This past week in chapel, Pastor Carl Muller of Trinity Baptist Church, Burlington, ON, brought us the Word of God with a focus on the Christian and joy. It was a good reminder of what the inward and outward disposition of the Christian is to be! Andrew Fuller also wrote on the issue of the Christian and joy. In a circular letter of 1795 (titled, “Why Christians in the Present Day Possess Less Joy than the Primitive Disciples”) Fuller discusses the reasons why Christians do not experience joy and some solutions for the problem.
The quote from this letter can be found in the Works, III:330.
“The primitive Christians were in the habit of considering all things as working together for good, and so of deriving joy from every occurrence. If the world smiled upon them, they rejoiced, and availed themselves of the opportunity for spreading the gospel; of if it frowned on them for their attachment to Christ, they rejoiced that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name’s sake. By thus converting every thing into food for joy, they answered to the exhortations of the apostles, ‘Let the brother of low degree rejoice that he is exalted; but the rich in that he is made low.’–‘Beloved, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations.’–‘Rejoice evermore.’–In everything give thanks.’ If we would feel like them, we must enter into their views; we must have less of the complaining patriarch, as well as the whining merchants; and more of that temper which prompted the holy inhabitants of heaven, on every new dispensation of providence, to cry, ‘Amen Hallelujah!'”