“…for the joy of the LORD is your strength.” (Nehemiah 8:10d)
Thank God for the seventh day of rest. God has a great design for the human body to rest one day out of the seven days of the week. When a man disregards the one day of rest, his body in time will suffer for not following God’s scheduled maintenance for the human body.
O, if man would follow God’s path for success (Joshua 1:5-8). When a man’s spiritual health is in decline, so is his physical health. Proof of this statement is found in many Scriptures. But one verse that I love is, “… for the joy of the LORD is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10d). The Hebrew word translated here as “strength” also means “health.”
Joy is a direct work of God in the believer. It is a fruit of the Spirit, “…love, joy…” (Galatians 5:22). Joy flows from Christ, “…that my joy might remain in you…” (John 15:11). The secret to have real joy is that Christ must abide in you (John 15:4-6.) See Psalms 16:11, “…in thy presence is fulness of joy…” and Psalms 43:4, “…God, unto God my exceeding joy...”
Also see Romans 5:11, “… we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ…” and Romans 14:17, “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.”
So, Christ Himself is “Joy” . The Greek word for “joy” is “chara” (#5479); which means “joy, delight; akin to ‘chairō,’ to rejoice.” Christ is our delight (Psalms 119:174; Romans 7:22). Christ is the end of the law for righteousness (Romans 10:4).
Therefore, joy cannot be produced by man, nor by any external circumstances that affect man; because “joy” flows from the Holy Spirit. The origin of joy is in the Atonement of Christ. In Christ’s Atonement for sinners (for His lost sheep), “peace” was made in the Blood of His Cross. That is, God was satisfied with the Perfect Sacrifice, Jesus Christ. As our Substitute, as our Representative, Christ “reconciled” us back to God; therefore, He is Peace on our behalf. The knowledge (experiential) of this peace in the spirit of the believer is the Source of Joy. (See Ephesians 2:13-14; Romans 5:1; Philippians 4:7.)
“Joy” then is the experience of peace with God in Jesus Christ (or in His Atonement on the Cross). It is “knowing” (ginōsko; knowing by experience) that God is your Father; whereby you cry, “Abba, Father” (Roman 8:14-16). It is knowing that Christ abides in your spirit (Galatians 2:20). It is knowing that it is in His life that you live and abide (Romans 5:10, 17). Here is real joy.
Therefore, your strength (or health) is dependent upon the kind of joy you possess. If you possess this real joy, Christ in you; then you have Peace with God and Peace of God.
Reader, are you physically and spiritually healthy? Do you possess joy in your spirit? Do you daily experience His Joy, Christ in you?