Thanksgiving Day


Certain days have always been declared for special purposes. Frequently they have some religious significance. Some examples are Memorial Day, Fathers Day, and Mothers Day. Another one is more significant than all the rest, Thanksgiving Day.


Of all peoples in the world: Americans, all the people that live in the United States, have more reason than others to give thanks.

Freedom to worship                          Freedom of assembly          Freedom of speech

Relative Security        Land of plenty                      Land of opportunity

Compared to all other people, of all time, we are truly blessed.

Now we are in danger of losing what God gave us!!

It is fitting that we show appreciation for our National Blessings with National Thanksgiving.


Give thanks occurs 34 times in NIV and 56 times in RSV. Thanksgiving occurs 25 times in NIV and 36 times in RSV. No other national holiday is mentioned by name. No other national holiday is devoted exclusively to recognizing what God has done for us and giving Him thanks. Passover, now the Lord's Supper is closest, but it is not a nationally recognized day. Not Christmas, not Easter, not Saint Valentine’s Day. Thanksgiving alone.


Thanksgiving Day in the United States is an annual day of thanks for the blessings of the past year, observed on the fourth Thursday in November in each of the states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.  It is a historical, national, and religious holiday that began with the Pilgrims.  After the survival of their first colony through the bitter winter, and the gathering of the harvest, Gov. William Bradford of Plymouth Colony issued a thanksgiving proclamation in the autumn of 1621. This first thanksgiving lasted three days, during which the Pilgrims feasted on wild turkey and venison with their Indian guests.


Days of thanksgiving were celebrated sporadically until, on Nov. 26, 1789, President Washington issued a proclamation of a nation-wide day of thanksgiving.  He made it clear that the day should be one of prayer and giving thanks to God.  It was to be celebrated by all

Now I, your magistrate, do proclaim that all ye Pilgrims, with your wives and ye little ones, do gather at ye meeting house, on ye hill, between the hours of 9 and 12 in the day time, on Thursday, November 29th, of the year of our Lord one thousand six hundred and twenty three and the third year since ye Pilgrims landed on ye Pilgrim Rock, there to listen to ye pastor and render thanksgiving to ye Almighty God for all His blessings."


*   1 Th 5:18 ... give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

*   Rev 7:12  And all the angels stood round the throne and round the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshipped God, Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.


Thanksgiving proclamation, 1863 ---Abraham Lincoln (1809–1865)

A prominent American who was visiting Argentina was asked by the president of the republic, "Why has South America gotten on so poorly and North America so well; What do you think is the reason?"  The visitor replied, "I think the reason is found in the fact that the Spaniards came to South America seeking gold, while the Pilgrim Fathers came to North America seeking God."

*   Mat 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

*   Thanksgiving was never meant to be shut up in a single day. --- Robert Caspar Lintner

*   Thanksgiving, to be truly thanksgiving, is first thanks, then giving. --- Proverb

*    (1 Chr 16:7 RSV)  Then on that day David first appointed that thanksgiving be sung to the LORD by Asaph and his brethren.


In conclusion let me encourage you to celebrate Thanksgiving as it was intended. It has unfortunately become simply a day for feasting and football. A day for family get-togethers, not a bad thing by itself, but bad if the family does not remember to thank God for the bounty we enjoy and the blessings we have received for so long. It strikes me as sad that it has become “T” day or “Turkey” day. I wonder if the turkeys aren’t eating the turkey!



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