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Location: 6425 Jefferson Rd.
(Hwy. 129) in Athens, Georgia.

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Rejoice always! Rejoice!
(Last in the series,
Overcoming the Enemies of Joy)

Jerry Varnado, pastor
Gateway Church, Athens GA

May 21, 2006

  • Main Scripture text: Philippians 4:4-7

  • Joy is a state of mind and spirit that results from knowing and serving God.

  • In other words, joy is something that comes to us supernaturally from God. It's not something we can manufacture or come up with ourselves.

  • Why then does Paul exhort us to rejoice?

  • The word "rejoice" itself gives us a clue. "Re" means "again" or "anew." Another meaning is to "go back."

  • Paul is saying we must regularly go again to that place where we first believed, when God became real to us and we experienced His grace and mercy.

    Sermons in this series

    1-The Promise of Joy

    2-Overcoming Unbelief

    3-Overcoming Self-Centeredness

    4-Overcoming Our Fear

    5-Overcoming Anger

    6-Overcoming Negative Thinking

    7-Rejoice Always! Rejoice!

  • By doing so -- no matter what burdens we may be struggling with at any given moment -- we remind ourselves of God's love and goodness toward us. Joy begins to build in our subconscious mind, and thus becomes our perspective on life.

  • Is it not a joyous thing to know that we rest in the everlasting arms? That God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble? That no weapon fashioned against us will prevail? That God has promised to never leave nor forsake us?

  • Isn't it a joyous thing to hear Jesus say, "Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest"?

  • Isn't it a wellspring of joy to know that by the mercy of God we have been born again into a living hope and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade -- kept in heaven for us"?

  • No matter what circumstances we may be facing, there is always reason to rejoice.

  • By the way, Paul is not suggesting we rejoice; he is exhorting us to rejoice!

  • For the Christian, rejoicing is an imperative -- because:


Expressing our joy makes our faith visible and desirable to others;


Our joy is therefore critical to God's Kingdom coming on earth;


Rejoicing in the Lord is the pathway that leads us to peace that surpasses human understanding, and the abundant life Jesus came to give us.

  • So rejoice in the Lord always! And again I say rejoice!

  • That's my sermon. Did you hear it? Will you do it?

Supporting texts: Philippians 4:8 | Deuteronomy 33:27 | Pslam 46:1 | Isaiah 54:17 | Hebrews 13:5 | Matthew 11:28 | 1 Peter 1:3-5

A mp3 audio file of this sermon is here (22 min.).
(Download to a PC by right clicking on the link and choosing "Save Target As." Mac users: click, hold, and choose "Download Link to Disk." Depending on your connection speed, the file may take several minutes to download.)

An audio tape of the sermon summarized above is available free of charge (U.S. requests only).

Request a tape by
calling or writing the Gateway Church office.
Please specify tape number 060521a: Rejoice Always! Rejoice!

© 2006 Gerald R. Varnado

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