One of the all time favorite “Sunday School Songs” is “I’ve Got the Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy Down in My Heart.” This song was written by George William Cooke (1884-1951) and was copyrighted in 1925. He ran the Delmarva Camp, a camp associated with the Methodist church that held gospel meetings and revivals. This song was often sung around campfires and during scouting events. It has been used in television commercials for Volkswagon and Coca-Cola, and was even sung by Granny (Irene Ryan) in one episode of “The Beverly Hillbillies.”
The original verses were:
I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart (Where?) Down in my heart, Down in my heart. I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart. (Where?) Down in my heart to stay!
Verse 2 – Repeat using the phrase – I’ve got the peace that passeth understanding down in my heart,
Verse 3 – Repeat using the phrase – I’ve got the love of Jesus down in my heart
Verse 4 – Repeat using the phrase – For there is therefore now no condemnation down in my heart
Subsequent lyrics included: And I’m so happy, so very happy. I’ve got the love of Jesus in my heart – down in my heart. And I’m so happy, so very happy. I’ve got the love of Jesus in my heart.
I believe that this song has endured because of what it means to the Christian. Think about it – A few years after this song was written, our country went through the Great Depression. This song reminded people that no matter what circumstances you may find yourself in – there are some things that this world can’t take from you. Joy – “Rejoice in the Lord, alway, and again I say rejoice.” (Philippians 4:4) This was written by Paul as he was chained to Roman guards in prison. We think we’ve got it rough? Still – in the Lord, he could rejoice.
I love the “peace that passeth understanding” verse because only a faithful Christian can find that peace that “all things work together for good to them that love God, who are called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28) Sorrows, trials, no matter what you face, we can find peace knowing that God will use us and this situation for good. Others may not understand how we can face sickness, death, financial difficulties, etc. . . with calmness and peace, but a Christian knows that God has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you. (Deuteronomy 31:8)
How amazing is it that we can have the love of Jesus down in our hearts? “And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love, and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.” (I John 4:16) “Now abideth faith, hope, and love, these three, but the greatest of these is love.” (I Corinthians 13:13) He loved us so much.
Yes, when we have the joy, joy, joy, joy, the peace that passeth understanding, and the love of Jesus down in our hearts, then, we can be happy – truly happy. God Bless, Courtney