Issue #2534 November 24, 2010
PAUL: THE APOSTLE OF THANKSGIVING
Of all of the writers of Scripture, Paul is the one who gives the most thanks; he is the apostle of thanksgiving. Little wonder, when we ponder the vast glories of the revelation given to him. To him was unveiled, by the exalted Lord Jesus Christ, the most wonderful truths of all of God’s Word.
Just listen to Paul as he incessantly gives thanks:
“God be thanked” (Romans 6:17).
“I thank God” (Romans 7:25).
“Thanks be unto God” (II Corinthians 9:15).
“We give thanks to God” (Colossians 1:3).
“Giving thanks unto the Father” (Colossians 1:12).
“We thank God without ceasing” (I Thessalonians 2:13).
“I thank Christ Jesus our Lord” (I Timothy 1:12).
“I thank God” (II Timothy 1:3).
“I thank my God” (Philemon 1:4).
Paul gave thanks for the saints,
“I thank my God… for you all” (Romans 1:8).
“I thank my God always on your behalf” (I Corinthians 1:4).
“I cease not to give thanks for you” (Ephesians 1:16).
“We give thanks to God always for you all” (I Thessalonians 1:2).
“We are bound to thank God always for you” (II Thessalonians 1:3).
“We are bound to give thanks always to God for you” (II Thessalonians 2:13).
Paul gave thanks for those who sacrificed for the gospel,
“Unto whom … I give thanks” (Romans 16:4).
“But thanks be to God, which put the same earnest care into the heart of Titus for you” (II Corinthians 8:16).
“Which causes through us thanksgiving to God” (II Corinthians 9:11)
“Is abundant also by many thanksgivings unto God” (II Corinthians 9:12).
“I thank my God upon every remembrance of you” (Philippians 1:3).
Paul gave thanks for providence,
“I thank God that I baptized none of you” (I Corinthians 1:14).
Paul gave thanks for liberty,
“For which I give thanks” (I Corinthians 10:30).
“Which God has created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth” (I Timothy 4:3).
Paul gave thanks for victory,
“But thanks be to God, Who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (I Corinthians 15:57).
“Now thanks be unto God, Who always causes us to triumph in Christ” (II Corinthians 2:14).
Paul taught that not being thankful was the first step in apostasy,
“Because that, when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened” (Romans 1:21).
Paul also taught that not being thankful would be the mark of the perilous last days,
“For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy” (II Timothy 3:2).
Paul taught us to give thanks “IN EVERYTHING,”
“In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (I Thessalonians 5:18).
Paul taught us to give thanks “FOR ALL THINGS,”
“Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 5:20).
Therefore, Paul taught us to abound in thanksgiving,
“Abounding therein with thanksgiving” (Colossians 2:7).
“And be thankful” (Colossians 3:15).
“Giving thanks to God” (Colossians 3:17).
“Watching in the same with thanksgiving” (Colossians 4:2).
“I exhort … that … giving of thanks be made for all men” (I Timothy 2:1).
Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.
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