Kenneth Copeland - Joy Is the Hallmark of God's Nature
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—Hello, everybody. I'm Kenneth Copeland. This is The Believer's Voice Of Victory Broadcast. If you will take hold of what Professor Stephens was telling us all last week, and take hold of what we've learned this week, particularly from faith connected with the Fruit of the Spirit, it'll change this whole year.
—Ooh, that's good.
—It'll change it.
—It'll absolutely change it in your life. It will not do it if you just listen to these broadcasts and that's it. You need to go back and go on online, and get the notes and the downloads, and get in there and study it for yourself. It's the scripture that you get excited about that works for you. And when you begin to realize there is a way to live a life without failure, and a life without fear, and a life with all your bills paid and more. And all your family in the Kingdom of God. There is a way to do that.
—And when you find out what it is, ooh. And I heard someone say one time, "If Christianity became illegal, would there be enough evidence to convict you"? Yes.
—Because that character, that nature, ought to be exuding out of us all the time.
—All the time.
—And changing everything around you.
—And when it does, according to 2 Peter, you will never fail.
—You won't fall.
—Amen. It's good. It won't just change your year, Brother Copeland, it'll change the destiny of your entire family.
—Yes, it will.
—My grandfather got saved, and it changed the trajectory of my entire family. When that one man walked down to Brush Harbor, and got saved. We went from moonshining, Baptist hillbillies to preaching the gospel, holding the first tent meeting for...
—Yeah. Praise God.
—And now here I'm sitting here, because one man made a decision based on love.
—Yes. Go really, God.
—That's what it'll do for your family.
—It'll do it.
—So you're absolutely right. You're not overselling that when you say it'll change this year, when you do that.
—These Fruit of the Spirit, we're talking all these, you've talked a lot about grief. But there's been a theme that's been running here, and I'm going to pick this book up again. You're not pushing this book, I'm pushing this book, Walking in the Fruit of the Spirit by Gloria Copeland, Releasing the Nature and Power of God in Your Life. That's what we've been talking about. Chapter eight, "Drink in God's blessings with joy".
—Listen to this. "Due to religious tradition and the lies of the devil, God isn't generally known for being joyful. He's usually thought of, at best, as being somber, at worst, downright grumpy, perhaps angry. According to Bible, however, joy is one of the primary hallmarks of His nature".
—Yes it is.
—And that should be a primary hallmark of our nature.
—Now, two places we need to look. First, we need to look in the book of James.
—And faith and joy is right at the first of it. Right? Go to the book of Hebrews and turn right one book. James, here we are again. "A servant or a slave of God, and of the Lord, Jesus Christ to the 12 tribes, which are scattered abroad, greeting, my brethren. Count it all joy". That's the second Fruit of the Spirit. "Count it all joy when you fall into diverse tests and temptations, tests and trials, knowing..." You have to know something, though. "Knowing this, that the trying of your faith..." He didn't say anything, he said the trying of your faith. It wasn't the trying of you. It is the trying your faith.
—But some fellow said, "I tried that speaking stuff, and it doesn't work". No, it tried you, and you didn't work.
—And Jesus is the finisher of my faith.
—The developer of my faith.
—So it's really, trying to try Him in me. I have to approach that by faith.
—Yes. Now, look. "But let patience..." Now we're back to the Fruit of the Spirit.
—There you go.
—"Let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God that giveth to all men liberally and upbraideth not, it shall be given him, but let him ask in faith".
—"Nothing wavering, for he who wavereth is like a wave of the sea, wind and tossed. Let not that man think he shall receive anything from the Lord, because faith is involved". Now, how are you going to count it all joy if you don't know what joy is, or where it comes from? It was born into you when you accepted Jesus, because we have His joy. Now, "The joy of the Lord is our strength," right? How do you know that? You have to go to the scripture that says that. You don't just quote it. So, Nehemiah, chapter eight. Now, you don't just start with the 10th verse. You back up. "Nehemiah and Ezra, the priest, the scribe, and the Levites that taught the people, said unto all the people, 'This day is holy unto the Lord, your God. Mourn not, nor weep. For all the people wept when they heard the words of the Lord. Don't mourn. Don't grieve.' Then he said to them, 'Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, send portions under them for whom nothing is prepared. For this day is holy unto the Lord. Neither be ye sorry, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.'"
—Get rid of that sorry attitude. "I'm sorry this. I'm sorry that. Oh, I'm so sorry. I'm so sorry I got here. I'm so sorry you be here, and I'm so sorry. I'm just so sorry. Sorry. Oh, sorry. Sorry. Oh, oh, sorry. Sorry. So I'm afraid, so yes, sorry. Sorry". And when God said, "Look at them passing the sorry around". He said, "If you have, if you are going to apologize, say 'I apologize.'" Sorrow comes from grief. "I apologize".
—I'll prove it to you, next verse.
—Next verse. "So the Levites stilled all the people, saying, 'Hold your peace, for the day is holy. Neither be grieved. Sorrow before it".
—It's right there.
—"Grief behind it".
—It's right there. "Neither be ye grieved. And all the people went their way to eat and to drink and send portions that started giving to make great mirth, because they had understood the words that were declared under them".
—They got their failures off of their mind, and they began to have joy, and they began to shout and sing. And now they felt like it.
—So you have to start first. And so, I guess you'll take it the way Brother Hagin did. He said, "I just started out laughing at the devil. Ha, ha, ha.
—And I've done it. You can't do that sincerely. I don't care how down you feel, how depressed you feel. And when you're depressed, you just have to fight to do it, so just show out, and glory to God, you'd be surprised how quick that depression will leave. That's just a little low-level devil.
—And like Gloria said, "To be depressed, you have to think about yourself all the time". And just think about it. Thinking about yourself all the time will depress anybody.
—Yeah. She writes...
—And I thought, "Okay, yeah. That'll work".
—Well right, here on page 105 of this book, she writes, "Resist the pull toward depression. Let joy take the lead by stirring it up in your spirit, connecting with the Lord".
—Well, Brother Copeland, I'll tell you this, though. I'm not going to laugh. I am not going to dance in church. I'm not going to be in the flesh. I don't want to be in the flesh. I want to be in the spirit. If the spirit moves me, I'll do it.
—Well, there's a spirit moving you, all right.
—But it's the wrong one.
—You're going to have to by faith.
—By faith, raise your hands. By faith. That first step might be flesh, but you'll be in the spirit like that. Because you're yielding by the faith.
—Well, you're in the flesh, let's face it.
—You're walking around in it 24 hours a day. You have to sleep the thing, you have to clean it. You have to bathe it, or it smells bad. You have to do all this, because it's not worth much. It's made out of dirt. But we have to deal with it. Now, once you move out of this flesh, that's when life really begins. If you know the Lord. And like Gloria said, "If you haven't made prior arrangements, then your lodging facility will be chosen for you". But you need to make Jesus the Lord of your life, and take care of that. That's first.
—Then you go from there. But that joy thing, and Dr. Colbert would tell me when I was in so much pain with my back, he said, "You're going to have to start laughing". I said, "There's not anything funny. Ha, ha, ha, ha". But you can't keep from it. The laugh will break out on you. Now, Dr. Avery Jackson, the neurosurgeon that is on our board of directors, one of the things that he talked about, I had heard about this, but I never had heard anyone say it that knew it for a fact. That particularly, cancer patients...
—Laughing was one of the treatments. And they'd get them in, and have laughing classes. And you'd just start off with ha, ha, ha. Ha, ha, ha. Ha, ha, ha. Just lead in laughter, until it begins to overcome that pain, and the laughter begins to catch on. And then it rises, then the joy rises up on the inside of you, and you just begin to laugh. And the joy of the Lord comes, and you just laugh. And he said, "You just laugh and you laugh. And the pain subsides, and you just keep laughing and laughing". And many, many, many people of those people actually were healed of cancer, just laughing their way out of it.
—My, my, my.
—And it's so difficult to convince people that that's true. But it is.
—Well, because Jesus was a man of sorrow, Brother Copeland. That's what the Word says. Gloria answers that. Is it really possible for us to rejoice all the time, you might ask. Is Jesus sometimes saying to us, like he did to the disciples in John 16:22, "Ye now therefore have sorrow". That was one of His last instructions. No, He didn't. The only time Jesus said that was when He was talking to disciples about leaving them and going to the cross. One moment.
—One time. And He gets the victory of that. He gets the victory over that in the garden. When He talked to them about their life would be like, after he went to the cross, He said, in verse 22, "I will see you again. Your heart will rejoice. And your joy, no one will take from you".
—That's what He said right after that.
—Yes he did.
—And that's what He's all about. That's why He did it. He endured that so that we could have joy, so that we could laugh at cancer.
—And now we apply another principle, the power twins in faith, patience.
—Have her perfect work. Gloria said this in the book, and I love it. "Patience is divinely designed to undergird all of the other fruit".
—It's the power twins.
—And you see it over and over again, faith and patience, faith and patience, faith and patience. That word patience, if you look it up, the word translated patience means constancy. Constant. You're constantly constant. You don't change. You don't get off your faith because of the way you feel or the way it looks. You just stay the same. When I had all that pain in my body, I had to stay on. I had to keep my faith alive. I had to stay in the Word. I particularly had to go over and listen to someone else preach, in order to feed on it. And then, read the Word. But that's when joy and praise came in so powerfully, just praise and worship. And it was in August when that happened, so I had good weather. And I'd just get out there in the backyard, and just shout and praise, and just thank God that the grass was green, and thank God my other leg didn't hurt, and thank God that my fingers and my hands didn't hurt, and glory to God, I just thank God that just the joy of the Lord, and just screaming joy and laugh, and go on and just grit my teeth sometimes to do it, and just laugh anyway.
—Because that spiritual strength it's talking about.
—Your word level and your joy level are directly connected.
—This reminded me of something, Greg. I drove... Praying in the spirit would edify me or strengthen me.
—I, of course, we had Rick in the good car, so I was driving that old car, Gloria's. It didn't look all that terribly bad, but it had a lot, just a ton of miles on that car. And so I was just petting it, and the Word of the Lord could... You see, I've got a tape recorder laying in my... And back there then, it was old carbon batteries, just a grocery sack full of batteries to keep this thing going. I had to feed it because it was feeding me. So, I was driving from Lubbock, Texas back to Tulsa. I had had a meeting there in the Full Gospel Businessman's first... and several hours to get home. So I decided, "Well, I'm going to do this". And I just started praying in the spirit, and praying in the spirit. And then this word came up. "I can hold this car together just as good at 65 miles an hour as I can at 45". "Really"? "Yes". But he said, "I can't, if you're going to break the speed limit". I had a reputation for doing that. And he said, "Because you agreed when you got your driver's license, you were going to obey the law". "Okay". So I just ran it up there, just a little bit less than the speed limit, and just held it there, praying in tongues, praying in tongues. And I got drier and drier and drier and drier. My throat was dry, and I'm dry, la, la, la, la, la, la. "I got the joy in the Lord. I got the joy". And I did it all the way to Tulsa. I got out of the car, and I told Gloria, I said, "Well, if I got any edifying for joy, I sure can't tell it". She said, "Kenneth, we've got an invitation to come over to so-and-so's house for a prayer meeting. And Tommy Tyson's going to be preaching. And they want to know if we'd like to come". I said, "Yes. We don't want to miss Tommy".
—So I said, "Let me change clothes". So I got excited. I wasn't near as tired as I thought it was. I got excited. We went over there. I had been praying in tongues for hours, hours.
—Believing for edification.
—That it's in my spirit, not my body. The joy of the Lord is in your spirit, not your body. We got over there. And Tommy's one of those guys that he didn't have to talk loud. And he didn't... One time, I said, "Tommy, I'm in the valley". He said, "Kenneth, the valley is where the lilies grow". I thought, "I don't want to hear about lilies". He was just a kind and spirit-filled Methodist. And he just preached and taught and taught, then he just kept teaching on healing and so forth. And he said, "Now all of those that would like to have hands laid on you for healing, raise your hand". And he said, "Brother Kenneth, would you and Gloria turn around and lay hands on the woman right behind you that has her hand up"? And I said, "Yes". I felt so good by this time. And I turned around, and I laid hands on her, and the power of God knocked her backwards, slammed her into that seat, and she was healed.
—I thought, "I did get edified".
—But it was in my spirit.
—Absolutely right. Makes no sense to your mind.
—A perfect example of this was with Jesus when he meets the woman at the well.
—He is tired and hungry. The boys go down to get him some bagels or something. And He's sitting there talking to her, and they come back and He said, "Oh, I'm not hungry".
—Yeah. He said, "I have food that you don't know of".
—"Don't know of". We have secret information, and it's on the inside of you. It's the Fruit of the Spirit. It's the gifts of the spirit. It's all within you because you accepted Jesus as your savior. You're no longer of this nature anymore.
—Now, that Fruit of the Spirit is born into you because we're born of God. Now, the power that was displayed on that trip was praying in tongues. That's the power within. But Jesus said, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me". He had just been baptized in water, and John saw the Spirit of God land on Him like a dove".
—Right. Just land on him.
—Yeah. Just landed on him. And that's when the power came in His ministry. Praying in tongues is the gateway to the supernatural, praying in the spirit.
—Yes. And you heard what the Father said when that happened?
—"This is my beloved Son".
—He told Him of His love. The Father revealed His love for Him right there, publicly, in front of everyone. Lucifer heard it.
—Yes he did.
—And when he went to the mountain to be tempted right after that, he left out a word. He said, "If you truly are the Son of God". He left out loved. The enemy will never, your flesh will never remind you that you're loved of God.
—But you are. And that's what Gloria was doing for you.
—She was reminding you of the love, by loving you.
—All the time.
—And then, our family... You teach it to the family, and a lot of times in dealing with things in the ministry... Love deals with things in grace. I heard the Lord say to me one time about a friend of mine, and about some things in the ministry. He said, "It's a whole lot better to give the wrong man a break, than to break the wrong man". There was a man that was actually stealing, and he was on staff, but he was actually stealing things; and we found out about it. And so, and I talked to him about it, and told him, "I'm going to give you a break, buddy". And he did it again. And I said, "Okay, you're going to jail". Well, I gave the wrong man a break, but he learned something in jail. Now, back in the days of the Full Gospel Businessman's Fellowship, and Brother Shakarian, when Demos Shakarian was on the earth. And there was a man that was stealing from him; and he owned a large dairy, and he was stealing money from him, and he was on his staff. And they caught him at it, and they called the police. The police came out there and had him in handcuffs. Now listen. Listen. And he said, "Brother Shakarian, why did you do that? I tithed on every dollar of it".
—"Steal no more," scripture says.
—Because we put off that, and we put on righteous.
—And Brother Shakarian didn't deal with him harshly.
—He was such a lovely man.
—And built one of the most powerful ministries that has ever existed, because he just loved and he loved and he loved, and everybody around him was that way. You couldn't be around him without just falling in love with him and with Rose. And we're out of time.
—We're out of time.
—But I believe we got somewhere with this.
—Glory to God. Come on, glory to God. We'll be back in just a moment.