GCV Blog

Give Thanks to the Lord

Give Thanks to the Lord
by Pastor David

1Chr. 16:34 Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good;
for his steadfast love endures forever!

As another Thanksgiving season has come and gone, I’ve asked myself again about the state of my thankfulness. Thankfulness is not a calendared activity, but every Thanksgiving is a valid opportunity to reflect on the condition of my soul. A Gospel-saturated heart necessarily leads to a thankful heart. When the Word of God dwells in us richly, we inevitably give thanks liberally. If I know the powerful works of God, I cannot help but return words of thanks.

As I’ve considered why I should be thankful, and as I’ve pondered what one thing should make me the most grateful, I’ve been struck by the Old Testament teaching on thankfulness. Over and over, the clear theme of thanksgiving in the Old Testament is the loyal love of God.

Notice the deliberate plan for people to give thanks, as well as the explicit reason stated, in 1 Chronicles 16:41: “With them were Heman and Jeduthun and the rest of those chosen and expressly named to give thanks to the LORD, for his steadfast love endures forever.”

Watch God’s chosen people respond to His appearance at the new Temple, which revealed how faithful He was to them as a people: 2Chr. 7:3 When all the people of Israel saw the fire come down and the glory of the LORD on the temple, they bowed down with their faces to the ground on the pavement and worshiped and gave thanks to the LORD, saying, “For he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.”

Jehoshaphat walked confidently into battle, knowing that God’s covenant love would endure forever: 2Chr. 20:21 And when he had taken counsel with the people, he appointed those who were to sing to the LORD and praise him in holy attire, as they went before the army, and say,
“Give thanks to the LORD,
for his steadfast love endures forever.”

As they worked on rebuilding Solomon’s Temple, Ezra and the people were thankful in the midst of rubble because God was faithful. Ezra 3:11 And they sang responsively, praising and giving thanks to the LORD,
“For he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever toward Israel.”

Like a broken record, or like a jackhammer to the ungrateful parts of our own hearts, the Psalms call us to give thanks because of God’s enduring love. They don’t point us to our improved circumstances, or trial-free lives, or our material comfort, but to a God who is intrinsically good and eternal in his loving faithfulness.

Psa. 106:1 Praise the LORD!
Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever!

Psa. 107:1 Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever!

Psa. 118:1 Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good;
for his steadfast love endures forever!

Psa. 118:29 Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good;
for his steadfast love endures forever!

Psa. 136:1 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever.
2 Give thanks to the God of gods,
for his steadfast love endures forever.
3 Give thanks to the Lord of lords,
for his steadfast love endures forever;

Psa. 136:26 Give thanks to the God of heaven,
for his steadfast love endures forever.

Psa. 138:1 I give you thanks, O LORD, with my whole heart;
before the gods I sing your praise;
2 I bow down toward your holy temple
and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness,
for you have exalted above all things
your name and your word.*

Generations give thanks to God because of a faithfulness that extends beyond individuals.
Is. 38:19 The living, the living, he thanks you,
as I do this day;
the father makes known to the children
your faithfulness.

Finally, Jeremy prophesied about a day coming when the LORD, would fulfill the promise He made to the house of Israel and the house of Judah, a day when He will cause a righteous Branch to spring up for David who will execute justice and righteousness in the land. And the response of the saved and renewed peoples will be “the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the voices of those who sing, as they bring thank offerings to the house of the LORD:
“‘Give thanks to the LORD of hosts,
for the LORD is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever!’” Jer. 33:11

God is eternally loyal to every loving promise He has ever made to you. Never will He abandon His people or His promises. Never will he take back or annul His loyal love. And this Thanksgiving, if all the other heaps of blessing were not enough, this one reason would give us eternal reason to be thankful. God is good and faithful, and He always be. Sing praise!

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