What Joy is set before You?
Hebrews 12:2 CSB
“keeping our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith. For the joy that lay before him, he endured the cross, despising the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
What was the joy that lay before Jesus?
I want to submit to you the Joy that was before Jesus is the joy of obeying His Father’s will?
Surely this is not a selfish joy for a reward. Not a joy motivated by selfish indulgence in one’s own accomplishments.
Jesus taught meekness and humility, not pride and grandeur, or self-approbation.
Jesus, The Messiah, washed the Disciples' feet.
John 13:12-15 CSB
“When Jesus had washed their feet and put on his outer clothing, he reclined again and said to them, “Do you know what I have done for you? You call me Teacher and Lord—and you are speaking rightly since that is what I am. So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done for you.”
How come we're not out washing each other’s feet? Where is the Institute of Feet Washing or the Foot Washing Seminary?
Jesus tells us that we should do the same. In v15, Jesus says, "For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done for you." Jesus says this. He has just put His clothes back on and put away the jar of foot water in his hand. The context couldn't be any clearer to me.
We don't get it. Like they didn't get it. Or, we don't want to get it. After all, the implications of what He has just taught would require us to stoop too low.
How low are we willing to go? Not that low!?
Why? For myself, I know why. I think it’s because I am not “keeping my eyes on Jesus, the pioneer, and perfecter of our faith.“
Because we're focused on the reward for ourselves and not the reward of glory for our Father. THAT’S WHY!! Our joy is skewed and tainted by our sin nature.
The Joy set before Jesus is Joy that gives glory and honor to His Father, The Almighty God. What would give glory to God more than complete, strict, and raw obedience?
It reminds me of II Chronicles 16:9 "For the eyes of the LORD roam throughout the earth to show himself strong for those who are wholeheartedly devoted to Him." (CSB)
That is the glory witnessed (testified) by and of the " so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us” mentioned in Hebrews Ch 12:1. Those Saints mentioned there are not sitting around witnessing our miserable little attempts at pleasing The Majesty On High.
They ARE the witnesses who have testified to the glory of God's Majesty and Honor by their lives. They have finished their races and are now a witness (testimony) to the angelic and human cosmos that God Is!
Their lives here on earth gave witness to God's faithfulness, justice, and righteousness in sending His only begotten Son for the propitiation of the sins of the whole world.
Those who deny God's gift are missing out on the opportunity to participate in His perfect plan for ALL to Joy, in the now, and Joy in eternity. Those of us who receive God’s gift; will miss out on God’s glory because we lay the wrong joy before us. We are either living in Joy now, or we are living in misery, missing out on all that God has prepared for us to glorify Him in, which must be a pure, and undefiled Joy. Jesus would not have endured for anything less than pure joy. Why would He? He is the Son of The Most High and Mighty God.
When we lay the wrong joy before us, we will miss the joy that Jesus has.
We ALL will live in eternity. But what we do with God now will determine our eternal state and where we will spend it.
The Good News is that ALL can experience now, and in eternity that pure Joy of Jesus.
"Don’t let your heart be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, so that where I am you may be also. You know the way to where I am going.”
“Lord,” Thomas said, “we don’t know where you’re going. How can we know the way?”
Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will also know my Father. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.” -- John 14:1-7 (CSB)
What is the joy set before you today, to endure your cross, your suffering, your pain, your humiliations, your sorrows, your...whatever?
I believe that whatever our joy is at present will determine the fullness of life that we live in the here and now and in the place prepared for us in eternity.
Jesus is pure and undefiled joy. The Joy that brings Honor and Glory to God Almighty. The Great I Am.
“My Father is glorified by this: that you produce much fruit and prove to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, I have also loved you. Remain in my love. If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you these things so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.” John 15:8-11 (CSB)
Don't let anyone or anything steal the joy that Jesus has for you.
Own it! It’s yours to receive. All you need to do is ask of your heavenly Father.
Father in heaven, I am miserable, save me from my sin. I believe Jesus is the way to You and pure joy in me. I believe Jesus will bring honor and glory to You.
Hebrews 12:3-11, 12,13 (CSB)
For consider Jesus who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, so that you won’t grow weary and give up. In struggling against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And you have forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons: My son, do not take the Lord’s discipline lightly or lose heart when you are reproved by Him, for the Lord disciplines the one He loves and punishes every son He receives. Endure suffering as discipline: God is dealing with you as sons. For what son is there that a father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline—which all receive—then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Furthermore, we had human fathers discipline us, and we respected them. Shouldn’t we submit even more to the Father of spirits and live? For they disciplined us for a short time based on what seemed good to them, but He does it for our benefit so that we can share His holiness. No discipline seems enjoyable at the time but painful. Later on, however, it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
Therefore, strengthen your tired hands and weakened knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated but healed instead.
Let us encourage one another to Joy in Jesus.
Put yourself into a posture of humility before Almighty God. Quiet your soul, wait in silence until all is calm. You may need to tell yourself to be quiet. This may take some time. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your eyes to see wonderful things from His Law, and open your ears to hear. Read Isaiah 46 out loud. As many times as it takes for you to hear. Wait on the LORD.
Isaiah 46:1-13 CSB
Bel crouches; Nebo cowers. Idols depicting them are consigned to beasts and cattle. The images you carry are loaded as a burden for the weary animal. The gods cower; they crouch together; they cannot rescue the burden, but they themselves go into captivity. Listen to me, house of Jacob, all the remnant of the house of Israel, who have been sustained from the womb, carried along since birth. I will be the same until your old age, and I will bear you up when you turn gray. I have made you, and I will carry you; I will bear and rescue you. To whom will you compare me or make me equal? Who will you measure me with, so that we should be like each other? Those who pour out their bags of gold and weigh out silver on scales— they hire a goldsmith, and he makes it into a god. Then they kneel and bow down to it. They lift it to their shoulder and bear it along; they set it in its place, and there it stands; it does not budge from its place. They cry out to it, but it doesn’t answer; it saves no one from his trouble. Remember this and be brave; take it to heart, you transgressors! Remember what happened long ago, for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and no one is like me. I declare the end from the beginning, and from long ago what is not yet done, saying: my plan will take place, and I will do all my will. I call a bird of prey from the east, a man for my purpose from a far country. Yes, I have spoken; so I will also bring it about. I have planned it; I will also do it. Listen to me, you hardhearted, far removed from justice: I am bringing my justice near; it is not far away, and my salvation will not delay. I will put salvation in Zion, my splendor in Israel.