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Devotional - week of October 2, 2005


A MORE EXCELLENT WAY

Restore to me the joy of Your salvation … Psalm 51:12

These words are part of a prayer of repentance by King David recorded in Psalm 51. David is repenting of his sins of adultery and murder. David committed adultery with Bathsheba. Then He sought to hide his sin by having Bathsheba’s husband, Uriah, killed in battle.

The man who could write the 23rd Psalm knew the experience of the joy of the Lord. However, sin in his life took away that joy.

David did three things in seeking the restoration of his joy in the Lord. With a broken spirit he confessed his sins. He asked God to change him. He made promises to God.

A common experience of believers today is the loss of the joy of their salvation. One man said, “I would give anything in the world to feel again the way I felt when I first received Jesus into my heart.”

When one receives Jesus as his Lord and Savior, the Holy Spirit comes to live in him. For a period he experiences a sovereign filling of the Holy Spirit. As a result he continues to be filled with joy because:

… the fruit of the Spirit is …joy … Galatians 5:22

In time, almost every believer loses his fullness of the Spirit and loses his joyfulness. Today’s believers may do the things David did to receive the restoration of joy; however, there is a more excellent way available to them.

The more excellent way is to receive again the filling of the Holy Spirit who continually seeks to fill the hearts of all believers. In John 4:14 Jesus says of the Holy Spirit:

… whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life …

Believers continue to receive the filling of the Holy Spirit and the joy He brings by continuing to experience their crucifixion, burial, and resurrection.