A. SOME CHRISTIANS ARE UNHAPPY UNABLE TO DEAL WITH PROBLEMS.
B. SOME ARE HAPPY EVEN IN THE MOST SEVERE TRIALS.
C. WHY THE DIFFERENCE?( Rom. 12:12 ).
D. SOME OBSERVATIONS ABOUT THIS VERSE.
A. MANY HAVE THE WRONG CONCEPT CONCERNING "JOY."
1. That joy is a matter of temperament or a matter of circumstances.
2. But how can that be when being joyful is enjoined upon us all?
a. It is a command, a duty( 1 Thess. 5:16; Phil. 4:4 ).
b. Commanded even when things are rough( 1 Pet. 4:13 ).
B. TRUE JOY RISES ABOVE THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF LIFE.
1. Seen in the example of the Hebrews( Heb. 10:34 ).
2. Also in the example of Christians in Asia Minor( 1 Pet. 1:6 ).
C. THIS IS BECAUSE THE KEY TO JOY IS "HOPE"
1. The hope of the Hebrews gave them joy despite suffering loss( Heb. 10:34 ).
2. Christians' joy in Asia Minor was their hope of salvation( 1 Pet. 1:5-6 ).
D. TO BE JOYFUL IN LIFE, WE MUST HAVE HOPE!
1. We have a living hope( 1 Pet. 1:3-4 ).
2. We hope because we believe( 2 Cor. 5:1-7 ).
3. Faith comes from God's promise( Rom. 1:17; 2 Tim. 2:11-13 ).
4. God's Word produces faith necessary for hope ( Psa. 119:81; 114 ).
A. FIRST, LET'S DEFINE OUR TERMS.
1. "Patient" means more than simply enduring, forbearing.
2. It also takes in the thought of activity despite the hardship.
3. "Tribulations" trials suffered for the cause of Christ or those common to all.
4. Paul is therefore talking about pressing on in doing good despite hardships.
B. THE KEY TO SUCH PATIENCE IS "JOYFUL HOPE."
1. This can be illustrated in several ways...
a. Why does the athlete endure the hardships of training?( 1 Cor. 9:25 ).
b. The pilgrims endured the hardships of sailing across the ocean.
c. The college student endures the hardships of study and examinations?
d. EARLY CHRISTIANS endure persecutions, pressing on in their
faithfulness to Christ? Why?( Heb. 10:34 ).
2. Doesn't this explain why some do not remain steadfast when things get rough?
A. "CONTINUING STEADFASTLY IN PRAYER" IS ESSENTIAL!
1. A relationship between prayer and the joy is implied( 1 Thess 5:16-18 ).
2. In prayer, we are constantly reminded of our HOPE
a. The REASON for our hope ( 1 Pet. 1:3; 2:24 )
b. The OBJECT of our hope ( Heb. 11:10 ).)
B. SO "PRAY WITHOUT CEASING!"( 1 Thess. 5:17 ).
A. ARE OUR LIVES AS JOYFUL AND PRODUCTIVE AS THEY SHOULD BE?
B. IF NOT, LET GOD'S WORD FILL UP OUR HEARTS AND PRAYER FILL UP
C. THE RESULT WILL BE A PRODUCTIVE AND JOYFUL LIFE.