Charles Spurgeon reveals the secrets of developing a thankful heart. With this inward transformation, your life will overflow with joyful praise and gratitude. In this insightful book, you will discover God's great plan of salvation, who you are in Christ, the certainty of God's promises, your acceptance in the Beloved, the warmth of being God's friend, and Christ's victory for you over sin, death, and Satan. Your life will be filled with the love and peace of God. As you give thanks for all of God's bountiful gifts to you, your sorrows will be burned into joys!
- Special Thanksgiving to the Father
- Jesus, Our Example of Holy Praise
- Marvelous Things
- Christ's Joy and Ours
- A Wonderful Transformation
- A Harp of Ten Strings
Chapter 1 Special Thanksgiving to the Father
Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son. Colossians 1:12-13
Our first text is a mine of riches. I anticipate the difficulty I may experience in expressing the depths of these verses and the regret I may feel in concluding this chapter because I am not able to dig out all the gold that lies in this precious vein. I admit that I lack the power to truly grasp, as well as the ability to present, the volume of truths that has been condensed into these few sentences.
We are exhorted to give "thanks unto the Father." This counsel is simultaneously needed and advantageous for each and every one of us.
My friends, I think we scarcely need to be told to give thanks to the Son. The remembrance of His bleeding body hanging upon the cross is ever present to our faith. The nails and the spear, His griefs, the anguish of His soul, and His agonizing sweat make such tender, touching appeals to our gratitude that they will always prevent us from ceasing our songs and will often fire our hearts with rekindling rapture in praise of Christ Jesus. Yes, we will bless You, dearest Lord. Our souls are all on fire. As we survey the wondrous cross, we cannot but shout,
O for this love let rocks and hills
Their lasting silence break,
And all harmonious human tongues
The Savior¿s praises speak.
It is very much the same with the Holy Spirit. I think we are made to feel our dependence on His constant influence every day. He abides with us as a present, personal Comforter and Counselor. Thus, we praise the Spirit of Grace who has made our hearts His temple and who works in us all that is gracious, well-pleasing, and virtuous in the sight of God.
THE PRAISEWORTHY FATHER
If there is any one Person in the Trinity whom we are more apt to forget than the others in our praises, it is God the Father. In fact, some people even get a wrong idea of Him, a slanderous idea of our God whose name is Love. They imagine that love dwells in Christ, rather than in the Father, and that our salvation is due more to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, rather than to our Father God.
Let us not be numbered with the ignorant, but may we receive this truth for ourselves: we are as much indebted to God the Father as we are to any Person of the Sacred Three. Our heavenly Father loves us as much and as truly as any of the worthy Three Persons does. God the Father is as truly worthy of our highest praise as either the Son or the Holy Spirit is.
THE SOURCE OF GOD'S WORKS
A remarkable fact, which we should always bear in mind, is this: in the Scriptures most of the operations that are described as being the works of the Holy Spirit are ascribed to God the Father in other passages. Do we not say that God the Holy Spirit quickens (John 6:63) the sinner who is dead in sin? It is true, but you will find in another verse that it is said, "The Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them" (John 5:21). Do we say that the Spirit is the Sanctifier and that the sanctification of the soul is a work of the Holy Spirit? Yes, but you will find a phrase in the opening of Jude¿s epistle in which he wrote, "To them that are sanctified by God the Father" (Jude 1:1).
Now, how are we to account for this? I think it may be explained this way. God the Spirit comes to us by the direction of God the Father. Therefore, whatever acts are performed by the Holy Spirit are truly done by the Father, because He sends forth the Spirit. The Spirit is often the instrument "although I do not say this in any way to detract from His glory" by which the Father works. It is the Father who says to the dry bones, "live" (Ezekiel 37:5); it is the Spirit who, going forth with the divine word, makes them live. The quickening is due as much to the Father¿s word as to the Spirit¿s influence that went with the word. Since the word came with all the bounty of free grace and goodwill from the Father, the quickening is due to Him.
It is true that the Holy Spirit is the seal upon our hearts:
In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise.(Ephesians 1:13)
And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
The Holy Spirit is the seal, but it is the Eternal Father¿s hand that stamps the seal. God the Father gives His Spirit to seal our adoption:
But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me.(John 15:26)
Ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.(Romans 8:15)
I repeat, many of the works of the Spirit can ultimately be attributed to the Father because He works in, through, and by the Spirit.
I ought to make the observation here that the works of the Son of God are, every one of them, intimately connected with the Father. The Son came into the world because His Father sent Him. The Son calls His people because His Father already gave them into His hands. When the Son redeemed the chosen race, was not the Son Himself the Father¿s gift? Did not God send His Son into the world so that we might live through Him? So then, the Father, the great Ancient of Days, is ever to be extolled; and we must never omit the full homage of our hearts to Him when we sing that sacred doxology:
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
In order to stimulate your gratitude to God the Father, I want to discuss this glorious passage in Colossians in detail, as God enables me. If you look at the text, you will see two blessings in it. The first has to do with the present; it concerns our fitness to receive "the inheritance of the saints in light." The second blessing, which must go with the first, for indeed it is the effective cause of the first, is related to the past. Here we read of our deliverance from the power of darkness. Let us meditate a little upon each of these blessings. Then, I will endeavor to show the relationship that exists between the two.
Charles. H. Spurgeon (1834-1892), the "Prince of Preachers," preached his first sermon at age sixteen. During his lifetime, he preached to an estimated ten million people. He founded and supported charitable outreaches, including educational institutions. He also founded a pastors' college and the famous Stockwell Orphanage. Spurgeon published over two thousand of his sermons, as well as numerous books. Highlighted with splashes of spontaneous, delightful humor, his teachings still provide direction to all who are seeking true joy and genuine intimacy with God.