Elder's Encouragement

Elders Encouragement

August - 2018

 

If you listen to the news on radio or TV, or read the paper regularly you might come away thinking there is just no hope left for a civilized world. And Jesus did warn us that this world would bring us trouble. John 16:33. But in the first sentence of the same verse He tells us what will give us peace. What God says will give you peace to overcome the trials of the world. So when the world gets after you, go to God’s word for your strength and peace. Like Psalm 34.

Jack Meehan

Elder

 

 

1 I will bless the Lordat all times;
    his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
2 My soul makes its boast in the Lord;
    let the humble hear and be glad.
3 Oh, magnify the Lordwith me,
    and let us exalt his name together!

4 I sought the Lord, and he answered me
    and delivered me from all my fears.
5 Those who look to him are radiant,
    and their faces shall never be ashamed.
6 This poor man cried, and the Lordheard him
    and saved him out of all his troubles.
7 The angel of the Lordencamps
    around those who fear him, and delivers them.

8 Oh, taste and see that the Lordis good!
    Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!
9 Oh, fear the Lord, you his saints,
    for those who fear him have no lack!
10 The young lions suffer want and hunger;
    but those who seek the Lordlack no good thing.

11 Come, O children, listen to me;
    I will teach you the fear of the Lord.
12 What man is there who desires life
    and loves many days, that he may see good?
13 Keep your tongue from evil
    and your lips from speaking deceit.
14 Turn away from evil and do good;
    seek peace and pursue it.

15 The eyes of the Lordare toward the righteous
    and his ears toward their cry.
16 The face of the Lordis against those who do evil,
    to cut off the memory of them from the earth.
17 When the righteous cry for help, the Lordhears
    and delivers them out of all their troubles.
18 The Lordis near to the brokenhearted
    and saves the crushed in spirit.

19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
    but the Lorddelivers him out of them all.
20 He keeps all his bones;
    not one of them is broken.
21 Affliction will slay the wicked,
    and those who hate the righteous will be condemned.
22 The Lordredeems the life of his servants;
    none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned.

 

 

Elder's Encouragement

July – 2018

I hope you don’t mind. This month I borrowed a few words from another kind of Elder. An Elder of our country. This is from a speech John Quincy Adams gave at Newburyport, MA, July 4th1837.   ( https://wallbuilders.com/oration-july-4th-1837/#)

“Why is it, Friends and Fellow Citizens, that you are here assembled? Why is it, that, entering upon the sixty-second year of our national existence, you have honored with an invitation to address you from this place, a fellow citizen of a former age, bearing in the records of his memory, the warm and vivid affections which attached him, at the distance of a full half century, to your town, and to your forefathers, then the cherished associates of his youthful days? Why is it that, next to the birthday of the Savior of the World, your most joyous and most venerated festival returns on this day? – And why is it that, among the swarming myriads of our population, thousands and tens of thousands among us, abstaining, under the dictate of religious principle, from the commemoration of that birth-day of Him, who brought life and immortality to light, yet unite with all their brethren of this community, year after year, in celebrating this, the birth-day of the nation?”

…“Is it not that, in the chain of human events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior? That it forms a leading event in the progress of the gospel dispensation? Is it not that the Declaration of Independence first organized the social compact on the foundation of the Redeemer’s mission upon earth? That it laid the corner stone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity, and gave to the world the first irrevocable pledge of the fulfillment of the prophecies, announced directly from Heaven at the birth of the Savior…?”

“War, at once civil and foreign, were waged, testing the firmness and fortitude of the one People, in the inflexible adherence to that separation from the other, which their Representatives in Congress had proclaimed. By the signature of the Preliminary Articles of Peace, on the 30th of November 1782, their warfare was accomplished, and the Spirit of the Lord, with a voice reaching to the latest of future ages, might have exclaimed, like the prophet of Israel, – Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God [Isaiah 40:1].”

The freedom we have to gather and worship is not one had by most of the world. And that freedom, at least in the opinion of one of the founder’s sons, was based on “the foundation of the Redeemer’s mission upon earth”.    “…in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself…” 2Corinthians 5:19

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

 

Romans 12:2     

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

It’s not easy to not be conformed to this world. 

According to one source, the French pastor, theologian, and reformer of the mid-1500s, John Calvin, thought it was so hard to not be transformed to this world that he would often preach eight times a week, and some times more. He believed that only being exposed to God’s word once or twice a week did little to resist the relentless diet of false illusions emanating from the world. He was persuaded that Christians needed all the time they could give to hearing God’s word. [1] Of course back then there weren’t many copies of the Scriptures around yet, so hearing is how a person got it.

If Calvin thought there was a relentless diet of false illusions in the 16thcentury, I wonder what he would think about the relentless diet of false illusions in the United States in the 21stcentury. TV programing and commercials. Sex and violence from one end to the other. Radio and it’s music. Songs about suicide and murder and drugs and sex. The internet. Oh my, you can find any kind of evil thought on there. Anything you can imagine. Social media where people tell each other every move they make in an effort to be thought highly of. 

What are we to do with all this? It seems so overwhelming. Shall we all become hermits so we can separate ourselves from the world, or wear a black hat and a bonnet and live in a time past? Even though folks who do such things may have the best of intentions, I don’t think so. The devil’s game has always been to take things that were intended for good, like TV, radio, internet, and social media, then twist and contaminate them and use them for his evil purposes. No I think Calvin’s advice is still good for today. We need to saturate our lives with God’s word daily. On the internet at “Bible Gateway”, there are 59 English versions of God’s word. Find one you like and saturate your life with it.

2Peter 1:3-4, 1John 2:15-17, Philippians 2:12-16, James 3:17-18, John 16:33, 

1John 4:1-4, 1Corinthians 10:13,

Jack Meehan

Elder

[1] – “The Gospel Shaped Life” by Ian Hamilton, page33

Elder's Encouragement

The Valley of Dry Bones

Ezekiel 37:1-10 

1The hand of the Lord was upon me, and he brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of the valley; it was full of bones. 2 And he led me around among them, and behold, there were very many on the surface of the valley, and behold, they were very dry. 3 And he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” 4 Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. 5 Thus says the Lord God to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. 6 And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the Lord.”

7 So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I prophesied, there was a sound, and behold, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. 8 And I looked, and behold, there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them. But there was no breath in them. 9 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.” 10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army.

 

My, my, a strange set of verses wouldn’t you say? What could these verses possibly mean? Well, these verses are about preaching the word of God to a spiritually dead world. God leads Ezekiel into the middle of a valley of dead humans and said “Preach!”  And what did he tell him to preach about? What He, God, says! He will give them new life and breath. (2Cor 5:17-18; John 20:22) Now read the Ezekiel verses again.

No person has ever been born again except through the preaching of God’s word.

(John 3:3, 8; Ro 10:17) And it is not just the “Preachers” job, or just on Sunday. It is up to all of us every day, at work, at play, at all times and everywhere to speak God’s word in this “Valley of Dry Bones” we call our world. After all, eternity is at stake.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

April – 2018

“Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38)

Again, this is the answer Peter gave to about three thousand people on the day of his first sermon. (Acts 2:14-41)  We’ve talked about repentance and baptism and what they mean. Let’s see if we can find out just a few things about what Peter means when he says, “and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” These are only a few verses, there are many more. Please, do not trust me. Look-up these verses to see if what I say is true.

From Acts 2:38 and Galatians 3:14 we learn the Holy Spirit is a gift. It is not something earned. And that we receive the Holy Spirit through faith.

In John 14:46 we find that God the Father sends the Holy Spirit in Jesus’ name and that he is a helper and a teacher.

Mark 12:36 and Acts 1:16 show us that the Holy Spirit has always been used by God to help men know what to say and to inspire them to write down His very word.

Mark 13:11 and Luke 12:11-12 tell us that the Holy Spirit will help us in our gravest trials and still speaks through the mouths of His people.

Acts 1:8 tells us that when we receive the Holy Spirit we gain power to be a witness for God and the gospel.

Galatians 5:16-23 tells us that with the Holy Spirit we also receive His life changing fruit.

Hebrews 2:4 tells us that signs and wonders and miracles and gifts of the Holy Spirit are distributed according to God the Fathers will, not according to my will.

Just a few verses that hopefully help us to know what receiving the Holy Spirit means to us, and causes us to want to study further. I have two more. Acts 19:2. Paul asked some people “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” Because he asked that, I know we can determine if we have received the Holy Spirit. If you are not sure, or know you have not, please talk to Jason or Eric or Melissa or one of the Elders so we can help you, as Paul helped the people he asked. Because in Romans 8:9 God, through Paul, says if you don’t have the Holy Spirit you haven’t got Christ.

Jack Meehan

Elder

 

Elder's Encouragement

March – 2018

“Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38)

Again, this is the answer Peter gave to about three thousand people on the day of his first sermon. (Acts 2:14-37)  Last month we looked at what it means to repent. But Peter didn’t say repent only, he also said to be baptized.

Baptize is the English word for the transliterated Greek word baptizo. Here is a definition of the Greek word baptizo from a Greek dictionary:

1.to dip repeatedly, to immerse, to submerge (of vessels sunk)

2. to cleanse by dipping or submerging, to wash, to make clean with water, to wash one's self, bathe.

Repent and be baptized for the forgiveness of your sins, were probably not unfamiliar words to at least some of these people that day because John the “forerunner” had preached the same thing in the not too distant past. (Matthew 3:11, Mark 1:4, Luke 3:3)   But Peter added to John’s words “in the name of Jesus Christ” and “you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

Jesus’ name was not “Jesus Christ”. His name was “Jesus son of Joseph”, or “Jesus of Nazareth”. (John 1:45, John 18:5)  Christ is the Greek word for the Hebrew word Messiah or “The Anointed One”. (John 1:41)  So what Peter was telling these Jewish people was they had to believe Jesus was “The Anointed One” they had been waiting for, and they needed to be baptized proclaiming that he was. (Acts 19:1-5) That would not have been an easy decision to make. Persecution had already come against anyone proclaiming Jesus as Lord. (John 9:1-34) And persecution will still come to anyone proclaiming he is.

To all who are reading this, your sin of rejecting Jesus as “Christ” is what hung him on the cross. And those of you who continue in that rejection are in real trouble with God. “We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.” (2 Corinthians 5:22b)  “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38)

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

“Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”   Acts 2:38

These are words from Peter to a large group of people on the day of Pentecost just after he had delivered his first sermon. God had opened the ears of about three thousand people that day and they believed and realized they were in real trouble with God. They asked what they should do, so Peter told them, “Repent and be baptized”. We read those words and many times don’t even think about what they mean.

What does it mean to repent? Well believe it or not, “Merriam-Webster” is actually the best place to go for a Biblical definition. Here is it’s number one definition of repent,

“to turn from sin and dedicate oneself to the amendment of one’s life.”

That is a perfect definition.

Now all we have to do is figure out what sin is. If you go to M-W for that definition, their number two answer is the best, “transgression of the law of God.”

Jesus said "If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” Jn14:15

If we know or find out we have not, we need to repent.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

 

December – 2017

 

In Luke 1:5-38 we have two Christmas stories of the angel Gabriel telling people of upcoming births. The first was to Zechariah, telling him how he would soon become the father of John the baptizer. The second was to Mary, telling her how she was soon to become the mother of Jesus the messiah. Both prophecies are incredible. Zechariah and his wife were old and well past the years of normal childbearing, and Mary was a virgin. Gabriel’s messages naturally caused questions in the minds all of them.

Zechariah asked Gabriel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years.” And because he questioned the truth of what Gabriel had said, (v.20) Gabriel pronounced judgment on Zechariah causing him to not be able to speak until John was born.

Mary’s question to Gabriel was, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” She didn’t question the truth of the prophecy, as shown by her statement “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” She just wondered how God would accomplish it.

As we read God’s promises in scripture, such as Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”, let us not question the truth of the promises, but watch in awe as He accomplishes them.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

November 2017

Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!  For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.  Ps100:4-5

A good set of Thanksgiving verses, don’t you think? Very easy to understand and believe. We go in thanking and praising God because He is good, steadfast, loving, and faithful.

That is, it’s very easy to understand and believe when all is going well. But when life is not going so well, we sometimes start to question His goodness, love, and faithfulness, and it can be about as small a thing as not having the weather the way we want it.

Matthew Henry, the famous Bible commentator of the late 1600s, showed a thankful spirit. After he was robbed, he wrote in his diary;

“Let me be thankful first because I was never robbed before; second, because although they took my wallet they did not take my life; third, because although they took my all, it was not much; and fourth, because it was I who was robbed, not I who robbed.”

 

He also is quoted as saying, “Thanksgiving is good but thanks-living is better.”

Maybe I’ll spend this thanksgiving season trying to learn from Matthew Henry.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

If you read Nehemiah chapters 8 and 9 you find the people of Israel attending a worship service that they themselves asked to happen. They asked Ezra to bring out the Book of the Law and to read from it. So Ezra, being the Pastor he was, thought to himself, (according to Jack), “this might only happen once in my lifetime so let me make the most of it”. So he brought out the Book and read “from daybreak until noon”. Wow, now that’s a long service.

 

But in the verses that followed we can find several things about the people’s attitudes as they listened. Here are just a few.

All the people listened attentively.

When Ezra opened the Book the people all stood up.

When Ezra prayed before reading the people lifted their hands and said Amen.

They bowed their heads humbly worshiping as he read.

When they were taught something, they were obedient and did what the book said to do. They mourned over their past disobedience and repented.

 

October is Pastor appreciation month. I wonder if we could show our appreciation for Jason and Eric and Mel in any way more than to simply follow the example given to us in Scripture.

 

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

Here it is September already. The month we usually associate with two things. Labor and fall. Labor day is on the 4th this year and the first day of fall is on the 22nd. At the end of July I turned 65. It depends how old you are as to how you think of 65. To me it seems as if I entered the fall of my life, which makes these lines by C.T. Stud all the more meaningful when I think of what I’m laboring at.

Two little lines I heard one day, traveling along life’s busy way; Bringing conviction to my heart, and from my mind would not depart; Only one life, ’twill soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one, soon will its fleeting hours be done; Then, in ‘that day’ my Lord to meet, and stand before His Judgement seat; Only one life, ’twill soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, a few brief years, each with its burdens, hopes, and fears; Each with its clays I must fulfill, living for self or in His will; Only one life, ’twill soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.

Give me Father, a purpose deep, in joy or sorrow Thy word to keep; Faithful and true what e’er the strife, pleasing Thee in my daily life; Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

August 2017

One of my earliest recollections as a boy of about three is going to one of the local grocery stores with my Mom and stealing a piece of bubble gum. Now this wasn’t just a youngster who didn’t know any better picking it up and walking out. No! This was a pre-planned heist! And when we got back to our car I sat with my legs straight and stiff as a board with my ill-gotten gains underneath. Then the interrogation started, ending with a tearful confession to the store owner.

Before I ever picked up that piece of gum, there was something inside me telling me it was wrong and I shouldn’t do it. That same something, my conscience, is still there. William Gurnall in his book “The Christian in Complete Armour”, published 1655, speaks of man’s conscience this way. “Man’s conscience, like his physical body, is created by God. Conscience may be defined as that divine influence at work in man to restrain him from sin. One evidence of its origin is that it always speaks against sin and for righteousness. Therefore, it cannot be the product of our own hearts which in their fallen state are ‘deceitful above all things and desperately wicked’.”  Jer 17:9

I think I’ll spend August learning to pay closer attention to that “divine influence” at work in me.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

One of the great truths about our Bibles is that by the Old Testament we can understand some of the main revelations given to us in the New Testament.

For example what does Paul mean in Romans 3:23-24 when he uses the phrase “redemption that is in Christ Jesus”. What is this redemption that is in Christ Jesus?

Paul’s original readers would have immediately known he meant that Jesus was their “Goel”. That’s a Hebrew word which most of our English Bible versions translate “Kinsman-Redeemer”. By reading the Old Testament books of the law and the book of  Ruth we can discover what God through Paul intends for us to understand about our “Goel”, as his first readers did.

Jesus, our Goel, redeems us by being our closest relative who in our time of need comes and rescues us saying, “Have you got a burden (your sin). Let me bear it. Have you got a debt? Let me pay it as if it were my own. Have you got a problem? Give it to me and let me solve it. Have you got a need that you cannot possibly meet? Let me meet it.”

To understand the Bible we must read the whole book. July is a great time to start.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Matthew 11:28-29

In Ireland in the spring it is deer hunting time. They chase the deer down with dogs who corner their prey, then the hunters come up and get supper.

The deer have learned something over the years. In the valleys in Ireland, in the spring, lilies grow. Not little lilies but large, 5 or 6 foot tall lilies. So guess what the deer have learned? When the chase is on they run to the valleys, get out in the middle of the lilies, and lie down very still and quietly. The hunters come up to the edge of the valley and look out and can not see the deer. The dogs run into the lilies and guess what they smell? Lilies. They loose the scent and after a while the chase is over until the next time.

When you are being chased by the hound of hell and the world is hunting you down, run to the Lily of the Valley, lie down,,,, and be very still,,,, and wait for the hound to loose the scent.

I am a rose of Sharon, a lily of the valleys. 

Song of Solomon 2:1

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

What a beautiful spring we have had so far. Good rains, really nice temperatures, flowers and trees blooming everywhere. Before you know it school will be out and all the summer activities will start.

Sometimes, unfortunately, all our summer activities can draw us away from meeting together on the first day of the week to worship our Savior. When that happens we miss that short but precious time when we can leave the lying deceiving world behind to be with others whose minds have been made new. Ro 12:2, 2 Cor 5:17  It is always so refreshing to be with like-minded people praising God for what he has done. So as the vacations and all the other activities of summer begin let me encourage you to meet with other Christians for worship wherever you might be.

“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful.  And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”  Hebrews 10:23-25

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

April, the month we focus on the resurrection of Christ. Of course we at FCC Abilene focus on the resurrection every week during communion. But still, Easter is special.

Have you ever paused and asked yourself, “Do I really believe Christ rose from the dead or is it something I know I’m supposed to believe, so when asked I’ve always just said yes.” It is really a very important question.

Read Romans 10:9-11. Paul actually makes a condition of true believing faith that I “…believe in your (my) heart that God raised him from the dead…” t question. Is the resurrection really something you believe or is it something you know you are supposeRead 1Cor 15:12-19. God says through Paul “if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.” And, that he and the other apostles have all lied to us because they all testified that Christ did rise from the dead. If they lied to us about that, then what else in the New Testament did they lie about? All of Christianity falls if God did not raise Jesus from the dead.

Knowing all of that, the question remains. Do I really believe Christ rose from the dead?

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

March is such a windy month. In fact it can be kind of the beginning of some real dangerous storms. I wonder why that is? Well for a concise answer to that question, ask the “Weather Dudes”. Really Jack? “The Weather Dudes”? Yes, here’s the link,, http://www.weatherdudes.com/facts_display.php?fact_id=48

Hey, I try to stay up on stuff dude. I also try to be careful to be prepared for dangerous storms that could be coming.

Paul also tells us of some winds to be careful of. Winds of phony doctrine that are produced “by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes.”  He says the way to battle these winds is for us to be unified in Christ, helping each other come to maturity in the faith.  Ephesians 4:1-16.  He also commends checking the Scriptures to see if what is being taught is true. Acts 17:11.

The Pastors and Elders of First Christian Church encourage you to do the same.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

February is the month of love. Saint Valentine ’s Day and all. So I “Googled” who St Valentine was and how it all started. One site said this, and one said that, to the point I didn’t believe any of them. There seems to be three churches who claim to have the remains of St. Valentine. I’ll leave all that up to someone else to figure out.

God defines love this way. “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.  Love never ends.”  (1Cor 13:4-8)

When Jesus was asked by some Pharisees what was the greatest commandment he said, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”  (Matt 22:37-39)

I would assume then that He meant for us to love Him, and our fellow man, in the way He defined it.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

Read - 2Timothy 3:16-17

These are words written to Timothy in probably the final letter by Paul before his execution. Imagine, as Paul waited to die, of all the things he could have told Timothy to reaffirm him in his role as a Pastor, the number one thing was the importance of Scripture. And he didn’t mention it just once. He told him it was through the Gospel that Christ ushered in immortality and light. Also to be strengthened by the words that Paul had preached, and to pass them on to faithful men, who would then teach others. He told him to rightly handle the word and to not be ashamed of it. And he charged Timothy to preach the word, and to be ready to do it whenever the need arose.

We are starting a new year, and once again I encourage you to start a reading plan that will take you through the Bible this year. If you need help finding a plan ask one of the Elders or Pastors and we will help you find the one that is right for you. Then if Amos 8:11 should come again you will be able to agree with the writer of Psalm 119:11.

Jack Meehan

Elder

Elder's Encouragement

Give - to set forth or show; present; offer.  Thanks - to express thankfulness.

Steadfast - firmly fixed in place, not subject to change.  Forever - for all time.

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    for his steadfast love endures forever!

Do you know how many times that verse, or one very similar, is in the Bible? Well let’s see. All we need is a good concordance to find out. 1Chronicles 16:34, 1Chronicles 16:41, 2Chronicles 20:21, Psalm 106:1, Psalm 107:1, Psalm 118:1, Psalm 118:29, Psalm 136:1, Psalm 136:3, Jeremiah 33:11.  Usually if something is in scripture 2 or 3 times we consider it as very important to God.

Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name;
    make known his deeds among the peoples!

Let’s do the same with this verse. 1 Chronicles 16:8, Psalm 9:1, Psalm 75:1, Psalm 105:1, Isaiah 12:4.

Ten for the first, and five for the second. It seems that it is pretty important to God that we understand and share these two verses. I think this “Thanksgiving” season when somebody asks me what I’m thankful for, I’ll just tell them of the first verse, and do the second.

Jack Meehan

Elder