Let Us Give Thanks

Posted on 11/20/2011 by Rev. Benjamin R. Faust D.D.

AUDIO: dialup - broadband - podcast

TRANSCRIPT: (does not contain everything found in the audio above)

*** listen to the audio for introduction and prayer ***


Public Prayer Requests:


*** there are no public prayer requests this week ***



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Please turn around and click one of the offering plates by the doors, and give as the Lord leads.

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SO GOOD TO ME

VERSE 1
O God You've been so good to me
You came and found this orphan
And You brought me right into
Your family
O God You've been so good to me
You threw away my past
And You never count my sins against me

BRIDGE
You got me dancing
And now I'm shouting
You go me leaping
And now I'm spinning Hallelujah

CHORUS
You're so good to me Nah nah nah nah
You're so good to me Nah nah nah nah
You're so good to me

VERSE 2
O God You've been so good to me
And every day I wake up
I breath another breath of
Your mercy
O God You've been so good to me
And my delight is in You
'Cause I know that
Your hand is upon me

BRIDGE 2
Jesus You're the one
Who saved myself from me
So I will be the one
To praise You in the streets


THANK YOU FOR THE BLOOD

Thank You, thank You for the blood that You shed
Standing in its blessing we sing these freedom songs
Thank You, thank You for the battle You won
Standing in Your victory we sing salvation songs
We sing salvations song

You have opened the way to the Father
Where before we could never have come
Jesus count us as Yours now forever
As we sing these freedom songs

We sing of all You've done
We sing of all You've done
We sing of all You've done for us
Won for us, paid for us


YOU ARE HOLY

I saw the Lord
seated on the throne
And He was clothed in glory
and exalted high
And the train of His robe
fills the temple
And angels gather round Him
and cry

You are holy
oh so holy
You are holy
Lord of all

And woe is me
for I am unclean
For my eyes have seen
the Holy King
And He cleansed my lips
right before my eyes
And the pillars shook
as the angels cried


*** listen to the audio for the message introduction ***


I think we would all agree that the most important thing is that we remembered to be thankful. Thankful that even though we may not have expensive cars or live in huge mansions, we are bountifully blessed in too many ways to number.

In just a few minutes, I'd like to give everyone an opportunity to share what God has blessed you with and for which you are thankful. But first, I'd like for us to take just a moment to reflect upon the true history of the first Thanksgiving Day.

Today our children are taught that the first Thanksgiving Day was a day on which the Pilgrims wished to show their gratitude to the Indians for showing them how to farm corn, and for their generosity. But while the Pilgrims were indeed thankful for their Indian neighbors and the invaluable help they were to their survival, the focus of thanksgiving that first Thanksgiving Day was not to the Indians, nor was it to the Pilgrims. They were simply the ones who both gave thanks, and their thanksgiving was to God.

Three years ago, we looked at an article published on hiddentreasures.wordpress.com, that gives a brief history of this holiday. I'd like to read part of that article, and then we'll open up the floor for you to talk about those things for which you are thankful.

Okay, so let's read from this article written by Attorney David C. Gibbs Jr., and consider what really happened that first Thanksgiving Day.


The Pilgrims barely survived their first winter on the Cape. Only four families escaped without burying at least one family member. And yet, in the midst of their great loss, God was still faithful.

In the spring of 1621, an indian who had learned how to speak English during his time as a slave, came to the Pilgrims. He was one of the few Indians from that area who had not died of the plague, and he offered to teach them how to survive in this strange new land.

Out of all the many things he taught them, perhaps the most important was how to plant corn. And as Squanto taught the Pilgrims how to meet their physical needs, the Pilgrims taught Squanto how to meet his spiritual needs. And before his death a year or two later, Squanto accepted Jesus as his Savior.

During those years, Squanto introduced other Indians to the Pilgrims, who were also impressed with the Pilgrims' God.

During the summer of 1621, when the year's corn harvest appeared to be completely lost because of a severe drought, the Pilgrims called for a day of fasting and prayer. And God heard them. By the end of the day, it was raining. The corn miraculously sprang back to life.

One of the Indians who observed this miracle remarked that their God must be a very great God. He explained that when the Indians pow-wowed for rain, it always rained so hard that the corn stalks were broken down. But the Pilgrim's God had sent a very gentle rain that did not damage the corn harvest.

It was this same miraculous harvest of corn, an answer to fasting and prayer to the God who had created both the corn and the rain, that provided the grain for the Pilgrims' first Thanksgiving meal with their Indian friends.

On this first Thanksgiving Day, both the Pilgrims and the Indians gave thanks to God for His great goodness toward and provision for them all.

In 1789, Congress approved the Bill of Rights, the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution, and they recommended a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to thank God for blessing America. President George Washington declared November 26, 1789, as the first national day of prayer and thanksgiving to the Lord.

75 years later, after the Civil War had ended, President Abraham Lincoln established the last Thursday in November as a day to acknowledge, as he put it, the gracious gifts of the Most High God bestowed upon America.


Every single president did the same until 1941 when Congress officially made Thanksgiving a national holiday. Thanksgiving Day, the day originally set aside as a day of thanksgiving and prayer to the God of the Pilgrims who had blessed America and had miraculously brought her through times that should have brought her to an end before she even began.

And this drought through which God brought them in response to their fasting and prayer is now being echoed once again in a severe spiritual drought that is not limited to a colony, or even to a continent; this is a global drought, and it's been getting worse with every year that goes by.

And instead of corn, we see the crops of righteousness, holiness, and sound doctrine withering away in an alarming portion of the present-day Church.

As a whole, we've become numb to, and even some of us support, the murdering of unborn children, the ordaining of homosexual ministers, and the removal of Jesus from the public square.

Some major church websites no longer have a doctrinal statement of beliefs, but have replaced it with generalities that they hope won't offend those who just aren't ready to hear the truth.

We've replaced the whole truth of the Scriptures, the fallen state of man, our utter wickedness and depravity as sinners headed for hell and in desperate need for a Savior, with a feel-good series of motivational speeches that are meant to tickle our ears and ease our conscience.

In the meanwhile, we give satan and his demons the freedom to set up strongholds of deception and sin, simply because we will not stand up for the truth and expose him and his lies.

But an eternal Thanksgiving Day is coming! Yes, this spiritual drought will continue to scortch the fields, but the rain is also going to fall from heaven, bringing back to life all those who love the truth and who are true to his Name, those who will humble themselves and pray, those who will not compromise the truth of the Word of God given to us in the Holy Bible, but will call righteousness good and all else evil.

Yes, an eternal day of thanksgiving is quickly approaching, that day in which sin and death are brought to an end, and we will be changed, in an instant, in the twinkling of an eye, as we behold, no longer through a dim glass, but face to face, the glory of God and of the Lamb!

So let's thank him now. Let's live a life of thanksgiving. The Bible tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:18, "In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." This is God's will for you, no matter what you're going through; and that will is for you to live a life of thanksgiving to God for what He's done and how awesome He is.

And I would like to encourae us all to tell others the true origin of Thanksgiving; and as we are thankful for what we have, let us also remember that an even more serious drought is upon us, and let us therefore set aside times to fast and pray to God for His gentle rain to start falling on His Church once again, a rain which will bring back to life that which is withering and dry.


Before we start sharing, I'd like for us to consider one more thing. In Romans 8:28, we read this:

28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

What does this tell us? Well, among other things, this tells us that even the things in our lives we think are horrible, those things that we would thank God if they went away, those things are what I like to call "blessings in the rough."

So we would do well to even thank God for the difficult circumstances in our lives.

Are you in financial ruin? Have you just lost someone you love, either to death or to a broken relationship? Do you have other things going on in your life that are difficult, tragic, or too heavy for you to carry?

Thank God for what He is doing in you during this time, and for what He is going to transform that thing into; and thank Him that He is with you during this time, that He has promised to never leave or forsake you and to be with you 'til the very end, and that He has promised to carry you through.


Okay. Let's take some time now to share some those things for which we're thankful.

If you'd like to share, just type in text chat that you'd like to share.