Peo­ple in bib­li­cal times also gave thanks to God

The Commercial Appeal - - Front Page -

Yes, peo­ple in the Bi­ble did cel­e­brate thanks­giv­ing — not just once a year (as we do), but sev­eral times through­out the year. Their pur­pose wasn’t just to get to­gether and en­joy a spe­cial meal, but to thank God for his bless­ings to them. The Bi­ble says, “Give thanks to him and praise his name. For the lord is good and his love en­dures for­ever” (Psalm 100:4-5).

In the Old Tes­ta­ment, the peo­ple cel­e­brated sev­eral times of thanks­giv­ing (usu­ally called “feasts” or “fes­ti­vals”). Three were es­pe­cially im­por­tant: Passover and the Feast of Un­leav­ened Bread in early Spring, thank­ing God for their de­liv­er­ance from slav­ery and for the be­gin­ning of the bar­ley har­vest; the Feast of Weeks in early Sum­mer, thank­ing God for the be­gin­ning of the wheat har­vest; and the Feast of Taber­na­cles in the Fall, thank­ing God for the end of the har­vest sea­son. God told them to “Be joy­ful at your fes­ti­val . ... For the lord your God will bless you” (Deuteron­omy 16:14-15).

Although times have changed, as you and your fam­ily gather in a few days for Thanks­giv­ing, may each of you — like those an­cient Is­raelites — sin­cerely thank God for his bless­ings to you. Not only has he given you your fam­ily, He’s also blessed you with many other good things — far be­yond what most peo­ple in our world will ever pos­sess.

Most of all, God has blessed us by giv­ing us his son, Je­sus Christ, who gave his life for our sal­va­tion. He is God’s great­est gift!

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