Three Messages on Christian Joy

I’ve uploaded mp3’s of 3 messages I preached at the 2006 Couples’ Retreat at Peniel Bible Camp, the camping ministry of the Ohio Bible Fellowship. The biblical concept of joy needs to be understood and proclaimed in the midst of a world (and church?) that is filled with despair. True Christian joy is a topic which fundamentalists need to consider (a) for our individual lives and (b) for the health of our churches and movement. I trust that these messages will provide both instruction and encouragement. They grow out of Philippians 4:4, then follow the theme of joy throughout the Scriptures. Among other things, the the last 10 minutes of message 3 address the points made in two recent posts on the connection between joy and resisting temptation (here and here).

Other messages which I’ve preached are available at other locations:

“The Lord be magnified!” (Psalm 40:16)


Update: The entire “Getting the Gospel Right” series is available here, and several sermons by our Assistant Pastor Joe Tyrpak are available at our church’s SermonAudio site.  BTW, our sound quality issues have finally been addressed.  Nice work, Joe.


8 Responses

  1. Hey Chris, did I ever tell you I hate change??

    Well, your new template is ok, I guess… I miss the ‘latest comments’ link that the old look had. It was always easy to check on all the raging controversies that way.

    I’ll give your message a listen. I do appreciate the challenge of thinking these things through.

    Don Johnson
    Jer 33.3

  2. Hey, Don. I’m just goofing around with the themes. I like the idea of 3 columns. If I change, I’ll get back the recent comments, and of course, the pictures of my daughters. :)

    I read your post on sanctification. Just not sure we can take our conversation much further without stepping outside. :D

  3. no mas, no mas!!

    (Are you old enough to know what that references???)

    Don Johnson
    Jer 33.3

  4. Sure. As long as you’re Roberto Duran. :)

  5. I listened to your message 3. Excellent message, but I think we still are not in agreement on the last ten minutes.

    Your comments on joy remind me of the importance of the book of Job. I think Christians sort of get Job – there are a few ‘biggie’ quotes that we tend to know and we think we get it. “Though he slay me, yet will I trust him”, etc. And as far as the general theme of the book, we do get it.

    But I think Job is as foundational as Genesis, perhaps as foundational as the first 11 chapters of Genesis. Gen 1-11 shows us the need of faith in God [and most men are faithless]. Job, a contemporary of Abraham [probably] shows the need of the faithful to know God.

    You mentioned in your message the much overused phrase ‘God is good’. Well, perhaps it is not overused so much as misused. God is always good. Adam to Noah, the message is, believe that. Job believed it – but then he began to question: “If you are good and I have not sinned, why is my life such a mess?” This is the need of the faithful to really know God, to learn to rejoice in the Lord in accordance with your message.

    Knowing God means first knowing self – I summarize God’s response to Job this way: “Who are you, Job?” and then comes “Who am I?” The answer to Job’s troubles lay in knowing who he is before God, knowing who God is, and being willing to trust God without getting any answers.

    My wife has leukemia. I don’t know why she has leukemia. Fortunately for us, a drug was created about 5 years ago that puts her leukemia into remission with minimal side-effects. But when the diagnosis came, we didn’t know that. I think for the most part we reacted as God taught us. We didn’t have to learn Job’s lesson because Job learned it for us and someone wrote it down. Who am I? Who is God? I know by His word that He is completely trustworthy, that He keeps His promises, that He has promised the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared to the glory that shall be revealed in us.

    So… we rejoice in the Lord. That’s enough.

    I may give you some comments on the last 10 minutes… but not now. The central premise of your message is where we need to keep our heads in walking the Christian life. I think Christian joy is where the regenerate spirit bonds itself to the Spirit of God and really can walk through the valley of the shadow.

    Don Johnson
    Jer 33.3

  6. Oh, BTW, I noticed that you have fixed the ‘tinny’ problem you were having on SermonAudio. What did you do for that?

    I am not thinking of using SermonAudio myself, but we are doing the ‘digital’ mode in our audio reproduction at our church. At the moment we are saving messages in 32 kbit format, but you appear to be in 16 kbit now, without tinnyness… so… what did you do?

    Don Johnson
    Jer 33.3

  7. We spent $30 on a better program. We believe its a worthwhile expenditure and hope it will stop listeners’ ears from bleeding when they listen to one of our sermons. We’ll be reposting the tinny ones once we have a chance to improve the quality.

    There are also several new sermons up at our SermonAudio site, including some by Joe Tyrpak, our assistant pastor. He’s a very effective preacher—we’re blessed to have him.

  8. um… which program, eh? or is it top secret?

    Don Johnson
    Jer 33.3

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