Joy. A fruit of the Spirit. Comforting, content and full of peace. An enduring attitude of the heart and spirit, and a natural part of the Christian faith. It’s often connected with, but not limited to, following Jesus and pursuing a Christian life.

Happiness. An outward expression of emotion connected to a moment. Fleeting in comparison to joy. Carried along like a scent on a breeze.

We pursue happiness, but choose joy.

As you grow in your faith and become more adept at choosing and living in joy, you'll inevitably want to share your joy with others. When you reach that moment, sponsoring a child is a great way to share the joy of the Lord.

Through child sponsorship children are reminded of their true worth and value, and joy is multiplied in the world. The following Bible verses about joy, explore the ways joy appears in our lives and relationships.

Rejoicing In God

Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of joy.

— Psalm 47:1, NIV

You have enlarged the nation and increased their joy; they rejoice before you as people rejoice at the harvest, as warriors rejoice when dividing the plunder.

— Isaiah 9:3, NIV

The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.

— Psalm 28:7, NIV

Shout aloud and sing for joy, people of Zion, for great is the Holy One of Israel among you.

— Isaiah 12:6, NIV

Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the LORD.

— Psalm 27:6, NIV

Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.

— Philippians 4:4, KJV

Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong. … Trust in the LORD and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.

— Psalm 37:1, 3

When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.

— Psalm 94:19, NIV

Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior.

— Habakkuk 3:17-18, NIV

You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

— Psalm 16:11, ESV

I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

— Isaiah 61:10, NIV

You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.

— Psalm 32:7, NIV

Your statutes are my heritage forever; they are the joy of my heart.

— Psalm 119:111, NIV

For the LORD takes delight in his people; he crowns the humble with victory.

— Psalm 149:4, NIV

I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches.

— Psalm 119:14, NIV

I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing the praises of your name, O Most High.

— Psalm 9:2, NIV

But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.”

— Luke 2:10, NIV

The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes.

— Psalm 19:8, NIV

Your words were found, and I ate them, and your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by your name, O LORD, God of hosts.

— Jeremiah 15:16, ESV

My lips will shout for joy when I sing praise to you — I whom you have delivered.

— Psalm 71:23, NIV

Many, LORD, are asking, “Who will bring us prosperity?” Let the light of your face shine on us. Fill my heart with joy when their grain and new wine abound.

— Psalm 4:6-7, NIV

You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

— Psalm 16:11, NIV

But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them ever sing for joy, and spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may exult in you.

— Psalm 5:11, ESV

Rejoice in the LORD and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in heart!

— Psalm 32:11, NIV

But may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you; may those who long for your saving help always say, “The LORD is great!”

— Psalm 70:4, NIV

A girl celebrating with paint

God’s Joy

“I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.”

— Luke 15:7, NIV

The LORD your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.

— Zephaniah 3:17, NIV

For all the gods of the nations are idols, but the LORD made the heavens. Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and joy are in his dwelling place. Ascribe to the LORD, all you families of nations, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.

— 1 Chronicles 16:26-28, NIV

Joy in Life

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

— James 1:2-4, ESV

In every province and in every city to which the edict of the king came, there was joy and gladness among the Jews, with feasting and celebrating. And many people of other nationalities became Jews because fear of the Jews had seized them.

— Esther 8:17, NIV

A person finds joy in giving an apt reply — and how good is a timely word!

— Proverbs 15:23, NIV

The LORD has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad.

— Psalm 118:24, NIV

Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.

— Romans 12:15, NIV

So that I may come to you with joy, by God’s will, and in your company be refreshed.

— Romans 15:32, NIV

Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine with a joyful heart, for God has already approved what you do.

— Ecclesiastes 9:7, NIV

I have much to write to you, but I do not want to use paper and ink. Instead, I hope to visit you and talk with you face to face, so that our joy may be complete.

— 2 John 12 NIV

A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

— Proverbs 17:22, NIV

I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil — this is the gift of God.

— Ecclesiastes 3:12-13, NIV

The vine is dried up and the fig tree is withered; the pomegranate, the palm and the apple tree — all the trees of the field — are dried up. Surely the people’s joy is withered away.

— Joel 1:12, NIV

Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

— 2 Corinthians 9:7, NIV

A woman smiling at a baby

Joy From Relationships

Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the Lord’s people.

— Philemon 7, NIV

The father of a righteous child has great joy; a man who fathers a wise son rejoices in him.

— Proverbs 23:24, NIV

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

— 3 John 4, NIV

A wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish son brings grief to his mother.

— Proverbs 10:1, NIV

Then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind.

— Philippians 2:2, NIV

Lasting Joy

The prospect of the righteous is joy, but the hopes of the wicked come to nothing.

— Proverbs 10:28, NIV

Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

— 1 Peter 1:8-9, NIV

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

— Romans 15:13, NIV

And those the LORD has rescued will return. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.

— Isaiah 35:10, NIV

“So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.”

— John 16:22, NIV

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

— Romans 14:17, NIV

Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

— Hebrews 12:2, NIV

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

— 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, NIV

“Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.”

— John 16:24, NIV

“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”

— John 15:11, NIV

Sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.

— 2 Corinthians 6:10, NIV

Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.

— Romans 5:3-4, NIV

But, brothers and sisters, when we were orphaned by being separated from you for a short time (in person, not in thought), out of our intense longing we made every effort to see you. For we wanted to come to you — certainly I, Paul, did, again and again — but Satan blocked our way. For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy.

— 1 Thessalonians 2:17-20, NIV

Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.

— 1 Peter 4:12-13, NIV

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

— Romans 12:12, NIV

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

— Galatians 5:22-23, NIV

A child smiling and sitting on a bench

Assurances of Joy

Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.”

— Nehemiah 8:10, NIV

For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.

— Psalm 30:5, NIV

Deceit is in the hearts of those who plot evil, but those who promote peace have joy.

— Proverbs 12:20, NIV

“You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.”

— Isaiah 55:12, NIV

Those who sow with tears will reap with songs of joy. Those who go out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with them.

— Psalm 126:5-6, NIV

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