Luke 17: 16 , “He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan”.
We are quick to complain and ask God for things, but slow to thank Him for the blessings already in possession and slow or non – existent to give thanks when He does answer prayer, provide, or protect.
How quickly we forget to give thanks. “Give credit where credit is due” How much credit does God deserve? Do you treat God like a cosmic Santa Clause or a Heavenly Father? I’ve heard it said that the Key to contentment is Thanksgiving. For the Christian, every day should be Thanksgiving Day. We should even be thankful in the midst of problems. The Apostle Paul said in 2Corinthians 7:4, “I have great confidence in you; I take great pride in you. I am greatly encouraged; in all our troubles my joy knows no bounds., ” He knew that God was working all things together for his good, even though he was going through trials (Romans 8:28). And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose
Jesus encounters 10 lepers that ask Him to have mercy on them. Jesus conforms to Jewish norms by requiring that the lepers go for the required priestly declaration of health (cf. Leviticus 14). Jesus teaches about the expressions of a thankful person. To give thanks is to show gratitude, give admonition, and let gratefulness flow out of your heart in words and in deeds and to express that joy Godward! Here are some expressions to learn from a thankful leper.
- #1 Thanksgiving BEGINS with Recognition (V.13). All the lepers acknowledged Jesus as MASTER. As you spend time with Jesus what are some names or titles you use to refer to Him as you recognize His rule over your life? Lepers were social outcasts that had body parts rotting away that would eventually fall off. Perhaps there are areas in your life that seem to be “falling off” that you can’t seem to keep together. There is no one that has it all together. Maybe everything is not falling apart in your life, but there are areas that each of us feel handicapped in. We need to recognize God’s power and mercy (“HAVE MERCY ON US).
- # 2 Thanksgiving CONTINUES with Obedience (V.14). Upon asking for help from Jesus, He sent them to the priest and they obeyed Him. As they were going (obeying) they were cleansed. God does things in our lives as we are obeying Him. He trusts us with a little and sees how obedient we are with what He has given us, before He will ever entrust us with more. Jesus has commanded us to “GO” seek and save the lost. Can this command given be seen as obedience in your life? Jesus said “if you love me, you will obey me” (John 14:21)
- #3 Thanksgiving is FULFILLED in Praise (V.15-16) Only 1 out of 10 returned to give thanks, and Jesus recognizes that. The leper gave active thanks. He didn’t send a postcard, or e-mail, no way, he thanked Jesus personally! His thanks came from his loud voice (he was not ashamed) Romans 1:16. He Glorified God (not the priest). In Humility he fell at the feet of Jesus. The world is unthankful “For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to Him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened”
- #4 Thanksgiving RESULTS in Spiritual Healing. The Samaritan realized he was healed and “Made whole” which was not the same proclamation for the others. Jesus verbally recognized the man’s faith in the healing process, which could also be read, “Your faith has saved you” More than physical healing, but spiritual healing. This man got something the other nine didn’t receive because he gave thanks. God may withhold future blessings from you when you don’t give Him thanks, and recognition for what He has already done in your life.
Until the nets are filled…Blessings & Thanks, Pastor Phil<><