Have you ever wondered?
How can we “enter into His gates with thanksgiving” (Psalm 100:4)?
In ancient Israel, when the people of God gathered at the temple to worship the Lord, they began by chanting this psalm: “Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name” (Psalm 100:4, NKJV). “Enter into His gates” is synonymous with coming into the Lord’s presence. Psalm 100 teaches us to begin our encounters with God by giving sincere thanks and enthusiastic praise. It calls us to delight ourselves in God’s presence, to celebrate, shout, worship with gladness, and sing for joy. Why? Because the Lord is God! We enter His gates—we come into His presence—by recognizing that He alone is God. Our thanksgiving finds its foundation and source in our intimate and personal relationship with the God of the universe. He is the source of our lives and the core of our being. He made us, and we belong to Him. Thanksgiving that finds its source in a deep, personal conviction of God’s exceeding goodness, enduring love, and timeless faithfulness will take us straight into His throne room. Our abiding, intimate knowledge of God enables us to “be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will” for those who belong to Christ Jesus (1 Thess.5:18). The apostle Paul expressed his gratitude in service: “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength to do his work. He considered me trustworthy and appointed me to serve him” (1 Tim.1:12). How else can we enter into His gates with thanksgiving? We can think about all the ways God has blessed us, saved us, transformed us, and answered our prayers! We can thank Him in our own words. According to the psalmist, we can even shout our thanks if we want. We don’t have to wait. We can bless the Lord any time and at all times. His praise can continually be in our mouths (Ps.34:1).