Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Christ, Real JOY

With joy you will draw water from wells of salvation. And you will say in that day: "Give thanks to the LORD, call upon His name, make known His deeds among the peoples, proclaim that His name is exalted. Sing praises to the LORD, for He has done gloriously; let this be made known in all the earth. Shout, and sing for joy, for great in your midst is the Holy One of Israel."
Isaiah 12:3-5 ESV

According to Jewish tradition during the Feast of Tabernacles, in celebration of joy and thanksgiving for God's provision while in the wilderness, a golden pitcher was filled with water from the pool of Siloam and along with wine was poured over the sacrifice on the altar. The act of pouring out the water was a symbol of repentance. Another act involved lighted torches which the Hebrew people carried around the temple. The purpose of this was to symbolize that "the Messiah would be a light to the Gentiles." [Mary Fairchild, Feast of Tabernacles]

In the New Testament, reading in John 7:37-38, "On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, 'If anyone thirsts let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water'" At this Feast of Tabernacles Jesus describes himself as Living Water, poured out for us. The next day, "while the torches were still burning" [Fairchild], Jesus said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." [John 8:12] 

"The inevitable result of genuine salvation is joy! The joy found in Christ is like an inexhaustible well, satisfying the most desperate thirst." [Blackaby Study Bible Notes] As you journey through this Christmas season, are you finding Real JOY? If not, perhaps you are looking in the wrong places. You don't have to wander alone in the dry, dark places. The Holy One is here! Christ is Real JOY! ~dho