Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! (Philippians 4:4, NIV)
Sometimes I wonder why Paul was so joyful. I mean, he could have just said “Rejoice in the Lord always.” But that wasn’t enough: “I will say it again: Rejoice!” He really wanted to get a point across.
I think a lot of us take salvation for granted. Sure, sometimes during youth conferences or a Christian concert we are just so filled with God’s spirit that we want to jump for joy. But we’re not consistent about it. Our minds wander and our eyes drift to worldly things, and we forget just what God has done for us.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)
I use this verse a lot–it’s one of the most well-known verses in the Bible after all. It’s pretty much a summation of the Gospel. 1) God loves us with a love that is unconditional, unfathomable, indescribable; 2) It’s because of His love that He sent His Son, Jesus, to die for us so that 3) we will have eternal life with Him in heaven if we accept the gift of salvation.
We tend to take this verse so lightly. If you have any verse in the Bible memorized, it’s probably this one. And yet we recite it, feel proud, and completely forget to think about what it means. The Gospel is so familiar to us as Christians that we forget just what it means.
It’s more than a free ticket to heaven. It’s the love that God has for us, a love that saw past our sin. A love that gave us an opportunity to have a close relationship with God.
Do you realize how cool that is?! We are the bride of Christ. God is our Father. He is our best Friend. That’s just incredible. We can talk to Him whenever we wish, read His word freely, and learn more about Him at church and conferences. We are so blessed, but we take it all for granted. We conveniently forget to pray, we shove our Bible in the corner, and going to church every Sunday seems like too much of an effort.
What we have as Christians is just so incredible that I can see why Paul was overflowing with joy. We should also be filled with complete, pure joy. Always saying, “Rejoice in the Lord! Rejoice!”