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:
- Doesn’t Mrs. Craig ever have company on Sunday to keep her away from church?
- Doesn’t she ever have headaches, colds, nervous spells, or tired feelings?
- Doesn’t she ever take a weekend trip?
- Doesn’t she ever sleep late on Sunday morning?
- Doesn’t it ever rain or snow on Sunday morning?
- 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.
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。
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：