United States President George Washington’s Thanksgiving Day Proclamation: https://www.mountvernon.org/education/primary-sources-2/article/thanksgiving-proclamation-of-1789/
Psalm 100 The Message
100 1-2 On your feet now—applaud God!
Bring a gift of laughter,
sing yourselves into his presence.
3 Know this: God is God, and God, God.
He made us; we didn’t make him.
We’re his people, his well-tended sheep.
4 Enter with the password: “Thank you!”
Make yourselves at home, talking praise.
Thank him. Worship him.
5 For God is sheer beauty,
all-generous in love,
loyal always and ever.
The Word of God for the Children of God. In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.
Psalm 100 is a climactic “mountain top” expression of thanksgiving. David tells us to acknowledge that ONLY the Lord is our God. How ought we do that? We acknowledge him when we shout and sing our praises, appreciate his status as our creator, accept his authority in every detail of life, enthusiastically agree with the guidance he gives us, and express our thanks for his unfailing love.
God created us; we did not create ourselves. Many people live as though they are the creator and center of their own little world. They believe they choose their own lifestyles, determine their own boundaries, and decide their own values.
This mind-set leads to pride, self-glorification, greed, and idolatry. But if everything were taken away, they would lose hope itself. When we realize that God created us and gives us all we have, we will want to give to others as God has given to us. Then, even if all is lost, we still have God and all he provides.
God created us, we belong to him. We find joy and hope in the relationship because the Creator God is our good, loving Shepherd. God by creating the world, established his power and authority to rule it. This calls for our praise.
God is the Creator who spoke our world into existence. He has total control over the chaotic waters out of which he called forth the land – heights and depths – land and sea. Thus he rules all, and we respond naturally in humble yet raucous worship. We need not create any reason or rationale for fear from any part of his creation. We need only fear the Lord God, that is, revere and worship him.
We have to worship God as a Church — God’s Family and Community – God’s people have abundant reasons to praise him. This verse 3 gives three reasons.
1. The Lord is God. He alone created the universe and is, therefore, Lord of creation.
2. God made us in his image. In His Image He Created Us! We are not our own creators, makers, shapers or shakers. We are not the potter, we’re but the clay.
3. God shepherds his people. He is involved intimately in the lives of his people. God’s people are thus a worshiping, praising and thanksgiving community.
Thanksgiving — Thanksgiving is a vital part of the community’s coming together in God’s house for worship. We should enter his presence with thanksgiving reverence and submission. The call to worship of Psalm 100 is a vital prayer in the congregation’s corporate worship. It calls for worship and obedience. Its speech to the congregation is at the same time prayer to God.
Praise — God’s word, God’s character, God’s creation, and God’s rule are compelling reasons to join the congregation in thanksgiving and praise. Music and singing are poetic ways to praise God. God’s unfailing covenant love is the overriding basis for all human praise. Praise includes a call to the congregation and community to join in praise for God’s creation, His mercy and faithfulness.
Faithfulness — God’s faithfulness is more than an abstract characteristic. Faithfulness finds its truest expression in action. God’s acts have a purpose. They carry out his dependable promises. God is not fickle. His good, loving faithfulness and Sovereignty remains the same forever. We can count on him.
Sovereignty — The sovereignty of God, his authority and power to rule over the world and achieve his purposes. He accomplishes his own plans for his creation. His sovereignty thus leads to salvation that he offers to his people.
Salvation — Blessing – God blesses the nation who owns him as Lord. This is his eternal plan to which he steadfastly commits himself. It means God’s basic work is to save a people for fellowship and worship with him. (Psalm 33:10-12)
Fellowship — Relationship to God – God, the Creator, is sovereign over all his creation, including every human. Any creature, whether great or small, is ultimately subservient to the Creator. Most remarkably, the sovereign God is defined by Love and Grace, Mercy and Forgiveness, so he uses his sovereign knowledge and power for our good. He delivers us from sin, evil, and from all threatening forces, and allow us to be covered by his salvation and Justice.
Justice — God’s righteousness and justice are closely related ideas. His justice grows out of his righteousness. God’s strongest positive feeling, his love, goes out to everything which establishes what is right and just in this world.
Grace and Love — God’s grace and love are basic to his character. No conflict exists between his love and righteousness in verse 5, they are virtually used as synonyms. Righteousness is the ultimate goal he loves to achieve in his world. His truest love is the goal his people seek justice, peace and joy in their distress.
The goal of society should be establishing right and justice because God loves and embodies these characteristics. The believer, in praise and worship, sees evidence of these divine qualities filling our world. God alone is worthy of being worshiped. What is your attitude toward worship? Do we gracefully, willingly, joyfully come into God’s presence, or are we just going through the motions, reluctantly whispering “thanks”? Has a recent disagreement left us fuming?
Doesn’t matter! Whatever circumstances we are facing in this moment or during this pandemic. Remember! this psalm 100 tells us to lay aside the cares of “normal” life and remember God’s goodness and dependability. This will change our attitudes and enable us to worship with thanksgiving and praise!
The climax to this series of praises of the Lord’s universal reign is a shout of joy. We praise him joyfully as God, Creator, and Shepherd. We give thanks because he is Sovereign, good, loving, and forever faithful. He is Just and our Redeemer gives us justice, love, joy, peace and Salvation. Because the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.
Blanket your Neighbors with Shouts of Praise and “ALL THANKS BE TO GOD!”
Enter into His Presence! Praise the Lord and give ALL thanks unto him! Amen.
God Bless you all.
In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, Let us now Pray,
God, like the Israelites in the wilderness, we too have known Your love, and experienced Your care and provision. You invite us to extend that love to the world around us—to care for others as deeply as we care for ourselves. So we bring the needs of our world before You now. In Your mercy, hear our prayer.
We pray for the many who do not have enough: enough food to eat, or shelter to keep warm; enough employment, or money to pay their bills; also enough medicine or medical care. Lord, in Your mercy, by your grace, hear our prayer.
We also pray for those who have more than enough, but who still struggle to find meaning and purpose in life; who indulge in dangerous or self-serving activities to dull their pain or loneliness. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Creator God, Your grace reaches out to all of us. You call us to live as citizens of heaven, working together with one heart and mind. Strengthen us to live in a manner worthy of the Good News we have received, offering our lives in service of Your kingdom, where the last are first, and the first are last, there is grace enough for all, for all lives matter to You. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
In the name of Jesus Christ, our Saviour and Lord, Amen.