“And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me.” — Genesis 21:6
It was far above the power of nature, and even contrary to its laws, that the aged Sarah should be honoured with a son; and even so it is beyond all ordinary rules that I, a poor, helpless, undone sinner, should find grace to bear about in my soul the indwelling Spirit of the Lord Jesus.
I, who once despaired, as well I might, for my nature was as dry, and withered, and barren, and accursed as a howling wilderness, even I have been made to bring forth fruit unto holiness. Well may my mouth be filled with joyous laughter, because of the singular, surprising grace which I have received of the Lord; for I have found Jesus, the promised seed, and he is mine forever.
This day will I lift up psalms of triumph unto the Lord who has remembered my low estate, for “my heart rejoiceth in the Lord; mine horn is exalted in the Lord; my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies, because I rejoice in thy salvation.”
I would have all those that hear of my great deliverance from hell, and my most blessed visitation from on high, laugh for joy with me. I would surprise my family with my abundant peace; I would delight my friends with my ever-increasing happiness; I would edify the Church with my grateful confessions; and even impress the world with the cheerfulness of my daily conversation.
Bunyan tells us that Mercy laughed in her sleep, and no wonder when she dreamed of Jesus; my joy shall not stop short of hers while my Beloved is the theme of my daily thoughts.
The Lord Jesus is a deep sea of joy: my soul shall dive therein, shall be swallowed up in the delights of his society. Sarah looked on her Isaac, and laughed with excess of rapture, and all her friends laughed with her; and thou, my soul, look on thy Jesus, and bid heaven and earth unite in thy joy unspeakable.
— Charles H. Spurgeon, Morning and Evening.
Concerning The Gospel And Our Glad Response by William Tyndale
EVANGELION (that we call the gospel) is a Greek word; and signifieth good, merry, glad and joyful tidings, that maketh a man’s heart glad, and maketh him sing, dance, and leap for joy: as when David had killed Goliath the giant, came glad tidings unto the Jews, that their fearful and cruel enemy was slain, and were delivered out of all danger: for gladness whereof, they sung, danced, and were joyful.
In like manner is the EVANGELION OF GOD (which we call gospel, and the New Testament) joyful tidings; and, as some say, a good hearing published by the apostles throughout all the world, of Christ the right David; how that He hath fought with sin, with death, and the devil, and overcame them: whereby all men that were in bondage to sin, wounded with death, overcome of the devil, are, without their own merits or deservings, LOOSED, JUSTIFIED, RESTORED to life and SAVED, brought to LIBERTY and RECONCILED unto the favour of God, and set at one with Him again: which tidings as many believe laud, praise, and thank God; are glad, sing and dance for joy.
This EVANGELION or gospel (that is to say, such joyful tidings) is called the New Testament; because that as a man, when he shall die, appointeth his goods to be dealt and distributed after his death among them which he nameth to be his heirs; even so Christ before his death commanded and appointed that such Evangelion, gospel, or tidings should be declared throughout all the world, and therewith to give unto all that repent and believe, all His GOODS: that is to say, His LIFE, wherewith He swallowed and devoured up death; His RIGHTEOUSNESS, wherewith He banished sin; His SALVATION, wherewith He overcame damnation. Now can the wretched man (that knoweth himself to be wrapped in sin, and in danger to death and hell) hear no more joyous a thing, than such glad and comfortable tidings of Christ; so that he cannot but be glad, and laugh from the low bottom of his heart, if he believe that the tidings are true indeed.
— From William Tyndale’s A Pathway Into The Holy Scriptures, 1525.