Thanking God For His Presence

Title: Thanking God For His Presence

Bible Book: 1 Chronicles 16

Author: David E. Owen

Subject: Thanksgiving; Praise; Gratitude; God, Presence of



It’s on my heart to begin this evening by giving thanks – and it’s on my heart to continue by giving thanks – and it’s on my heart to conclude by giving thanks. 

The historical setting of this special psalm is the bringing of the Ark of the Covenant (which is a manifest token of God’s presence) to Jerusalem. The last few verses of 1 Chronicles 15 (verses 25-29) and the first six verses of chapter 16 reveal the events of that great day. In verse 7, David’s heart explodes with his psalm of Thanksgiving.

Now I haven’t brought the Ark of the Covenant to its long time resting place, but God has given all of us a great deal to be thankful for. And the consideration of our blessings has prompted within me a desire this evening to enter into this Davidic thanksgiving. I want to sing – or rather preach – David’s song of thanks!

As we rally around these verses, we first see that…

I. David Calls For A Response vs. 7-11

In these verses, there seems to be two types of response coupled together and complementing each other. We have the horizontal, outward response; and then we have the vertical, upward response. Thus we move from the horizontal to the heavenward, and from the vocal to the vertical. David says…

A. Thank Him vs. 7-8

1. With People vs. 7

2. With Praise vs. 8 Give thanks unto the LORD

3. With Prayer Call upon his name

B. Exalt Him vs. 8-9

1. Exalt Him In Testimony Make known his deeds among the people

2. Exalt Him In Tunes Sing unto him; sing psalms unto him

3. Exalt Him In Talking Talk ye of all his wondrous works

C. Glorify Him vs. 9-10

Glory ye in his holy name

D. Seek Him vs. 10-11

Let the heart of them rejoice that seek the LORD

seek – Hebrew 1245. baqash; to search out (by any method, spec. in worship or prayer); by impl. to strive after:--ask, beg, beseech, desire, enquire, get, make inquisition, procure, (make) request, require, seek (for).

Seek the LORD and his strength; seek (1245 – see above) his face continually.

seek – Hebrew 1875. darash; to tread or frequent; usually to follow (for pursuit or search); by implication it means to seek or ask; spec. to worship:--ask, inquire, make inquisition, question, require, search, seek [for, out], X surely.

II. David Calls For A Remembering vs. 12-22

Now there is here in verse 12 a summary statement, which is then elaborated upon.

(1 Chronicles 16:12) Remember his marvellous works that he hath done, his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth;

A. We Can Remember His Actions vs. 12

1. His Distinctive Works

marvellous – [Hebrew pala'] to separate, distinguish; by implication to be (make) great, difficult, wonderful: --accomplish, (arise . . . too, be too) hard, hidden, things too high, miracles, perform, separate, make singular, wonderful, wondrous.

2. His Displayed Wonders

wonders – [Hebrew mowpheth] in the sense of conspicuousness; a miracle; by implication a token or omen: --miracle, sign, wonder (-ed at).

3. His Divine Words

judgments – [Hebrew mishpat] a verdict (favorable or unfavorable) pronounced judicially, especially a sentence or formal decree (human or divine law, individual or collect.): -- determination, ordinance, sentence. See 1 Chronicles 16:13-22

God remembered even when they didn’t.

(Psalms 105:8) He hath remembered his covenant for ever, the word which he commanded to a thousand generations.

(Psalms 105:42) For he remembered his holy promise, and Abraham his servant.

B. We Can Remember His Agreement vs. 13-22

III. David Comments On The Reason vs. 23-30

In verses 23 and 24, David says Sing – Show (Announce) – Shout (Declare). Why?

A. Because Of The Dimensions Of His Greatness vs. 25

greatly – [Hebrew me'od] vehemence, vehemently; by implication wholly, speedily: --diligently, especially, exceeding.

B. Because Of The Distinctiveness Of His Godhood vs. 25-27

1. Consider The Revelation Of His Power vs. 26 – “the LORD made the heavens”

2. Consider The Response In His Presence vs. 27 – “Glory and honour are in his presence”

3. Consider The Resources In His Place vs. 27 – “strength and gladness are in his place”

C. Because He Is Deserving Of Glory vs. 28-30

1. Notice The Glory Of God And Strength vs. 28

2. Notice The Glory Of God And Sacrifice vs. 29

3. Notice The Glory Of God And Stability vs. 30

IV. David Calls For A Rejoicing vs. 31-36

A. We See Cosmic Rejoicing

1. Let The Stars Rejoice vs. 31 – “the heavens”

2. Let The Soil Rejoice vs. 31 – “the earth”

rejoice – [Hebrew giyl, gheel; or ` guwl, gool] to spin round (under the influence of any violent emotion), i.e. usually rejoice, or (as cringing) fear:--be glad, joy, be joyful, rejoice.

3. Let The Souls Rejoice vs. 31 – “let men say...”

B. We See Creation Rejoicing

1. The Water Areas vs. 32 – “the sea”

2. The Wilderness Areas vs. 32 – “the fields”

3. The Wooded Areas vs. 33 – “the trees of the wood”

(1 Chronicles 16:32-33) Let the sea roar, and the fulness thereof: let the fields rejoice, and all that is therein. {33} Then shall the trees of the wood sing out at the presence of the LORD, because he cometh to judge the earth.

C. We See Climactic Rejoicing

1. Notice The Purposeful Rejoicing

(1 Chronicles 16:34) O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.

2. Notice The Prospective Rejoicing

(1 Chronicles 16:35) And say ye, Save us, O God of our salvation, and gather us together, and deliver us from the heathen, that we may give thanks to thy holy name, and glory in thy praise.

3. Notice The People Rejoicing

(1 Chronicles 16:36) Blessed be the LORD God of Israel for ever and ever. And all the people said, Amen, and praised the LORD.


In an article from The Christian Law Association it said…


Today, many of our public school children are taught that we celebrate Thanksgiving because the Pilgrims were thanking their Indian neighbors for helping them; but the evidence of history shows that on that first Thanksgiving Day in 1621 the thanks of both Pilgrims and Indians went to God for His great goodness toward them all. But the story does not end there.

Even though the Pilgrims hosted the first Thanksgiving dinner in America, the holiday itself actually has its origins almost 170 years later, after the Revolutionary War had been won and our American Constitution had been adopted. In 1789, Congress approved the Bill of Rights, the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution. Congress then “recommended a day of public thanksgiving and prayer” to thank God for blessing America. President Washington declared November 26, 1789, as the first national day of prayer and thanksgiving to the Lord.

Another 75 years later, after the Civil War ended, President Abraham Lincoln established the last Thursday in November as a day to acknowledge “the gracious gifts of the Most High God” bestowed upon America. Every president did the same until 1941 when Congress officially made Thanksgiving a national holiday.


Lincoln's Thanksgiving Proclamation Washington, DC – October 3, 1863

The year that is drawing toward its close has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added which are of so extraordinary a nature that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart, which is habitually insensible to the ever-watchful providence of Almighty God.

In the midst of a civil war of unequaled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign states to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere, except in the theater of military conflict, while that theater has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union.

Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defense have not arrested the plow, the shuttle, or the ship; the ax has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well as the iron and coal as of our precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege, and the battlefield, and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.

No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.

It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently, and gratefully acknowledged, as with one heart and one voice, by the whole American people. I do therefore invite my fellow-citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next as a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners, or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the imposition of the Almighty hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it, as soon as may be consistent with the divine purpose, to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility, and union.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed. Done at the city of Washington, this 3d day of October, A.D. 1863, and of the Independence of the United States the eighty-eighth.

Abraham Lincoln

Posted in


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top