Rejoice in the Lord! – Philippians 3
“Further, my brothers and sisters, rejoice in the Lord! It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard for you. 2 Watch out for those dogs, those evildoers, those mutilators of the flesh. 3 For it is we who are the circumcision, we who serve God by his Spirit, who boast in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh— 4 though I myself have reasons for such confidence.
If someone else thinks they have reasons to put confidence in the flesh, I have more: 5 circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; in regard to the law, a Pharisee; 6 as for zeal, persecuting the church; as for righteousness based on the law, faultless.” Philippians 3:1-6 NIV
“Further, my brothers and sisters, rejoice in the Lord!” This passage speaks very loudly to me today. Paul says, “rejoice in the Lord.” It is interesting that he does not say, “rejoice in your circumstances.” He does not tell us to, “rejoice in your job, your paycheck and your income.” He doesn’t instruct us to “rejoice in your religious or church affiliation.” He does not want us even to “rejoice in our friendships, relationships, or marriage.” He says very specifically, “rejoice in the Lord!”
Even more telling to me is how he says it. There is an exclamation point at the end of the sentence. Paul doesn’t say with hesitation or suggest that we might “rejoice in the Lord?” He doesn’t calmly make the statement to “rejoice in the Lord.” He demands with authority, “rejoice in the Lord!”
He doesn’t even end there. Paul says, “It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again… it is a safeguard to you.” Here Paul is saying, “I don’t mind telling you this again and again. Rejoice in the Lord because that protects you!” By the way, Paul is at it again in Philippians 4:4, “4Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!”
Don’t rejoice in how religious you think you are. Don’t rejoice in how much Bible verses you have memorized or how many ministries you have served in. Rejoice in the Lord! Rejoice in the fact that not only did Jesus give His life for you on the cross, but that He rose again! Rejoice in the fact that because He rose again, you can rise again. Rejoice in the fact that the same Holy Spirit that empowered Jesus to rise from the dead can empower you to rise from whatever you are facing today! Rejoice in the fact that the same Holy Spirit that created the Heavens and the earth with just a word from His mouth, who parted the waters of the Red Sea with a mere stick in the hand of Moses, spoke to His people through a pillar of fire and a pillar of cloud, miraculously fed 2 million people in the wilderness, healed the blind, the sick, the lame, and overcame even the sting of death, has chosen to take up residence in your life! Oh don’t rejoice in your goodness. Rejoice in His goodness. Don’t rejoice in your own works, your vacations, trips, bank accounts, or football games! Rejoice in the One who resurrected Jesus and who resurrects you! Rejoice in the One who conquered death and life. Rejoice in the One who set the captives free. Rejoice in the One who says to “fear not for I am with you.” Rejoice in the Lord!
I rejoice in You Lord! I find my joy in You. I find my strength in You. I find my comfort in You. You are my provider! You are my peace! You are my banner! You are my salvation! You are my strong tower! You are my refuge! You are my hiding place! I find my life in You. I rejoice in You Lord Jesus! There is no other! There is no other! There is nothing to fear! It is not about me. It is all about You. In the strong, matchless, timeless, powerful name of Jesus Christ I pray and rejoice in… Amen!!!