Monday, November 19, 2012

The Godliness of Giving THANKS – Psalm 100

Governor William Bradford's Thanksgiving Proclamation - Inasmuch as the great Father has given us this year an abundant harvest of Indian corn, wheat, peas, beans, squashes, and garden vegetables, and has made the forests to abound with game and the sea with fish and clams, and inasmuch as he has protected us from the ravages of the savages, has spared us from pestilence and disease, has granted us freedom to worship God according to the dictates of our own conscience.
Now I, your magistrate, do proclaim that all ye Pilgrims, with your wives and ye
little ones, do gather at ye meeting house, on ye hill, between the hours of 9 and 12 in
the day time, on Thursday, November 29th, of the year of our Lord one thousand
six hundred and twenty-three and the third year since ye Pilgrims landed on ye
Pilgrim Rock, there to listen to ye pastor and render thanksgiving to ye Almighty
God for all His blessings.

--William Bradford, Ye Governor of Ye Colony

In similar fashion, we are delighted to give thanks to our great God and Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.

We are all so very blessed!
The story is told of two old friends bumped into one another on the street one day. One of them looked forlorn, almost on the verge of tears. His friend asked, "What has the world done to you, my old friend?"
The sad fellow said, "Let me tell you. Three weeks ago, an uncle died and left me forty thousand dollars."
"That’s a lot of money."
"But, two weeks ago, a cousin I never even knew died, and left me eighty-five thousand free and clear."
"Sounds like you’ve been blessed...."
"You don’t understand!" he interrupted. "Last week my
great-aunt passed away. I inherited almost a quarter of a million."
Now he was really confused. "Then, why do you look so
"This week... nothing!"
I have formulated an acrostic for this morning’s message to help us in our giving of thanks.

T - Take every opportunity you can to say thanks to God – this is God’s will concerning you!
1Th_5:18  In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
H - Have a daily devotional time in which you can regularly give thanks
Eph 5:20  Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;
1Ti 2:1  I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;
Heb 13:15  By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.
A - Acknowledge where our blessings come from
Jas 1:17  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

Neh 2:8  And a letter unto Asaph the keeper of the king's forest, that he may give me timber to make beams for the gates of the palace which appertained to the house, and for the wall of the city, and for the house that I shall enter into. And the king granted me, according to the good hand of my God upon me.
Name the specific things for which you are thankful – it makes your gratefulness more of a reality
Job_5:9  Which doeth great things and unsearchable; marvellous things without number:
Job_9:10  Which doeth great things past finding out; yea, and wonders without number.
We cannot count all the things which His wonderful hand has provided for us, but we ought to busy ourselves trying!
Things have changed a lot since Wm Bradford’s proclamation. Think about it! The pilgrims had no peanut butter, no Doritos, no refrigeration to keep their Diet Coke chilled.  Al Gore hadn’t invented the internet yet. They got around by self ambulation (they walked everywhere they went). They had no running water, no on demand hot water and no purified water. If they wanted to eat, they had to produce the food. What do we do if we want to hear music? What do you suppose they had to do? Think of the infrastructure of our city – Streets, sidewalks, sewer, plumbing, water, trash, bridges, and the list goes on. They had none of it!
If we would just open our eyes and see all there is to be thankful for, we would be more thankful! By the way, we have sunglasses to aid in that vision, they didn’t.
Psa 107:1  O give thanks unto the LORD, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.
Psa 107:8  Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! Also verse: 15, 21, 31

Know that God is watching over you – He’s got your back… and your front and your side. He is above you, in you, over you, He walks before you and is your rear guard.
Romans 8 tells us that
>The Father is for us in salvation: Rom 8:31  What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? 32  He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
>Son is for us in our prayers: Rom 8:34  Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.

>Spirit is for us in our infirmities: Rom 8:26  Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

Add to that the fact that He has commissioned His holy angels to protect us!

Serve the Lord with gladness
Psa 100:1  A Psalm of praise. Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.
Psa 100:2  Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.
Psa 100:3  Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
Psa 100:4  Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
Psa 100:5  For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

Giving THANKS – it is not just an act, but a way of life! It is not for a certain Thursday in November, but a 24/365 attitude.
Question. You have much to be thankful for… have you expressed it to the Lord lately? Do you let others know how thankful you are for them?
Giving thanks is a very godly thing to do, not being thankful is wicked!

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