Class Notes: 11/24/2010
Thanksgiving as part of Reciprocal Love part 2
Last time we took up the Doctrine of Thanksgiving as an example of the expression of reciprocal love for God.
We saw that there is a relationship between the believer's consistent perception of Bible doctrine and their attitude of thanksgiving toward God.
Bible doctrine provides capacity for gratitude because it reveals to us our place in the purpose, plan and will of God. It also shows us that God has provided everything for us within his plan.
Col 1:12; "Giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us for a share in the endowment of the saints in the light."
"In the light" is an idiom stating the manner in which the believer is qualified for a share in the endowment of the saints that is in the light of the infallible word of God.
The only way that the believer acquires capacity to receive this endowment is through the application of metabolized doctrine that is circulating in the stream of consciousness.
Thanksgiving is directed to God. It is a function of the believer's cognizance of God's grace as it relates to the believer. Thanksgiving is an expression of your appreciation of God, not people. It is related to the believer's fellowship with God. It corresponds to the believer's relationship with God.
Ps 119:11; "Your word I have treasured in my heart that I may not sin against You."
If your relationship with God is correct, your relationship with people will automatically be correct.
Thanksgiving is both an expression of the spiritual skills and the capacity for divine blessing in time. Thanksgiving is the expression of appreciation of God and the mental attitude of gratitude in reciprocity to God that comes from the capacity created by Bible Doctrine in the soul.
Thanksgiving is an act of giving thanks, it is the grateful acknowledgement of the benefits of the grace of God. It is an expression of gratitude toward God based on one's capacity to appreciate who and what He is.
Believers who are consistently functioning under the mentorship of God the Holy Spirit have maximum capacity for true thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is more than an expression of gratitude, more than appreciation in a human sense. It is appreciation for God that cannot exist apart from the function of the spiritual skills that are required for this reciprocation.
This relationship with God is fulfilled by the unique spiritual life of the Church Age. If we are going to have this harmonious relationship with God, then it must be on the basis of His mandates, His commands, and His plan.
God instructs us regarding what we must do to have a harmonious relationship with Him is contained in the mystery doctrine of the church. Col 1:25-28;
Eph 5:20; "always be thankful with reference to all things toward God, even the Father, through the person of our Lord Jesus Christ."
Obedience to this command demands the filling of the Spirit, metabolized doctrine circulating in the stream of consciousness, and the function of the problem solving devices.
Thanksgiving is first of all directed toward God, and as an overflow it is capacity and appreciation for life. David expresses this attitude in Psa 23;
Gratitude is an index of the spiritual status of the believer. The greater the content of metabolized doctrine in the believer's right lobe, the greater the capacity for mental attitude of thanksgiving.
The more the believer uses the problem solving devices of the protocol plan of God the more capacity the believer has for thanksgiving toward God.
Each function of a spiritual skill is related to the true concept of thanksgiving.
"Always be thankful" in Eph 5:20 is related to the filling of the Spirit in Eph 5:18. Thanksgiving accompanies rebound as an expression of gratitude for the forgiveness of sins, restoration to fellowship, and the recovery of the filling of the Holy Spirit.
Thanksgiving is related to metabolized doctrine circulating in the stream of consciousness. The greater the content of metabolized doctrine in the believer's stream of consciousness, the greater the capacity for the mental attitude of thanksgiving.
Col 1:10; "That you might walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, pleasing to all, bearing fruit in every good work; constantly growing up by means of metabolized doctrine from God."
Thanksgiving is related to all of the problem solving devices.
Once believers begin to understand rebound by grace, it inevitably results in an expression of gratitude to God for the forgiveness of sins and restoration to fellowship with God.
Thanksgiving is related to the filling of the Holy Spirit as the means of expressing our appreciation to God. Without the filling of the Spirit we cannot even possess true thanksgiving to God.
The faith-rest drill results in capacity for the expression of thanksgiving.
Grace orientation is a continuous source of thanksgiving to God.
Doctrinal orientation provides greater and greater capacity for thanksgiving until the capacity is so great that God shares his happiness with the believer.
A personal sense of destiny is a source of thanksgiving because the believer with a personal sense of destiny understands God's will, plan, and purpose for their life and has oriented to those objectives.
Personal love for God the Father adds motivational virtue to thanksgiving.
Impersonal love for all mankind relates interpersonal relationships to mental attitude thanksgiving toward God. You are thankful regardless of unjust treatment because you trust that God is working it all together for the ultimate good.
Sharing the happiness of God provides tremendous contentment in life, and therefore, thanksgiving and tranquility in every circumstance in life.
The ultimate in mental attitude thanksgiving and the overt expression of gratitude toward God comes from occupation with Christ. Without occupation with Christ, capacity for life, or Bible doctrine in the soul, thanksgiving has no true meaning.
Thanksgiving reaches its peak in personal love for God the Father and occupation with the person of Christ. Thanksgiving is spiritual orientation to life through residence; function; and momentum inside the unique power system that God had provided for Church Age believers.
Thanksgiving fulfills the divine mandates found in the imperative moods of:
1Thes 5:18; "In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus."
Eph 5:20; "Always be thankful with reference to all things to God even the Father through the person of our Lord Jesus Christ."
Metabolized doctrine circulating in the stream of consciousness produces thanksgiving toward God.
2Cor 9:15; "Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift."
Rev 7:12; "Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and ability belong to God forever and ever. Amen."
Psa 100:4; "Enter into His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him; honor His person."
Thanksgiving is to be expressed in prayer.
Eph 1:16; "I do not cease giving thanks for you; and I make mention of you in my prayers."
Col 1:3; "We give thanks to God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ; praying always for you."
Col 4:2; "Devote yourselves to prayer; keeping alert in it with thanksgiving."
Phil 4:6; "Stop worrying about anything; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving; let your requests be made known to God."
2Cor 9:7-12; states that giving causes thanksgiving: "Each one on the basis as he has determined by means of his thinking so give; not reluctantly; nor from compulsion; for God loves a happy giver.
v8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; so that always having all sufficiency in everything; you may have an abundance for every good of intrinsic value deed.
v9 Even as it stands written; `He has scattered abroad; He has given to the poor; His righteousness (virtue) abides forever.'
v10 Now He that provides graciously the seed to the sower provides graciously for the act of eating; and at the same time multiplies your seed sown and enlarges the harvest of your grace virtue.
v11 Because of your generosity; you will be enriched in all things which through us produces thanksgiving to God.
v12 Because the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints; but also overflowing through many with thanksgivings to God."
Food should be accepted with thanksgiving; 1Tim 4:3-4.This applies to all food; anytime; anywhere. God has created food to be received with thanksgiving.
Thanksgivings before meals is a part of grace orientation with special emphasis on the appreciation of God's logistical grace provision.
Thanksgivings before meals sanctifies the food; protecting the believer's health from any possible impurities in the food and so that the food will fulfill the requirements of the body when metabolized.
"Thanksgiving is often a part of public acknowledgment or celebration of worship as was the case of the celebration at the return of the ark of the covenant as described in 1Chron 16:7-36; Net
The justice of God demands that the believer being blessed have capacity for the blessing. Capacity for blessing means potential for thanksgiving.
One's potential for thanksgiving depends on the amount of Bible doctrine that is resident in the soul so that the believer who is blessed is occupied with the Giver as well as the gift.
For the receiver of the gift to enjoy the gift; they must be occupied with the Giver. True happiness is loving the Giver more than the gift. True thanksgiving is to be occupied with the Giver more than the gift. Capacity for life is to enjoy the Giver more than the gift.
Thanksgiving is a priestly sacrifice; Psa 116:17; Psa107: 22; Amos 4:5; Heb 13:15; It is the mental attitude of the mature believer.
Thanksgiving is a function of the believer with capacity for life; Col 3:15; 2Cor 4:15; 2Cor 9:10-11.
Personal testimonies of the gratitude and thankfulness of mature believers are found in Dan 2:23; John 11:41; Rom 1:8; 1Cor 1:4; Phil 1:3; and 2 Tim 1:3;
Believer's who are positive to doctrine are motivated to be thankful for what others do. 1Thes 3:9; We see here that Paul expresses thanksgiving in connection with his happiness.
This means that true happiness is related to gratitude not to the satisfaction of the lust patterns of the OSN. The unhappiness that comes from trying to be happy is the reason why many people are miserable all of their lives.
The entire book of Ecclesiastes describes Solomon's pursuit of happiness through every possible venue and he found that only unhappiness comes from the pursuit of happiness.
The only way to be happy is through the consistent PMA of Bible Doctrine. Jer 15:16;
The feeding of the soul with Bible doctrine provides believers with the spiritual capacity to advance until we are sharing the happiness of God with it's maximum reciprocation of gratitude and thanksgiving.
The Gratitude that comes from the consistent PMA of Bible Doctrine is the basis for true happiness in life. No one can have true happiness without gratitude.
The less capacity from Bible Doctrine you have, the less gratitude you have, and the less happiness you have.
To possess this happiness the believer must magnify Bible doctrine above and beyond his person (Psa 138:2;), live on the basis of every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God (Matt 4:4;), and in everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus. 1Thes 5:18;
So as we celebrate the Thanksgiving Holiday let's be certain that for us it is not simply ritual without reality as we recall the grace gifts that God has provided and reciprocate to him in thanksgiving by our function in the unique spiritual life of the Church Age.
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