Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day in Canada. It is always good to be filled with gratitude and thanksgiving to God. The Psalmist tells us, “It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord” [Psalm 92:1]. It is a blessing to set aside a special day to focus our thanks on the Lord.
In Canada, we have more cause for thanksgiving than most. The country has vast tracts of fertile land and a climate that brings forth grain, fruit and meat plentifully. It has an almost limitless supply of good, clean, fresh water. We sometimes grumble about the ineptitude of politicians but we can thank the Lord Canada is a stable country with no wars, tyrants, or despots. There is little by way of persecution. We can echo the words of the Children of Israel, “it is a good land which the Lord our God doth give us” [Deuteronomy 1:25]
“Then I was by Him, as one brought up with him: and I was daily His delight” [Proverbs 8:30].
This refers to the relationship between God the Father, and His pre-existent Son, Jesus Christ. One can understand the Father’s “delight” in His “only begotten Son.” But amazingly, the next verse speaks of God “rejoicing in the habitable part of His earth; and my delights were with the sons of men.”
We come face to face with God as the great Creator. He made us, He made the world, He made the Universe. With the Hubble, and now the James Webb telescopes, we can see something of the astounding size of God’s creation. I think we need to contemplate just how great God is.
It is estimated that there are 200 million stars in our Milky Way galaxy. There are probably another 100 million galaxies out there just like ours. If we had a supercomputer counting them at 10 million a second, it would take 63 million years to count them all!
Beside us, the Lord is infinite or limitless. And we are but “grasshoppers” [Isaiah 40:22]. Let us ponder Solomon’s wise words;
“Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thy heart be hasty to utter any thing: For God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few” [Ecclesiastes 5:2]
Yet here is an amazing and staggering thing. Despite the disparity between the size of God and man, the Lord Almighty says that He delights in His people every day. We see ourselves as unworthy recipients of the grace of God, another good reason to be thankful today and “to sing praises unto (His) name, O most High” [Psalm 92:1]. We wonder why God so loves us. It is because of “His only begotten Son,” the darling of His bosom. We mere mortals are blessed because of Him. [Note verses 22 – 36]. It is astounding that we saved sinners are the objects of “His delight.”And the prayers of the upright are also “His delight” [Proverbs15:8].
THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS
“Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee” [Matthew 9:2].
Before Christ dealt with the physical needs of the man sick of the palsy (paralysis), He dealt with the spiritual. He looked beyond the man’s bodily disability and saw a soul stricken with sin, in danger of eternal death. In dealing with that need first, Christ teaches us the importance of having our priorities right. We must not put the body before the soul. or time before eternity.
The palsied man was aware of his spiritual need. The words of Christ indicate that he was troubled about his soul. The Lord said to him, “Be of good cheer,” showing he was miserable and unhappy. He felt the weight of his sin. His friends were carrying him, but he was carrying a greater burden, that of unforgiven sin. A load of guilt pressed down upon him, which he was helpless to do anything about.
Furthermore, so dejected was he, that he felt there was no hope. The words “be of good cheer” mean “take courage” – “take courage, thy sins be forgiven thee.” The implication is that he had lost all courage, all hope that his sins would be forgiven.
But in faith, his friends had brought him to Christ. Believing the Lord had the power to forgive sins. They were not disappointed.
Christ has the authority to forgive sin. He is the Lamb of God who bore sin, the Redeemer through whom there is forgiveness, and the great High Priest who can be approached to obtain it. Come to Him today and receive the greatest blessing that man could ever possess, the forgiveness of sins.[Dr. Alan Cairns].
“Sins are so remitted as if they had never been committed.” [Thomas Adams].