Summary: A thanksgiving sermon reminding us to give thanks to God, to remember His past works, wonders words and faithfulness, and to speak them to the brethren and to those outside the household of faith.
A Song of Thanksgiving
November 20, 2016
TEXT: 1 Chronicles 16:7-36 – “Then on that day David delivered first this psalm to thank the LORD into the hand of Asaph and his brethren. 8 Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people. 9 Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him, talk ye of all his wondrous works. 10 Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the LORD. 11 Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his face continually. 12 Remember his marvellous works that he hath done, his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth; 13 O ye seed of Israel his servant, ye children of Jacob, his chosen ones. 14 He is the LORD our God; his judgments are in all the earth. 15 Be ye mindful always of his covenant; the word which he commanded to a thousand generations; 16 Even of the covenant which he made with Abraham, and of his oath unto Isaac; 17 And hath confirmed the same to Jacob for a law, and to Israel for an everlasting covenant, [Go on down to verse 23] 23 Sing unto the LORD, all the earth; shew forth from day to day his salvation. 24 Declare his glory among the heathen; his marvellous works among all nations. 25 For great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised: he also is to be feared above all gods. 26 For all the gods of the people are idols: but the LORD made the heavens. 27 Glory and honour are in his presence; strength and gladness are in his place. 28 Give unto the LORD, ye kindreds of the people, give unto the LORD glory and strength. 29 Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come before him: worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness. 30 Fear before him, all the earth: the world also shall be stable, that it be not moved. 31 Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice: and let men say among the nations, The LORD reigneth. 32 Let the sea roar, and the fulness thereof: let the fields rejoice, and all that is therein. 33 Then shall the trees of the wood sing out at the presence of the LORD, because he cometh to judge the earth. 34 O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever. 35 And say ye, Save us, O God of our salvation, and gather us together, and deliver us from the heathen, that we may give thanks to thy holy name, and glory in thy praise. 36 Blessed be the LORD God of Israel for ever and ever. And all the people said, Amen, and praised the LORD.”
David recited this song of praise and thanksgiving after the Ark of the Covenant (called the “ark of God” in verse 1) had come back to its rightful place in Jerusalem after having been captured by the Philistines. In thanks to God, David ordered that sacrifices be offered to God, so the people gathered to celebrate the return of the Ark and to bless and honor God.
Whenever God has His rightful place in our lives, thankfulness and gratefulness are sure to be the result! Let’s look at this song of David to see what it teaches us:
I. FIRST OF ALL, IT TEACHES US WHAT WE SHOULD GIVE – 1 Chronicles 16:8 – “Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people.”
David says that we should give thanks. Giving of thanks is not natural. We’re naturally prone to griping, complaining, and “belly-aching,” to use a perfectly good Southern colloquialism. A grateful spirit must be cultivated through constant diligence and through acting against the natural grain of our flesh.
Gratitude is an attitude. It’s not something we should do occasionally or just on Thanksgiving Day. God wants us to develop an ATTITUDE of gratitude where we’re constantly, regularly LIVING a life of thanksgiving. In other words, thanks-GIVING should be thanks-LIVING—a LIFESTYLE of thanks.
David not only says we should be thankful internally in our hearts, but he indicates that our thankfulness should be public—told to others. He says, “make known his deeds among the people.” I’ll say more on that a little later.
II. NOTE SECOND, WHAT WE SHOULD REMEMBER.
Usually the reason we fail to have a grateful spirit is because we’re always thinking about what we don’t have NOWs. The key to thanksgiving in the PRESENT is remembering what God has done in the PAST as an indicator of what He will surely do in the FUTURE.
In our text, David points out three things about God and our relationship with Him in the past we should call to remembrance: