior marked by] tenderhearted pity and mercy, kind feeling, a lowly opinion of yourselves, gentle ways, [and] patience [which is tireless and long-suffering, and has the power to endure whatever comes, with good temper].

13 Be gentle and forbearing with one another and, if one has a difference (a grievance or complaint) against another, readily pardoning each other; even as the Lord has [freely] forgiven you, so must you also [forgive].

14 And above all these [put on] love and enfold yourselves with the bond of perfectness [which binds everything together completely in ideal harmony].

We personally apply these principles of renewing our minds when we determine that we will change directions in our lives and start following this directive by

Moving in the Opposite Spirit

Quit backbiting—God doesn’t want to hear it.

Don’t retaliate—move in the opposite spirit.


And do not be conformed to this world,

but be transformed by the renewing of your mind,

that you may prove what is that good and acceptable

and perfect will of God.

Romans 12:2

Moving in the opposite spirit, not in hate

But walking in love, being kind, tenderhearted;

Not being anxious but learning patiently to wait;

To quench the fiery tongue before it gets started;

Never spewing venom but with our mouths confess

The truth of the Word of God that we might make known

What God declares we are, to always seek to bless

And reap a great harvest from good seed that is sown;

To reverse the curse and counter iniquity.

God orders our steps, and we choose the path of peace,

Not to seek revenge but pray for each enemy,

For all giving assures that favor will increase;

Renewed in the spirit of our mind night and day,

Being transformed “to put off, put on, put away.”

As followers of Christ, each day we must “Put off! Put on! Put away!”

Jody McBryer concludes with a powerful rendering of “The Mind of Christ”:

Rejoice in the Lord always: again, I say rejoice

September 12, 2015

Philippians 4--4The Verse of the Day for September 12, 2015 is a marvelous reminder of how we should approach each day:

Philippians 4:4 (NKJV)

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!

The New Living Translation puts it this way:

Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice!

The idea of continual rejoicing is also clearly revealed in 1 Thessalonians 5:16:

Rejoice evermore.

The letter to the Philippians, written while Paul was in prison, is also known as the “Epistle of Joy” because of this particular fruit of the spirit is mentioned repeatedly throughout the four chapters. We note that in chapter 4 some form of the word joy is found in verses 1, 4, and 10.

I have fond memories of Philippians 4:4 taught as a scripture memory song that was sung as a round in the Children’s Ministry classes that I taught for years. Israel Houghton offers a lively contemporary arrangement inspired in part by Philippians 4:4:

The joy that abounds in Philippians 4 reflects a similar overflow found in the Psalms 118:24 where we find this familiar declaration:

This is the day the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.

The Psalmist also offers this reminder:

Psalm 35:27 (Amplified Bible)

Let them shout for joy and rejoice, who favor my vindication and want what is right for me; Let them say continually, “Let the Lord be magnified, who delights and takes pleasure in the prosperity of His servant.”

Other places in the Psalms make similar declarations:

Psalm 95:1

O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.

Psalm 98:4

Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise.

As we reflect upon the goodness of the Lord and celebrate His faithfulness, we will also come to experience, joy, unspeakable and full of glory:

The Joy of the Lord    

Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, 

and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them    

for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our LORD:     

neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength.

Nehemiah 8:10

Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy,

all ye that are upright in heart.

Psalm 32:11


Since Christ has set us free, we are no longer bound.

To show thanks to Him we will go to any length.

We will jump and shout, leap for joy and spin around.

We will praise Him; the joy of the Lord is our strength.

We glorify His name and raise a joyful sound.

Joy like a fountain is bubbling deep in our soul:

We know an inner river of joy flows freely.

Cleansed from within by His precious blood, we are made whole.

With a voice of triumph we shout for the victory.

At all times we rejoice, for God is in control.

God has given us all things richly to enjoy

From our soul His praises we will joyfully extol.

Now we know that God’s faithfulness nothing can destroy:

We celebrate and rejoice with exceeding great joy.

Twila Paris ends our joyful celebration with “The Joy of the Lord is my Strength.”