“Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.”
• We are called to enter into God’s gates (the outer courts) with thanksgiving and into His courts (inner courts) with praise.
• The tabernacle: God’s dwelling place:
• The outer courts had no ceiling. It was a place with a brazen altar. There was only natural light in the outer courts. You can also note that we don’t need the light of the Holy Spirit to be thankful. The people brought themselves, their flesh here. There was a lavar cleansing pool. There was no limit to cleansing!
• The inner courts had walls and a ceiling. It also had light from a seven branch candlestick representing the seven anointings of the Holy Spirit: (1) spirit of the Lord, (2) the spirit of wisdom, (3) understanding, (4) the spirit of counsel, (5) might, (6) the spirit of knowledge, and (7) the fear of the Lord. Only priest were allowed into the inner courts. The altar of incense was here too.
• Praise is consumed with who God is and what He has done
• Worship is surrender to God!
• We cannot bypass thanksgiving and praise to go to worship. There has to be thanksgiving and praise first.
“I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the Lord.”
• Thanksgiving is an offering!
• God knows our gratitude and the sincerity of our thankfulness. He sees our heart and the sincerity of our thankfulness affects the intensity of our praise.
• Take inventory of what the Lord has done for you and what your life could have been and offer Him thanks.
• Sacrifice of thanksgiving – it is hard to give thanks. If it’s easy, it’s not a sacrifice. A sacrifice makes the gift more precious.
“That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works.”
• Let your testimony be toward the goodness of God!
• Don’t let comparison and an ungodly mindset to rob you of your thankfulness.
• When you compare with others, it strangles the voice of thanksgiving.
• Samuel was content with the praise he got until David got more attention.
• Other examples of unthankfulness: Genesis 26:14, Est 5:9-14, Genesis 4, Gen 30, Numbers 11:10-15, 1 Kings 19:4-10, Jonah 4.
• Covetousness keeps us from thanksgiving.
• James 4:2-3 describes when you can’t get enough: “Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.” James 4:2-3
• Enter into His gates with thanksgiving:
– Take natural inventory of your of your flesh.
• Enter into His courts with praise:
– This involves a conversion of the mind.
– Praise can be offered to God for what you know about Him, not what you’ve experienced (such as healing). You can praise Him as your healer even when you are waiting to be healed.
– Praise is spiritual, it has nothing to do with your physical life.
– You can be limited financially but praise Him as a provider! You can be lost but praise Him as a way maker!
• Worship Him in the beauty of holiness:
– This is complete surrender!
– At this point, you’ve so encountered His presence that you are surrendered.
– It is a position and a posture. There doesn’t even have to be a song playing.
– Its on the other end of thanksgiving. The first says thanks for what I have and the last says you can have it all!
• If you can’t credit God for what’s in your life, you’ll never offer it to Him. You can offer it back when you know the source.
• Could it be that our worship is not intense because we’ve not been thankful?
• Make thanksgiving the culture of your home. It is a spiritual principle that we have to do more often in our lives.