JOY: The Strength of the Believer
Priscilla Van Sutphin

When the Toronto people came to our church 
in 1994, holy laughter hit the church I was in, 
but I was prepared, because I had a friend 
who had been a closet charismatic for 20 yrs
 in the Presbyterian church .  When she received 
the baptism in the Spirit 20 years before, it had 
been with holy laughter. She had shared her 
testimony with me, and besides that, I had been 
led of the Lord to read Orr's book on Revivals
 long before they came.  I felt very blessed to be in the right place at the right time.  Yet there were many who didn't seem to share this opinion.  When I asked God why, about many of the manifestations, He would speak to me.  One time I asked, why is that guy jumping up and down.  He can't seem to stop.  The Lord simply said"Jumping for JOY ". Now as I read on the definitions of joy, that is one of jump for joy.

God is not happy with the smug, sour-faced, too serious, hypocritical face of the church and He told me that the face of the church is the heart attitudes of the people.  Self-righteous pride in how holy people are, seems to have pervaded the church.  People are afraid of making a mistake because there are such judgmental attitudes and critical hearts in the church and some in the family of God need to just get real.  It is by GRACE we are saved and by which we maintain any form of holiness  certainly not by our efforts...because the minute we think we are something and beyond making the same mistakes as someone else, we have blown it.  God promised in scripture to eradicate pride & arrogance from the church  in the end  times.  Much of pride rises out of insecurities which came from pain and suffering, and wrong learning.  So to that end I want to explore with you scriptures on JOY.  Joy of the Holy Spirit is meant to eradicate depression and pain.  It is a wonderful grace of God and not to be missed.

Laugh : Hebrew
OT:6711  tsachaq (tsaw-khak'); a primitive root; to laugh outright (in merriment or 
                scorn);  by implication, to sport:  KJV-laugh, mock, play, make sport.
OT:7832  sachaq (saw-khak'); a primitive root; to laugh (in pleasure or detraction); by   
          implication, to play:  KJV-deride, have in derision, laugh, make merry, mock 
          (-er), play, rejoice, (laugh to) scorn, be in (make) sport.
OT:7832 sachaq (saw-khak'); a primitive root; to laugh (in pleasure or detraction); 
           by   implication, to play:  KJV-deride, have in derision, laugh, make merry,  
           mock (-er), play, rejoice, (laugh to) scorn, be in (make) sport.
Greek: NT:1070  gelao (ghel-ah'-o); of uncertain affinity; to laugh (as a sign of joy or
           satisfaction): KJV-laugh.

Gen 21:5-7 NKJV
5  Now Abraham was one hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him. 6  And Sarah said, " God has made me laugh, and all who hear will laugh with me." 7  She also said, "Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children?   For I have borne him a son in his old age." 
Here the laugh has to do with shock and surprise, maybe even mocking

Job 5:21-24 NKJV
21  You shall be hidden from the scourge of the tongue, and you shall not be afraid of destruction when it comes. 22   You shall laugh at destruction and famine, and you shall not be afraid of the beasts of the earth. 23  For you shall have a covenant with the stones of the field, and the beasts of the field shall be at peace with you.  24  You shall know that your tent is in peace;
Here the laughing at destruction seems to be more a mockery of UNBELIEF because the person who knows God's covenant promises, knows that God will always help us to go through; that His heart is always to protect His own.

Job 8:19-21 NKJV
19   "Behold, this is the joy of His way, and out of the earth others will grow. 20  Behold, God will not cast away the blameless,  nor will He uphold the evildoers. 21   He will yet fill your mouth with laughing, and your lips with rejoicing.

Yes, God enjoys it when you laugh and even frolick !  Despite some opinions, He really has a sense of humor Himself and will add to the conversation when you are having fun or even make you laugh in the face of adversity...Because it is sometimes the devil's pitiful attempt to get you down and unhappy, and discouraged.  He fills your mouth with laughter literally in renewal.  I found myself laughing uproariously, not just at other people laughing, but from the presence of the Lord Himself and it made my knees buckle and I was on the floor pounding the floor, ribs hurting from laughing so hard ; it was WONDERFUL.  Some will say, so what ?  what did it accomplish?  It imparted an ability to do the above, to laugh at adversity, at the pitiful voice of the demons who would sometimes mock me.  It made me feel wonderful; it was healing to my emotions as I came to the Lord filled with depression many years earlier and had to always have worship music on to stay the demon of depression when I first was saved

Job 22:19-20 NKJV
19   "The righteous see it and are glad,  and the innocent laugh at them: 20  'Surely our adversaries are cut down, and the fire consumes their remnant.'   21  You shall be hidden from the scourge of the tongue, and you shall not be afraid of destruction when it comes. 
22  You shall laugh at destruction and famine, and you shall not be afraid of the beasts of the earth.  23  For you shall have a covenant with the stones of the field, and the beasts of the field shall be at peace with you. 24  you shall know that your tent is in peace;

Ps 2:4-6 NKJV
4  He who sits in the heavens shall laugh; The LORD shall hold them in derision. 
5  Then He shall speak to them in His wrath,  and distress them in His deep displeasure: 
6  "Yet I have set My King  On My holy hill of Zion." 

Yes, God laughs.  He cries.  He has emotions and gave them to us. We are not supposed to be emotionless to be perfect Christians...stiff upper lip...ta ta !  That is a terrible way to be.  I was taught that in nursing school; to be professional, only I found that when you cried with your patients, they found you to be more real, as long as you could also comfort and not be paralyzed by it.  Compassion is God's way.  Laughter and rejoicing are also His ways.  So many times the Holy Spirit has given me silly songs to sing to people that made me laugh, but imparted a message.  He doesn't want us to get so serious that we cannot be HUMAN and compassionate people.  Paul said to rejoice with those that rejoice, weep with those who weep.

Ps 52:6-8 NKJV
6  The righteous also shall see and fear, and shall laugh at him, saying,  7  "Here is the man who did not make God his strength, but trusted in the abundance of his riches, and strengthened himself in his wickedness." 8  But You, O LORD, shall laugh at them; You shall have all the nations in derision. 

Ps 126:1-3 NKJV
When the LORD brought back the captivity of Zion, We were like those who dream. 
2  Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing.
Then they said among the nations,  "The LORD has done great things for them." 
3The LORD has done great things for us, and we are glad. 

When their captivity was ended, He brought them back to Zion, and it says, our mouths were filled with laughter and our tongue with singing.  That is what joy looks like !  

Prov 14:13 NKJV     Even in laughter the heart may sorrow, and the end of mirth may be grief. 
Even in laughing, people can hide their pain.  There are many comedians like this.  You hear their background and you are cut by their stories, yet here they are making others laugh.  Sarcastic laughter is nothing but a cover-up for anger.  Anger always comes from pain and sorrow.  We are often good at covering up what is hidden in our hearts.  Pretense abounds where pain is too hard to face for some.

Eccl 3:1-8  NKJV      To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven: 2  A time to be born, and a time to die;  A time to plant, and a time to pluck what is planted; 3  A time to kill, and a time to heal;  A time to break down, and a time to build up;  4  A time to weep,  and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;  5  A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;   6  A time to gain, and a time to lose;  A time to keep,  and a time to throw away;  7  A time to tear, and a time to sew;  a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;  8  A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace. 

I love this passage and the old song from the 60's too ~! There is a time for every purpose under heaven.  We have so tried to control everything sometimes,  that we go too far and are covering up and pretending to be sophisticated  or professional, or are afraid of what others will think if we have a good time...youch ! I remember the time I visited a messianic temple and everyone got up to dance the circle dance,almost everyone.   They weren't performing.  They were rejoicing in the Lord and it didn't matter if they were tall or short, thin or fat, old or young.  They danced together .....a wonderful vision of what the church should be like in unity.

Eccl 7:3  NKJV    Sorrow is better than laughter, for by a sad countenance the heart is made better.  

This kind of sorrow, is the kind that comes from repentance of sin, or from suffering & loss that leads to perfection; like the sorrow of repentance when your heart has been convicted of transgression, and you feel awful insidebut after comes joy.see Romans 5.

Eccl 7:6 6 NKJV  For like the crackling of thorns under a pot,  So is the laughter of the fool.  This also is vanity.
Fools laugh when it is inappropriate to laugh with mockery or wrong feelings.

Eccl 10:19 NKJV     A feast is made for laughter, and wine makes merry; but money answers everything. 
Feasts are made for enjoyment and GOD ordained feasts for the Jews.  Purim is one such feast, that allows us to remember how God came through for His own, when there could have been a holocaust.  This feast in Jewish tradition is really fun for children.  God wants His children to have fun.  Some who have been raised with perfectionism really don't know how to have fun.

Luke 6:21, 24-25 NKJV
21  Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh24   "But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation.  25   Woe to you who are full, for you shall hunger. Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep.

There is a Divine justice, talked about in the above scripture.  You who have sowed in tears will reap in JOY it says elsewhere in the scriptures.  And woe is for those who laugh unrighteously like the wicked who scorn the poor or righteous and steal from them and laugh at their own schemes.

James 4:7-10 NKJV
7Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8  Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9  Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up. 
Like Ecclesiastes says there is a time for joy, and a time for weeping.  Repentance leads to JOY.  Sometimes God's prophets seem off synche for the rest of the body.  Part of this is due to the fact they often labor and hear what is coming, so when people are crying they are laughing, for they see God's restoration.  Or people are dancing and rejoicing, but the prophets are weeping and travailing, because they see judgment being met out in the next thing God is going to do
Below is an exerpt from Vines on Joy/Rejoicing:

A. Verb.
samach  OT:8055, "to rejoice, be joyful." This verb also occurs in Ugaritic (where its 
         radicals are sh-m-h and perhaps in Aramaic-Syriac. It appears in all periods of 
         Hebrew and about 155 times in the Bible.
Samach usually refers to a spontaneous emotion or extreme happiness which is expressed in some visible and or external manner. It does not normally represent an abiding state of well-being or feeling. This emotion arises at festivals, circumcision feasts, wedding feasts, harvest feasts, the overthrow of one's enemies, and other such events. The men of Jabesh broke out joyously when they were told that they would be delivered from the Philistines 1 Sam 11:9.

The emotion expressed in the verb samach usually finds a visible expression. In Jer 50:11 the Babylonians are denounced as being glad and "jubilant" over the pillage of Israel. Their emotion is expressed externally by their skipping about like a threshing heifer and neighing like stallions. The emotion represented in the verb (and concretized in the noun simchah)  is sometimes accompanied by dancing, singing, and playing musical instruments. This was the sense when David was heralded by the women of Jerusalem as he returned victorious over the Philistines 1 Sam 18:6. This emotion is usually described as the product of some external situation, circumstance, or experience, such as found in the first biblical appearance of samach:  God told Moses that Aaron was coming to meet him and "when he seeth thee, he will be glad in his heart" Ex 4:14. This passage speaks of inner feeling which is visibly expressed. 
         When Aaron saw Moses, he was overcome with joy and kissed him v. 27.

Therefore, the verb samach suggests three elements: (1) a spontaneous, unsustained feeling of jubilance, (2) a feeling so strong that it finds expression in some external act, and (3) a feeling prompted by some external and unsustained stimulus.
This verb is used intransitively signifying that the action is focused on the subject (cf. 1 Sam 11:9). God is sometimes the subject, the one who "rejoices and is jubilant": "The glory of the Lord shall endure for ever: the Lord shall rejoice in his works" Ps 104:31. The godly are to "be glad in the Lord, and rejoice... and shout for joy..." Ps 32:11. Samach can also mean "to be joyful or glad."    In the place the Lord chooses, Israel is "to be joyful" in all in which the Lord blesses them Deut 12:7.   Used thus the verb describes a state into which one places himself under given circumstances. It has a further and technical sense describing all that one does in making a feast before God:   "And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the Lord your God seven days" Lev 23:40.

In a few cases the verb describes an ongoing state. In 1 Kings 4:20 the reign of Solomon is summarized as follows: "Judah and Israel were many, as the sand which is by the sea in multitude, eating and drinking, and making merry."

B. Noun.
simchah OT:8057, "joy."   
This noun, which also occurs in Ugaritic, is found 94 times in biblical Hebrew. Simchah is both a technical term for the external expression of "joy" Gen 31:27-- the first biblical occurrence; cf. 1 Sam 18:6; Jer 50:11 and (usually) a representation of the abstract feeling or concept "joy" Deut 28:47. In another technical use this noun signifies the entire activity of making a feast before God: "And all the people went their way to eat, and to drink, and to send portions, and to make great mirth [literally, "to make a great rejoicing"]..." Neh 8:12.

The noun catches the concrete coloring of the verb, as in Isa 55:12: "For  ye shall go out with joy...: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands."

C. Adjective.
sameach OT:8056, "joyful; glad." 
This adjective occurs 21 times in the Old Testament. The first biblical occurrence is in Deut 16:15: "Seven days shalt thou keep a solemn feast unto the Lord thy God in the place which the Lord shall choose: because the Lord thy God shall bless thee... therefore thou shalt surely rejoice."

Strongs.other words for joy
sasown (saw-sone'); or sason (saw-sone'); from OT:7797; cheerfulness; specifically,
      welcome: KJV-gladness, joy, mirth, rejoicing.
      OT:7797 suws (soos); or siys (sece); a primitive root; to be bright, i.e. cheerful:
                       KJV-be glad, X greatly, joy, make mirth, rejoice.
masows (maw-soce'); from OT:7797; delight, concretely (the cause or object) or abstractly (the feeling): KJV-joy, mirth, rejoice.

        All this is to say that MOST of the time joy shows in being manifested outwardly which just means you can see it !  And often times more than just a smile on your face !

Deut 28:47-48 NKJV
47  "Because you did not serve the LORD your God with joy and gladness of heart, for the abundance of everything, 48   therefore you shall serve your enemies, whom the LORD will send against you, in hunger, in thirst, in nakedness, and in need of everything; and He will put a yoke of iron on your neck until He has destroyed you.

Seems God does not look well at unthankfulness, which is also a sign of pride in our hearts.

1 Sam 18:6 NKJV   Now it had happened as they were coming home, when David was returning from the slaughter of the Philistine, that the women had come out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tambourines, with joy, and with musical instruments.
This is a wonderful picture of the right kind of thankfulness and it included singing, dancing, playing of instruments; rejoicing.

1 Kings 1:40 NKJV   And all the people went up after him; and the people played the flutes and rejoiced with great joy, so that the earth seemed to split with their sound. 

Can you imagine thousands of people in one accord ?  Rejoicing, dancing, singing , etc.  The earth seems to split with their sound ? reminds me of when I went to Toronto for a prophecy conference in 1996 and when we worshipped together....people from so many nations and was resounding and one night we heard angels singing !  It was glorious !  If we had coupled it with specific prayer, maybe the earth would have split : ) .  It seems at such times, that you could fly due to the manifest presence of the Lord.

1 Chron 12:39-40 NKJV      Moreover those who were near to them, from as far away as Issachar and Zebulun and Naphtali, were bringing food on donkeys and camels, on mules and oxen--provisions of flour and cakes of figs and cakes of raisins, wine and oil and oxen and sheep abundantly, for there was joy in Israel. 

The sharing of food is something that comes with rejoicing and joy.  There is hospitality as well. "Love of strangers" is what that word means in the Greek.  Did you know that in the Old Testament it was an accepted practice that if a stranger came to your door or the gates of the city, they were to be invited in and no one would even question why they were there.   For up to three days, they would have a  place to sleep and food to eat without being provoked to give an account ? This shows their TRUST in the covenants of God.  They weren't afraid to run out of food, knowing God was their sustainer.

1 Chron 15:16 NKJV
Then David spoke to the leaders of the Levites to appoint their brethren to be the singers accompanied by instruments of music, stringed instruments, harps, and cymbals, by raising the voice with resounding joy.

David spoke this into existence I am sure by the spirit of God, that people be appointed to the temple from among the levites as singers (cantors) and those who would play instruments for Temple worship.  David knew a lot about the power of worship and what it does.  It was he who played for Saul and the evil spirits would flee from Saul. 

2 Chron 20:27 NKJV
Then they returned, every man of Judah and Jerusalem, with Jehoshaphat in front of them, to go back to Jerusalem with joy, for the LORD had made them rejoice over their enemies.

Ezra 3:12-13 NKJV
But many of the priests and Levites and heads of the fathers' houses, old men who had seen the first temple, wept with a loud voice when the foundation of this temple was laid before their eyes. Yet many shouted aloud for joy, 13  so that the people could not discern the noise of the shout of joy from the noise of the weeping of the people, for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the sound was heard afar off. 

You could say the Israelites were not shy in their worship.  They shouted for joy, they danced and wept, they seemed very emotional to me.  The thing is, it is a very emotional experience to be in the presence of God and nothing to be ashamed of when crying or rejoicing comes out of your mouth.  It was the norm for them.  The presence of God is worth shouting over.  We shout at football games or secular concerts yet how many shush us if we want to shout about the things God is doing ?  Or if we want to shout out prophetic declarations of joy ?   I remember years ago at this outreach to the community we were going to do, that we had prayer before, and the Spirit of God came upon me so strong I felt like shouting for JOY the word of the Lord.  I held it back due to the people I was with....I feel now, I wished I hadn't.

Ezra 6:22 NKJV  And they kept the Feast of Unleavened Bread seven days with joy; for the LORD made them joyful, and turned the heart of the king of Assyria toward them, to strengthen their hands in the work of the house of God, the God of Israel. 

Note that it was the LORD Who made them joyful.  He is the Father of Lights Who gives good gifts to His children.  If we want something, we just have to ask, because we are people of covenant.

Neh 8:10 NKJV  Then he said to them, "Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our LORD. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the LORD is your strength."

The joy of the Lord is your strength and THIS is why the enemy is always trying to steal he can rob you of your strength for service and devotion to God !  We can respond emotionally, but we don't have to rely on our emotions.  We can choose to not allow discouragement   or depression to get a hold of us.  We can put on the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness, get into the presence of the Lord and get comfort from HIM...get peace and joy from Him again.

      Neh 12:43 NKJV    Also that day they offered great sacrifices, and rejoiced, for God had made them rejoice with great joy; the women and the children also rejoiced, so that the joy of Jerusalem was heard afar off. 
      Est 8:16-17 NKJV    The Jews had light and gladness, joy and honor. 17   And in every province and city, wherever the king's command and decree came, the Jews had joy and gladness, a feast and a holiday. Then many of the people of the land became Jews, because fear of the Jews fell upon them. 
      Est 9:22  NKJV   as the days on which the Jews had rest from their enemies, as the month which was turned from sorrow to joy for them, and from mourning to a holiday; that they should make them days of feasting and joy, of sending presents to one another and gifts to the poor.

There is a time for feasting and joy, just as there is a time for work and seriousness.  Oftentimes under the guise of religious fervor, people want to put down joy and feasts as frivolous.  Such practice is common in Jehovah's Witnesses, Islam and some other strict cults, so let it be a lesson for the oh so religious.  But GOD Himself ordained such feasts ( of course not to pagan gods) and festivals.  But if our hearts are right towards Him, and not carnal in thinking only of ourselves, and what WE can GET...there is nothing wrong with celebration and sending presents to each other, and giving to the poor is something we should always be doing anyhow.  The trouble in America is that we took it to the level of carnality and greed.  That is not ordained by the Lord and so we need to examine ourselves and once again depend on the Lord for the things we do or don't do.

Job 20:5-7 NKJV
5   That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite is but for a moment?  6  Though his haughtiness mounts up to the heavens,  and his head reaches to the clouds,  7  Yet he will perish forever like his own refuse; Those who have seen him will say, 'Where is he?' 
This is reassuring to those who have been hurt by the hypocritical but our hearts should be praying for the hypocrites,  that they might enjoy real freedom from bondage.

Job 29:13 NKJV  The blessing of a perishing man came upon me, and I caused the 
                             widow's heart to sing for joy. 
How did Job do this ? I would suppose by supporting her financially as well as emotionally something James calls us to do if we really practice true religion.

Job 33:26 NKJV
He shall pray to God, and He will delight in him,  he shall see His face with joy, for He restores to man His righteousness. 

Righteousness brings JOY.  Repentance is key to having joy in our hearts because then there is nothing between God and us and there is continual communion. May God keep a "short leash" with you so that you are convicted quickly when you do something displeasing to Him for the deeper our hearts get in defying His ways, the colder we get.  And the harder it is to connect with God.  But if we repent daily and are brave enough to ask the Lord to convict us daily, we will keep that close connection with no kinks in the line.

Job 38:7 NKJV   When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted 
                             for joy? 

All beings rejoiced at creation.  This says something of the value God places on all life.  God gave us dominion, not destruction over life. He sorrows when we take life so lightly.  He once told me when I got a word about China, and mothers killing babies there, that "the highest form of witchcraft is to disdain life."   Life is worth celebrating and protecting to Him. He doesn't send little children out into the battles grown men fight.  He doesn't ask a child to blow up people.  One of the judgments America is experiencing is for the neglect of that value for children who are called a "blessing from the Lord."

Ps 5:11 NKJV
But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You; Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them; let those also who love Your name be joyful in You. 

Ps 16:11 NKJV   You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy;
                             at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. 

In the most Holy presence of the Lord there is JOY indeed.  It is a wonderful thing to be in the presence of God, and JOY is a natural outcome of that place of communion with Him.  For anything we lack or need is there and given, imparted in that place of His presence.

Ps 21:1-3 NKJV
The king shall have joy in Your strength, O LORD; and in Your salvation how greatly shall he rejoice!  2  You have given him his heart's desire,  and have not withheld the request of his lips. Selah  3  For You meet him with the blessings of goodness; You set a crown of pure gold upon his head. 

One of the desires of my heart when I got ordained  was that I wanted my son and my sister who is not saved to come.   I remember the joy I had in my heart as I saw my sister at the church.  She would never step into a church under normal circumstances,  but at least that day, as seed was sown and there was joy in my heart....deep in my heart to have my family there.  Such occasions are sometimes rare in life and to be treasured. I felt like dancing.

Ps 27:6 NKJV  And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me;
Therefore I will offer sacrifices of joy in His tabernacle;  I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the LORD. 

Ps 30:4-5 NKJV    Sing praise to the LORD, You saints of His,  and give thanks at the remembrance of His holy name. 5  For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.

Ps 32:11 NKJV   Be glad in the LORD and rejoice, you righteous;  and shout for joy, all you upright in heart! 

Another reason to shout for joy to the Lord is the way He gives favor to his children.  He lifts our heads up above our enemies, therefore we are thankful and rejoice in Him. There are always times that are hard to go through, so weeping may endure for a night season, but JOY comes as we walk through that experience and He Who is Light makes His face to shine upon us.

Ps 33:3-5 NKJV    Sing to Him a new song; Play skillfully with a shout of joy. 
4  For the word of the LORD is right,  and all His work is done in truth. 5  He loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD. 

Ps 35:9 NKJV    And my soul shall be joyful in the LORD; It shall rejoice in His 

Ps 35:27-28 NKJV   Let them shout for joy and be glad, who favor my righteous cause;
And let them say continually, "Let the LORD be magnified, Who has pleasure in the prosperity of His servant."  28  And my tongue shall speak of Your righteousness and of Your praise all the day long. 

Joy is an outcome also of seeing God's justice.  Salvation is one such justice performed for a person who is not saved, has been oppressed by the enemy, and God shows His triumph over evil in that salvation which is by His GRACE alone. 

Ps 51:8-12 NKJV
8   Make me to hear joy and gladness, that the bones You have broken may rejoice. 
9   Hide Your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities. 10  Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. 11   Do not cast me away from Your presence, and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me. 12  Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit. 

Ps 63:4-5 NKJV      Thus I will bless You while I live;  I will lift up my hands in Your name. 5  My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips. 

I remember well the first time I lifted my hands in church.  We had started going to a Pentacostal church and I was new to the Lord, and as we were worshipping others had their arms raised and I asked the Lord, "what is the big deal about raising the hands ? what is it for anyhow ? "  The answer came expediently..."SURRENDER" said HE.  My arms shot upwards at His reply and I never felt weird raising them again.

Ps 65:13-66:1 NKJV    The pastures are clothed with flocks; the valleys also are covered with grain; they shout for joy, they also sing. 

Ps 66:1-2 NKJV    Make a joyful shout to God, all the earth!  2  Sing out the honor of His name; make His praise glorious.

Ps 67:4-7 NKJV    Oh, let the nations be glad and sing for joy!  For You shall judge the people righteously, and govern the nations on earth.  Selah 5   Let the peoples praise You, O God;  Let all the peoples praise You. 6  Then the earth shall yield her increase; God, our own God, shall bless us.  7  God shall bless us, and all the ends of the earth shall fear Him. 

Ps 81:1-4 NKJV   Sing aloud to God our strength; Make a joyful shout to the God of Jacob. 2   Raise a song and strike the timbrel, the pleasant harp with the lute. 3  Blow the trumpet at the time of the New Moon, at the full moon, on our solemn feast day.  4  For this is a statute for Israel, a law of the God of Jacob

Ps 89:15-17 NKJV   Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound!  They walk, O LORD, in the light of Your countenance. 16  In Your name they rejoice all day long,
and in Your righteousness they are exalted. 

We are not just asked to praise.  It is a command of scripture and Psalm 89 says blessed are those who know the joyful sound.  Blessed indeed for God dwells in the praises of His people it says in the Word. He says, " Put on the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness."
So when defeatism, depression, or despair come knocking at your door PUT ON THE GARMENT OF PRAISE and it is not just refers also to speech.  Our speech should be seasoned with praise, not criticism and negativity and complaining, but with PRAISE.  You need to praise as much as you need to eat or sleep. It is the key to victory over darkness. 

Ps 96:12-13 NKJV   Let the field be joyful, and all that is in it.  Then all the trees of the woods will rejoice before the LORD. 13  For He is coming, for He is coming to judge the earth. He shall judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with His truth. 

Ps 100:1- 5   NKJV
Make a joyful shout to the LORD, all you lands! 2  Serve the LORD with gladness;
Come before His presence with singing. 3  Know that the LORD, He is God; It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; We are His people and the sheep of His pasture. 4  Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name. 5   For the LORD is good; His mercy is everlasting, and His truth endures to all generations. 

Ps 105:43 NKJV  He brought out His people with joy, His chosen ones with gladness. 

Ps 126:4-6 NKJV      Bring back our captivity, O LORD, as the streams in the South. 
5  Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy.  6  He who continually goes forth weeping,
bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him. 

I love this scripture for those who have cried much will reap much joy.  What a beautiful promise for those who have little hope.  Once you have Jesus, you again have hope.

Ps 132:9 NKJV   Let Your priests be clothed with righteousness, and let Your saints 
                            shout for joy. 

Ps 132:16-18 NKJV    I will also clothe her priests with salvation, and her saints shall shout aloud for joy.  17  There I will make the horn of David grow; I will prepare a lamp for My Anointed. 18   His enemies I will clothe with shame, but upon Himself His crown shall flourish." 

Ps 149:2-9 NKJV
2  Let Israel rejoice in their Maker; Let the children of Zion be joyful in their King. 3 Let them praise His name with the dance; Let them sing praises to Him with the timbrel and harp. 4  For the LORD takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the humble with salvation. 5  Let the saints be joyful in glory; Let them sing aloud on their beds. 6 Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand, 7  To execute vengeance on the nations, and punishments on the peoples; 8  To bind their kings with chains, and their nobles with fetters of iron; 9  To execute on them the written judgment--This honor have all His saints. Praise the LORD!

Some of these scriptures need to just be soaked in.  Here in Ps. 149 is that key it says"Let them sing aloud on their beds" So even when we are about to sleep, there is time for praise . I have found that if you go to sleep praising, often you wake up with praises in your mouth.  If you don't want music on, sing a psalm...make up your own tune and sing it !  What are high praises ? I think it is when you get so caught up in praising Him, that you forget everything else and the Spirit takes over.
And at that point are being led by the Lord.  The two edged sword is the word of God and it says when we do this, we execute vengeance on the nations and judgments on people without saying specifically anything to them.  God just honors the praises of His people and sets the angels on assignments.  What did Gideon do?... trumpet in one hand, pitcher in the other with a torch dropped the pitcher representing our flesh that holds the spirit (torch) and shouted to the Lord and what happened ?  The enemies turned on each other instead of them and killed each other.  God is doing it again and He is bringing forth music now, that will break the yoke of bondage, and people will be healed and delivered by just being in the place where high praises abound.  They will get up out of wheel chairs, and  walk"the lame will leap like a deer "

I want to insert in here a breakdown of the words in Ps. 149 from a Messianic believer's article by Matt Schwartz

First we are to Hallel, celebrate God. We celebrate His goodness. 
We celebrate the resurrection of the King. 
Then we move from celebration into singing a new song, Hadesh.  This is where the song of the Lord begins to flow in our midst.  Perhaps the singers, the musicians, the trumpet player or the worship leader begins to sense the creative anointing, and the song of the Lord begins to flow in a service.  The song of the Lord brings the anointing.  The song of the Lord brings God's presence. 

Then we move forth into three kinds of Holy Spirit movement, Machawl, the round circle dance, Guwl, to spin, Ahaz, to leap. We may lift our hands in praise.  Move our feet in praise.  We become free from bondage and filled with the Holy Spirit, Eph 5: 11 as we minister to the Lord according to Rev 1:6, as a Kingdom of Priests. 

Finally we enter the ninth level, called High Praise (Romenah) where we enter into spiritual warfare and Intercession over our city and our nation, pulling down principalities and powers as the Holy Spirit reveals to us the names of ruling princes of darkness through the gift of discerning of spirits. 

We do warfare and when we are done, there will come a release of new souls, new freedom, answered prayer, healing, miracles and finances released by the enemy and set in motion by angels.  2 Chronicles 20:21.   Lift your hearts and start to enter in to all that God has for you 
as a worshipper of the King of Kings and finally as a mighty prayer warrior and Intercessor. 

Praise (1 Hallel) the Lord. 

Sing to the Lord a new (2 Hadesh) song and His Praise 
(3 Tehilah) in the congregation of the godly ones. 

Let Israel be glad (4 Samach) in His maker. 

Let the sons of Zion rejoice (5 Guwl) in their King. 

Let them praise His name with dancing (6 Machawl). 

Let them sing praises (7 Zamar) to Him with timbril and lyre. 
Let the godly ones exult (8 Ahaz) in glory. 

Let the high praises (9 Romenah) of God be in their mouth and a two edged sword in their hands.  To execute vengeance on the peoples (spiritual warfare) and judgment on the nations.  To bind (acar) their Kings with chains and their Nobles with fetters of Iron.  This an honor for all his godly ones.  Psalm 149: 1-9. 

Prov 12:20-21 NKJV   Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil, but counselors of peace have joy.  21  No grave trouble will overtake the righteous, but the wicked shall be filled with evil. 

Prov 15:21 NKJV  Folly is joy to him who is destitute of discernment, but a man of 
                              understanding walks uprightly. 
Foolishness is joy to him who has no sense of discerning and by foolishness here seems to indicate a lack of obedience and right attitudes.

Prov 15:23 NKJV   A man has joy by the answer of his mouth, and a word spoken in 
                              due season, how good it is! 
Doesn't it make you feel great when God gives us the wisdom to give an answer to someone who needs encouragement ?  We have not because we ask not He said.

Prov 17:21-22 NKJV     He who begets a scoffer does so to his sorrow, and the father of 
                             a fool has no joy. 22  A merry heart does good, like medicine, but a 
                             broken spirit dries the bones. 

Prov 21:15 NKJV   It is a joy for the just to do justice, but destruction will come to the workers of iniquity. 

Eccl  2:26 NKJV    For God gives wisdom and knowledge and joy to a man who is good in His sight; but to the sinner He gives the work of gathering and collecting, that he may give to him who is good before God. This also is vanity and grasping for the wind. 

Here above is a scripture that shows that repentance leads to joy.
For our sins are covered if we confess them to Jesus, once saved and that leads to joy, but to someone walking in sin, who continues to go his own way without repentance; heavier becomes the burden of sin, and true happiness eludes.  And God alone knows the heart of man, what is in it...what motives, what efforts a man makes to follow.  It is not for man to judge.  That too will bring more lack of joy to our hearts. So examine your hearts daily for any judgments.  You don't want to have those on our conscience either for "there but for the grace of God go I."  

Eccl 5:19-20 NKJV  As for every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, and given him power to eat of it, to receive his heritage and rejoice in his labor--this is the gift of God. 20   For he will not dwell unduly on the days of his life, because God keeps him busy with the joy of his heart. 

Eccl 7:14 NKJV   In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: Surely God has appointed the one as well as the other, so that man can find out nothing that will come after him.

Yes, there is a warning to not get into complaining when things don't go as planned.  I grew up with perfectionism, and there is inherent in that complex of sin a real discontentment when things don't go as you expectand it plays out  in anger, rage, pride and arrogance blaming and projecting all kinds of garbage at others. I was mildly schizophrenicand if I dropped a glass, or one of my childrenI would go into a ragebe so upset and nervous, and anxiouswhat it was is I was replaying the role of my foster momand my stepfather, and mother as they responded in this way to me and replayed it over and overI was like a different person when this happeneda whole different personalitythere had been such fear that came in at an early age for making a mistake.  I know loads of people bound by this who have not been willing to get healing for itand it is rampant in the churcha performance based mentalityand adheres to religion. ( My grandmother who raised me the first 1 ½ yr was very religious. )  And this mindset, since getting free of the spirits behind it, has been a difficult one to overcomeOne daythe Lord just said to me, once I was aware of my behavior " What does this matter eternally, Priscilla "  and it helped me to gain perspective. So often we think something is SO importantif we don't get it donebut seldom is it as important as we think.  God is able to keep us in line with what is neededWe need to lighten up and put HIM firstand HE will direct our pathif we will trust Him with our lives instead of giving in to the pride of self-sufficiency.

Eccl 9:7-8 NKJV   Go, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart; for God has already accepted your works. 8   Let your garments always be white,
and let your head lack no oil. 

This makes me think of the virgins with their oil lampsdon't let your head ( the seat of the mind ) lack any oil.  Don't let days go by without getting in communion with Him.

Isa 9:3-4 NKJV
3   You have multiplied the nation and increased its joy; They rejoice before You 
according to the joy of harvest, as men rejoice when they divide the spoil.  4  For You have broken the yoke of his burden  and the staff of his shoulder, the rod of his oppressor,  as in the day of Midian. 

Isa 12:3 NKJV   Therefore with joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation. 

Isa 29:19-20 NKJV   
The humble also shall increase their joy in the LORD, and the poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel. 20   For the terrible one is brought to nothing, the scornful one is consumed, and all who watch for iniquity are cut off-- 

Here is a key to joy.HUMILITY !  Pride, it's opposite lead to all sorts of sin and malformations in characterso maintaining an attitude of humility is one way to keep your joy.

Isa 35:1-2 NKJV
The wilderness and the wasteland shall be glad for them,  and the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose;  2  It shall blossom abundantly and rejoice, even with joy and singing.  The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it, the excellence of Carmel and Sharon.
They shall see the glory of the LORD, the excellency of our God.

Isa 35:10 NKJV   And the ransomed of the LORD shall return, and come to Zion with singing, with everlasting joy on their heads. They shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away. 

Isa 49:13 NKJV  Sing, O heavens!  Be joyful, O earth! And break out in singing, O mountains!  For the LORD has comforted His people, and will have mercy on His afflicted.

Let everything that has breath praise the Lordeven the mountains will rejoice in His presence !  I remember Dr. Eby talking about his visit to heaven and how even the flowers were making music !  How much more should we rejoice who have been made in HIS IMAGE ?

*Isa 51:3 NKJV   For the LORD will comfort Zion,  He will comfort all her waste places;  He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD; Joy and gladness will be found in it, thanksgiving and the voice of melody. 

*Isa 51:11 NKJV  So the ransomed of the LORD shall return, and come to Zion with 
singing, with everlasting joy on their heads. They shall obtain joy and gladness;
Sorrow and sighing shall flee away.   
This is the same refrain as  in Isaiah 35 and when HE repeats things, it is to reinforce the truth of them !