Summary: The criteria by which each of the churches of the New Testament are measured are their faith, hope, and love. This was a thanksgiving message looking at Paul's thankfulness for the Church at Colosse.
*Give Thanks To God*
Dorn Ridge October 7, 2007
1.) This is a special holiday weekend on our calendars and in our hearts.
A.) It is the time of the harvest.
B.) It is a time of being mindful of the blessings God has given to us.
C.) It is a time of thanksgiving.
2.) Really, for the Christian every day needs to be a day of thanksgiving, and certainly on the first day of the week when we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, we come together in thanksgiving.
3.)Today we are looking at a verses from the first chapter of Colossians. Paul, in our key verse, was giving thanks for the church members at Colosse.
A.) It is a most wonderful thing to be a part of a good church where born again people live together in love and care
for one another.
B.) These people were converts of Paul*s ministry.
ba.) He was grateful to God for them and expressed his
thankfulness in three ways.
I. PAUL WAS THANKFUL FOR THEIR FAITH.
1.) Faith is the channel through which our salvation comes.
A.) "By grace through faith" (Eph. 2:8).
B.) On thanksgiving Sunday what better thought than to think that our faith was bringing another Christian to thanksgiving because of us.
ba.) That is exactly the scene at Colosse.
bb.) Paul had worked with the saints of God in Colosse, but was now separated from them.
bb-1.) It was only through the coming of individuals who had been to Colosse, or perhaps an occasional letter, that might be months in coming that Paul was hearing of this church.
bb-2.) Yet what Paul was hearing was filling his heart with thanksgiving.
C.) What greater compliment could this or any church receive than to hear the words that our faith is bringing another Christian to Thanksgiving before God.
2.) Faith is the knowledge that God is in absolute control of all the situations of life and that He is working in everything, all the time.
A.) Even this morning, I am mindful of many individuals who are experiencing difficult things in their lives.
B.) Yet as Christians, even in such times there can be a thankful heart because of the knowledge that God is there.
3.) Faith makes possible our daily Christian walk.
A.) Gal. 2:20
4.) The faith of these Colossians was in the right place - - in
A.) Our faith and hope must stand in Him alone.
B.) It cannot come through works of righteousness that
we have done, or in any other person, but by
trusting totally in Jesus Christ, the Son of God,
and in His death, burial, resurrection, and
C.) When Paul thought on the church at Colosse, it was truly a Thanksgiving celebration.
ca.) As we come here today on this Thanksgiving weekend, may the faith we see in those around us fill us with Thanksgiving to God as well.
II. PAUL WAS THANKFUL FOR THEIR LOVE
1.) Where there is true faith, there is also love.
A.) The love of God Is shed abroad in the hearts of all the saved by the Holy Spirit which dwells in
aa.) Rom. 5:5
B.) One of the things that is so powerful about our faith is that it moves every other area of our lives.
C.) The church at Colosse had strong faith, and that faith motivated them in the realm of Christian love as well.
ca.) In Paul's Thanksgiving of praise for the Colossian Christians, he praised God for the love the church had for each other.
2.) There is no love as pure, sweet, or great as the love of true
A.) 1 John 3:14
B.) When Paul looked at that church he thanked God for their love.
ba.) Today on this Thanksgiving weekend, let us give thanks to God for the love of God that is demonstrated in this room.
bb.) If we are to be honest, every person in this room have had occasions when we have felt the love of each other.
bb-1.) It may have been in times of tragedy, or death, or when there was a special need, but every person and family here have felt, and I am sure appreciated the love of God expressed here through each other.
bb-2.) May we like Paul go to God this weekend thanking him for the love that each person here has for the body of Christ.
3.) On this special weekend when we are trying to be conscious of that which we have to be thankful for, may each one of us be filled with thanksgiving from the love of each other in this congregation.
III. PAUL WAS THANKFUL FOR THEIR HOPE
1.) Biblical hope is, "A confident expectation which rests upon the promises of God."