Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven.” -Luke 6:23
It’s a word you read often in Scripture. Mary rejoiced when the angel announced she would bear the Savior. Angels rejoiced in the sky over Bethlehem. People rejoiced to see lame men walk and deaf men hear. The women rejoiced as they raced from the empty tomb. Even the apostle Paul commanded, “Be joyful always.”
But Jesus takes it a step further when He exclaims, “Leap for joy!” This is no sedate and dispassionate command. You can’t be dignified and demure when you’re exclaiming. In fact, scholars note that the word “rejoice” is best communicated with a jump-up-and-down, clenched fist, throw-your-head-back, and yell out loud, “Oh, joy!” This is the power-packed emotion behind the Lord's words in Luke 6:23.
The people in Scripture were not plaster-of-paris saints who uttered their amazements in less-than-amazing tones. When they exclaimed surprise or excitement, you’d better believe they were bursting with joy. So when you read Scripture, never read the word “rejoice” without a smile. Remember, God's Word is alive and active, full of feeling and brimming with heartfelt emotion.
“They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them” (Isaiah 35:10).
Somewhere in Scripture it says that as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride, so God rejoices over you. That’s stupendous. Incredible. There aren’t enough adjectives to describe the wonder. God bursts with joy over you. He observes your obeying Him and exclaims, “Oh, joy!” And He will one day crown you with such joy everlasting.
My cup overflows with joy, Lord, when I think of your great and unsurpassed love May I enjoy You today and delight over You as You delight over Your children!