Rejoice in the Lord (The Longer Version)

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

The Epistle to the Philippians was written from Rome, and more specifically from a prison cell. Yet what is most notable throughout this wonderfully written inspiration is the mention of the words joy and rejoicing, used some sixteen times in four short chapters and each one is worthy of notation for our inspiration. In this study, we will be highlighting four verses from Philippians 4, commencing with “Rejoice in the Lord.”

Philippians 4:4:
Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.

Joy is something God gives as a spiritual inner quality of life, while happiness is something man has and is conditional upon circumstance. For instance, if someone gave us a fancy sports coupe, we would certainly be happy, but over time as the car wore down and rusted out, the happiness would begin to dwindle, especially when it needed servicing. However, joy can continue to bubble over into rejoicing regardless of any circumstance for it is literally a gift of God as His healing Word continues making known to us the complete fullness of His joy.

I John 1:4:
And these things write we unto you {the Scriptures}, that your joy may be full.

The Scriptures are written so that we may know the complete fullness of having joy. We are not half full of joy, and as we come to God’s Word and allow Him to be our guide, He is able to show us with indisputable revelations that we are completely full of His spiritual joy. When Paul said Rejoice in the Lord alway he was referring to an overabundance of joy to the point that it was running over.

John 15:11:
These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

Rejoice is a repeat performance of having the fullness of joy. God’s instruction to us is not only to have rejoicing always, but also to rejoice again and again. Amazingly, Paul wrote Philippians 4:4 (above) from prison, yet he himself had this inner joy that was overflowing. He had the practical experience in understanding that God continually blessed his life and even though in his current situation he was incarcerated, his life continued to be full of joy and rejoicing.

Philippians 4:5:
Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.

Moderation means that we are to let our patience and our self-control over life’s circumstances be known. The reason that we can have patience and self-control is first and foremost that we know the Lord is at hand; He is always with us so that we need not have fear. This indeed can inspire others, believers and unbelievers.

Philippians 4:6:
Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

Be careful for nothing is old English and means to be anxious for nothing because God indeed will answer our heartfelt prayers. When we give to God our worries, our cares, our concerns, and our fears by supplication with thanksgiving, then we will learn to have complete trust that our care is truly in His hands.

Supplication means a specific need in one’s life, and the Scripture encourages us to make our exact needs known to God with thanksgiving, that is, to be thankful in advance for God giving us the special requests that we ask of Him (Mark 11:24, I John 5:14-15).

Philippians 4:7:
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

The peace of God is another spiritual quality of life that God freely gives to us. This peace far surpasses all human understanding, yet we can know with complete assurance that we indeed have the peace of God in our lives. As we continue in our personal prayer life to God, He continues showing us His peace that not only is in our hearts but also is guaranteed to us through Christ (John 14:27, Romans 5:1). The word keep means to watch over and to guard (us), to spiritually protect our hearts and minds from fears, because we already have the joy and peace of God in our hearts.

The Epistle of Philippians is such an inspiring revelation that it compels us to praise God for His wonderful Word, and so as the Apostle said, Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.

Psalms 5:11:
But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee.

Philippians 4:4 (The Amplified Bible):*
Rejoice in the Lord always [delight, gladden yourselves in Him]; again I say, Rejoice!

* Scripture taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE.
The Amplified New Testament copyright (c) 1958, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation.
Used by permission.

“Joy is but the sign that creative emotion is fulfilling its purpose.” ~Charles Du Bos~

“Joy is not in things; it is in us.” ~Richard Wagner~

“To be simply ensconced in God is true joy.” ~Alfred A. Montapert~

Our Justification by Faith

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

Galatians 2:16 – Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

The Church in Galatians was practicing the Law because they began to believe that their sanctification (their being set apart for heaven) was contingent upon their own actions and abilities. But in stark contrast, justified means “just as if I’d never sinned,” being made free from guilt, and thus we present ourselves before God as those who are righteously acquitted of any wrongdoing. The faith of Jesus Christ has already given us our justification before God, rather than being justified by any of our works. The Greek word for faith is pistis and means believing. Our complete justification is given to us based not on works but rather on the believing faith of Jesus Christ himself, who gave himself for us.

Romans 4:25 – Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.

Jesus Christ was delivered unto death for our offences, for our sins and shortcomings. However, he was raised from the dead so we may receive our justification. Jesus himself had the believing faith that his sacrifice would secure our own justification. Today we do not need to base our justification on our own works, but rather our justification is because of the absolute believing of Jesus Christ who died and was resurrected for us. This is why we are justified today and all that we have to do is believe on the work of Jesus Christ and his accomplishments.

Romans 5:1 – THEREFORE being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

Again, we are justified by faith, and this faith is the believing faith of Jesus Christ, and as a direct result of his faith we were justified. With the faith of Jesus Christ, we have a genuine peace with God. We are not at war with God, and contrary to some schools of thought, God is not at war with us, rather we are at peace with Him. Peace with God is something that we have received because we are justified by the faith of Jesus Christ. Peace is not something that we need to hope for but rather it is something received, something spiritually enjoyed, and something totally deserving to our souls because Jesus gave his life so that we will forever be justified and have continuous peace with our heavenly Father.

The Word of Faith (The Longer Version)

 Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

In this study, we will take a closer look at the word “faith” from a biblical perspective. The words “faith” and “believing” are the same Greek word pistis and always mean believing or believing faith. We are born with the innate ability to believe, however, there is another kind of believing faith that the Bible reveals called, “the faith of Jesus Christ” and this faith is something new and introduced to believers when they become saved. With salvation, the believing Christian receives Christ in them (Colossians 1:27), and thus we become endowed with the believing faith of Jesus Christ himself which is purely perfect.

Hebrews 12:2 says, “Looking unto Jesus {who is} the author and finisher of our {believing} faith,” and since he is the author and finisher of our faith, we can look to him in the Scriptures for our example of how to grow our believing faith to maturity. Another way we could look at this is that without Jesus, we will have a lack of Christian faith. So then, how do we learn more about this faith of Christ that we now have? We go straight to the Word of God!

Romans 10:17:   So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

The faith of Christ comes to us by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. This verse carries a double meaning. First, the word hearing is repeated doubly to emphasize how the faith of Christ comes to us, and that is by hearing, and hearing to the point of our believing – and believing one thing and one thing only – and that is the word of God! The second meaning of the word hearing here is that the more of the Word of God we hear, the greater our own believing can rise to believe in the promises that are laid out for us in God’s faithful Word to receive and to enjoy. There are promises such as, “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart” (Psalms 37:4), and “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father” (John 14:12), and “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Philippians 4:13).

Since Jesus ascended unto his Father after his resurrection (Acts 1:9–11), just as he said he would in John 14:12 above, the “greater works” that Jesus promised can become something we can now accomplish. One of the major works Jesus did was to completely believe what God’s Word said about him. Jesus’ believing faith was perfectly complete; he had believed to do more than anyone on earth had ever done, and then (because of the resurrection) God gave men and women who will believe on and accept his resurrection, the actual faith of Jesus Christ. His believing faith is similar to our believing faith, but Jesus never doubted the Word of God, which caused his faith to be immensely precious and extremely powerful. We find in Mark 9:24 that a man came to Jesus Christ in need, imploring with tears in his eyes ― “Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.” Well, today Jesus still helps our unbelief mature to faith equaling his own, for he is “the author and finisher of our {believing} faith.”

The Epistle of Galatians 3:23–26 sheds some interesting light on Jesus’ faith:

Galatians 3:23:  But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.

Before faith came means that there was a time when there was no faith. Many people believe that faith, all faith, has always been around, but the faith that Galatians is referring to in verse 23 is the believing faith of Jesus Christ himself. Before faith came, refers to before Jesus was on earth, and therefore his believing faith was not available. Thus, the Scripture says, we were kept under the law until Christ and his faith came; for the Law was designed to protect the believers up until Jesus would come and give men and women his faith, the faith that would be from “the author and finisher of our {believing} faith.” But what confuses people sometimes about the word faith, is that it is used for our believing faith (pistis), and this word is also used for Jesus’ believing faith (pistis). In both usages throughout the Bible, faith is the same Greek word pistis. Only when we observe the context where pistis is used will the difference be apparent of which faith the Text refers.

For an example of the confusion of one word with more than one meaning, I could say, “I am at the bank,” and it could mean I am near a river, or it could mean I am depositing money at the bank, or I could be in a bank of snow for that matter. We need to view the broader context to know where I am and we can use the same logical deduction with the word faith, pistis. Only as we see the context in which the word faith is set will we understand whether the Scripture implies Jesus’ faith, or ours. At the conclusion of this study, you will be able to recognize many more of the passages where the word faith is used, and more verses will open up for you and become much clearer.

Galatians 3:24:  Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto {or until} Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

The Scripture says we are justified by faith but by whose faith were we justified? When we see the context of this verse, we find we are justified by Christ’s faith! As Romans 4:25 declares, “Who {Jesus Christ} was delivered {unto death} for our offences {our sins}, and was raised again for our justification.” We are justified because of the sacrifice and resurrection of Jesus, not because of our faith, thus, Ephesians 2:8–9 reveals, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Our justification into salvation is a gift from God through faith, and since salvation is not based on our works, then our salvation is given and received because of the faith of Jesus Christ who had done all the work so that we could receive by grace. The Epistle of Romans celebrates this blessed truth of our gift of God which is our salvation, “but the gift of God is eternal life through {by the work and faith of} Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

 Galatians 2:16:   Knowing that a man {or woman} is not justified by the works of the law, but {a man or woman is justified} by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

See how not only the immediate context fits together with Christ’s faith, but all the related passages work towards a wonderful enlightenment that we are justified because of his faith! With the believing faith of Jesus Christ, we have received our justification, being made completely justified from the dictates that the Law demands. It took the believing faith of Jesus Christ himself to give his life on our behalf to redeem us; his own faith now sets us free from the Law, giving each of us an equal justification, affording us a perfect standing before God, as we simply believe in the completeness of Jesus’ faith. This is the perfection of the faith of him who is “the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2).

Romans 5:1:  Therefore being justified by faith {i.e., Jesus’ faith}, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

Acts 26:18:  To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God {this is literally the mission of the Pauline Epistles}, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me {Christ Jesus}.

Today in grace, we are not only justified by Christ’s faith, but we have peace with God, and we are also sanctified, and we have “the righteousness of God which is by {the} faith of Jesus Christ” (Romans 3:22). We also have access into God’s grace by the faith of Jesus Christ.

Romans 5:2:  By whom {Jesus Christ} also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

Any faith that we read about in the Old Testament and in the Gospels is man’s own believing faith or that perfect faith of Jesus Christ. However, in the New Testament, faith could be man’s own faith, Jesus’ own faith, or believers utilizing the faith of Jesus Christ as in these verses, Acts 3:16; 6:5, 8; 15:9; Romans 1:16; I Corinthians 2:5; II Corinthians 4:13; Ephesians 1:19; 6:16; and I Thessalonians 2:13. Today, in grace, “the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). We are able to live in a Christ-like lifestyle because we have received the faith of Jesus Christ, which is, the faith of the Son of God.

Recall that Galatians 3:23–24 above talked about before faith came, but now the Epistle continues with “after that faith is come:”

Galatians 3:25–26:
-25: But after that faith is come {again, Jesus’ own faith}, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.
-26: For ye are all the children of God by faith in {of or by} Christ Jesus.

Now that the faith of Jesus Christ has come, we are no longer under the rules and regulations of the schoolmaster, i.e., the Law. Believing faith was always around since the beginning of time, but a new and enhanced, spiritual faith came with Christ, and with Christ came spiritual freedom to experience a much greater life than what the written Law offered in the Old Testament times (see Ephesians 2:15; Hebrews 7:16–19).

Galatians 5:1:  Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage {i.e., the schoolmaster — the law}.

The main difference between man’s faith and the faith of Jesus is that human faith can only rise up to believe in that which is seen, like the phrase says, “seeing is believing.” As Jesus said to Thomas, “because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed” (John 20:29). In stark contrast to seeing before we believe; the faith of Jesus Christ is given so men and women can rise all the way up to believe in that which is not physically seen, yet is spiritually real ― such as salvation, love, peace, grace, joy, and the faith of Jesus Christ.

 II Corinthians 4:18 and 5:7:
-18: While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
-7: For we walk by faith {Christ’s believing faith}, not by sight:

In truth, man needs Jesus’ faith to fulfill his own faith, as we read in Hebrews 12:2 “Jesus {is} the author and finisher of our faith,” and this is how Christians can become fully satisfied, feeling complete within their hearts (Colossians 2:10). The faith of Jesus Christ is only available to the Christian believer, as II Thessalonians 3:2 emphatically states, “for all men have not faith.” This cannot be one’s personal believing faith, for anyone can believe, but not all men have the faith of Christ to apply towards believing God’s Word and to enjoy and believe for help in times of great need. This is also why spiritual truths in the Bible make perfect sense to the believer, whereas the same truths make absolutely no sense to the unbeliever (I Corinthians 1:18–31, 2:14).

Living by the faith of the Son of God works like this: If someone was to tell you that you are going to hell or if you once thought so yourself, now being equipped with your upgrade of the faith of Jesus Christ, you can say and believe in your innermost being that is not true. Instead, you can say to yourself ― I am heaven bound, and you can think and say this with believing conviction because it is true according to the Bible. If someone was to say you are unrighteousness or if you ever assumed this of yourself, now with faith, you can know in your heart that you are as righteous as God Himself is because it is true according to the Bible. If someone was to say to you that you are destined to failure or if you believed in your heart that success was not for you ― with faith, you can rise above that negative perception of yourself because faith has made you more than a conqueror through all situations. Faith believes the Word of yourself, faith delivers to you the promises of God; faith is the power of Christ manifested in your life! This is why I Corinthians 2:5 boldly proclaims, “That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” We Christians have “the same spirit of faith” (II Corinthians 4:13) to believe that we are “filled with all the fulness of God” (Ephesians 3:19). Talk about ease of believing ― Jesus is “the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2), and all we have to do is follow Jesus’ instructions to “come unto him.”

Matthew 11:28–30:
-28: Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
-29: Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
-30: For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light {nothing brings peace and rest into our souls like coming unto and accepting and enjoying the uplifting faith of Christ}.

There was a time that I believed that I was so far removed from God that hell was to be my ultimate destiny, for I believed I was a sinner and had no rights to heavenly blessings, and I believed this with all my heart, and obviously I feared the end of my life. But with the believing faith of my Savior, who is my hero and everything to me, I can boldly say with believing conviction, “I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” What made the transformation in my thinking and in my inner heart? The faith of Jesus Christ; his faith now flows through my heart and assures me that God loves me completely! I now know effortlessly that I am justified and sanctified and that I have peace with God through the faith of the Son of God. Christ’s faith gives the Christian believer the feeling of flying high because God has, “raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:6), and “ye are risen with him {Christ} through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead” (Colossians 2:12).

We only need to believe in the work that our Savior has done for humanity (and what he has accomplished for you personally), to experience completeness and fullness. For with Christ’s faith we collectively, “come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ” (Ephesians 4:13). Our Savior’s faith is now so pleasantly real that it causes one to simply accept the grace of God with humbleness. Rather than searching for “more faith in yourself,” you will find faith to be real – to be palatable – to be in you – and to be enjoyable.

Romans 10:8–10:
-8: But what saith it {the Scriptures}? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach.
-9: That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
-10: For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

The word of faith when preached (as well as when heard, when read, when understood, and when believed), will be as close as in your mouth and in your heart. Because the Word of God is that close to you ― you can spiritually taste its divine presence (and presents), as it settles deep within your soul, giving you tangible impressions of God in meaningful revelations of divine truths, so that your believing the Word continuously becomes an exciting daily adventure. You will increase your own believing by tapping into all the believing faith that comes with having Christ within your heart (Colossians 1:27), and his faith accompanies your salvation with your belief and confession of Romans 10:9–10.

We have shown the simplicity of receiving and utilizing the faith of Jesus Christ is as it is succinctly stated in Romans 10:17: “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

Today, I invite you to think about the word of faith that God has placed within your mouth and heart, for the word of faith delivers to you the salvation of God (Romans 10:8–10). When you begin believing the Word of God within the depths of your soul, you will come to experience the realities of the Word effectually working in your heart and life and surroundings, as the word of faith Christ’s faith – continues blessing you and all that you have and all that you do.

I Thessalonians 2:13 (The Amplified Bible):**  And we also [especially] thank God continually for this, that when you received the message of God [which you heard] from us, you welcomed it not as the word of [mere] men, but as it truly is, the Word of God, which is effectually at work in you who believe [exercising its superhuman power in those who adhere to and trust in and rely on it].

**Scripture taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE.
The Amplified New Testament copyright (c) 1958, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation.
Used by permission.

A Place for You and Me in the Son (The Missing Link For a True Reality Check)

“I ask you to consider a few questions and thoughts with me about the theory of evolution and God’s truths of creation. When did man first need atonement or did he ever need atonement? When he lived in the perfection of Eden? When he walked in serenity with his Creator? Or did man need atonement before Paradise? When did man sin? When he supposedly was only a single cell and could have fit into a test tube? Or did man need atonement when he fell from a branch as he was jumping from tree to tree, or when he first moved into a cave, bypassing Paradise altogether, or when he broke free from the Stone Age, or the Bronze Age, or the Iron Age, or the Dark Age, or the Age of Enlightenment, or the Agriculture and Mechanical Age, or the Technology Age, or the Space Age, or the Cell Phone Age, or the Tweedledee Age, or the Age of Whatever is Next? Atonement affords a man or a woman justification and life ― eternal (Romans 5:1ff). In the theory of evolution itself, there is no place for Paradise or atonement or redemption and eternal life at any time or in any place or in any Age before or after Paradise. The theory of the evolutionists has no answers to or concerns about these questions because their theory has no place for a past Paradise, for the theory dictates that man has yet to arrive (or ascend up enough ― yet) to make his own perfect paradise, though he is almost there, as his hopes and dreams promise. Evolution itself has no place for God, no place for Christ, and no place for the true believer. In a man’s dreamworld utopia, armed with the theory of evolution, and without knowing God as his Heavenly Father and the atoning sacrifice and redeeming blood offered by the Savior, Christ Jesus ― he is wanting, wanting because truth is missing from his heart’s foundation ― this is his missing link into a true reality check of life, which is to be lived and enjoyed in the light of the Son of God throughout all ages, {and} world without end– Ephesians 3:21.” ~LMJ~

Being at Peace with God

THEREFORE being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ– Romans 5:1. We are not at war with God, and contrary to some schools of thought, God is not at war with us, rather we are at peace with Him. Peace with God is something that we have received because we are justified by the faith of Jesus Christ. Peace is not something that we need to hope for but rather it is something received, something spiritually enjoyed, and something God believes we deserve because Jesus gave his life so that we will forever be justified and have continuous peace with our heavenly Father.” ~LMJ~