What is the Purpose of Thanksgiving Day?
Delivered By
From Pastor David
Delivered On
November 7, 2016
Subject
What Is The Purpose of Thanksgiving Day?
Description

     Abraham Lincoln designated the last Thursday of November as a day to give thanks to God, to humble ourselves and pray earnestly for our nation. Since then the meaning has been forgotten, lost, or even stifled. We think it is for us to eat turkey, watch football games, and enjoy a day off. The Word of God tells us in Psalm 100:4-5  4“Enter his gates with thanksgiving  and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.  5For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.”  Psalm 33:12 “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord: and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.”  

     By the President of the United States of America - A Proclamation. It has pleased Almighty God to prolong our national life another year, defending us with His guardian care against unfriendly designs from abroad and vouchsafing to us in His mercy many and signal victories over the enemy, who is of our own household. It has also pleased our Heavenly Father to favor as well our citizens in their homes as our soldiers in their camps and our sailors on the rivers and seas with unusual health. He has largely augmented our free population by emancipation and by immigration, while He has opened to us new sources of wealth and has crowned the labor of our workingmen in every department of industry with abundant rewards. Moreover, He has been pleased to animate and inspire our minds and hearts with fortitude, courage, and resolution sufficient for the great trial of civil war into which we have been brought by our adherence as a nation to the cause of freedom and humanity, and to afford to us reasonable hopes of an ultimate and happy deliverance from all our dangers and afflictions:  Now, therefore, I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, do hereby appoint and set apart the last Thursday in November next as a day which I desire to be observed by all my fellow-citizens, wherever they may then be, as a day of thanksgiving and praise to Almighty God, the beneficent Creator and Ruler of the Universe. And I do further recommend to my fellow-citizens aforesaid that on that occasion they do reverently humble themselves in the dust and from thence offer up penitent and fervent prayers and supplications to the Great Disposer of Events for a return of the inestimable blessings of peace, union, and harmony throughout the land which it has pleased Him to assign as a dwelling place for ourselves and for our posterity throughout all generations.   In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed. Done at the city of Washington, this 20th day of October, A.D. 1864, and of the Independence of the United States the eighty-ninth year.  ABRAHAM LINCOLN. By the President: WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State. 

     Lincoln would later write in His call to prayer and fasting, “But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us; and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own. Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!  When you sit down around the table to eat turkey and all the fixings that go with it, remember the real reason for thanksgiving is to give thanks, and to call on God in humility, penitence, and fervency for our nation.

Give thanks, with a grateful heart,    

Pastor David

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