Give Thanks

“Therefore by Him [Jesus] let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.” Hebrews 13:15.

“In the name of God, Amen. We whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread [revered] Sovereign Lord King James, by the Grace of God of Great Britain, France, and Ireland King, Defender of the Faith, etc.

Having undertaken for the Glory of God and advancement of the Christian Faith and Honour of our King and Country, a Voyage to plant the First Colony in the Northern Parts of Virginia, do by these presents solemnly and mutually in the presence of God and one of another, Covenant and Combine ourselves together in a Civil Body Politic, for our better ordering and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute and frame such just and equal Laws, Ordinances, Acts, Constitutions and Offices from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the Colony, unto which we promise all due submission and obedience. In witness whereof we have hereunder subscribed our names at Cape Cod, the 11th of November, in the year of the reign of our Sovereign Lord King James, of England, France and Ireland the eighteenth, and of Scotland the fifty-fourth. Anno Domini 1620.”

The Mayflower had originally set out to colonize the Northern parts of Virginia, but due to circumstances beyond their control (read God’s intervention) they wound up at Plymouth, and rather than move south, they decided to stay there.

The Christians aboard the Mayflower had set out to the New World to escape religious persecution, as did most of those who settled the original thirteen colonies; persecution, not just from Catholicism but other state churches such as the Church of England.

For 66 days, passengers and crew, 102 souls, endured rough seas and seasickness, with the only fatality being a godless sailor who constantly vexed the Christians with the vilest of taunts.

Once at Plymouth the Christians, after spending more months aboard ship while homes were built began living through a harsh winter wherein half of them were dead by the end of it, and nearly every one of them lost their spouse through what was called a general sickness.

Were it not for a kindly Indian name Squanto and further help from the Wampanoag tribe it is possible that most or all of them would have starved during that first winter.

Instead they were celebrating God’s goodness to them by sending them friendly Indians and a good harvest.

The original dates for this three day gathering with some 90 Indians vary but October, 1621 may be the date of the first Thanksgiving.

An excellent book that covers this subject and other early American history is “The Light and the Glory” by Peter Marshall and David Manuel, published by Fleming H. Revell Company.

This country was originally set up by godly Christian men with the intent that it should be a city set on a hill as a beacon for the world showing the glory of Christ.

“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16.

No matter how much the unbelievers shout it, do not believe that the founders were anything other than Christian men or moral men who believed in God; not atheists, not Muslims, not deists, Christians. Remember this when you give thanks.

The current state of this country is not because it is a Christian country it is because godless men have wormed their way into power as they always will and turned it into a pagan country.

“Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.” Jude 1:3-4.

This is because godly Christian men and women have over the years come to rely on God’s blessings as a thing to be expected rather than as something which requires constant vigilance to keep God first in our lives.

“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.” 1 Peter 5:8-9.

We are to resist vehemently the intrusions of the ungodly into the affairs of the Christian church which is the body of Christ on earth.

“But these speak evil of whatever they do not know; and whatever they know naturally, like brute beasts, in these things they corrupt themselves.” Jude 1:10.

Freedom to worship God with thankfulness for His blessings is a gift. Remember this when you give thanks.

Including the Revolutionary War, America has fought 35 wars with the loss of one million three hundred and nine thousand lives.

The Civil War dead number 625,000, almost half of this countries total war dead over the last 239 years.

Some of these deaths are:
Revolutionary War, 1775-83, 25,000
War of 1812, 1812-15, 20,000
Mexican-American War, 1846-48, 13,283
Civil War, 1861-65, 625,000
Spanish-American War, 1898, 2,446
World War I, 1917-18, 116,516
World War II, 1941-45, 405,399
Korea, 1950-53, 36,516
Viet Nam, 1955-75, 58,209
Persian Gulf, 1990-91, 258
Afghanistan, 2001-2020, 2,445, this war is ongoing.
Iraq, 2003-12, 4,486.

These men and many women died to preserve this country’s liberty for their children and our grandchildren. A number of these were courageous female combatants and nurses who gave up everything to help the wounded.

Of the dead many were godly, many were moral, all of them gave their lives for a country they believed in; not socialism, not communism, not liberalism, not Islam, not atheism, and certainly not for political correctness. Remember them when you give thanks.

“But Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, ‘My father!’ And he said, ‘Here I am, my son.’ And he said, ‘Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?’ And Abraham said, ‘My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering.’ And the two of them went together. Then they came to the place of which God had told him. And Abraham built an altar there and placed the wood in order; and he bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, upon the wood. And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. But the Angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, ‘Abraham, Abraham!’ And he said, ‘Here I am.’ And He said, ‘Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.’ Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked, and there behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. So Abraham went and took the ram, and offered it up for a burnt offering instead of his son.” Genesis 22:7-13.

“By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, of whom it was said, ‘In Isaac your seed shall be called,’ accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead, from which he also received him in a figurative sense.” Hebrews 11:17-19.

Abraham was tested by God, not because God did not know whether Abraham would do it or not; he was tested to show the angels and us how powerful love for God could be, and how great was Abraham’s faith.

It was a test that God Himself would, in grace, go through to completion at the cross of Jesus. Remember faith, hope, and the love of God when you give thanks.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16.

“In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation [payment] for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” 1 John 4:9-11.

“So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, ‘It is finished!’ and bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.” John 19:30.

God is rich beyond comprehension, so payment for our sins in gold or silver would not be much of a show of love for us; so He gave something precious beyond riches, His only Son.

“…knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.” 1 Peter 1:18-19.

I think we can empathize with that. It has been said that God so loved us that He would rather die than live without us; remember this when you give thanks.

“They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented – of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth. And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us.” Hebrews 11:37-40.

Remember the Old Testament martyrs and all the Christian martyrs since then, even to this day, who were martyred, fought and died to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ and through many hardships brought it to America. Remember this when you give thanks.

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18.

Give Thanks taken from posted on 11-26-14, updated on 4-4-21.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version, copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission, all rights reserved.

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