This past Sunday my pastor preached on how to have a happy new year and told us that there were about 26 scriptures that mentioned the word ‘happy’ in the Bible, although he only used a few for his sermon. He did tell us we should look up additional scriptures, so I thought I would check it out, and share what I found with all of you.
He did mention that the word blessed is often used in place of the word happy, so while I was studying, I looked up the definition of ‘blessed’. I also looked up the definition of the word ‘delight’, since it is used in several scriptures as well. One definition of blessed is “divinely or supremely favored; fortunate; blissfully happy or contented; bringing happiness or thankfulness. The word ‘delight’ is defined as “a high degree of pleasure or enjoyment; joy; rapture; something that gives great pleasure.”
So of course, looking at scripture, it is easy to see that God wants us to have a Happy New Year. In fact, He wants us to be happy all throughout the year. And He tells us how to be happy.
The Beatitudes, found in Matthew 5:3-11, tells us many ways that we can be blessed. This list includes being meek, merciful, and pure in heart; being peacemakers, and hungering and thirsting after righteousness. Luke 6:20-21 says that if we hunger, we shall be filled; and if we weep, we shall laugh; and that if we are poor, the kingdom of God is ours. And in verse 22, He says, “Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.”
So, we know that we shall have many blessings in our eternal life, but what about happiness here and now? What did God say about that? Well, in Psalm 1:1, He says, “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither, and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.” These are promises that God has given us, that if we will be happy in keeping His commandments and avoid those who would draw us into sin or bitter, scornful attitudes, that He will bless us to prosper here and now. He tells us in Psalm 37:4, “Delight thyself also in the LORD: and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart.” And we know that when our desires are in line with God’s will, it is His pleasure to bless us, because in Romans 8:28, we read, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.”
In Proverbs 14:21, we learn that “he that hath mercy on the poor, happy is he.” And in Proverbs 16:20 we are told that “Whoso trusteth in the LORD, happy is he.” And in Psalm 146:5 it says, “Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is the LORD his God.”
Oh, the joy of knowing that because Christ is our Savior that we have eternal life and that true happiness is found in Him. No wonder the Apostle Paul said in 1 Timothy 6:6, “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain that we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.” When we can find that happiness in our salvation, knowing that our God, according to Philippians 4:19, “shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus”, we have all we need. So, as Paul states earlier in Philippians 4, verses 7-9, “Rejoice in the Lord always: and again, I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
So, let us go forward into 2019 knowing that we serve an awesome God who is willing and able to provide all we need to be happy, and let us do as we learn in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, “Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”
Happy New Year 2019! God bless you all!
Grace and blessings on your path,