IN EVERYTHING GIVE THANKS
In ( 1 Thess. 5:16-18) Paul says-" REJOICE ALWAYS; PRAY WITHOUT CEASING; IN EVERTHING GIVE THANKS; For this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus ". These three verses are among the 22 commandments for Christians given in ( 1 Thess. 5:16-18) , and also they are Gods will for the believers in Christ Jesus. These are the commandments for believers- not just ten of them but 22 of them ! Up to the time we are saved, God has us shut up to a cross. That is, God is not asking anything of us except this question: what will you do with my son who died for you? After we have accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior, then God talks to us about our lives. The child of God is not under the ten commandments as the way of life. He is way above it. He is to live on a much higher plain, as we can see by the 22 commandments for Christians given in (1 Thess. 5:11-27) . I asked the readers to read all the 22 commandments from the bible.
The Lord Jesus Christ said, "IF YOU LOVE ME, KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS (John 14-15 ).
Today, I am just going to discuss 3 verses which are in ( 1Thess. 5:16-18) . We will find out at the end that- In everything give thanks is the characteristic of spiritual maturity.
I would like to discuss these 3 verses, in successions, according to my personal experience how I matured in my walk with Christ .
(1) PRAY WITHOUT CEASING (1 Thess. 5-17)
Prayer is an attitude . The attitude of devotion to God can be without ceasing, We can only communicate with God through prayer ( spiritual communion ). We cannot connect with God without praying . Jesus said in ( John 15- 5) -" I am the vine, you are the branches; He who abides in me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing". Without praying we cannot abide in Christ and apart from Him we cannot do anything right . So prayer is always necessary before we do anything else in order to abide in Christ.
(11) REJOICE ALWAYS (1 Thess. 5-16)
Christian joy is not dampened by affliction or other harsh circumstances, because it is rooted in one's unassailable relationship to God ( Phil. 2:18 ; 3:1; 4:4). In fact, Joy may thrive in tribulation when a believer discerns the glorious purposes of God. (Rom.5:3-5)says-"And not only this, but we also exult (rejoice greatly) in our Tribulations, knowing that Tribulation brings about Perseverance; and Perseverance, Proven Character; and Proven Character, Hope; And Hope does not disappoint us, because the love of God has been poured out within our Hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us."
Every time we come to god, we have to be sure that our sins are confessed and forgiven by God before we pray so that the Holy Spirit will fill us. Every time we are filled with the Holy Spirit, we will always REJOICE, because JOY IS A FRUIT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT (Gal.5:22).
(111) IN EVERYTHING GIVE THANKS (1 Thess. 5:18)
After we master how to pray unceasingly, we definitely REJOICE ALWAYS, then we will learn how to thank God in everything ,because we know that God is our creator (Gen.1:1); God is our salvation (Isa. 12:2); God loves us (Rom. 5:8); God gives us eternal life (Matt.25:16), (John 10:28); God is our supplier (Phil.4:9); God is righteous in Judgment (Rom.2:5),(Rev.19:2); God created everything including us, and we are nothing away from HIM. OUR ONLY HOPE OF SURVIVAL IS TO DEFEND ON HIM,TO SUBMIT OUR ENTIRE LIFE TO HIM.
After we have learned that the Believers in Christ will receive the Highest Position in the universe, second only to Christ, then our gratitude to God will reach to the SUMMIT. THE BELIEVERS WERE CALLED CHILDREN OF GOD. THE ISRAELITES WERE CALLED BY GOD HIS PEOLPLE (Hosea 4:6),THEY WERE ALSO CALLED CHILDREN OF ISRAEL (Ex.9:4). THEY WERE NEVER CALLED THE CHILDREN OF GOD. THE CHILDREN OF GOD ARE THE TRUE BELIEVERS WHO WILL JUDGE THE WORLD. BECAUSE OF OUR UNION WITH CHRIST, WE WILL BE ASSOCIATED WITH HIM IN THIS JUDGMENT DURING THE MILLENIUM. WE WILL ALSO JUDGE ANGELS (1 Cor.6:3) ; (2 Pet.2:4,9); (Jude 6). WE WILL BE JUDGES AND PRIESTS FOREVER IN NEW JERUSALEM BECAUSE OF OUR UNION WITH CHRIST.
BELIEVERS ARE THE ONLY NEW CREATIONS OF GOD THAT WILL LIVE FOREVER IN NEW HEAVEN OR NEW JERUSALEM WITH CHRIST. CHRIST, BEFORE HIS DEPARTURE FROM HIS DISCIPLES HE SAID IN (JOHN 14:2)-" IN MY FATHER'S HOUSE ARE MANY MANSIONS: IF IT WERE NOT SO, I WOULD HAVE TOLD YOU. I GO TO PREPARE A PLACE FOR YOU".THIS IS A CONFIRMATION FROM JESUS HIMSELF THAT ALL BELIEVERS ARE GOING TO HAVE MANSIONS, AS THEIR RESIDENCES, IN NEW JERUSALEM OR NEW HEAVEN.
( Rev.21:1-2) says--"Then I saw a new Heaven and a new Earth----and I saw the Holy City, new Jerusalem coming down out of Heaven from God, made ready as a Bride adorned for her Husband". NEW JERUSALEM - This heavenly city will be the abode of all saints ( Heb. 12:22-24), the bride of Christ (Rev. 21:9-10), and the place Christ is preparing for His people ( John 14:2) . During the millennium the new Jerusalem ( describe in detail in ( Rev.21:9-22:5) apparently will be suspended over the new earth, and It will be the dwelling place of all believers during eternity ( as is emphasized in (Rev.21:1-8).
The old testament saints will live forever in new earth, as God promised to king David that He will establish His kingdom on earth forever ( 2 Sam. 7:1-17). David's zeal for the Lord is evidenced by his desire to build a temple to house the Ark of the Covenant (2 Sam 7:2). David was denied his request to build a house for the Lord, but God promise instead that He will build a house for David, A Dynasty, (2 Sam. 7:11). The son ( Solomon), rather than David, would build the temple (2 Sam.7:13a) and the throne of Solomon's kingdom will be established forever ( 2 Sam.7:13b ). Therefore, the old testament saints will abide forever in New Earth NOT in New Heaven where Christ and all the believers abide forever. Probably, the old testament saints will need to renew themselves, once year, by going to visit Christ in the New Heaven. But we the believers, we do not need to do that because we abide with Christ forever in New Heaven.
After learning all the benefits of what we are going to enjoy in New Heaven with Christ, there is no doubt in my mind that every true believer, in Christ , will be inspired to thank God in everything because God has given us everything that nobody can give.
Written by Osmundo S. Sabado
Edited by Orman L. Sabado