1 Thessalonians 5:18 – “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Jesus Christ concerning you.”
Ephesians 5:20 – “Giving thanks always for all men to God the Father in the name of our LORD Jesus Christ.”
Colossians 3:17 – “And whatever you do in word or deed, do it in the name of our LORD Jesus Christ, giving thanks through him to God the Father.”
It would be an understatement to say that as Americans and as Christians, we are Blessed! Things may be difficult now and from time to time, but we are Blessed! The problem is that too few give consideration to our blessings and truly count their blessings. That is what this devotional is designed to address and answer the title question, “What Have We To Be Thankful For?”
The Bible in 2 Timothy 3:1-5 and other places identifies a time in the Last Days when people would be unthankful, and ungrateful toward God and their fellow man. It speaks of a time when people would be more interested in themselves, pleasure, possessions, and power than God and the things of God.
It speaks of a time when people would be so filled with the desire to satisfy their ambitions, reach their goals, and fulfill the desires of their hearts they would have little time or interest in God and the things of God. No time for Him, His Word, or His Worship. It speaks of a time when churches and professing Christians would have a form of godliness but without power.
Unfortunately, too many times God has blessed His people with prosperity, and they prospered to the place where they forgot the source of their blessings. It is a shame that too many only find time to express gratitude at Thanksgiving each year. Once a year in November give lip service to blessings. We must never forget that we are Blessed!
Now, to the question – “What Do We Have To Be Thankful For?” Obviously, time would not permit, nor could the libraries of the world contain all that we have to be thankful for, individually or collectively. Not to overuse this, but We Are Blessed! We are a very Blessed People!
I would like to mention three (3) major things that we have to be thankful for and hope it resonates with you.
FOR THE LOVE THAT BROUGHT REDEMPTION
John 3:16 is such a familiar passage that too often it is quoted without actually thinking about what is promised and provided. “For God – Who? God the Creator of all things. God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER believes on Him SHOULD NOT perish but have everlasting life.” (Emphasis mine). Notice it is whosoever believes and that they should not perish. Believing alone is insufficient to enter in, it requires repentance of sin and confession that Jesus is the Christ.
Let’s walk through the condition of man from the Garden to the coming of Jesus. Man began in innocence but through rebellion and disobedience fell and darkness fell on the race. God gave the Law of Moses; the Torah and man could not fulfill it revealing the need for a Savior.
Romans 3:23 – “For all have sinned and are short of the glory of God”
Galatians 3:22 – “But the scripture has included everything under sin, that the promise by the faith of Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.”
God made man aware that the only provision was a sinless substitute to buy us back from the authority of the devil and made that provision in Jesus. Man was hopelessly and helplessly lost. He was doomed eternally, but Jesus came to give life!
Hebrews 9:23 – “It is necessary, therefore, that the patterns of things which are heavenly should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves, with sacrifices better than these.”
Matthew 26:28 – “It is necessary, therefore, that the patterns of things which are heavenly should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves, with sacrifices better than these.”
God, in the abundance and overflow of His Love, was willing to give the one thing that was required for our salvation. He was willing to do what was necessary to give people who had turned against him the opportunity for restoration and regeneration. John 3:16 became a reality and the door to salvation was opened.
God gave His Son, not just any son but the Only Begotten of the Father, the Lamb of God. Jesus came freely and willingly to be our substitute and pay our debt. The Way of Redemption, the Only Was now open. The Door had come!
What Have We to Be Thankful For? Jesus! Salvation! Love!
I will pause here and take this to the second reason in the next devotional.
God bless you and may your Thanksgiving be Awesome! Have a Great Day and a Great Week!