From Tears to Joy: The Movement of the Psalms, Jesus’ Life, and the Christian Life

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As I am preparing to preach on praying your tears/sorrows to God I put together a list of some of the Biblical passages that show that we should expect tears, that we should express our tears to God in prayer and that we should expect no more tears and unimaginable joy when Christ returns. I thought this may be helpful to others so I am posting it here. As you meditate on these verses, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope” (Romans 15:13).


Expect Tears and Express Your Tears to God in Prayer

  • Psalm 6:6: I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping.
  • Psalm 39:12 “Hear my prayer, O Lord, and give ear to my cry; hold not your peace at my tears For I am a sojourner with you, a guest, like all my fathers.
  • Psalm 42:3 My tears have been my food day and night, while they say to me all the day long, “Where is your God?”
  • Psalm 56:8 You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book?
  • Psalm 102:9 For I eat ashes like bread and mingle tears with my drink,
  • Psalm 119:136 My eyes shed streams of tears, because people do not keep your law.
  • Isa. 53:3 He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. 4 Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted.
  • John 11:33 When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. . .35 Jesus wept.
  • Matt. 26:36 Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to his disciples, “Sit here, while I go over there and pray.” 37 And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. 38 Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” 39 And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.”
  • Heb. 5:7 In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence.

Expect Joy

  • Ps. 16:11 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 30:5 For his anger is but for a moment, and his favour is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning. . .11 You have turned for me my mourning into dancing;. . .
  • Psalm 116:8 For you have delivered my soul from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling;
  • Psalm 126:5 Those who sow in tears shall reap with shouts of joy! 6  He who goes out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing his sheaves with him.
  • The Psalms end with a crescendo of praise and joy (Psalms 145-150)
  • John 15:11 These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.
  • John 16:20 Truly, truly, I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice. You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy. 21 When a woman is giving birth, she has sorrow because her hour has come, but when she has delivered the baby, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world. 22 So also you have sorrow now, but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.
  • Heb. 12:2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. 
  • Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is. . .joy. . .
  • 1Thess. 4:13 But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope.
  • 2Cor. 4:17 For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison,
  • Rom. 8:18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. 
  • Jude 24 Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, 
  • Rev. 21:4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
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