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Be Thankful

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Radio transcript for the week of January 08, 2017

Harold Bigham speaks on "Be Thankful" on Seeking the Lost - International Radio.

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Lesson Text:
Ephesians 5:20 - "Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."

Lesson:
The word, "Be" shows a willingness to act; it implies a determination to start and implement action. The Bible provides this small word "Be" in combination with other words to encourage people to act on God's commands to make us better people. Today, we investigate the need to "Be Thankful".

Were there not ten cleansed? This statement was made by Jesus to the thankful Samaritan who was cleansed of leprosy. Luke 17, "And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine?"

We have much to be thankful for.

  1. Be Thankful for what God has provided Physically.

    Life needs. Clothes, food, shelter. Not everyone is blessed with life needs. Consider the one who has clothes but they are not sufficient and might be in need of replacement. Consider the person who has no protection for their feet, they have no shoes. Think of the many people who have no food or might be lacking in enough food to sustain them. Think of those who live in dangerous living conditions or without the protection from the wind and weather. Before we begin to complain, begin to reflect and thank God. Societies are different in all parts of the world. Some societies are not as developed as others. God has blessed man with more than the general needs of life. Most of us have abundant things of life.

    Remember the rich farmer in Luke 12:15-28? "And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God. And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on. The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment. Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit? If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest? Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith?"

    Consider the things that he was blessed with! Consider the things that we are blessed with! God owns the world and all things therein.

  2. Be Thankful for what God has provided Spiritually.
    • Be Thankful for Salvation's Cost - God prepared in eternity His plan of redemption for lost man. Consider the mind of God. How vast are His ways! God knew that man would be in need of salvation. God prepared and planned for lost man. When the time was right, God sent His Son Jesus to die for the sin of the world.
      • John 1:29 - "The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world."
      • Galatians 1:4 - "Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father."
      • Ephesians 5:25 - "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it."

    • Be Thankful for the Church Built by Jesus
      • Matthew 16:18 - "And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."
      • Ephesians 1:22-23 - "And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all."
      • Colossians 1:18 - "And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence."
      • Acts 20:28 - "Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood."

    • Be Thankful for God's Word
      • 2 Timothy 2:15 - "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."
      • 2 Timothy 3:16-17 - "
      • All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."
      • 2 Peter 1:3 - "According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue."

    • Be Thankful for All Spiritual Blessings in Christ.
      • Ephesians 1:3 - "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ."
      • James 1:17 - "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning."

    Conclusion:
    Are you a Christian? God's plan reveals that after hearing the gospel taught, that we are to have faith (Romans 10:17; Mark 16:15-16). This faith leads us to repent of our sins and to confess the good name of Christ as the only begotten Son of God (Luke 13:3,5; Romans 10:9-10). The final step of God's plan of salvation is scriptural baptism for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38). Baptism puts one into Christ and into His church (Acts 2:42-47). Paul wrote, "For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ."(Galatians 3:26-27). Jesus' blood is that which will wash away our sins. It is by contacting His blood that we have the grace of God and our sins are forgiven. "In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace" (Ephesians 1:7).

    Will you consider our study today and then respond in loving obedience to the commands of God? Thank you for studying with us today. May God bless you as you continue to read and study the Bible.

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