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  • William T. Howe Ph.D.

November 22, 2023

The Bible Edge

Thank You Lord

Hebrews 13:15

By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.

With so many things for which to give thanks, how? How can we give thanks to the Lord? Over the next few days consider ways from the Scriptures to thank Him. First, with our lips! Let our lips offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually. In this statement there are three key words that added together give us the sum of how to thank Him with our lips.

Sacrifice. In the Old Testament there were many sacrifices made unto God. One was the sacrifice of praise. Psalm 116:17 states: I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD. In the New Testament we are encouraged to do the same. Praise Him with our lips, that is a sacrifice of sorts. When it comes to the great things of life, self is often king. Sacrifice is the opposite of self. To truly praise God takes sacrifice of self in that we put ourselves down and lift Him up. John the Baptist summed up this sacrifice of self when he said of Jesus: He must increase, but I must decrease. John 3:30

The second word is praise. The sacrifice of praise. Not of money, for some have none to give and not of an innocent animal like a lamb, goat, turtledove or ox, but of words. Words of praise. Just saying the words “Thank you, Lord” is a sacrifice of praise given. To say “thank you” meaningfully is a small sacrifice of self in that we are lowered and those whom we thank are elevated. They are praised. No wonder so many find it difficult to look someone in the eye and say “thank you” in a way that the other person is uplifted. If we find this difficult with those we see, how much more difficult is it to offer such sacrifice to He who can’t be seen.

Continually. That is the third word in this prescription for praise. A measure of sacrifice, a measure of praise, a measure of praise continually. There was a time when I never, if ever praised the Lord verbally in prayer or casual conversation. Then I heard James Green pray. He was a deacon in our church, the head deacon for many years. When he prays, he always begins with praising the Lord, thanking Him for all His wonderful benefits. He did this continually. I caught it, for this is a grace that like so many others is better caught than taught. Continually means repeatedly, frequently, persistently, incessantly, over and over and over again. We are to give the sacrifice of praise to God continually.

James 3:11 states: Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? Lips that bring forth the sacrifice of praise to God continually are lips that will bring forth sweet water all the time. No bitterness, just sweetness. Sweet sacrifices of praise to God continually. What a thing to do. An amazing thing to do.

William T. Howe, Ph.D.

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