What Is Biblical Joy?

Vivian Bricker

Contributing Writer
Published: May 15, 2023
What Is Biblical Joy?

However, when we have biblical joy, it never goes away because Jesus never goes away... This joy can never be taken away from us because the Lord can never be taken away from us.

It is common for individuals to mix joy and happiness together, believing them to be the same thing. Many individuals even believe they are synonyms for each other. Happiness and biblical joy are two different things. Even though the world tried to blend these two things together, it is important to know biblical joy is much greater than happiness, and happiness cannot compare to biblical joy. Biblical joy is only given to us by God, and it can never be taken away. 

But what is biblical joy? 

Biblical Joy

Biblical joy is different from happiness in the sense that biblical joy lasts. It is not based on circumstances or feelings. Happiness is based on different factors and is determined by situations, circumstances, and emotions. Biblical joy is based solely on the person of Jesus Christ. Even if we are sorrowful and depressed, we can still have biblical joy in our hearts because of who Christ is.  

This is because biblical joy isn't based on our situation, circumstance, or emotions. Instead, it is based on our great and glorious Savior. We might experience a hurtful word from someone, the ending of a career, or the death of a loved one, yet we can still have the biblical joy of knowing Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord in our hearts. Maybe you have already experienced this joy. Something negative happened to you, yet you still had peace and joy in your heart because of Jesus. 

This concept can be challenging to many, especially if they aren't a believer. Since they don't know Jesus as their Savior and Lord, they don't have biblical joy. Rather, their happiness is based on their circumstance. Therefore, if something bad happens in their life, they don't have the resting joy of Jesus in their hearts. While tragedy causes great sadness, it needs to motivate us as believers to help the lost world come to know Jesus. 

Everyone wants to be happy, and at times, it can seem as though the entire world is trying to do anything to make themselves happy. As you may already know, happiness is fleeting, and it won't last. Think about how many times you were flooded with a feeling of happiness. Maybe you just graduated college, got your dream job, or became a first-time homeowner. All of these things can bring feelings of happiness, yet they don't last. Soon, you'll have to start looking for a job after college, your dream job might drown you in work, and you might realize your new home needs much upkeep. All of the things that grant temporary happiness eventually fall victim to a fallen world, and their glitter and shimmers fade.

However, when we have biblical joy, it never goes away because Jesus never goes away. We can have joy in all situations because we know Jesus. This joy can never be taken away from us because the Lord can never be taken away from us. Knowing this can help us in our walk with the Lord and know that we will always have joy in our hearts because of Him. Even if we might not feel it all the time, we can rest in knowing that biblical joy is always in our hearts.

Longing for Happiness

As mentioned, by nature, all human beings yearn for happiness. After all, we all watched movies growing up with the happily-ever-after ending. We all want that same happy ending, yet this might not be God's plan for our lives. The final destination of our lives in the New Heaven and New Earth will be one of perfection, happiness, and love; however, we are not promised these things in our present life. Even though we don't have these things in their completion today, we do have the complete biblical joy of knowing Jesus as our Savior and Lord. 

I have recently been watching a show called Torchlighters. It is a very convicting show in the sense that it details Christian martyrs and those who are strong in their faith. Through the lives of Perpetua, Robert Jermain Thomas, and Jim Elliot, I have seen examples of biblical joy in the face of death. Each of these individuals had biblical joy despite dying for their faith. 

Perpetua was sentenced to death in Carthage because of her faith. She, along with other believers, was forced to face wild animals; however, only the pastor was killed by a leopard. The rest of the believers were hurt by the wild animals, yet they were not killed. After the Roman soldiers saw that the wild beasts had not killed them, the Roman soldiers killed them all by sword. This account alone left me amazed. I couldn't imagine the strong faith and biblical joy Perpetua and the other believers had in the face of strong persecution and death.  

Secondly, Robert Jermain Thomas showed biblical joy despite his difficulties during his time serving in China and Korea. His wife died four months after arriving, which caused him much depression, yet he still had biblical joy in his heart. Through God's hand, Robert was able to help take Bibles illegally into Korea and give many their first understanding of the Gospel message. Even though he died a brutal death, he still had hope and biblical joy in his miserable state. This joy was only possible because of His faith in the Lord. 

Thirdly, biblical joy was displayed in the life of Jim Elliot. Jim Elliot was killed while he was trying to share the Gospel with the Huaorani people in Ecuador. He, along with other members of his team, were brutally killed. Before going, they knew what troubles lay before them, yet they continued to have biblical joy in their hearts because they knew they were taking the Word of God into a land that had never heard the gospel before. 

As we can see, biblical joy remains with us–even until death. It is nothing we must try to improve as it is always with us, just as Christ is always with us. It can be difficult for us to be happy through dark times; however, we can always have the joy of knowing Jesus Christ. No matter what you are going through today, know that Jesus loves you, and He wants you to experience the joy that only He can give you.

Once a person places faith in Jesus by believing that He died for their sins, was buried, and rose again, they are given eternal life, forgiveness of sins, redemption, and also biblical joy in their heart. You know and understand that no matter what happens, you are Jesus' own, and He will be with you always. Even though the Lord doesn't promise to save us from every earthly trouble, we can trust that He will be right beside us through every trouble. We might not feel happy, yet we always have the joy of Jesus in our hearts. 

While it is true that biblical joy is not happiness, it is something that is much better. Biblical joy never fades, and it never leaves our hearts. Even if we are going through the death of a loved one, we can still have the joy of Jesus in our hearts. Happiness is only temporary and can fizzle out in a matter of minutes. Biblical joy lasts forever and is always present for us as believers. We can always find lasting hope, love, and joy in the Lord. 

Photo Credit: ©Pixabay/Wokandapix

Vivian BrickerVivian Bricker loves Jesus, studying the Word of God, and helping others in their walk with Christ. She has earned a Bachelor of Arts and Master's degree in Christian Ministry with a deep academic emphasis in theology. Her favorite things to do are spending time with her family and friends, reading, and spending time outside. When she is not writing, she is embarking on other adventures.

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