Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. – 1Theselonians 5:16-18,23
This seems to represent Jesus almost as much as GRACE and MERCY- it is THANKSGIVING. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is called the GOODNEWS. Which one of us, is NOT thankful for GOOD NEWS? I learned a long time ago, if God says something in HIS WORD, pay attention. If He says it multiple times: HEAR YE, HEAR YE, HEAR YE! In other words- PAY ATTENTION, this is really important. The Bible is filled with instructions to be thankful. There are many scriptures that point to thanksgiving. Romans 8:28 gives us a reason to be thankful: And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. Notice how this verse starts with ‘AND’, it’s a conjunction, it connects 2 things. What is connected to GOD USES ALL things for our good? ‘The Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God’. In other words- GOD HAS THIS! Ephesians 2:10 also gives us reason to be Thankful. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. God has planned GOOD WORKS and He has set us up FOR GOOD WORKS, all we have to do is WALK IN THEM. Consider the BLOOD and BODY of Jesus Christ. Before we partake in communion, we are always first called to GIVE THANKS! For GOD PLANNED IT ALL, and JESUS PAID IT ALL!
Leader, if someone at your work, or your home, did your work, did your chores and yet you still got credit for it…I would believe you would be THANKFUL! Greater is He who is in me, than He who is in the world. In my weakness His strength is perfected. (1 John 4:4, 2 Corinthians 12:9) The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” (Deuteronomy 31:8) He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:29-31) If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” (Luke 11:13) The Bible is replete with reasons for us to be THANKFUL, but the most important one could be Romans 5:8; But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. We are SAVED by GRACE alone, through FAITH alone, In CHRIST alone: how thankful should we all be? UNMERITED FAVOR, getting what we DO NOT deserve and NOT GETTING what WE DO deserve: Are you hearing the message? For those in Christ we have so much to be thankful for! God chose you, God loved you and gave you the DESIRE to Love HIM and to CHOOSE HIM!
Conduit, this THANKSGIVING, push the cares of this world aside. Coronavirus, lockdowns, fraudulent election, loss of our defender-in-chief, financial losses, missed ‘Get togethers’….The world wants us to get wrapped up in the concerns and affairs of the temporal things that happen on this temporal experience. However, God wants us to be THANKFUL IN ALL THINGS! Not just in the good things, the right things and the fair things-BUT IN ALL THINGS! Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. (James 1:2-4) Since we are listing things to be thankful to God for, how about another biggie? Jesus is described as the author and perfecter, or finisher, of our faith in Hebrews 12:2. An author is an originator or creator, as of a theory or plan. The Greek word translated “author” in Hebrews 12:2 can also mean “captain,” “chief leader” or “prince.” Gotquestions.org says; The Greek word translated “perfecter” in Hebrews 12:2 appears only this one time in the New Testament. It literally means “completer” or “finisher” and speaks of bringing something to its conclusion. Putting the two words together, we see that Jesus, as God, both creates and sustains our faith. We know that saving faith is a gift from God, not something we come up with on our own (Ephesians 2:8-9), and that gift comes from Christ, its creator. He is also the sustainer of our faith, meaning that true saving faith cannot be lost, taken away or given away. This is a source of great comfort to believers, especially in times of doubt and spiritual struggles. Christ has created our faith and He will watch over it, care for it, and sustain it. In closing, Paul in our verse of the day was closing out His letter to the church in Thessalonica, with the command we got above: Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. God bless you and have a HAPPY THANKSGIVING DAY!