The Bible - the Book of Joy
It is with this joy over the Living Word, Jesus Christ, that the Apostle reminds us of the source revealing Christ – namely the written words of the prophets. In 1 Peter 1:10-12 we are told of how the prophets made “careful search and inquiry” as the “Spirit of Christ in them” was revealing both His sufferings and the “glories that would follow”. By the time the Messiah would ascend into heaven, 109 Bible prophecies would had been fulfilled. The enjoyment of the Living Word through His written Word has only begun.
In order for the saint of God to be effective in their ongoing Christian walk, we will consider how:
Godly Living continues with enjoyment of the Word (and the word) 1:13-16One thing we know about the Apostle Peter was his incessant enjoyment over the Living Word and the written Word. In 1 Peter 1:13 he writes: “Therefore, prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” For the Apostle Peter, focusing upon what Christ accomplished in His first coming and centering ourselves upon what He will do in His Return constitutes abiding joy of the believer. In fact the entire 3rd chapter of Peter’s second letter is dominated by Christ second coming.
God's people must be obsessed with the Word and the WORD
If we consider the testimony of church history, the Gospel of Mark was a compilation of Peter’s preaching about Jesus Christ by the hand of Mark as Peter expounded about Christ’s 1st coming from both Matthew and the then newly written Gospel of Luke. Peter was obsessed with Jesus Christ and the written Word. When Jesus for example asked the disciples in John 6:67 “So Jesus said to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?” Only Peter responded in the next verse: “Simon Peter answered Him, 'Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life.'”
Feed your desire for God by enjoying the Word and the WORD
One of the themes Peter kept warning his readers about was combating against the “lusts or desires” that war against the soul. There are other “joys” that compete for our attention. Every Christian is tempted with this offer throughout their sanctification: To follow Jesus Christ with reckless abandonment or to walk away. Peter knew that temptation first hand, and yet he centered his joy around the Living Word and the written Word. In 1 Peter 1:15 he writes: “but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; 16because it is written, “YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY.”
Peter quotes from the book of Leviticus, whose chief interest is to call the believer to a closer walk and fellowship with God the Father, enjoying Him in the beauty of holiness. If we desire God in the beauty of holiness, then our Godly living will be marked not by obligation – but true devotion.
Christianity is most attractive when believers are enjoying the Word and the WORD
In contending that Christianity derives its joy from being centered on the WORD and The Word, we have seen that enjoyment of both is germane to saving faith at the beginning of salvation and that this joy is central to the believer’s continuance in Godly living. If anything, unending joy, fueled by Christ and the scriptures, is the most attractive and effective way Christian's can demonstrate the legitimacy of what they claim to believe.