Bible Topics: Happiness and joy

Definitions: Happiness is a state of well-being and contentment. Joy is a feeling of great pleasure or happiness that comes from success, good fortune, or a sense of well-being; gladness.

1. True happiness is a gift from God.

* Psalm 4:7 Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time that their corn and their wine increased.

* Ecclesiastes 2:26a For God giveth to a man that is good in His sight wisdom, and knowledge, and joy.

* Ecclesiastes 8:15 Then I commended mirth, because a man hath no better thing under the sun, than to eat, and to drink, and to be merry: for that shall abide with him of his labour the days of his life, which God giveth him under the sun.

* Acts 13:52 And the disciples were filled with joy, and with the Holy Ghost.

* Romans 14:17 For the Kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.

* Romans 15:13 Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.

* Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

2. True happiness comes from living close to the Lord and His Word.

* 1 Chronicles 16:27 Glory and honour are in His presence; strength and gladness are in His place.

* Psalm 16:8,9,11 I have set the Lord always before me: because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. 9 Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope. … 11 Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in Thy presence is fulness of joy; at Thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.

* Psalm 19:8a The statutes of the Lord [the Word] are right, rejoicing the heart.

* Psalm 43:4 Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: yea, upon the harp will I praise Thee, O God my God.

* Psalm 89:15,16 Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound: they shall walk, O Lord, in the light of Thy countenance. 16 In Thy Name shall they rejoice all the day: and in Thy righteousness shall they be exalted.

* Psalm 104:34 My meditation of Him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the Lord.

* Psalm 118:24 This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.

* Psalm 119:111 Thy testimonies have I taken as an heritage for ever: for they are the rejoicing of my heart.

* Psalm 119:162 I rejoice at Thy Word, as one that findeth great spoil.

* Psalm 146:5 Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God.

* Jeremiah 15:16a Thy Words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy Word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart.

* Acts 2:28 Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; Thou shalt make me full of joy with Thy countenance.

3. True happiness is the fruit of obedience to the Lord.

* Psalm 40:8 I delight to do Thy will, O my God: yea, Thy law is within my heart.

* Psalm 45:7 Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, Thy God, hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above Thy fellows.

* Psalm 92:4 For Thou, Lord, hast made me glad through Thy work: I will triumph in the works of Thy hands.

* Psalm 97:11 Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart.

* Psalm 128:1,2 Blessed is every one that feareth the Lord; that walketh in His ways. 2 For thou shalt eat the labour of thine hands: happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee.

* Matthew 25:21 [Jesus explains in the parable:] His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.

* Luke 11:27,28 And it came to pass, as He [Jesus] spake these things, a certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto Him, Blessed is the womb that bare Thee, and the paps which Thou hast sucked. 28 But He said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the Word of God, and keep it.

* John 13:17 If ye know these things [about obeying the Lord in love], happy are ye if ye do them.

* John 15:10,11 If ye keep My commandments, ye shall abide in My love; even as I have kept My Father’s commandments, and abide in His love. 11 These things have I spoken unto you, that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

* Acts 2:46 [It is a joy to be one of the Lord’s disciples.] And they [the members of the Early Church], continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart.

* 1 John 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments: and His commandments are not grievous.

4. Happiness and joy are manifestations of our faith and trust in the Lord.

* Psalm 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.

* Psalm 13:5 But I have trusted in Thy mercy; my heart shall rejoice in Thy salvation.

* Psalm 28:7 The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in Him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise Him. [See also Psalm 33:21.]

* Proverbs 16:20b Whoso trusteth in the Lord, happy is he.

* Acts 16:34 [After Paul’s and Silas’ bonds were miraculously loosed, the keeper to the prison became a believer:] And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house.

* 1 Peter 1:8 Whom having not seen, ye love; in Whom, though now ye see Him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.

5. Happiness and joy come from being concerned about others and wishing them happiness.

* Proverbs 14:21b He that hath mercy on the poor, happy is he.

* John 3:29 He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: This My joy therefore is fulfilled.

* Romans 12:15 Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.

* 1 Corinthians 12:26 And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.

* Philippians 2:2 [Paul wrote:] Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.

* 1 Thessalonians 2:19,20 For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at His coming? 20 For ye are our glory and joy. [See also 2 Corinthians 1:14.]

* 3 John 4 [John wrote:] I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.

6. When we count our many blessings, our joy overflows in song and praise.

* Psalm 65:13b They shout for joy, they also sing.

* Psalm 95:2 Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto Him with psalms.

* Psalm 100:1,2,4 Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands. 2 Serve the Lord with gladness: come before His presence with singing. … 4 Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise: be thankful unto Him, and bless His Name.

* Psalm 144:15 Happy is that people, that is in such a case: yea, happy is that people, whose God is the Lord.

* Isaiah 51:3b Joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody.

* Jeremiah 33:11 The voice of joy, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the voice of them that shall say, Praise the Lord of hosts: for the Lord is good; for His mercy endureth for ever: and of them that shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the Lord.

* Luke 10:20b Rejoice, because your names are written in Heaven.

* 1 Timothy 6:6 But Godliness with contentment is great gain.

7. The Lord wants us to be happy.

* Deuteronomy 12:18b Thou shalt rejoice before the Lord thy God in all that thou puttest thine hands unto.

* Nehemiah 8:10b The joy of the Lord is your strength.

* John 16:24 Hitherto have ye asked nothing in My Name: Ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.

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

8. Our trials and sorrows are followed by greater victory, greater joy.

* Job 5:17 Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty.

* Job 42:10,12 [Job, the man who was once called “the greatest of all the men of the East,” lost everything, but then … ] The Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before. 12 So the Lord blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning.

* Psalm 30:5 For His anger endureth but a moment; in His favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.

* Psalm 126:5,6 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. 6 He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.

* Matthew 5:4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

* John 16:20-22 [Jesus told His disciples:] Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy. 21 A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world. 22 And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you.

* John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

* Hebrews 10:34 [Paul explains that losses are not such a problem for God’s people, as they look forward to Heavenly gains.] For ye had compassion of me in my bonds, and took joyfully the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that ye have in Heaven a better and an enduring substance.

* Hebrews 12:2b [Jesus endured suffering by looking ahead to His Heavenly reward and happy return to live with the Father.] Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith; Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

* Hebrews 12:11 Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.

9. The Lord can give us inward spiritual happiness in times of difficulty and suffering.

* Isaiah 29:19 The meek also shall increase their joy in the Lord, and the poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel.

* Isaiah 61:3 To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He might be glorified.

* Habakkuk 3:17,18 Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: 18 Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.

* Romans 5:1,2 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: 2 By Whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

* 2 Corinthians 6:4,10 In all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, … 10 As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

* 2 Corinthians 7:4b [Paul wrote:] I am filled with comfort, I am exceeding joyful in all our tribulation.

* Colossians 1:10,11 Walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, … 11 Strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness.

* Philippians 4:11,12 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. 12 I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.

* James 1:2,3 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; 3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.

* James 5:11 [Even when we are just holding on and smiling by faith, the Lord counts it as happiness.] Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy. [See also James 1:12.]

* 1 Peter 3:14a But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are ye.

* 1 Peter 4:12-14 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: 13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when His glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. 14 If ye be reproached for the Name of Christ, happy are ye; for the Spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part He is evil spoken of, but on your part He is glorified.

* Acts 5:40,41 And to him [Gamaliel] they agreed: and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the Name of Jesus, and let them go. 41 And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His Name.
[See also 1 Thessalonians 1:6.]

10. Our happy, joyful spirits testify of the Lord’s goodness to us. It’s part of our witness.

* Psalm 40:2,3 He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. 3 And He hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord.

* Psalm 40:16 Let all those that seek Thee rejoice and be glad in Thee; let such as love Thy salvation say continually, The Lord be magnified.

* Psalm 69:30,32 I will praise the Name of God with a song, and will magnify Him with thanksgiving. … 32 The humble shall see this, and be glad: and your heart shall live that seek God.

* Psalm 107:1-2 O give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever. 2 Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy.

* Proverbs 15:13,15 A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance: but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken. … 15 All the days of the afflicted are evil: but he that is of a merry heart hath a continual feast.

* Nehemiah 12:43 Also that day they offered great sacrifices, and rejoiced: for God had made them rejoice with great joy: the wives also and the children rejoiced: so that the joy of Jerusalem was heard even afar off.

* Psalm 51:12,13 [King David prayed:] Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation; and uphold me with Thy free Spirit. 13 Then will I teach transgressors Thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto Thee.

* Isaiah 61:10 [Our happiness is like an adornment which is admired by others.] I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, He hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.

* Acts 3:8-10 [When the Lord, through Peter and John, healed the lame man on the steps of the temple, it was the man’s own joyous reaction that attracted a huge crowd, resulting in the salvation of over five thousand souls:] And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God. 9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God: 10 And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him.

* James 5:13b Is any merry? Let him sing psalms.

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