Maybe you're thinking, 'well, that's a little arrogant'. But it's true. I am God's joy.
Let me explain. It came to me as I was preparing a talk about perseverance and cleanliness (the talk seemed to go ok, if you're wondering). In looking for Bible passages on perseverance, I was brought back to Hebrews 12. Specifically verse two, where it says:
"For the joy set before him [Jesus] endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."
And I thought to myself, 'what is that joy'.
You see, it's not like God has completed a programme of self-improvement by going to the cross. He's God.
It's not like He's making up for some terrible mistake He made way back when. He's God.
It's not like he has gained the title 'champion god' by making this sacrifice. He's God.
So what is the joy set before Jesus? What does He gain from persevering to the cross?
I am the joy set before Jesus. I am the reason he endured the cross. Not duty, but joy. I am what God gains through dying on the cross. Or perhaps it would be fair to say, what He regains. The only thing that changes for God is the restoration of His relationship with man. I am God's joy.