Ingratitude: forgetful for kindness received, not appreciating what you have or were given. Not expressing gratitude is ingratitude.
We need to be thankful for everything God has given us. God wants us to learn from the past.
I Corinthians 10:9-12 Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened unto them for examples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.
The Israelites had no gratitude for what God had given to them. They hated the manna God provided that had all their vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. They weren’t thankful for the way God was leading them.
Numbers 21:4-5 And they journeyed from mount Hor by the way of the Red sea, to compass the land of Edom: and the soul of the people was much discouraged because of the way. And the people spake against God, and against Moses, Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? for there is no bread, neither is there any water; and our soul loatheth this light bread.
Our attitude is important when we face difficulties. We won’t be blameless and harmless if we murmur and complain.
Philippians 2:14-15 Do all things without murmurings and disputings: That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;
God sent fiery serpents that killed the people because they murmured and complained. When the people came to Moses and asked him to pray for them, the first thing they said was “We have sinned” because they spoke against the Lord. God told Moses to make a brass serpent so they would be healed if they looked at it. When people look to Jesus, they can be healed of sin.
Numbers 21:6-8 And the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died. Therefore the people came to Moses, and said, We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord, and against thee; pray unto the Lord, that he take away the serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the people. And the Lord said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.
Moses said to remember all the way the Lord led them in the wilderness. The Lord used that way to humble them, to prove them, to know what was in their heart, and if they would obey him.
Deuteronomy 8:2 And thou shalt remember all the way which the LORD thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no.
The way the Lord leads us in life is to prove or try us and to see what’s in our heart. If we murmur and complain, it comes from ingratitude in our heart. God gives us power to get wealth. It isn’t because of our own power but he leads us that way.
Deuteronomy 8:11-18 Beware that thou forget not the Lord thy God, in not keeping his commandments, and his judgments, and his statutes, which I command thee this day: Lest when thou hast eaten and art full, and hast built goodly houses, and dwelt therein; And when thy herds and thy flocks multiply, and thy silver and thy gold is multiplied, and all that thou hast is multiplied; Then thine heart be lifted up, and thou forget the Lord thy God, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage; Who led thee through that great and terrible wilderness, wherein were fiery serpents, and scorpions, and drought, where there was no water; who brought thee forth water out of the rock of flint; Who fed thee in the wilderness with manna, which thy fathers knew not, that he might humble thee, and that he might prove thee, to do thee good at thy latter end; And thou say in thine heart, My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth. But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.
God did not accept the attitude the Israelites had. He expects us to have gratitude and a grateful heart, no matter what happens to us.
Deuteronomy 28:45-47 Moreover all these curses shall come upon thee, and shall pursue thee, and overtake thee, till thou be destroyed; because thou hearkenedst not unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to keep his commandments and his statutes which he commanded thee: And they shall be upon thee for a sign and for a wonder, and upon thy seed for ever. Because thou servedst not the Lord thy God with joyfulness, and with gladness of heart, for the abundance of all things;
The twelve spies that went to Canaan all said it was a land flowing with milk and honey, but ten spies brought an evil report. All they thought of was the giants. The congregation murmured against Moses and Aaron.
Numbers 14:1-3 And all the congregation lifted up their voice, and cried; and the people wept that night. And all the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron: and the whole congregation said unto them, Would God that we had died in the land of Egypt! or would God we had died in this wilderness! And wherefore hath the Lord brought us unto this land, to fall by the sword, that our wives and our children should be a prey? were it not better for us to return into Egypt?
They wanted to go back to Egypt, but in Egypt they had hard bondage and had to serve with rigor or harshness. They had no gratitude in their hearts, even though God showed them miracles every day. God brought them through the Red Sea and sent plagues against the Egyptians. God was angry and wanted to destroy the people.
Numbers 14:11-12 And the Lord said unto Moses, How long will this people provoke me? and how long will it be ere they believe me, for all the signs which I have shewed among them? I will smite them with the pestilence, and disinherit them, and will make of thee a greater nation and mightier than they.
They tempted God ten times even though he’d shown them his glory by the miracles they saw. Moses prayed for the people and God pardoned them, but he said they would all die in the wilderness.
Numbers 14:20-22 And the Lord said, I have pardoned according to thy word: But as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the Lord. Because all those men which have seen my glory, and my miracles, which I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and have tempted me now these ten times, and have not hearkened to my voice;
Caleb and Joshua had a different spirit and thankful hearts. The other ten spies all died in the wilderness.
Numbers 14:23-24 Surely they shall not see the land which I sware unto their fathers, neither shall any of them that provoked me see it: But my servant Caleb, because he had another spirit with him, and hath followed me fully, him will I bring into the land whereinto he went; and his seed shall possess it.
God called the people an evil congregation because they had murmured and complained.
Numbers 14:26-27 And the Lord spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, How long shall I bear with this evil congregation, which murmur against me? I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel, which they murmur against me.
Everyone that was 20 years old and older died as they wandered for 40 years in the wilderness. God is looking to see if we will keep a grateful heart in the things we go through.
Numbers 14:35 I the Lord have said, I will surely do it unto all this evil congregation, that are gathered together against me: in this wilderness they shall be consumed, and there they shall die.
When Jesus healed the ten lepers, they had to stay 250 feet away from other people because of their leprosy. They had to beg for their food and clothes. They had to yell so Jesus could hear them. Jesus only told them to go show themselves to the priests. They had to believe because as they turned they were cleansed.
Luke 17:11-14 And it came to pass, as he went to Jerusalem, that he passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee. And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off: And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us. And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed.
Only the Samaritan was healed and saved because he came back to thank Jesus. He glorified Jesus with a loud voice. Jesus said his faith made him whole, so he was healed of his sins when he came back to thank Jesus.
Luke 17:15-19 And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine? There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.
When Peter asked how often he had to forgive, Jesus said 490 times.
Matthew 18:21-22 Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.
To explain forgiveness, Jesus told the parable of a servant asking for mercy to forgive a debt of over $16 million. The servant showed he had no gratitude for the debt being forgiven because when his fellow servant owed him only $15 he had no forgiveness.
Matthew 18:26-30 The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt. But the same servant…found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest. And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt.
God wants us to have so much thanksgiving in our heart, that we willingly forgive our fellowmen their small debts.
Matthew 18:32-35 Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.
Forgiveness and thankfulness go together. If we’re not thankful in everything (I Thessalonians 5:18), we won’t have forgiveness.
(Notes from the Mature Class Bible Study, teacher Edith Tolbert)