Have you ever wondered… What does the Bible say about joy?
Then you’ve come to the right place! In this devotional, we’ll read Bible Verses about Joy that will fill your heart with gladness! In each one, you will discover the true joy that only comes from knowing Jesus as your Savior.
Today I’m playing “The Glad Game” by channeling my inner Pollyanna and sharing these Bible verses about joy that will fill your heart with gladness.
If like me, you’re a fan of the book or movie, you know that the glad game is a central part of the story of Pollyanna.
Her father made up this game to teach her how to deal with the disappointments in her life. And he showed her that by focusing on the things that bring joy instead of sorrow she could rise above and overcome any hardship.
Likewise, our Heavenly Father has given us the one tool we need to play our own version of the glad game, the Bible.
It’s through His Word, God teaches us how to overcome the difficult circumstances we are faced with every day.
Joy in the Bible is a big topic. And this powerful verse from Philippians has a very close relationship to the glad game because it tells us to focus on the positive instead of the negative …
whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.
Our version of the glad game is not about pretending we don’t know or see the bad things going on around us. Of course, we do.
But God commands us to not let negativity weigh us down or take hold within us. Instead, He wants us to put our thoughts and energy into the goodness that surrounds us every day.
When we do, God promises to renew our hearts and minds. Refresh our souls. And give us strength for the journey ahead.
We can choose joy over sorrow! And find true happiness in our faith!
With that in mind, let’s play “The Glad Game” by looking at some scriptures about joy that are sure to fill our hearts with gladness. God’s Word is full of them! And we’re sure to see the goodness of God in each scripture.
Are you ready? Let’s start with some of my favorite Bible Verses about the Joy of the Lord.
Best Bible Verses about Joy in the Lord
Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.
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
You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Psalm 16:11 NKJV
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
You have made known to me the ways of life; You will make me full of joy in Your presence.
These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.
Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Bible Verses about Joy and Happiness
You have put gladness in my heart,
More than in the season that their grain and wine increased.
You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of gladness more than Your companions.
He who heeds the word wisely will find good,
And whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he.
Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves.
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 your God is in your midst, A victorious warrior. He will rejoice over you with joy, He will be quiet in His love, He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.
Zephaniah 3:17 NASB
The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.
Zephaniah 3:17 KJV
Bible Verses about Joy in the Morning
Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.
My soul waits for the Lord
More than those who watch for the morning—
Yes, more than those who watch for the morning.
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love,
for I have put my trust in you.
Show me the way I should go,
for to you I entrust my life.
Psalm 143:8 NIV
Bible Verses about Joy in Suffering
Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.
1 Peter 4:12-13
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
James 1:2-4 NKJV
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds,
James 1:2 NIV
Therefore you now have sorrow; but I will see you again and your heart will rejoice, and your joy no one will take from you.
that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,
1 Peter 1:7-8 NKJV
These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 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,
1 Peter 1:7-8 NIV
obtaining as the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
1 Peter 1:9 NASB
Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
Romans 5:3 ESV
And you became followers of us and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Spirit,
1 Thessalonians 1:6 NKJV
I am acting with great boldness toward you; I have great pride in you; I am filled with comfort. In all our affliction, I am overflowing with joy.
2 Corinthians 7:4 ESV
I have the highest confidence in you, and I take great pride in you. You have greatly encouraged me and made me happy despite all our troubles.
2 Corinthians 7:4 NLT
Uplifting Joyful Bible Verses
Therefore with joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.
looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 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 12:1-2 NIV
Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
Hebrews 12:3 NLT
Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.
To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy— to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.
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.
I will greatly rejoice in the Lord,
My soul shall be joyful in my God;
For He has clothed me with the garments of salvation,
He has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
As a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments,
And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
Isaiah 61:10 NKJV
Bible Verses about Joy and Thankfulness
Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving
and extol him with music and song.
For the Lord is the great God,
the great King above all gods.
Psalm 95:1-3 NIV
With praise and thanksgiving they sang to the Lord:
“He is good;
his love toward Israel endures forever.”
And all the people gave a great shout of praise to the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid.
Ezra 3:11 NIV
So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
Go, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart, for God has already approved what you do.
Ecclesiastes 9:7 ESV
Beautiful Psalms about Joy
The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy.
Psalm 126:3 NIV
The king shall have joy in Your strength, O Lord; And in Your salvation how greatly shall he rejoice!
Psalm 21:1 NKJV
Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.
Psalm 51:12 ESV
Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Psalm 37:4 ESV
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever.
Psalm 136:1 ESV
Oh come, let us sing to the Lord; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
Psalm 95:1 English Standard Version of the Bible
I have inherited Your testimonies forever, For they are the joy of my heart.
Psalm 119:111 NASB
The poor will eat and be satisfied. All who seek the Lord will praise him. Their hearts will rejoice with everlasting joy.
Psalm 22:26 NLT
the precepts of the Lord are right,
rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the Lord is pure,
enlightening the eyes;
Psalm 19:8 ESV
When the cares of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul.
Psalm 94:19 ESV
This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:24 KJV
May we shout for joy over your victory and lift up our banners in the name of our God. May the Lord grant all your requests.
Psalm 20:5 NIV
Inspirational Old Testament Scriptures on Joy
A joyful heart is good medicine, But a broken spirit dries up the bones.
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
Proverbs 17:22 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
Be glad; rejoice forever in my creation! And look! I will create Jerusalem as a place of happiness. Her people will be a source of joy.
Isaiah 65:18 NLT
And on that day they offered great sacrifices, rejoicing because God had given them great joy. The women and children also rejoiced. The sound of rejoicing in Jerusalem could be heard far away.
Nehemiah 12:43 NIV
Your words were found and I ate them, And Your words became a joy to me and the delight of my heart; For I have been called by Your name, Lord God of armies.
Jeremiah 15:16 NASB
Encouraging New Testament Scriptures on Joy
For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.
Romans 14:17 NIV
I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth.
3 John 1:4 NASB
Now I beg you, brethren, through the Lord Jesus Christ, and through the love of the Spirit, that you strive together with me in prayers to God for me, that I may be delivered from those in Judea who do not believe, and that my service for Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints, that I may come to you with joy by the will of God, and may be refreshed together with you.
Romans 15:30-32 NKJV
His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’
Matthew 25:23 NKJV
And so the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
Luke 2:10-11 NASB
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
Romans 5:1-2 NKJV
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
Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.
Luke 15:10 NKJV
But godliness with contentment is great gain.
1 Timothy 6:6
The harvesters are paid good wages, and the fruit they harvest is people brought to eternal life. What joy awaits both the planter and the harvester alike!
John 4:36 NLT
But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
Acts 20:24 NKJV
So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.
Philippians 2:1-2 ESV
We all face difficult situations in life. But as God’s children, we don’t have to let the hard times drag us down. Biblical joy is God’s plan for those of us who believe in Jesus Christ.
What I love most about the story of Pollyanna is her infectious positivity. The joy she had quickly spread throughout her town and changed the hearts of everyone she met. All it only took to make a real impact was one little girl who had the gumption to share her joyful worldview.
We can have that same gumption too.
By allowing these scriptures on joy to change us from the inside out, we can have a positive outlook and make a real impact for God’s kingdom.
And when we follow the simple guidance inside of these verses about joy from the Word of God, the fruit of the Spirit… love, joy and peace will be with us wherever we go.
People will see the difference in us. And before we know it, the joy of the Lord will spread like wildfire to all those around us. And God’s joy will have a lasting, positive effect in our communities.
I truly hope these Bible Verses about joy that will fill your heart with gladness will get you through the tough times and remind you of all Jesus has done in your life.
And I pray everyone around you will feel the joy the Lord surrounding them today.
May the grace, peace, and joy of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you!