Joy: An Attribute Of God       

Deuteronomy 30:9


     Joy is complacency, satisfaction and delight. And the Lord our God is so kind, gracious and good to his people that he makes joy a duty, commanding us to rejoice (Phil. 4:4; I Thess. 5:16). And he has given us "the joy of faith" (Phil. 1:25). Joy is both the commandment of God and the gift of God. But did you know that joy is an attribute of God, essential to his character as God? Our God is a God of joy! I want you to read three texts of scripture in which joy is attributed to the Lord our God.

     JEREMIAH 32:41 - Here the Lord God is proclaiming some of his blessed covenant promises to his people (31:3, 31-34; 32:36-40). And he makes this the crowning promise of his covenant grace - "Yea, I will rejoice over them to do them good!"

     DEUTERONOMY 28:63 - In this chapter Moses is declaring to Israel all the blessings of God upon those who perfectly obey his commands. These are blessings which could never be won by any man other than Christ. He alone obeyed God perfectly! Since Christ has obeyed God as our Representative, he has won these blessings for us. And they are ours by faith in him. Read what God has promised, and rejoice (vv. 1-14). In everything all who believe are blessed! In the latter part of the chapter we read of God's curses upon all who transgress his law. Those who will not trust Christ, standing upon their own merit, are in everything cursed. Verse 63 declares God's joy both in the glory of his grace, blessing his elect, and in the glory of his justice condemning the wicked.

     DEUTERONOMY 30:9 - In Deuteronomy 29 and 30 Moses gives us "the words of the covenant which the Lord commanded." Ultimately this covenant and the prophecy of these chapters refer to the salvation of God's elect in Christ (Compare Deut. 30:6 and 14 with Phil. 3:3 and Rom. 10:8). Then, in verse 9, read the promise that the Lord God makes to bless his covenant people, those who trust Christ. He promises to bless us and make us plenteous in all things. And this is the reason for his goodness to us: "For the LORD will again rejoice over thee for good!" God's grace to us is the cause of his joy in us. And God's joy in us is the cause of his grace to us. And both his grace and his joy are immutable attributes of his Being.


Don Fortner