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Thought for the Week--Oh, Give Thanks unto the Lord

Monday, November 20, 2006

"Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. And say, ‘Save us, O God of our salvation; gather us together, and deliver us from the Gentiles, to give thanks to Your holy name,’" (1 Chronicles 16:34-36 NKJ)

"Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever" (1 Chronicles 16:34 NKJ). David is speaking these words to the children of Israel. He is rejoicing and dancing. (1 Chronicles 15:29). The ark of the covenant--the resting place of God--has been returned to Jerusalem. David has erected a tent for it. When God gave Moses instruction for building the ark of the covenant He said, "You shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark…And there I will meet with you, and I will speak with you from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are on the ark" (Exodus 25:21-22 NKJ). The dwelling place of God was again among His people.

Today, God has promised to dwell in the heart of His people. God, who is a Spirit, sends His Spirit into us so that we can know His Son and become united in spirit with Him. In His mercy, God sent Jesus for us, and now He sends His Spirit into us so that we can be united with Him. In His new covenant promise God says, "I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them" (Ezekiel 36:27 NKJ). God promises to put His ways into us, through Jesus. He promises to put His Spirit into us so we can become united with Him, desire what He desires, and do all He has purposed for us to do. Paul says, "But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him" (1 Corinthians 6:17 NKJ).

We can give thanks to our God that He is merciful. By His life in us through Christ, and by His Spirit awakening our spirit to the reality of living in Christ, we are able to be united with God as He brings all things under the reign of Christ. We can know our own destiny and the destiny of all nations to worship Him.

Today there is much division between nations. Some nations are calling for the removal of the nation of Israel. Some people are trying to kill and destroy the Christians in their land. BUT God has a plan to unite Jews and Arabs and all peoples in Christ. The Bible says, of Jews and Gentiles, "that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity. For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father" (Ephesians 2:16-18 NKJ). God has a plan for uniting people from all races and nations to Himself through Jesus. He is merciful. Jesus said, "Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy." People will offend us, but we can extend the mercy of God to them and walk in His mercy. Receive mercy, extend mercy, and give thanks to God.

Father, we rejoice in Your mercy extended to us. Help us to live in Your mercy, to give You thanks for Your mercy, and to extend Your mercy to others. Amen.

 

Thought for the Week--Oh, Give Thanks unto the Lord

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

"Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. And say, ‘Save us, O God of our salvation; gather us together, and deliver us from the Gentiles, to give thanks to Your holy name.’" (1 Chronicles 16:34-36 NKJ)

David is speaking these words to the children of Israel. In 1 Chronicles 15:29 we see him rejoicing and dancing. The Ark of the Covenant--God’s resting place--has been returned to Jerusalem. When God gave Moses instruction for building the ark of the covenant, He said, "You shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark…And there I will meet with you, and I will speak with you from above the mercy seat" (Exodus 25:21-22 NKJ). The dwelling place of God was again among His people—a cause for rejoicing.

The manifest presence of God was once again with the people. David knew this. David also knew that there were enemies all around Jerusalem. He knew that God had called the children of Israel to go into the land of Canaan and destroy all the heathen cities and establish cities for the children of Israel in the land. The Canaanites were a wicked and murderous people. They even offered their children as sacrificial offerings to their gods so that they could get their gods to bless them. God was righteously going to deliver the evil people of the land into the hands of the children of Israel so that God’s ways could be established in this idolatrous land.

David knew that God had returned to the people of Israel so that they could have victory over their enemies and fill the land with the ways of God. Today we are to accomplish the same thing. Our enemies are not people, but rather our enemies are the spiritual powers of evil that have established the kingdom of Satan in the heavenly places. Paul describes the reality of our war against the evil powers in the heavens. He writes, "For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places" (Ephesians 6:12 NKJ). These spiritual rulers have set up strongholds in our minds and have imprisoned our spirits so that we cannot by ourselves overcome the ways of evil. We cannot free ourselves from the ways evil spirits have set up in us.

BUT GOD has won the victory through the cross of Jesus. Now Jesus reigns far above the spiritual powers in the heavens, able to send His Spirit into us so that our hearts can be cleansed and our spirits strengthened and renewed so that we can know and love the ways of God. We can literally become a temple of God, being a place where He dwells and makes His ways known in the earth through us. God will deliver us from the evil one. Jesus taught us to pray for this. With Christ in us we can be filled with God’s ways.

Father, we rejoice that You have come to dwell in us through Your Son living in us. Help us to let Your Spirit guide us into all truth and manifest Your ways in all we do. Amen.

 

Thought for the Week--Oh, Give Thanks unto the Lord

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

"Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good!...give thanks to Your holy name,’" (1 Chronicles 16:34-36 NKJ)

A Blessed Thanksgiving to all. We thank God for you all. We thank God for all you do through Him, but more than that we thank God for who you are. We thank God that you are His children, and are growing in your knowing of Him as your Father. We thank God that you are saints, holy ones of God, called to be holy as He is holy and being made holy by His Holy Spirit living in you. We thank God that you are His workmanship, created by God to be holy and without spot before Him in Christ in love. We thank God that you are His priests, able to come into His Holy presence through the desire and work of His Son, and then able to bring things from His heavenly presence into the world. We thank God that you are being trained to reign with Christ as His kingdom and principles and nature grow in you now, so that you can manifest them in your new bodies over the earth in the ages to come. We thank God that He reveals to us His ways as we see the ways of Jesus being developed in you and then we see His ways coming forth from you. We thank God for the Godly things you impart to others through the life of Jesus in you. We thank God for the Godly atmosphere that envelopes you by His Son living in you and His Spirit resting upon you. We thank you for God being in you.

David says we should "give thanks to Your holy name’" (1 Chronicles 16:34 NKJ). In this time of special thanksgiving we especially thank God for His Holy Name. God is Holy. His name is Holy. His ways and His nature are far above and more beautiful and pure and transcendent in majesty over any other being. God is truly set apart, in a class by Himself, beyond what mere words can describe as we seek to convey to others the greatness of His love, His righteous actions, and His fairness and longsuffering. His justice is far above that of any other being. His Holiness demands that He hate evil and seek its removal from the earth His Holiness demands the removal from the world of the evil spiritual beings who have lived to destroy His people and to deceive the world so that people live in rebellion toward God. His Holiness demands that people become holy as He is Holy, so that people live in harmony with Him and His ways. His Holiness provides a way through Jesus for us to be made partakers of His Holy nature so that we truly can become holy as He is Holy. His Holiness provides the way for this to be done so that He can show the world through simple and humble people how Holy God is and how holy He can make His people. God’s holiness transcends what we can ask or think; that is why it seems almost blasphemous to our finite minds to think that we can be made holy as God is Holy. BUT, "the nations shall know that I am the LORD," says the Lord GOD, "when I am hallowed [made holy] in you before their eyes" (Ezekiel 36:23 NKJ). Let us thank and praise God for His great and Holy Name!

Father, we rejoice in You. We are especially thankful that Your Name is Holy and that You make us Holy through Jesus. Amen. 

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Serving God as He Unites Heaven and Earth in Christ

     
Rich and Kay Fick, Directors, Cyrus Ministries International

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