Monday, November 9, 2020

Giving Thanks ALWAYS

 Last week = "giving thanks"

Tis week - "Giving Thanks Always" - 1 Thess. 5:18

NOTE:  this is not FOR all things, but = IN all things - is a world of difference. 
Examples:  Adam and Eve - "thanks for the fall?",  You - "thanks for my sins?", Daniel - Dan. 6:10 - he wasn't thanking God for the situation, but in the midst of the situation.

Question:  Why give thanks always?
Some Answers: 

I)  There's always something to be thankful for - examples:  1 Chron. 16:8 - past deeds, blessings ie:  what God has done
Psm. 107:8 - unfailing love
Lam. 3:19-23 - current mercies, His faithfulness, etc.
God doesn't change, therefore if He was good yesterday, then He is good today!
                                              if He was worthy yesterday, then He's worthy today!!
Situations change, we change, life changes, He doesn't!!

II)  Giving Thanks if God's will for you - 1 Thess. 5:18   And... IF it's His will for you, then = good for you!  Beneficial!  Right!  It's not for Him.
ie:  A)  Good for you (as an individual) - example:  Phil. 4:6-7 - peace that transcends understanding
B)  Good fo rthose around you - example:  Gen. 21:6 - when you give thanks in dire circumstances, it affects others around you.
Question:  Why are the martyrs so inspiring?  Because the died???  OR because they died WELL?!  - "Fox's Book of Martyrs" -
Heb. 13:15 - "sacrifice of Praise" - praise and thanksgiving is truly sacrificial in hard times!!!

III)  We know that in all thing God works - Rom. 8:28
This doesn't mean you'll see the good!  Example:  cross for 1st 3 days??
Example:  Jacob (who'd been a con man his whole life) - Gen. 32:22-31 - does Jacob LOOK blessed?  clearly not!!!  

2 Observations (from Ron Dunn)
(1)  Sometimes blessings come wrapped in the rags of a curse!  example:  Jacob's appearance!!   On the other hand, what appears to be a great blessing can lead to a curse!  example:  Solomon's wealth - 1 Kings. 11:1

(2)  Blessings and curses often travel on parallel tracks.. and often arrive at the same time!!  Sometimes in the curse, the blessing comes.
Example:  = the Cross = blessing?  or curse?  Answer = a curse God used to create great blessings!! - "in all things .... God works!"

hence ... Matt. 5:3-4, 56, 10 

OBSERVATIONS:  We often forget to "give thanks" - because are so focused on blessings!!!  (absorbed in, enjoying, etc.)
We struggle to "give thanks" amidst hardships... because we are so focused on the situation, difficulty!!

But clearly God's will = (1) give thanks
                                    (20  give thanks always!
This requires acknowledging His LORDSHIP!    His goodness,, faithfulness, sovereignty ... and His Providence.

To this we are called - not for the circumstances, but in the midst of them!

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