Summary: Three benefits of offering sacrifial thanks.
9, October 2005
(Thanksgiving weekend in Canada)
Dakota Community Church
What’s In It for Me?
We have many things to be thankful for.
Why do we have holidays? They are God’s idea.
1. Thanksgiving defeats pride.
Pride is a destroyer.
- It destroys finances.
- It destroys families.
- It separates close friends.
Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.
Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world—the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does—comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.
Pride is simply the exultation of “self”.
The belief that we have made ourselves what we are, that we have earned what we have.
I spoke to a man this week who told me, “I have always done what suits my own best interest.”
A man’s pride brings him low, but a man of lowly spirit gains honor.
Famous inventor Samuel Morse was once asked if he ever encountered situations where he didn’t know what to do. Morse responded, "More than once, and whenever I could not see my way clearly, I knelt down and prayed to God for light and understanding."
Morse received many honors from his invention of the telegraph but felt undeserving: "I have made a valuable application of electricity not because I was superior to other men but solely because God, who meant it for mankind, must reveal it to someone and He was pleased to reveal it to me."
Pride keeps us from serving others. Jesus said serving was the key to greatness.
- Foot washing
- Greatest in Kingdom
With what shall I come before the LORD and bow down before the exalted God? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has showed you, O man, what is good.
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
Know that the LORD is God. It is he, who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.
2. Thanksgiving teaches us to appreciate sacrifice.
Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress.
He sent forth his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave.
Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men.
Let them sacrifice thank offerings and tell of his works with songs of joy.
When we are in trouble we need to bring sacrifial thanks. We don’t feel like, we are thanking God by faith. He is the deliverer.
Sometimes the Christian faith requires sacrifice.
We all know:
And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.
Look at the verse before 4:19:
I have received full payment and even more; I am amply supplied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent. They are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God. And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.
a.) What and when do you sacrifice for your faith?
b.) When is the last time you gave the Lord sacrificial worship, money, time, prayer, fasting, or anything else?
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual [or reasonable] act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
3. Thanksgiving adds joy to our blessings.
Do you know that it is very common for those with great wealth in this world to be miserable?
Blessing and abundance without the knowledge of God as provider does not bring peace, even for Christians.
The blessing of the LORD brings wealth, and he adds no trouble to it.
Are you experiencing the no trouble clause?