The Best Thanksgiving

2 Cor 9:15

15 Thank God for his Son-- a gift too wonderful for words! (NLT)

This message was preached November 24, 2002 at Toulon, by Albert Harmon. See it at toulonbaptist.com  

Thanksgiving is usually a happy time. A time when we enjoy good food and family. Some enjoy the football games, although for the life of me I have never figured out what football has to do with Thanksgiving. I want to direct your attention this afternoon to this passage. I want to tell you how to have the best Thanksgiving ever.

Thanksgiving is often centered around the prosperity we have. We think of ourselves as thankful contingent upon our material blessings. But you know if that was true of those early settlers, they really would not have had much to be thankful. Most of us would not be thankful if we had just enough to stay alive. We demand much more in this age than the necessities.

But if your thankfulness centers around spiritual blessings we can all be thankful.

  1. We did not need to work for them.
    1. We do not need to be a super star, or Charles Atlas
      1. Eph 1:3 How we praise God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we belong to Christ. (NLT)
      2. If you belong to Him you are blessed with every spiritual blessing.
      3. Do you see any other conditions laid down there?
      4. If you are His, you are blessed.
    2. Rom 8:32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? (NKJ)
      1. This same word freely here is translated without a cause in -
      2. John 15:25 This has fulfilled what the Scriptures said: 'They hated me without cause.' (NLT)
      3. If they hated Jesus without a cause they are given spiritual blessings with out a cause.
      4. Nothing that you do or have done could even buy a portion.
    3. When you go to the store and buy something, and pay for it why do you thank the clerk for giving you what you paid for.
      1. We have not paid for our salvation or earned it in any way.
      2. We are simply children as the result of His love.
      3. I Jn 3:1 See how very much our heavenly Father loves us, for he allows us to be called his children, and we really are! But the people who belong to this world don't know God, so they don't understand that we are his children. (NLT)
  2. They can never be taken away.
    1. Matt 6:19-21 "Don't store up treasures here on earth, where they can be eaten by moths and get rusty, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where they will never become moth-eaten or rusty and where they will be safe from thieves. Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be. (NLT)
    2. Luke 12:33 "Sell what you have and give to those in need. This will store up treasure for you in heaven! And the purses of heaven have no holes in them. Your treasure will be safe-- no thief can steal it and no moth can destroy it. (NLT)
    3. Luke 12:21 "Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God." (NLT)
    4. Isa 33:6 In that day he will be your sure foundation, providing a rich store of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge. The fear of the LORD is the key to this treasure. (NLT)
    5. 1 Pet 1:4 For God has reserved a priceless inheritance for his children. It is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay. (NLT)
    6. 1 Pet 5:4 And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away. (NIV)
    7. 1 Tim 6:17 Tell those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which will soon be gone. But their trust should be in the living God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment. (NLT)
  3. The Blessings we have in Christ Jesus are not to be compared to anything else we have.
    1. Rom 8:18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. (NKJ)
    2. 1 Cor 15:57 How we thank God, who gives us victory over sin and death through Jesus Christ our Lord! (NLT)
    3. Col 3:4 And when Christ, who is your real life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory. (NLT)
    4. 1 Pet 1:13 So think clearly and exercise self-control. Look forward to the special blessings that will come to you at the return of Jesus Christ. (NLT)
    5. 1 Pet 4:13 Instead, be very glad-- because these trials will make you partners with Christ in his suffering, and afterward you will have the wonderful joy of sharing his glory when it is displayed to all the world. (NLT)
    6. I Jn 3:2 Yes, dear friends, we are already God's children, and we can't even imagine what we will be like when Christ returns. But we do know that when he comes we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. (NLT)
    7. For forgiveness
    8. For a good night sleep.
    9. For peace with God.
    10. For assurance.
    11. Salvation and an eternal home.

The best news is that if you do not have a turkey or a ham, you can have a thanksgiving. If your riches are real and not temporary, you can be truly thankful.

You can have the best Thanksgiving ever if you know that your name is written in heaven and you have a heavenly inheritance reserved for you there.

Children can be sad one minute and full of joy the next.