Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. (1Th 5:16-18)
As God finishes teaching the church at Thessalonica how to conduct themselves while waiting for His second coming, He gives three groupings of instructions in rapid fire. They are short statements but carry with them with deep implications. The three groupings I call “A Christian’s Duties While Waiting”.
The first grouping tells us that while waiting there is a “Constancy Required”. There are three areas where God requires us to be constantly engaged. He first commands us to “Rejoice Evermore”
Ever = This tells us that we are to be ever rejoicing. All the time, every place, in every circumstance.
More = From now on. Increasingly more often.
Important lessons about rejoicing evermore.
It is a repeated command
Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. (Php 4:4)
We always have plenty to do, but this we have always to do – Spurgeon
It is a reasonable command
Because of all He has done for us it is only natural and reasonable that we be a rejoicing people! God puts it best (as always). Read below why we should be rejoicing.
I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels. (Isa 61:10)
Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. (Isa 12:2)
Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation. (Isa 12:3)
Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven. (Luk 10:20)
Even if we have little or nothing in this world, we can, and should, decide to rejoice and find our joy in our Lord!
Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation. (Hab 3:17-18)
It is a resourceful command – the Joy of the Lord is our strength!
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 our strength. (Neh 8:10)
It counters depression, discouragement, and despair. It is hard to rejoice and be depressed at the same time. Do not wait for rejoicing to come, DO IT!
It is not a carnal joy, a circumstantial joy, or a joy common to man, but it is a work IN us by the Holy Spirit. It grows from the new birth disposition.
It is a revealing command
Our response and obedience to the command to rejoice evermore shows our readiness to God’s service by “approving ourselves as the ministers of God”.
But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, … as chastened, and not killed; As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; …. (2Co 6:4-10)
What does our rejoicing (or lack thereof) say of our approving?
Decide to rejoice evermore. Demand it of yourself.
(Watch for the next continuing expectation)
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