[From Study 8 ws 02/19 p.14– April 22 – April 28]
“Show yourselves thankful” — Colossians 3:15
“Also, let the peace of the Christ rule in your hearts, for you were called to that peace in one body. And show yourselves thankful” (Colossians 3:15)
The Greek word for “thankful” which is used in Colossians 3:15 is eucharistoi which can also be rendered as grateful.
But why was Paul saying that the Colossians were to be grateful?
To appreciate the full meaning of the words in verse 15 one should start by reading from verse 12 – 14:
“Accordingly, as God’s chosen ones, holy and loved, clothe yourselves with the tender affections of compassion, kindness, humility, mildness, and patience. Continue putting up with one another and forgiving one another freely even if anyone has a cause for complaint against another. Just as Jehovah freely forgave you, you must also do the same. But besides all these things, clothe yourselves with love, for it is a perfect bond of union.” – Colossians 3:12 -14
In verse 12 Paul highlights the first reason why Christians ought to be grateful, they are God’s chosen ones. This is a privilege that should never be taken for granted. The second reason highlighted in verse 13 is the fact that Jehovah has freely forgiven them for all their sins. This forgiven was made possible by means of Christ’s ransom sacrifice. The third reason to be grateful is that true Christians were united in love which is the perfect bond of union and as a result were able to “let the peace of the Christ rule in [their] hearts”.
What wonderful reasons we have as Christians to be thankful to Jehovah for.
With that in mind let us examine this week’s article and see what we will learn about the following as stated in paragraph 3:
“we will consider why it is important for us to express appreciation by what we say and do. We will learn from the examples of some Bible characters who were grateful and others who were not. Then we will discuss specific ways in which we can express appreciation.”
WHY SHOULD WE EXPRESS APPRECIATION?
Paragraph 4 brings out a compelling reason why we should express appreciation, Jehovah shows appreciation and we want to imitate his example.
Paragraph 5 highlights another good reason why we should express appreciation to others, when we show appreciation others become aware that of our gratitude and the fact that we value their efforts, and this may strengthen the bond of friendship.
THEY EXPRESSED APPRECIATION
Paragraphs 7 speaks of David as one of God’s servants who showed gratitude. In Psalm 27:4 David says he wanted “to look with appreciation” upon Jehovah’s temple. Clearly, he was a man who appreciated all that Jehovah had done for him. Then the paragraph makes the following true but unsubstantiated conclusion; “He contributed a fortune [bold ours] toward the construction of the temple.” This is a subtle way to encourage those among Jehovah’s Witnesses to contribute their resources to the Organization as evidenced by the words “Can you think of ways that you can imitate those psalmists?” at the end of the paragraph.
Paragraphs 8 – 9 highlight ways in which Paul expressed his appreciation for his brothers. One way was by commending his brothers and the paragraph highlights the fact that he acknowledged some of them in his letter to the Romans for example Prisca, Aquila and Phoebe. We should imitate Paul’s example by expressing appreciation for the good things that all our brothers say and do.
THEY SHOWED A LACK OF APPRECIATION
Paragraph 11 shows how Esau lacked appreciation for sacred things. Hebrews 12:16 shows that he “gave up his rights as firstborn in exchange for one meal” and thereby giving up his rightful inheritance.
Paragraph 12 -13 brings out the example of the Israelites and how they lacked appreciation for the things Jehovah had done for them which included freeing them from Egypt and providing for them in the wilderness.
EXPRESS APPRECIATION TODAY
Paragraph 14 shows marriage mates can express appreciation for each other by being forgiving and praising one another.
Paragraph 17 says we should thank Jehovah for meetings, our magazines, and our websites and broadcasts through our prayers. This would be perfectly acceptable provided that the magazines, websites and broadcasts do not contain falsehoods and half-truths.
Interestingly, no mention is made of thanking Jehovah for the most important thing in the lives of all Christians, Jesus’ ransom sacrifice.
In conclusion what have we learned from this article?
The article has raised some useful points such as:
- Imitating Jehovah in expressing appreciation
- Examples of Jehovah’s servants in the past who expressed appreciation for example David and Paul
- How marriage mates and parents can express appreciation.
The article failed to expand on the context of Paul’s words in Colossians 3:15
It also failed to indicate how we show appreciation for the Ransom sacrifice – by observing the memorial in the way Jesus intended all Christians to, by partaking of the emblems which represent his blood and flesh.
What other things can we show gratitude for?
- God’s word the Bible
- God’s creation
- God’s goodness and life
- Our health and Our abilities
Some scriptures about gratitude which we could read:
- Colossians 2:6 -7
- 2 Corinthians 9:10 – 15
- Philippians 4:12 – 13
- Hebrews 12: 26 -29
Ways to show Gratitude
- Thank Jehovah in Prayer
- Pray for others
- Be Generous
- Forgive Freely
- Show love to others
- Be kind
- Obey Jehovah’s requirements
- Live for Christ and acknowledge his sacrifice