Offering our sacrifice of praise
Lord, help!” they cried in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. He sent out his word and healed them, snatching them from the door of death. Let them praise the Lord for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them. Let them offer sacrifices of thanksgiving and sing joyfully about his glorious acts. Psalms 107:19-22
Thanksgiving celebration was rooted in the acknowledgement of the providence of God. When the Pilgrims in Plymouth Massachusetts celebrated thanksgiving together with the local Native Americans it was for the purpose of giving thanks to God that provided them harvest and survival from their first winter experience in the New World. When President George Washington was asked by US Congress to made a proclamation declaring a national Day of Prayer and Thanksgiving he included a powerful statement saying that it is the national duty of all nations to acknowledge God, obey Him and be grateful for what He has done. One factor that separates us from animals is our ability to use words connecting them together to form complex concepts and to use our physical faculties to convey such thoughts. This is how God designed us being in His image and one of the noblest uses of this ability is the capacity to praise and worship Him. The Psalmist from the text called all the redeemed to offer thanks for God’s wonderful act of deliverance. “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. Has the Lord redeemed you? Then speak out!” (Psalm 107:1-2). The Psalmist cited several reasons why the redeemed should offer their praise to God. But the one that was highlighted was the redemption He provided them when they were led out from Egyptian bondage (v. 3). God’s love is strong and enduring for those who allowed Him to save them. “The godly will see these things and be glad, while the wicked are struck silent. Those who are wise will take all this to heart; they will see in our history the faithful love of the Lord” (vv. 42-43). Let us offer to God our praise and thanksgiving when we gather together as we remember how God through the Lord Jesus Christ paid the price to redeem us. Thanking God is not only our duty but also a privilege for through it we offer our worship. One day we will gather with heavenly beings together with the redeemed of all ages and nations offering our praise for His great works in creation and the redemption He gave us. “You are worthy, O Lord our God, to receive glory and honor and power. For you created all things, and they exist because you created what you pleased” (Revelation 4:11). “You are worthy to take the scroll and break its seals and open it. For you were slaughtered, and your blood has ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation” (Revelation 5:9).
Noel De Guzman