Happiness, Thankfulness and God’s Inexpressible Gift

— Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!

  • Andrew Fountain — Dec 12th, 2010

The Greatest Gift

  • Christmas is a time to celebrate and give gifts
  • Why do we give gifts at Christmas?
  • To celebrate the greatest gift ever given
  • “Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!” (2 Cor 9:15)

Luke 17

  1. On the way to Jerusalem he was passing along between Samaria and Galilee.
  2. And as he entered a village, he was met by ten lepers, who stood at a distance
  3. and lifted up their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.”
  4. When he saw them he said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went they were cleansed.

Luke 17

  1. Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice;
  2. and he fell on his face at Jesus’ feet, giving him thanks. Now he was a Samaritan.
  3. Then Jesus answered, “Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine?
  4. Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?”
  5. And he said to him, “Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well.”

When Christians meet together

  • Colossians 3:16-17 & Ephesians 5:19-20
    1. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
    2. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
    1. addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all your heart,
    2. giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,

Optimist and Pessimist

Optimist and Pessimist

Lost Boy returns home

  • Happiness actually has little to do with our outward circumstances

Colossians 2

  1. Therefore, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him,
  2. rooted and built up in him and firm in your faith just as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.

Colossians 2 cont’d

  1. Be careful not to allow anyone to captivate you through an empty, deceitful philosophy that is according to human traditions and the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.
  2. For in him all the fullness of deity lives in bodily form,
  3. and you have been filled in him, who is the head over every ruler and authority.

Basic necessities

  • Food
  • Shelter
  • clothing
  • Safety and Security
  • Freedom from physical pain
  • Access to healthcare
  • Hygiene
  • Stability of life

Added Blessings

  • Excellent food
  • Beautiful and comfortable homes (comparatively)
  • Wonderful freedom of choice of clothing
  • Free time—don’t have to work 24/7
  • Access to culture and entertainment
  • Education
  • Easy transport
  • Communication with friends and family
  • Opportunities to make a difference to the lives of others

Spiritual Blessings Now

  • Forgiveness of sin
  • Peace with God
  • Loved and adopted by God
  • God’s care over our lives now
  • The gift of his Spirit within us
  • An opportunity to significantly serve God
  • The community of Christ

In Eternity

  • Secure for eternity
  • A future inheritance which is unimaginably wonderful
  • To reach the potential God has for each of us
  • To experience the love of Christ in its full intensity

But what if things are really bad?

  • Paul and Silas were in prison and they were singing
  • They were really happy, and not just because they were in prison for Christ
  • His reason is “the love of Christ” as he shares in Romans 8:
  1. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?
    Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?

The love of Christ overcomes

  • He continues:
    1. As it is written,
      “For your sake we are being killed all the day long;
      we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”
    2. No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
    3. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,
    4. nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Let’s Do It

  • Let’s give thanks this Christmas
  • We are going to sing “Give thanks to the Lord”
  • As we are doing it you can add your own words

Updated on 2010-12-13 by Andrew Fountain