No Greater Joy – Pastor Stacey Shiflett

No Greater Joy

3 John 4  I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.

Intro: There are a number of things that bring a child of God joy:

               A. The Announcement of Salvations

  • Acts 15:3 And being brought on their way by the church, they passed through Phenice and Samaria, declaring the conversion of the Gentiles: and they caused great joy unto all the brethren.
  • Luke 15:10 Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.

Acts 8

  • 5 Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them.
  • 6 And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did.
  • 7 For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed.
  • 8 And there was great joy in that city.

               B. The Association of Saints

I Thessalonians 2

  • 18 Wherefore we would have come unto you, even I Paul, once and again; but Satan hindered us.
  • 19 For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming?
  • 20 For ye are our glory and joy.
  • 2 Timothy 1:4 Greatly desiring to see thee, being mindful of thy tears, that I may be filled with joy;
  • Philemon 1:7 For we have great joy and consolation in thy love, because the bowels of the saints are refreshed by thee, brother.
  • Philemon 1:20 Yea, brother, let me have joy of thee in the Lord: refresh my bowels in the Lord.

               C. The Advent of Suffering

Matthew 5

  • 10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  • 11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
  • 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
  • James 1:2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;

Acts 13

  • 50 But the Jews stirred up the devout and honourable women, and the chief men of the city, and raised persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them out of their coasts.
  • 51 But they shook off the dust of their feet against them, and came unto Iconium.
  • 52 And the disciples were filled with joy, and with the Holy Ghost.
  • 1 Thessalonians 1:6 And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost:

Acts 5

  • 40 And to him they agreed: and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.
  • 41 And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.

There is NO GREATER JOY than…

I. A Training that is Effectual

John here is talking about the discipleship from an elder to a younger believer.

John the Beloved called Gaius his “children” – vs. 4

  • Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

1 Thessalonians 2

  • 13For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.
  • 14 For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus:

II. A Testimony that is Evident

  • Vs. 3 – “…when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth.”
  • Vs. 4 – “…no greater joy THAN TO HEAR…”
  • Vs. 5 – “…which have borne witness of thy charity before the church…”

When the truth is in you, and you’re walking in the truth, you will have a testimony.

That testimony will be evident both before the church and strangers.

III. A Truth that is Embraced

One of the greatest statements in this passage is found in verse 3.

The truth that is in thee.

What a statement!

John and others no doubt had poured the truth into Gaius.

Guess what? It didn’t leak out!

Guess what? He didn’t pour it out.

Guess what? He didn’t replace it with lies and fables and deception.

The truth that was put into him was STILL in him!

The relationship that John had with Gaius was CENTERED around truth.

SEE verse 1 – “…whom I love in the truth…”

In fact, John used the word TRUTH no less than 5 times in the first 8 verses.

A passion for truth is a thing of great joy.