This is the sermon for Sunday, November 21st, 2010.

Psalm 100:1-5 HCSB  – 1 Shout triumphantly to the LORD, all the earth. 2 Serve the LORD with gladness;
come before Him with joyful songs.  3 Acknowledge that Yahweh is God.  He made us, and we are His — His people, the sheep of His pasture. 4 Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him and praise His name. 5 For Yahweh is good, and His love is eternal; His faithfulness endures through all generations.

Introduction: This morning we are beginning a new topical series entitled, “Thanksgiving: a celebration of Christ.”  It is my hope and prayer that this short topical series will be completely Christ centered and focused; Why?  Because as Christians we have a reason to be the most thankful people on the planet: Because of what Christ has done for us.  Today we are going to be looking at the holiday of Thanksgiving as an opportunity to celebrate Jesus as our Great Shepherd.

Let’s begin studying Psalm 100 in light of this.

Christians are joyful sheep. (verses 1-3a)

Psalm 100:1 – Shout triumphantly to the LORD, all the earth.

Our shout is a triumphant shout (verse 1).

  • “Shout triumphantly” is the Hebrew word ruwa ‘(roo-ah’). It means, “to split the ears (with sound), i.e. shout (for alarm or joy):–blow an alarm, cry (alarm, aloud, out), destroy, make a joyful noise, smart, shout (for joy), sound an alarm, triumph.”
  • It is so easy to get bogged down with the busyness of jobs, bills, children, and the holiday season.  And because of busyness we tend to come to church tired, weary, and worn.
  • But we should come together in our time of worship with a joyful shout and joyful songs not just for what God is going to do, but for what He has already done.
  • The fact of the matter is He has saved us; washed us; and delivered us from our sins!  That should put a triumphant shout of praise on our lips!
  • Paul gives us an example of what Christ has done.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 – 9 Do you not know that the unjust will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be deceived: no sexually immoral people, idolaters, adulterers, male prostitutes, homosexuals, 10 thieves, greedy people, drunkards, revilers, or swindlers will inherit God’s kingdom. 11 Some of you were like this; but you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

Psalm 100:2 – Serve the LORD with gladness; come before Him with joyful songs.

Our worship is with joyful songs (verse 2).

  • Serve in Hebrew can mean, “service, work, worship.”
  • It is more than just singing in a church service, but to literally become a song yourself throughout life.  Not a song that you originate, sing, or pen; but one that God has authored, and God sings out to a world dying to hear songs of life.

Psalm 100:3a – Acknowledge that Yahweh is God.

We acknowledge that the Lord is God! (verse 3a)

  • This acknowledgment mentioned in the text here isn’t just about mental assent, but to openly acknowledge that the Lord is God.
  • We don’t allow life’s circumstances or people to determine who we are or how we live – but God alone!

Christians know the Shepherd by name (verses 3-4).

  • Before we unpack this truth, as Christians we know this Shepherd as Jesus Christ.  Let’s look at what Jesus said in the Gospel of John.

John 10:2-5&14 – 2 The one who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 The doorkeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought all his own outside, he goes ahead of them. The sheep follow him because they recognize his voice. 5 They will never follow a stranger; instead they will run away from him, because they don’t recognize the voice of strangers.” 14 “I am the good shepherd. I know My own sheep, and they know Me.

  • So in light of what Jesus says in John, let’s unpack verses 3-4.

Psalm 100:3-4 – 3 Acknowledge that Yahweh is God.  He made us, and we are His — His people, the sheep of His pasture. 4 Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him and praise His name.

Thankful sheep acknowledge their Shepherd (verse 3).

  • Why?  Because they know they belong to Him.
  • Notice the Psalmist’s progression: He made us; we are His; we are His people; the sheep of His pasture.  What a glorious truth to hold onto.

Because we belong to Him we can enter His courts joyfully (verse 4).

Christians know the character of the Shepherd (verse 5).

Psalm 100:5 – For Yahweh is good, and His love is eternal; His faithfulness endures through all generations.

  • He is good.
  • His love is eternal.
  • His faithfulness continues toward His flock.

Conclusion: Why must we gather together with somber faces and attitudes?  Christ is our Good Shepherd.  He has saved us; called us His sheep and is faithful toward us.  May we celebrate Him as Shepherd this holiday season.

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