The Psalmist says “The Lord is king! Let the earth rejoice; let the many coastlands be glad!” And again, “O sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth. Sing to the Lord, bless his name; tell of his salvation from day to day. Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples.” These bits (taken almost at random from Psalms 97 and 96) illustrate one of the dominant themes of Christianity: joy. It is the joy felt by the castaway when the rescuing ship sees his signal of distress, the joy felt by the hunter who has been lost but suddenly recognizes his bearings and can find his way home. It is the relief felt in a chaotic situation when an adult with knowledge and authority enters the room. Many people make the mistake of thinking that Christians are repressed, joyless people who are prevented from being themselves (usually imagined as giving in to impulses). This is wrong: we are joyful victors, and more than victors, against sin, evil, and death. Bad things continue to exist, but they can no longer threaten us because we belong to God, who has conquered them. Who would not praise God and feel joyful? Who would not be eager to tell others? Come and share in our joy.