Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "I Heard The Voice Of Jesus Say"1 (Lyrics)
Have you ever had joy in doing a difficult task? Was your joy related to the expected outcome? The writer of the Biblical letter to the Hebrews tells us that Jesus had joy in His perspective even when enduring the cross, in what we see as His most excruciatingly difficult time on earth:
Hebrews 12:2 – Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (NIV)
Joy set before him … What joy?
Can it be that the writer is suggesting that Jesus' joy was in the salvation that Jesus was securing for us by dying and rising to open up His new and perfect way that He has given us in the gift of faith? Could it be that Jesus, on the cross, was envisioning all of us people of faith being with Him, enjoying heaven forever because He was cancelling our sin-debts with the sacrifice of His own life? Amazing!
What does this say to us in our current time here on earth, before we are in heaven? Jesus' disciple, Peter, wrote about Jesus:
1 Peter 2:24 – He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. (NIV)
Jesus has healed us by setting us free from the power of our sin-burden of guilt. He has gifted us with good news of joy to share, and righteous deeds of love to pass on.
- Joy, joy, joy,
With joy my heart is ringing.
Joy, joy, joy,
His love to me is known.
My sins are all forgiven,
I'm on my way to heaven.
My heart is bubbling over
With His joy, joy, joy.
– From a Zulu chorus
Ephesians 2:8-9 – For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast. (NIV)
- God forgave my sin in Jesus' name;
I've been born again in Jesus' name.
And in Jesus' name I come to you
To share His love as He told me to.
He said, "Freely, freely you have received;
Freely, freely give.
Go in My name and because you believe,
Others will know that I live."
– Carol Owens
Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for enduring the cross for our sake to purchase heaven's joys for us, for time without end. Thank You for giving us Your work to do on earth in the time that is now. Please guide us in sharing Your way of love so that others will know that You are alive and that You will give them life, too. Amen.