Romans 1:18-21 18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
21 Because that, when they knew God,they glorified him not as God, neither were THANKFUL; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
Jewish “Feast of Tabernacles” • The original “Thanksgiving” • Also called “Feast of Booths” or “Sukkoth” • One of 3 annual Hebrew feasts • October 7-13, 2006 this year
Leviticus 23 (Deuteronomy 16) • Dwell in booths for 7 days to remind them of Egypt (verse 42) • Do no work (verse 36) • Rejoice with feasting before the Lord (verse 30)
American “Thanksgiving” • First celebrated by English Pilgrims and Indians in 1621 in Massachusetts Plymouth Colony • Celebrated unofficially over next 200 years • Made official US holiday in 1863 by President Abraham Lincoln
A Life of ThanksgivingOur lives should be one of constant “thanksgiving”to God, and not just a seasonal celebration.
WHEN Are Most People “Thankful?” • They like something, or something makes them feel good • They received something they wanted • Something happened the way they wanted it to
WHY Should We Be Thankful? • God commands us to be thankful • Being thankful gives us great benefits • NOT being thankful leads to many problems
God Commands UsTo Be Thankful • Psalm 95:2 - Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms. • Psalm 100:4 - Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
Colossians 3:17 - And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him. • I Thessalonians 5:16-18 - Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
WHAT Should WeBe Thankful For? • TEMPORAL blessings • SPIRITUAL blessings
“TEMPORAL” Blessings • Material needs of every kind • Both necessities and luxuries
Food, clothing, shelter, etc. • Personal good health • Family and friends • Jobs, occupations, business opportunities • Political security; general safety in society • Entertainment and general enjoyment of life. We have it pretty good!
“SPIRITUAL” Blessings – Gifts from God • Salvation (Rom. 6:23) • Holy Spirit • Comfort of His indwelling presence (John 14:16) • His development in us of Christian character (Gal, 5:22-23) • Spiritual Gifts (I Cor. 12)
Wisdom; knowledge (Ps. 119:98-100) • Weapons of spiritual warfare(Eph. 6:11-17) • Deliverance from temptation(I Cor. 10:13) • Comforts in trials and assurance of their beneficial purposes(Rom. 5:2-4; James 1:2-4; I Pet. 1:6-7)
Assurance that everything will work out in the end for our benefit: • ALL things work together for good for believers (Rom. 8:28) • God has promised to supply ALL our needs (Phil. 4:19) • God’s predestination of all events, including every detail of our lives • Christ’s final and total victory(I Cor. 15:57; Rev. 11:15)
2. BENEFITS of Being Thankful • We accept the PAST without feeling: • GUILT for our mistakes and sins • Paul accepted his past (I Cor. 15:9-10) • BITTERNESS over being mistreated • Joseph saw God’s providential hand in his being sent to Egypt (Gen. 50:20) • RESENTFUL of our calamities • Job trusted God (Job 1:20-22)
Benefits (part 2) • We feel peaceful and content with the PRESENT: • Christ gives us His peace (John 14:27) • We learn contentment (I Tim. 6:6-8)
Benefits (part 3) • We feel relaxed and confident about the FUTURE: • Romans 8:37 - “in all these things we are more than conquerors” through Christ.
3. Real Problems Happen When We Are NOT Thankful! • a. We develop negative emotions, resulting in harm to our bodies, and our relationships with others. • Disappointment, resentment, revenge, critical spirit, judgmental attitude, etc. • Bitterness (Heb. 12:15; Col. 3:19)
Problems (part 2) • b. When we are not thankful to God, we can develop “false thankfulness”like the Pharisee in Luke 18:11 • This is really the sin of PRIDE • We begin to see ourselves as deserving our blessings, rather than seeing all of them as a GIFT from God. • We may begin to love the gift more than the giver.
Problems (part 3) • c. Not being thankful leads to all kinds of sin. • Romans 1:18-32 shows the path of the wicked resulting from them not respecting God, nor being thankful. • Christians can fall into the same sins if they are not thankful to God!
Final Thought • Gratefulness • Joy • Praise • Worship • Giving and Thanksgiving
“Homework” – 3 Parts • 1. Write down 5 things you are thankful to God for now; • 2. Write down 5 things you need to learn to be thankful for; • 3. At the end of each day this week, write down something you can thank God for. You can do this as a family.