Thanksgiving Proclamations

 

Thanksgiving Proclamation

31 Presidents have issued official Thanksgiving proclamations beginning with George Washington.  Thanksgiving was later made an official holiday by Abraham Lincoln in 1863.  Lincoln’s Thanksgiving proclamation began an unbroken chain of yearly thanksgiving proclamations made by U.S. Presidents.

Thanksgiving is a time of unity when all men of various religions can gather to give thanks to God, despite their differences in understanding (Colossians 3:14-17).

Psa 67:3  Let the peoples thank You, O God; let all the peoples thank You.
Psa 67:5  Let the peoples give thanks to You, O God; let all the peoples give thanks to You.

Psa 100:1  A Psalm of praise {תודה ‘todah’} Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands (כל־הארץ ‘kol ha`aretz’ – “all the earth”).

The Hebrew word for thanksgiving is תודה ‘todah’ which literally means to raise up the hands in praise, confession, and thanksgiving.  The yearly Thanksgiving proclamations given by the President of the United States, who is the ‘head’ of the country, is literally a proclamation by the United States of America that the LORD God is our Lord.

Psa 33:12  Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.
Psa 144:15  Happy is that people, that is in such a case: yea, happy is that people, whose God is the LORD.

Thanksgiving & His mercy/grace
Psa 136:1  O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.
Psa 136:2  O give thanks unto the God of gods: for his mercy endureth for ever.
Psa 136:3  O give thanks to the Lord of lords: for his mercy endureth for ever.

The primary Greek word translated as ‘thanks’ in the Scriptures is εὐχαριστία ‘eucharistia’ which consists of the words εὖ ‘eu’ meaning to be well off and χαρίζομαι ‘charizomai’ to dwell in grace.  χαρίζομαι ‘charizomai’ comes from the root word χάρις ‘charis’ which means grace and mercy.  Thanksgiving is a proclamation by the United States that we live by His grace and mercy.  Numerous times this concept is seen in the proclamations of the Presidents.

Another Greek word translated as ‘thanks’ is ἐξομολογέω ‘exomologeō’ which means to confess or give praise to, similar to the Hebrew word תודה ‘todah.’

Rom 14:11  For it has been written, “As I live, says the Lord, that every knee will bow to Me, and every tongue confess to God.” Isa. 45:23
Php 2:10  that at the name of Jesus “every knee should bow,” of heavenly ones, and earthly ones, and ones under the earth,
Php 2:11  and “every tongue should confess” that Jesus Christ is “Lord,” to the glory of God the Father.

Every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess.  Amazingly, the Hebrew word for kneel, ברך ‘berekh’ is also translated as ‘give thanks’ (2 Samuel 14:22) as the word literally means to kneel before another and give honor to.  This is the essence of Thanksgiving.

Rom 15:9  and for the nations to glorify God for mercy, even as it has been written, “Because of this I will confess to You in the nations, and I will give praise to Your name.” Psa. 18:49

Thanksgiving Proclamations – George Washington

Thanksgiving Proclamations – John Adams

Thanksgiving Proclamations – James Madison

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Abraham Lincoln

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Ulysses S. Grant

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Rutherford B. Hayes

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Chester A. Arthur

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Grover Cleveland

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Benjamin Harrison

Thanksgiving Proclamations – William McKinley

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Theodore Roosevelt

Thanksgiving Proclamations – William Howard Taft

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Woodrow Wilson

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Warren G. Harding

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Calvin Coolidge

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Herbert Hoover

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Franklin D. Roosevelt

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Harry S. Truman

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Dwight D. Eisenhower

Thanksgiving Proclamations – John F. Kennedy

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Lyndon B. Johnson

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Richard Nixon

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Gerald Ford

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Jimmy Carter

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Ronald Reagan

Thanksgiving Proclamations – George H.W. Bush

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Bill Clinton

Thanksgiving Proclamations – George W. Bush

Thanksgiving Proclamations – Barack Obama