Saturday 29th August 2020
How Should We Praise God?
Pastor Soong Kok Kee

Psalm 95: 1-2
“Come, let us sing to the Lord! Let us give a joyous shout to the rock of our salvation! Let us come before him with thanksgiving. Let us sing him psalms of praise.”

Psalm 95 is one of a series of psalms which the Israelites sang together as they went up to the temple in Jerusalem to worship. The series begins with Psalm 93 and ends with Psalm 100. These psalms offer a majestic confession of faith and hope for the kingdom of God on earth. For today, we will first deal with “How” God is to be praised (vv1-2). On Monday, Aug 31, we will look into the “Why” He is to be praised (vv 3-11).

Verses 1 and 2 tell us how God is to be praised – with joyful songs of praise and shouts of thanksgiving. I still remember in the 50s, 60s and probably even the 70s where hymns were sung at Sunday worship as though it was a funeral service! Praise the Lord, those days are long gone and buried for good! Clapping and dancing were also encouraged in other psalms. When we Christians come together to worship Him for who He is and what He has done, we need to sing and praise Him with every emotion our Lord has blessed with us. He is indeed worthy of our praise and honour.

The pandemic had robbed us of that joy for the last five months. Yes, we still sing on zoom or live streaming but it is never the same like before the pandemic. But sad to say, our Church only averaged about 100 each Sunday after we started our physical service on July 11, seven Sunday’s ago.

We understand some cannot attend because they are in the high risk group and others because of health reasons. It’s better to be safe than sorry. But I am more concern about those who are not in any of the above categories but stay home because of convenience. Let that not become a habit as warned in Heb 10:25 “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”

The Nashville Banner reported that 81-year-old Ella Craig had a perfect attendance in Sunday School for twenty years. That’s 1,040 Sundays! The article then raised these questions:

  1. Doesn’t Mrs. Craig ever have company on Sunday to keep her away from church?
  2. Doesn’t she ever have headaches, colds, nervous spells, or tired feelings?
  3. Doesn’t she ever take a weekend trip?
  4. Doesn’t she ever sleep late on Sunday morning?
  5. Doesn’t it ever rain or snow on Sunday morning?
  6. Doesn’t she ever get her feelings hurt by someone in the church?

The article concluded by asking, “What’s the matter with Mrs. Craig?” The answer? Nothing at all. But if we are not in church on Sunday when we can be, there is something wrong with us! We all need to take a lesson from Mrs. Craig.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, thank you for reminding us as brothers and sisters in the Lord that we need to come together as often as we can to worship you in songs and praises with thanksgiving in our hearts, for who you are and what you have done in our lives. We thank you for sisters like Mrs Craig who goes to Church every Sunday rain or shine, in session and out of session to worship you.

Father God, we pray for your protection upon those who are in the high risk and for those who are not well physically. Protect them Lord, heal them of their illness that they may have long life and good health all the days of their life. In our Lord’s most precious name we pray AMEN.

每日灵粮
星期六, 2020年8月29日
题目:我们应该如何赞美上帝?
作者:宋国基牧师
翻译:方美珠姐妹

诗篇95:1-2
“来啊,我们要向耶和华歌唱,向拯救我们的磐石欢呼!我们要来感谢祂,用诗歌向祂欢呼!”

诗篇95是以色列人上耶路撒冷圣殿礼拜时一起唱的一系列诗篇之一。这系列从诗篇93开始,到诗篇100结束。这些诗篇彰显崇高的信仰宣告和对上帝国度降临地上的祈望。今天,我们将先探讨“如何”赞美上帝(1-2节)。在8月31日星期一,我们将研究“为什么”祂要受到赞美(3至11节)。

第一和第二节告诉我们如何以欢乐的赞美诗和感恩的呼喊来赞美上帝。我仍然记得在50、60、甚至是70年代,在星期天崇拜时唱赞美诗就好像是进行葬礼一样!赞美主,那些日子早已过去,永不回首!其他的赞美诗也被鼓励以鼓掌和跳舞来颂赞。当我们基督徒为着祂的身份和所成就的事聚集在一起敬拜祂时,我们需要以我们主所赐予我们的一切情感来歌颂和赞美祂。祂的确配得我们颂赞和荣耀。

在过去的五个月中,大流感使我们失去了一起聚集敬拜的喜乐。是的,我们仍在使用zoom远程会议软件或实时视频(live streaming) 一起颂赞,但与大流感以前相比是不再一样了。更可悲的是自从我们于七个主日前(7月12日)开始回教会聚会, 我们的平均出席人数才大约有100人。

我们了解有些人属于高危人群,其他人由于健康原因,所以不能参加。安全总比后悔好。但我更关心的是那些不在上述类别中但由于方便而留在家里的人。不要让方便成为一个习惯好像希伯来书10:25中所警惕:” 你们不可停止聚会,好像那些停止惯了的人,倒要彼此劝勉,既知道(原文是看见)那日子临近,就更当如此”

纳什维尔横幅(The Nashville Banner)报道说,现年81岁的埃拉·克雷格(Ella Craig)从未缺席主日学,在主日学校上课已有20年。那是1,040个星期日!文章也提出了以下问题:

1.克雷格太太在星期天有因公司使她不能去教堂吗?
2.她曾否有头痛、感冒、紧张的神情或疲倦的感受吗?
3.她从来没有周末旅行吗?
4.她从没有在星期天早上睡到很晚吗?
5.星期天早上没有下雨或下雪吗?
6.她难道没有在教堂里被某人伤害过吗?

文章最后问道:“克雷格夫人怎么了?”答案:一点事也没有! 如果我们在礼拜天应该去教堂而不去的话,那我们就有问题了!我们所有人都需要向克雷格夫人学习。

祈祷:亲爱的上帝,感谢祢提醒我们作为主内的弟兄姐妹,我们需要尽可能的聚在一起,用歌声和赞美来敬拜您,并在心中感恩,感谢祢是主,感谢祢为我们所做的一切。我们感谢像克雷格夫人这样的姐妹,不管是雨天或晴天每个主日都去教堂,得时不得时都要敬拜祢。父神,我们祈求祢保护处于高风险中的人和身体状况不佳的人。保护他们,求主医治他们的疾病,使他们可以长寿并健康。我们奉主最宝贵的名祈祷,阿们。

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