Punching the car’s radio buttons to find a good song, I stopped to listen as the radio hosts discussed Thanksgiving and wishbones. It was a lighthearted exchange, bringing back fond memories. As I drove, I wondered if the Bible had anything to say about wishing. I would look later.
It turns out; there are hundreds of references! The word in Greek is thélo, and depending on the Bible translation, the word is rendered in English as wish, desire, or want. It is defined as wanting what is best (optimal) because someone is ready and willing to act. It is commonly used of the Lord extending His "best-offer" to the believer – wanting (desiring) to birth His persuasion (faith) in them, which also empowers, manifests His presence, etc.
In the Apostle Paul's letter to Timothy, he called him to prayer saying, "First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who wishes, desires, wants (thélo) all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time" 1 Timothy 2:1-6 (ESV).
How remarkable that Jesus fulfills the very definition of wishing (desiring, wanting)!
1) Jesus wishes what is best: that all people would be saved and would come to the knowledge of the truth.
2) Jesus is the Someone who was ready and willing to act: he would be the mediator to God that we need!
3) Jesus extends his best offer: he gave his life as a ransom for all.
This year, as we gather around our dinner tables, may our hearts be filled with thanksgiving and praise to our Lord Jesus Christ, and may we be mindful of what he wishes for us!
Happy Thanksgiving! Share this message with a friend!
Copyright 2021 Sarah Keith
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