THANKSGIVING
(week 08/14)
OLUBI JOHNSON

God desires that we respond to His love to us with thanksgiving.

Psalms 50:7-14 NKJV:  “Hear, O My people, and I will speak, O Israel, and I will testify against you; I am God, your God!  (8)  I will not rebuke you for your sacrifices Or your burnt offerings, Which are continually before Me.  (9) I will not take a bull from your house, nor goats out of your folds.  (10) For every beast of the forest is Mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills.  (11) I know all the birds of the mountains, and the wild beasts of the field are Mine.  (12)  “If I were hungry, I would not tell you; for the world is Mine, and all its fullness.  (13) Will I eat the flesh of bulls, or drink the blood of goats?  (14) Offer to God THANKSGIVING, And pay your vows to the Most High.

1 Peter 2:5 NKJV: you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

Hebrews 13:15 NKJV: Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, GIVING THANKS to His name.

Psalms 136:1-5 NIV: Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good. His love endures forever. (2) Give thanks to the God of gods. His love endures forever. (3) Give thanks to the Lord of lords: His love endures forever. (4) to him who alone does great wonders, His love endures forever. (5) Who by his understanding made the heavens, His love endures forever.

Thanksgiving is a spiritual offering that we give to God from a heart attitude of gratitude expressed through the words of our mouth.

Thanksgiving is very important to God as it refreshes Him in the same way physical food and water refreshes our physical body.

Why?

God is constantly releasing and using spiritual power to create and sustain the spiritual and physical realms; thanksgiving returns some of this power back to Him in a very pleasant and refreshing manner, forming a cycle of life and power FROM God TO ALL creation and BACK to God.

Romans 11:36 KJV: For OF him, and THROUGH him, and TO him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.

It is instructive to note that ALL created spiritual beings MUST recycle some of God’s life and power back to Him: you can do it pleasantly through thanksgiving or grievously through torment:

Revelation 14:10-11 KJV: The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:  (11) And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.

Isaiah 45:22-23 KJV: Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.  (23) I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, that unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.

So we should cultivate BOTH the attitude of gratitude and practice of constant thanksgiving both in the understanding and in the Spirit, Who enables us to give thanks WELL:

Colossians 4:2 NKJV: Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving;

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NIV: Be joyful always;  (17) pray continually;  (18) give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

1 Corinthians 14:14-17 NKJV: For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful.  (15) What is the conclusion then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding.  (16) Otherwise, if you bless with the spirit, how will he who occupies the place of the uninformed say “Amen” at your giving of thanks, since he does not understand what you say?  (17) For you indeed give thanks well, but the other is not edified.

So we should complement our watching and praying ALWAYS with thanksgiving.

In addition to this, we express our thanksgiving with clapping and dancing:

Psalms 47:1-2 NKJV: To the Chief Musician. A Psalm of the Sons of Korah. Oh, CLAP YOUR HANDS, all you peoples! Shout to God with the voice of triumph!  (2) For the LORD Most High is awesome; He is a great King over all the earth.

2 Samuel 6:14-15 NKJV: Then David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was wearing a linen ephod.  (15) So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting and with the sound of the trumpet.

Psalms 150:1-6 NKJV: Praise the LORD! Praise God in His sanctuary; Praise Him in His mighty firmament!  (2) Praise Him for His mighty acts; Praise Him according to His excellent greatness!  (3) Praise Him with the sound of the trumpet; Praise Him with the lute and harp!  (4) Praise Him with the timbrel and dance; Praise Him with stringed instruments and flutes!  (5) Praise Him with loud cymbals; Praise Him with clashing cymbals!  (6) Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD!

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