Summary: Principles of Thanksgiving found in Psalms 100.
The Thanksgiving Psalm
Thanksgiving is not natural.
A small boy was given an orange by a nice man. His mom asked, "What do you say to the nice man who gave you the orange?"
Handing the orange back to the man, the boy said, "Peel it."
Psalm 100 can be organized in several ways.
1. Praise to God, 2. The person of God, 3. The promises of God.
Seven directives: Make noise. Serve. Come. Know. Enter. Give thanks. Bless.
Tonight, I would rather dissect the passage and glean the issues of Thanksgiving.
Psa 100:1 A Psalm for giving thanks. Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth!
We normally joke that "a joyful noise" is singing from one who is not gifted.
Actually, it originally describes more of an exuberant shout, a trumpet blast to mark the beginning of a celebration.
Who should give thanks to God? All the earth.
God has demonstrated His love to all men.
It rains on the just and the unjust, Matthew 5:45.
The ladies of certain parts of Mexico take their laundry to the springs. There are places where hot and cold springs run side by side.
The women wash their clothes in the hot springs and rinse them in the cold springs.
When someone asked a guide if the women were thankful to God for supplying such a wonderful gift to them, he said, "No, they complain because He doesn’t supply soap."
Men without God are more likely to curse God for not supplying enough conveniences while He is lovingly supplying us with all we need to survive.
Psa 100:2 Serve the LORD with gladness! Come into his presence with singing!
Serve the Lord with gladness. Some translations say "Worship"
The Hebrew word that you would not remember actually reflects three things.
Surrender and submission, service and stewardship, and worship and praise.
It is letting God be Lord, and instructs us to do it gladly.
Secondly, verse 2 instructs us to approach Him.
It not only tells us to approach Him, but how to approach Him: with singing.
Many say that this is why we begin our Church services with music.
We collectively come into the presence of God when we lift our voices in praise.
What I want you to see tonight is that we serve a God who invites us to Himself.
If you need a reason for Thanksgiving, this can stand alone.
Our God desires our company and invites us to His Thanksgiving celebration.
Psa 100:3 Know that the LORD, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
He not only invites us to come to Himself, but invites us to know Him.
Know that Jehovah is Elohim. The true God is the Trinity.
Know that the self-existent eternal God is the King of Kings and Lord of Lord.
He made us, and we are his. Lord, owner, creator.
Some Hebrew texts reflect, He made us and not we ourselves.
Adam Clarke in his 1800’s commentary said, " I can never think that this is the true reading, though found in the present Hebrew text, in the Vulgate, Septuagint, Ethiopic, and Syriac. Was there ever a people on earth, however grossly heathenish, that did believe, or could believe, that they had made themselves?"
Yet, John Gill in his commentary written in the 1700’s, said, "as we have no hand in making either our souls or bodies, so neither in our regeneration, or in the work of God upon our hearts; that is solely the Lord’s work: there is a double reading of this clause;"
What is not debated is, "We are His people, the sheep of His pasture."
The Psalmist has moved from the universal call to praise to the focus of those who will truly praise God: His sheep.
Sheep of His pasture indicates God’s possession, protection and provisions for us.
Psa 100:4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!
This verse reflects a gathering. The gates represent the gates of the city as people came to the original Thanksgiving celebrations called for in Leviticus 7.
Many of you thought that thanksgiving was original for the United States.
One of the Jewish feasts was that of thanksgiving.
They were instructed to eat meat and grain, a reminder of how life was before Cain and Able were separated by envy and jealousy.
It was also a thanksgiving to God for blessing the livestock and the crops.
People would come to the city from the outer villages and enter Jerusalem through the gates.
They were to enter the gates with thanksgiving.
Then they would gather in the courts of the temple and begin their praise.