Temple Baptist Church - 11-20-2011
A. Most people say “Thank you” simply because they have been trained to do so. I know that, personally, there have been times that I have blessed the food on our table and then had to ask my wife if I had blessed it already. Then I bow my head and really give to God thanks! There have been times when I have said, “Thank you” for something that I really did not want but did so out of courtesy. “Thank you for the beets?”
THANKSGIVING is defined as the act of rendering thanks or expressing gratitude for favors or mercies. A public celebration of divine goodness; also, a day set apart for religious services, specially to acknowledge the goodness of God, either in any remarkable deliverance from calamities or danger, or in the ordinary dispensation of his bounties. The practice of appointing an annual thanksgiving originated in New England.
B. We have so much to be thankful for.
1. Our Great Salvation
a) Saved by grace
b) Saved eternally
c) A wonderful life here and heaven waiting!
2. Our Great families and friends
a) Your greatest possession outside of salvation!
b) Your church and church family!
3. Our Great Possessions
a) Our homes
b) Our transportation
c) Our everyday needs
4. Our Great Liberty
a) Freedom of travel
b) Freedom of speech
5. Our Great Opportunities
a) You can be anything that you want.
b) Your life is limited by your will to accomplish
C. We are to be thankful at all times. I, as a pastor, have difficulties in this area. Now, I can be thankful when the heavens are opened up, and God's blessings rain down upon me, and when everything is going well, and when there are no bumps in the road! But when problems come, I am more likely to complain. When things don't go my way, I am more likely to whine than to give thanks!
1. There is the realization of Thanksgiving – 2 Corinthians 9:11 Being enriched in every thing to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God. (Everything that we have or ever hope to have is a gift from the Lord. He gives us the health, strength, and opportunity to earn a living.)
2. There is the gratitude of Thanksgiving – Thessalonians 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. (We need to learn to never take for granted what we have and return thanks to the One who gave it. What we have now we may not always have.)
3. There is the worship of Thanksgiving – Psalm 69:30 I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving. (True thanksgiving is a magnification of a gracious, kind, gentle, loving and compassionate Lord.)
4. There is the song of Thanksgiving – Nehemiah 12:46 For in the days of David and Asaph of old there were chief of the singers, and songs of praise and thanksgiving unto God. (As we sing this morning, we should sing as unto the Lord. We are not here to be seen or heard but rather to give to the Lord the glory due His name.)
Psalm 95:2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.
5. There is the voice of Thanksgiving – Psalm 26:7 That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works. (It is a good thing to give thanks publically. The bible says that everything that has breath should praise the Lord in Psalm 50.)
Psa_107:22 And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing.
6. There is the sacrifice of Thanksgiving – Psalm 50:14 Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High: (I love to give back to the Lord not only my tithe but also a gift from a grateful heart. All that I have comes from Him and, as far as I am concerned, belongs to Him.)
7. There is the entrance of Thanksgiving – Psalm 100:4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. (Faithfulness to come to the House of the Lord is a sign of true thankfulness. When we come to church, we are to approach Him in our entrance with thanksgiving.)
8. There is the prayer of Thanksgiving – Psalm 116:17 I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD. (My wife and I bow our heads in public thanksgiving every time we go out to eat. It is also a blessing to personally thank Him in the prayer closet for His many blessings.)
9. There is the witness of Thanksgiving – 2 Corinthians 4:15 For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God. (It is a great testimony when the unsaved see us thank God for all that He does for us and gives to us. “Unthankful” is a word used to describe this generation in 2 Timothy 3. We should be an example of gratefulness.)
10. There is the continuation of Thanksgiving – Colossians 4:2 Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving; (Let us never forget to continually count our blessings while naming them one by one. God is good all of the time.)