In God’s Presence there is Fulness of Joy

In You I Take Refuge
Psalms 16:1-4 ESV

“Preserve me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
I say to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord;
I have no good apart from you.’

“As for the saints in the land, they are the excellent ones,
in whom is all my delight.

“The sorrows of those who run after another god shall multiply;
their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out
or take their names on my lips.”

We are not promised that we will never have to suffer, for we share in the fellowship of Christ’s sufferings, and we will be persecuted for righteousness’ sake, and we will go through times of trials which test our faith. But we can be assured, if we are following Jesus with our lives, that our Lord is there with us, carrying us, holding us, and protecting us from the evil one.

We can endure whatever suffering comes our way because our Lord is going before us and he’s preparing the way for us. Our Lord is completely sovereign over our lives and absolutely in control of our circumstances, so we can trust him with whatever he allows us to go through, that it has a purpose, and that God is working it all for good in our lives.

We can also be encouraged by our fellow believers in Jesus who are walking in holiness and righteousness, whose God is the Lord, who are doing his will, and who are following in his footsteps. They have the mind of Christ, they are in his word daily, and they are doing what it says. They are not those who give lip service only to God and who are still living in disobedience.

Those who do not repent of their sins, who do not turn away from them, but who continue to live in them, in direct disobedience to the Lord, while claiming to have fellowship with God and while claiming heaven as their eternal home, do not know God, and they do not have eternal life with God. He will say to them, “Depart from me, I never knew you!”

[Lu 9:23-26; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:7; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10]

I Have a Beautiful Inheritance
Psalms 16:5-8 ESV

“The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup;
you hold my lot.
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.

“I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me.
I have set the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.”

Having the Lord as our chosen portion and cup is not just praying a prayer to receive Christ and then nothing changes in our lives. This is not about a one-time decision to “receive Christ” and then life goes on as normal until one day we die, and we go to heaven.

If the Lord is our chosen portion and cup, he is our life. He is our all! Our lives are surrendered to him, and he is the master of our lives. Our desire is for him to do his will. We listen to what he says, and we follow him in obedience. He is the one directing our paths, and not our flesh.

We have a beautiful inheritance because we have been crucified with Christ in death to sin and we are living to Christ and to his righteousness. But for those who are still walking according to the flesh, and not according to the Spirit, who are making sin their practice, and righteousness is not what they practice, they will not inherit eternal life with God.

We who have that delightful inheritance, though, love our Lord and his word and his instructions to us, and our desire is to do his will. We love his counsels to us and his instructions he gives to us even in the night. And we walk in his ways and in his truth because he is our hope and our joy.

My Whole Being Rejoices
Psalms 16:9-11 ESV

“Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
my flesh also dwells secure.
For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption.

“You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”

We who put our hope in Jesus Christ for our salvation, to deliver us from our slavery to sin so that we can now be slaves of God and of his righteousness, who are walking not according to the flesh, but who are walking according to the Spirit, can be assured of eternal life with God and that we will not be abandoned by God, and that our souls will not end up in hell.

In this we can rejoice, not just that we were delivered from hell and promised eternal life with God, but that we were delivered from our slavery to sin so that we can now walk in holiness and righteousness in God’s power and strength at work within our lives.

We are glad, and our whole being rejoices because we are no longer left to our own devices, but Jesus now makes known to us the paths of life he has designed for us to walk in. We rejoice in our Lord because we love him, and we want to do what pleases him. We are not looking for a loophole to try to get out of obeying him, as many are doing today.

We find joy and peace and assurance in walking with our Lord in obedience to his commands, and in having an intimate relationship with Almighty God. It is not a drudgery for us. Yes, we get tired, and we get weak, but then we rely on the Lord for our strength and comfort. And we continue in our Lord and in his service not just because it is the right thing to do, but because we love our Lord, and our heart rejoices in him and in pleasing him.

My Sheep

An Original Work / June 24, 2012
Based off John 10:1-18 NIV

My sheep hear me. They know me.
They listen to my voice and obey.
I call them and lead them.
They know my voice, so they follow me.
They will never follow strangers.
They will run away from them.
The voice of a stranger they know not;
They do not follow him.

So, I tell you the truth that
I am the gate, so you enter in.
Whoever does enter
Will find forgiveness and will be saved.
Nonetheless whoever enters
Not by the gate; other way,
He is the thief and a robber.
Listen not, the sheep to him.

Oh, I am the Good Shepherd,
Who laid his own life down for the sheep.
I know them. They know me.
They will live with me eternally.
The thief only comes to steal and
Kill and to destroy the church.
I have come to give you life that
You may have it to the full…

They know my voice, so they follow me.

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