Gladness of God I

At Your right hand is fullness of Joy and pleasures forevermore.  (Psa 16:11.)

There are three different ways to behold His glory and His emotions in those three directions. Beholding the emotional makeup of God and understanding it is a very powerful reality.  Psalms 16:11, which is Davidic revelation of God’s joy. The very crowning glory of King David’s revelation begins in Psalms 16. This is the entry point. We want to make it a priority to encounter the God of gladness. In the church there is an unspoken and sometimes a very clearly spoken sentiment that God is mostly mad or sad. It is spoken very clearly in some camps.

By and large it is not articulated, but it is there. It is ever present. It is that God’s emotions are mostly mad or mostly sad. The truth of scripture is that God’s emotions are mostly glad. It is very opposite. It is not an accident that the church that is worshipping a God who is mostly sad or mostly mad is the very church that is also mostly mad or mostly sad who worships a God like that. There is a direct correlation in the image that we have of God’s emotions and our own emotions. There is a direct correlation between the two. It is the idea that holiness is understood with a certain somber, morbid sadness.

It is that holiness is equated with quietness and sadness. It is like “Shhh, it’s holy in the atmosphere. This is in the sanctuary.”  In Psalms 60:6, David is writing. He says, “God spoke in His holiness. God said, ‘I will rejoice.” In holiness God speaks. He speaks, though not always, but often in a tone of rejoicing. When He speaks out of His holiness He speaks with gladness motivating what He says. He gives about 10 or 12 prophetic declarations in Psalms 60. He speaks out of His holiness with a heart of gladness. Ultimately gladness and holiness are one and the same thing. I am talking about holy gladness. There is carnal and sinful gladness, but I am not talking about that. The gladness in God’s heart and the holiness in God’s heart are not contradictory, but identical.

He does not always speak in gladness, but He often speaks in gladness. Gladness is not a contradiction to holiness. It is an expression of holiness when the gladness comes from God’s heart.

At Your right hand is fullness of Joy and pleasures forevermore.  (Psa 16:11.)

The apostle Peter under the anointing of the Spirit applies this passage by the revelation of the Spirit to Jesus who is the true David. The little David, that is King David, is talking about himself, but under the anointing he is talking about the greater David. He is talking about His heart. In verse 8 King David says, “I have set the Lord always before me.” Again, Peter is going to let us know that it is Jesus speaking about God the Father. “Because He is at my right hand I will not be moved.” Verse 9, “Therefore my heart is glad. My glory rejoices.” Verse 11, “You will show me the path of life. In Your presence is the fullness of joy and at Your right hand are pleasures forever more.” It is Jesus speaking to the Father. I want to highlight one point here. David understood this about the Father. Jesus understood this about the Father.

It is one of the most dynamic and magnificent statements about the throne of God. Verse 11 says, “In Your presence is the fullness of joy.” Instead of the word “joy” put the word “enjoyment.” You can often put the word “enjoy” or “enjoyment” for the word “joy.” You can put the word “gladness” if you want. It is the twin sister of joy. It is joy and gladness. They are normally put together in the scripture. Of course, in verse 9 the word “gladness” is there, but joy is the word in verse 11. Here is what I want you to picture. Sometimes we picture “In the presence of God is fullness of joy” an anointed worship service. It is true. There is joy in the presence of God in an anointed worship service, but that is not what David is talking about. David is talking about Revelation 4 and 5, which is the throne of God and the heavenly symphony.

The Throne

The nearer you get to the throne of God in the eternal city the more overwhelmed you will be about the gladness that radiates and flows out of that throne. It is not just talking about an anointed worship service on the earth. It is talking about the very essence and the very being of God in the center of His throne. David says that this is a revelation that goes far beyond what Moses saw. He says, “I know something about You. In Your immediate presence there is fullness.” That is a literal word. David was not exaggerating. He was under the anointing of the Spirit. There is fullness of gladness. Why? What does that mean? When we go up to the eternal city in the resurrection we will get close. There will be the 24 elders. They are bowing down. Of course, this will never happen this way, but let us just say that we kind of kneel down right there and say, “Sir, I know you are engaged, but I really need to ask you something.” As you look at them bowing down and I will tell you something that might surprise you. You will find a smile on their faces of adoration. There is fullness of joy the nearer you get to the throne. We are expecting them to be in utter anguish, such as, “Aaahh!” or something like that. It is God.

The elders are nearer to the glad heart of God than any other of the saints. Although it will not really happen this way, we will move a little closer. We will go to the seraphim. Their faces are covered. They are awestruck with the splendor and majesty of God’s holiness. We will find a smile on their awestruck face. We will get near to the throne. Jesus is at the right hand beaming with a radiant smile that you could never imagine. I do not mean that He smiles every moment of every day, but God’s predominant emotion is gladness and enjoyment. He has this radiant countenance of gladness.

We do not go to Him and say, “I hate to disturb You.” What is God’s countenance like? It is filled with gladness. The Father and the Son have gladness because the Father is filled with gladness. His presence is filled and it is saturated with gladness and happiness. All those that are near the throne of God have gladness flowing through their being. I do not mean that it is unbroken gladness where there can never be any other emotion. The predominant emotion in eternity is gladness. David goes beyond that and says, “It is more than gladness. At Your right hand there are pleasures. Near Your throne there are pleasures.” The 24 elders and the seraphim, which are the 4 living creatures, are filled with pleasure. I am sure this will not happen, but we say, “How do you like your new ministry assignment?” “Oh, I love it!” “You do? Is it a good assignment?” “I love to love Him! I love this! I would not have any other job in all of the eternal city.” There are eternal pleasures forever and ever. There are unending, inexhaustible pleasures in the hearts of those closest to the being of God in eternity forever. Psalms 84 says, “How lovely is Thy dwelling place.”

Again, it is okay to think of the dwelling place of God as the worship service when the Spirit is present with “How lovely is it when Your anointing is flowing.” That is true, but the sons of Korah are not thinking of the anointed worship service. They are talking about the dwelling place. It is the lovely dwelling of God around the throne. The throne of God is not only filled with pleasure and enjoyment.  Revelation 4 Describes the sea of Glass like Crystal, and the emerald Rainbow.  Revelation 22 talks about the New Jerusalem city, which will be connected to the throne of God, ie. the sea of Glass like Crystal.

The throne of God is stunning in its beauty. It is totally lovely. When we get near the throne for the first time face to face we are going to say, “This is absolutely fantastic!” When Dorothy came across that corner and saw Oz the first time, the Emerald City, she said, “Whoa! Toto look at that.” She looked at that Emerald City. I remember when I was about 6 years old I said, “Whoa! Look at that!” I had no idea. I cried when they pulled back that curtain and that little guy was back there. It shattered me. When the veil is pulled back in eternity He is the Almighty, the Ancient of days. It is the real deal. When we come around that corner, whatever corner it is that we come around and see that emerald rainbow, the radiance of the lovely dwelling place and God the Father and His Son whom He has made King of kings filled with gladness, filled with pleasure, the lovely dwelling place, which is the very center of government of every created thing, we are going to say, “This is good! I knew it! It is smart that I did this thing hard on the earth.”

It is not that we will just have pleasure when we get there. There is an impartation. There is a transformation that we partially experience in this age. It is related to gladness, pleasure and beauty. Turn to Acts 2:25. Let us look at Peter under the anointing of the Spirit interpreting this psalm. As he interprets it he says, “Well, David was talking about himself in truth, but it was mostly revealed to David so that we would have insight into the God-Man and what He experienced at the resurrection.” Acts 2:25, “For David says concerning Him, Jesus, ‘I foresaw the Lord always before My face,” this is Jesus speaking, “for He, the Father, is at My right hand. I will not be shaken. Therefore My heart rejoiced and My tongue was glad.” Jesus is filled with gladness. He is filled with rejoicing. It was not a momentary gladness that broke out in the resurrection. Psalms 45:7 tells that Jesus was anointed with gladness more than any other man and of any of His fellows or companions. The idea is that Jesus has more gladness than any other fellow human being. Jesus was anointed with the Father’s gladness more than any other man that ever walked on planet earth and far more than David. When Jesus said, “My heart rejoiced and My tongue was glad,” undoubtedly He was talking about the resurrection. It is over and He comes through. Jesus has this million dollar smile and says, “It is great! It is awesome!”

The seraphim, the elders and all the angels of heaven see that radiant, smiling, glad heart that they were so accustomed to seeing. He now has a new dimension. He is now fully human. His gladness did not begin with His humanity. God’s gladness is rooted in the reality of who He is. It was expressed in His humanity. Forever He will be glad as a man and as God. The very core of God’s heart is gladness. He is not mostly mad and mostly sad. He is mostly glad. He can be angry without every contradicting His gladness. In verse 28 Jesus is talking to the Father. “Father, You have made known to Me the ways of life. You will make Me full of joy in Your presence.” What does it mean for the second Person of the Trinity to be full of joy in the presence of uncreated joy, which is His Father? What does it mean for the second Person of the Trinity to be made in His humanity full of joy forever in the presence of His Father?  Gor some reason Peter does not quote the last part of Psalms 16:11. Acts 2:28 is Psalms 16:11.

There are three lines in Psalms 16:11 and Peter only quotes two. Line one is “Make me know the path of life.” Line two is “Make me full of joy.” He did not put “and at Your right hand are pleasures forever more,” but we know from Psalms 16 that is related to Jesus. Jesus is there. It is not Dorothy going to Oz. It is something far more powerful. Jesus is there. He has always been fully God, but now He is fully man. “I love it, Father! Here I am! It is over!” He is filled with gladness in the presence of uncreated gladness, which is His Father. Beloved, this is what this thing is about. In Psalms 45:7 it says that Jesus was anointed with the oil of gladness. How do you know Psalms 45:7 is about Jesus? It is because Hebrews 1:9 tells us it is Jesus that Psalms 45 is talking about. In Psalms 45:7 you think it is the psalmist, but Hebrews 1:8-9 assures us that it is Jesus who is the one that is filled with joy. He is anointed with the Father’s joy. The joy does not start with Jesus in His humanity. The joy starts with the Father. It is the Father’s joy that Jesus walked on the earth with. It is a fantastic reality.

Jesus’ Joy

When Jesus walked into town all the kids made a beeline right to Him. They loved Him. They loved being in His presence. The kids loved this 30-year-old Man from Nazareth. They loved this carpenter who was a new preacher. You can not fake out kids. The kids went running. They stopped and looked at the disciples and said, “Maybe yes, maybe no.” They are running and they look at them. There is Peter, James and John. They have this new badge. They are the main guys. It is the first time they have ever had a badge. The first time you ever get a badge typically you use it wrong. What do you do but show it off and you do the macho thing for a few minutes until you find out it is stupid. Anyway, they say, “Okay, everybody get back. The Man of God is coming through. Kids, get out of the way.” Jesus says, “Put your badge away. I like these kids. I like these kids as much as I like you. As a matter of fact, I like all kinds of people in this city. I love coming to this city.” They said, “We love being with You, Jesus.”

The kids see the disciples and they say, “50/50, maybe 70/30, but probably not. No, I am not going to run to you. You will get me and be mean to me.” They run pass the disciples. They look at the Pharisees and say, “Those Pharisees, no way.” It is that old cranky holiness stare that says, ‘We are holy.” The kids say, “Mommy, it is a monster.” They want nothing to do with the Pharisees, no way. There is no more connection in those kids’ hearts between those Pharisees holiness and the holiness of God. They go right past them and go right to Jesus. I can just imagine them with arms around His neck. They say, “We like Him.”

Afterwards the mother says, “Why do you like Him?” They say, “We can tell He likes us. We know He likes us.” She says, “How do you know He likes you?” They say, “When He came in town all of the big shots were there. He looked over at me and looked me right in the eye. I know He likes me. I do not know this Man very well, mommy, but He likes me. I can tell He likes me.” They went past all of those sacred boundary lines that religious systems put up and went and hugged Jesus. They did not care about the fact that He was in the middle of healing crusade. It did not matter. They said, “He likes me. This is awesome!”


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