Posted by: missionventureministries | November 24, 2016

THE BIBLICAL MEANING OF THANKSGIVING – Psalm 100:4-5

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Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations. (Psalm 100:4-5) 

We should be thankful because God is worthy of our thanksgiving. It is only right to credit Him for “every good and perfect gift” He gives (James 1:17). When we are thankful, our focus moves off selfish desires and off the pain of current circumstances. Expressing thankfulness helps us to remember that God is in control. Thankfulness, then, is not only appropriate; it is actually healthy and beneficial to us. It reminds us that we belong to God and that we have been blessed with every spiritual blessing (Ephesians 1:3). Truly, we have an abundant life (John 10:10), and thankfulness is our expression of love for our Creator. 

Let us look at a couple of biblical points on why we should be thankful to our heavenly Father. 

Because it honors God. When we are thankful, we recognize that God exists, and true thankfulness recognizes our total dependence on God and stems from realizing that everything going on in our lives and all we have is the product of God’s sovereign control, infinite wisdom, purposes and grace. “All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.” (2 Corinthians 4:15) 

A humble person is a thankful person and a thankful person will be a humble person, therefore, they know that everything that they have comes from our loving Heavenly Father. 

Because it is commanded in Scripture. God commands us to overflow with thanksgiving. Both the Old and New Testament are filled with verses about thanksgiving as our verse tells us; and the apostle Paul teaches us to “pray without ceasing; 18 in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:17-18) 

We also find these beautiful words in Colossians 3:15-17 – Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and]be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. 17 Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. 

We should give thanks for God Himself and for His sovereign activity and control over the universe. What a hopeless world this would be if all things had no purpose and were merely the product of time plus chance. As we again see in Colossians 1:12-14, we should give joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins”.  

We should give thanks for our salvation through Christ and for the unfathomable riches that are ours in Him (Ephesians 3:8). After all, we are blessed with every spiritual blessing, and we are complete in Him (Ephesians 1:3; Colossians 2:10). As illustrated so often by Paul in the salutation of his epistles, we should give thanks for others who know the Savior and are growing and serving the Lord. And we should continue sharing the good news with those who are lost and in such great need of our Savior. 

So, are we responding with a heart of gratitude that is focused on the Lord? Are we actively giving thanks for what God has done, is doing, and will, and are we seeking to serve the Savior? Such a response can only come as we begin to truly comprehend the grace of God in Christ, are seeking to know Him intimately in all the situations of life as we face them, and are resting in His sovereign grace.

We should rejoice as David did – Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. 2 Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations. (Psalm 100)

Let us encourage one another and come joyfully before the Lord, worshiping Him with gladness and in song. As we do this the enemy flees from us and our hearts are filled with hope and joy.

We need to remember that thanksgiving needs to be the attitude of the believer at all times because: Praise, thanksgiving and worship is our expression of love for the Lord.

MAY YOUR THANKSGIVING BE BLESSED

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