Chapter # 2 Paragraph # 2 Study # 2
February 13, 2005
Lincolnton, N.C.

<131> Thesis: The anomaly of "joy" is that it typically follows "fear". Introduction: When we began the study of this paragraph, I told you that we would be looking at the issue of "joy" for as long as we are in this paragraph -- because that is the central thesis of Luke's words in this place. In a way, I misled you...because it seems that it is a central theme in the entire Gospel of Luke (if we take his "parting shot" as a restatement of his "point" -- see Luke 24:52). In our study this morning we are going to look into the backdrop of "the message of great joy" which the angel announced to the shepherds and ask ourselves, "So, where's the joy?" Have you missed the huge contradiction in our recent news? A boy who killed his grandparents is mounting his defense on the claim that the anti-depressant drug that he was taking was really the culprit..."the pills made me do it". Increasingly we hear that "anti-depressant" drugs often lead to suicide. How absolutely goofy is that? I could understand it if it meant that people on those drugs often laughed themselves to death, but how does an anti-depressant lead to suicide? Paul's claim that those who reject God "profess themselves to be wise" while being incredibly "foolish" is certainly illustrated by this aspect of our drug-crazed culture. But, in a way, the Bible says something that seems to be just as "nutty", for it seems to be saying in Luke's record that "the greater the fear, the greater the joy". So, let's look into this.