Jim's Jots and Tittles. . .
Faithfulness has always been a problem between man and God. It was true with Adam and Eve, the days of Noah, the days of the Israelites, and it has been true since the establishment of the church.
God has always made it known to man that there is joy and blessing in obedience to Him. Adam and Eve lost that blessing because they listened to the devil. Only eight souls were saved during the flood. The Israelites lost the land of milk and honey because they let the inhabitants become a snare to them. And in two of the seven churches of Asia Jesus found unfaithfulness among them.
It seems that in every age man has found the Lord's plan a burden, not a blessing. And in the Christian age, Christians seem to look at the Christian life not as a life full of joy and the Lord's plan for our lives a blessing, but as a burden.
In the New Testament there is reference to "rejoice" 43 times. There is a reference to "joy" 62 times. That certainly says that God's plan for the Christian life is not a burden.
In 1 Corinthians chapter 10, Paul writes about the Israelites hearing God's plan. But he says "nevertheless with most of them God was not well-pleased." So in verse 11 he writes "Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the end of the ages have come." Then in verse 12 he writes "therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall."
So while Paul was in prison he could write to the Philippians in Philippians 4:6 "Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!"
In 1 Peter 1:6 Peter writes "In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials "
Then he writes in verses eight and nine "and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls."
And the Hebrew writer further expresses why we should have this rejoicing with joy concerning this salvation. Hebrews 10:3536 "Therefore, do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised."
So we see that God's plan for our lives is a blessing, not a burden. Notice the victory that can be hours when we see the victory we can have through God's plan. In 1 John 5:34 John writes "For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world our faith!"
We lose our joy when the things we enjoy in this world become a greater joy than God's promises. Then God's plan for us becomes a burden. We forget the faithfulness of God and His promises for eternity. As the Hebrew writes in Hebrews 10:23 "Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful."
What greater joy can we have been the anticipation of meeting the Lord in the air and thus we shall always be with the Lord. (1 Thessalonians 4:19)