Thanksgiving, by Pastor Peter Yakubu
Bible Text: Luke 17:11-19
What is Thanksgiving? Why will I give thanks and if I refuse to give thanks what will happen? The Bible text is a very familiar story about the ten lepers. They cried that Jesus should have mercy on them. After being cleansed only one of them came back to give thanks and Jesus wondered why out of 10 only one came back to glorify God but the other 9 was found wanting.
The virus of leprosy eats up the bones; some of them do not have fingers anymore. Suddenly these lepers felt healed in their body, they knew the difference. What happened was they didn’t feel the pain anymore after Jesus said they should go and show themselves to the Priest. Jesus was waiting for them to come back and show gratitude but for only one.
Nobody has a right to life if you don’t need healing to life; show gratitude if you find yourself still alive. We are in a world where people keep asking questions “If God is good why are there killings and sufferings in other countries?” if people understand God very well, they would know God is not responsible for killings and sufferings. He is a God of order unlike before the fall when He enters the Garden anytime, but the fall of a man shut Him out of this world. He rules the world through man and if man refuse to submit; He wouldn’t force. That is why He said although we are in this world we are not of this world, he has access through us now.
Learn to say thank you. Hebrews 11:6 “…..without faith it is impossible to please God”. Thanksgiving is an act of faith. Out of the 10 Lepers, only a man came to say thank you and Jesus said “your faith has made you whole…” (Luke 17:16-19). The other people went with half fingers and half toes although without pain but the only man with gratitude was made whole.
If anyone gives you something, be grateful, show gratitude. I heard there is this man “Formula 1 champion- Schumacher” he fell ill about 4years ago and was in coma, they spent over 1 billion naira (when converted to naira) to keep him alive. All the money he has ever earned has been spent on this illness. In Nigeria, it’s about 5000 naira to pay for oxygen per hour. You are sitting amongst the audience and you do not have to pay for the air you breathe, show gratitude.
At one time as a Bachelor, I was living at the church house. There were apartments set aside for people in need. So we were about 30, with singles and families with kids. So this Brother came forward to render some help, got 2 bed house paid for 2years rent in order to help one of the families. So I took the keys, hoping that the man will be dancing for joy. After giving him the keys and told him we had paid for 2 years, he came back and said “…after 2years who will pay”. The man lacked faith and gratitude. A man without gratitude is a man without faith. Without faith it’s impossible to please God. If someone does something for you and you say thank you and he says don’t mention, please mention it. If you don’t, the person won’t like it.
Try it, someone gives you something and you collect and leave without showing some form of gratitude. It is important that we give thanks.
Note that, tithes and offering is also a way of giving thanks to God. If you have a problem with giving tithes and you are a Christian; you are ungrateful. Firstly, the whole package is not yours; God has given it to you. Giving your tithes and offering is a show of gratitude and display of faith that the Lord God Almighty will continue to less the lot.
Continue to show gratitude henceforth and see how your life would take a different turn for the best. Praise the Lord!!!!! Halleluyah.
The sermon, Thanksgiving, by Pastor Peter Yakubu, of Prevailing Life Ministries, Lagos was delivered on February 4, 2018.