UNCHANGING REASONS FOR THANKSGIVING
Intro: One of the most explicit Bible verses related to
the matter of thanksgiving is 1 Thes. 5:18. This verses
says, "In every thing give thanks: for this is the will
of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." This verse
commands believers to give thanks to the Lord, not
FOR everything, but IN everything! There is a big
difference there! Certainly, we ought to be thankful, not
just because we are told to be thankful, but because we
have much to be thankful for!
However, I have discovered that thankfulness is a
very fickle thing. Often, our thankfulness focuses on
things that are physical in nature. We are thankful for
our health. We are thankful for our families and our
homes. We are thankful for our financial stability. We
are thankful for the things we have. Yet, all of these
things are subject to change. Think about it, health can
break, families can split up and bank accounts can run
dry. What do we do then? How does that affect our
I would like to suggest that we remain thankful for all
the physical blessings we enjoy, and that we learn to
look beyond those changing things to some things that
never change. I would like to share a few of those
unchanging blessings with you this evening. Notice in
these verses some Unchanging Reasons For
I. V. 5-6, 8 OUR SAVIOR
(Ill. These verses tells us of just a few of the
unchanging glories of our Lord! The things revealed
here are causes for thankfulness at all times.)
A. V. 5 His Abiding Presence - Regardless of
where the path of life leads, the saint of God will
never walk alone - Matt. 28:20; Isa. 41:10!
B. V. 6 His Assisting Presence - (Ill. The word
"helper" comes from a word which means to "to
run". The idea is that when we are in need, the
Lord runs to our aid.) He is our Comforter -
John 14:16. (Ill. Paraklete - One called
alongside of another to give aid and comfort!)
C. V. 8 His Anchoring Presence - One of our
greatest sources of thanksgiving this evening is
in the truth that Jesus never changes! What He
was then is what He is now! From before
creation on into eternity, Jesus has never, nor
will He ever change! He is still "I AM!" He still
possesses all power in heaven and earth, Matt.
28:18. We can always be thankful for our
II. V. 9-12 OUR SALVATION
A. V. 9 The Price Of It - This verse mentions grace!
We can thank God that salvation is given without
cost, Isa. 55:1; Rev. 22:17. It is purely the
operation of grace! Think of how you came to
know Him! Dead in sin and He sought you, He
called you, He died for you, He redeemed you
and He keeps you. All you did was exercise the
faith that He gave you. He did it all! (Ill. Eph.
B. V. 12 The Pain Of It - For us the price was low,
for God, the price was unimaginable! Our
salvation cost God the life of His Son, John
3:16. His death on the cross is what provided
salvation for you and me! There is no way that
we can adequately describe the gory details of
the death of the Lord Jesus, But the prophet
Isaiah tells us something about what He suffered
for us, Isa. 53:4-7. We can be thankful,
everyday, that even though He knew what we
were and what we would be like after He saved
that He still went to the cross and died for our
C. V. 12 The Purpose Of It - We are told here that
He suffered the death He did so that He might
"sanctify the people." The word "sanctify"
means "to separate from vain things and set
apart for God's use." This is why Jesus died!
He died to take vile sinners out of their sins and
set them apart from this world for the glory of
God. He saved us so that we might become
different and that God might be able to use us
for His glory, 2 Cor. 5:17; Ill. Paul 1 Tim. 1:12-15. We can be thankful that we which were so
lost and wicked have now been cleansed and set
apart for God's glory through the blood of Jesus!
III. V. 13 OUR SEPARATION
A. The call of this verse is for us to do on the
outside what He has already done on the inside.
That is, He has set us apart inwardly through the
redemption of the blood of Jesus. He call to us
is that we willingly take our stand with Jesus on
the outside of society. He is calling us to pick up
our cross and bear the reproach of Jesus, Matt.
16:24. He is telling us to be different - 2 Cor.
B. We ought to thank the Lord that He has made a
change in us. The very fact that we don't live like
we used to, that we don't find enjoyment in all
the things the world is running to, that we are
different is a cause for rejoicing everyday of our
C. We ought to stand out and we should be
thankful when we do!
IV. V. 14 OUR SANCTUARY
A. Again, we are reminded that we are living in a
world that is constantly changing. If all of our
hopes are placed in this world and in the
physical realm, then we are going to be
disappointed more than we will be happy.
However, the child of God can rejoice in the
fact that this world is not the end all, tell all of our
Christian experience! Verse 14 tells us that
there is something better just down the road!
B. We can thank the Lord this evening that when
this journey is over, we have a city awaiting us
were we can rest from our labors and where we
can enjoy the sweet presence of the Lord. It is
a place of which we know little, but we do know
that none of the problems of life will be allowed
there, Rev. 21:4. We do know that we will be
with Jesus, John 14:1-3. We do know enough
to allow us to be thankful for that blessed home
that waits for every child of God.
Conc: This evening we need to take a close look at the
real blessings of the Lord! Let us be thankful for all the
things He gives us. Let us praise Him for our health,
our families, our financial blessings and so on. Let us
not take them for granted. But, let us learn to be more
thankful for those things which we can never lose! Let's
learn to be ever thankful for those things that cannot
change! When all the physical blessings have faded
and we can find no reason for praise in them, let us
thank the Lord that there are some things that will never
change! In these things we have an unchanging reason
for eternal thanksgiving!
Why not come before Him right now and just thank
Him for Who He is and for what He has given you and