1 Chronicles 16:7
"On that day David gave Asaph and his fellow Levities this song of thanksgiving to the LORD." (NLT)
Since we will be celebrating Thanksgiving this week, David's song is a fitting example of Biblical thanksgiving. In verse four, David appointed some of the Levites as ministers before the ark of the LORD. They were to invoke his blessing, give thanks and praise the LORD, the God of Israel. Interestingly, each of those three words is used extensively in David's song of thanksgiving.
To invoke means to remember and memorialize. In verse 12 and 15, David instructs the people to recognize God's wondrous works, miracles, and judgments along with His covenant promises.
To thank is to praise, confess and acknowledge. Thankfulness would obviously include praise and acknowledgment, but confession? Biblical gratitude consists of a recognition of the unworthiness of the recipient. If we were worthy, thanks would be deserved and therefore unnecessary. Scriptural thankfulness is more than just a polite response of "Thank you." David's song begins and ends with thankfulness in verses 8, 34 and 35.
To praise is to glorify, celebrate, boast and commend. Verse ten says "Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice." Verse 25 adds, "For great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised." At the end of the song, all the people say "Amen" and praise the LORD.
Don't you find it compelling that after David finished this corporate worship, praise, and thanksgiving with the people of Israel, he went home to bless his own family?
As you celebrate this Thanksgiving, incorporate Scriptural thanksgiving into your activities.
LORD our God, we praise, worship and extol Your name. We are thankful for the blessings You provide. We acknowledge our unworthiness of Your grace. As we spend time this week with those You have placed in our lives, may our thanksgiving be to You above all else.
This event is one of many in Scripture that causes me to both rejoice and struggle at the same time. I celebrate when Peter says, "But at your word, I will let down the nets." What faith!
Peter made his living catching fish. These men had worked all night and earned nothing for their efforts. Now Jesus, who was not a fisherman but a carpenter, was telling them how to run their business. Peter, based on Jesus' word alone, was willing to set his experience and knowledge aside and obey. What a great heart! At your word, I will do what you say even though experientially it seems impossible. What faith!
My struggle is Peter's response to Jesus after this visible miracle. Obeying Jesus' instruction led to catching an overwhelming number of fish. I suspect if I were Peter my natural reaction would be an attempt to get Jesus to be my business partner. But Peter's response is to fall on his face before Jesus and ask Him to "Go away. I am sinful."
What emotions arise when you see the obvious miracles of Jesus in your life?
The following link to "Go Away" is a song by Ross King. "Go Away" is just one of his many songs that I find thought-provoking.
Lord Jesus, I desire to be like Peter, James, and John, willing to leave everything and follow You.