– A.W. Pink
The Command to Rejoice
The Apostle Paul wrote that we should “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice” (Phil 4:4) and notice that he said twice to “rejoice,” so it must be vital for the Bible never repeats itself unless it is vitally important. There is something about rejoicing that is infectious. Joy spreads and so does rejoicing. When we see others rejoice we are also inclined to rejoice.
The Reason to Rejoice
We may not rejoice because we feel like it but rejoicing is a choice. Paul rejoiced at the generosity of the church at Philippi and wrote “I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity” (Phil 4:10). The feasts were joyful occasions too but God still insisted, “you shall rejoice before the Lord your God seven days” (Lev 23:40), showing that it’s commanded by God that we rejoice.
The Desire to Rejoice
Our worship leader spontaneously rejoices during the worship music. No one had to tell him that it’s commanded. He had the desire to rejoice of his own volition. He didn’t have to read it in the Bible or feel guilty about it if he didn’t. The psalmist wrote “may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you; may those who love your salvation say continually, “Great is the Lord” (Psalm 40:16).
The Privilege to Rejoice
Once more the psalmist writes “I will rejoice and be glad in your steadfast love, because you have seen my affliction; you have known the distress of my soul” (Psalm 31:7). He was glad to rejoice. He felt compelled to rejoice. He had reason to rejoice. Don’t we have as good a reason to rejoice as the psalmist did? Shall we sing with the psalmist, “This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24)?
A.W. Pink, in saying “It is both his privilege and duty to rejoice in the Lord,” rightly understood that we’re commanded to rejoice, but more than that, we have reason to rejoice which should give us the desire to rejoice, for it is a privilege to rejoice, wouldn’t you say?