Saturday, Dec 12th 2020
Title: Praise the Lord
Author: Pastor Andrew Lim
Interpreter: Irene Hong
Praise the Lord. Praise God in His sanctuary; praise Him in His mighty heavens.
Praise Him for His acts of power; praise Him for His surpassing greatness.
Praise Him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise Him with the harp and lyre,
Praise Him with tambourine and dancing, praise Him with the strings and flute,
Praise Him with the clash of cymbals, praise Him with resounding cymbals.
Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.
Psalm 150 begins with “Praise the Lord”, and end with “Praise the Lord”.
1 We praise because we obey God
Why is praise so important? Not to mention what we will get from our praises, or how much satisfaction our God will get from our praises; praise itself is a service, the most beautiful service. It is praise that covers all the services with glory of joy and satisfaction, it is praise that cleanses our hearts, purifies our minds, sublimates our emotions, elevates our realms, it is praise that makes our life beautiful, make our hearts pure and lets God receive all glory. Praise is willing to be submissive before God. If we are willing to obey God, it is easy for us to praise God. Those who are not willing to obey God will not find it easy to praise God, because they are not willing to let God take control of their lives.
2 We praise because we saw the works and attributes of God
If you have seen Mt Huangshan in China, you would say: Wow, how majestic! So beautiful! This is our natural reaction when we see great things. As Christians, will we be praising the mountain or praising the God who created these majestic mountains? Of course praising God. This is what happens when we see God’s mighty works and praise Him. Or when the crowd saw Jesus made the mute speaks, the disabled recovers, the lame walks, the blind sees, so they marveled: Wow, what had happened? It was miraculous, so they praise God. People praised God when they saw the great things God had done in their lives. Did we see the great works that are accomplished in our lives?
We should praise God for we are able to eat because there are many that are not able to eat because they have problems with their throats; thank God we are able to go to toilet every day because many people have problem with their excretion system; when we choose to see the works and attributes of God, we will be able to praise God frequently. There are some people would would deliberately “turn a blind eye”, which means they actually saw but pretended that they did not see. When we “turn a blind eye”, it hinders us to see God working in our daily lives, and we are not willing to praise God. Are we such kind of person?
3 We praise because we experience God
It is easy for those that see the works of God and experience God to praise Him. Have you seen the works of God and experience Him?
We praise God when we experience His goodness, for He is good to us. God blesses us, God makes all things to run smoothly, give us a healthy body, allow our children to be filial, all these draw us to praise Him.
What about those things that are no good? Will we praise God? Paul is an extraordinary person, he obeyed God, and had unusual experiences, he even went to the third heaven, but Paul also faced many problems, one of them is the thorn in his body which made him very painful. Paul prayed to God to remove the thorn but God never did.
Paul did not complain, curse or was dissatisfied in his suffering, he look at this difficulty with different perspectives, and learned within his sufferings and considered the thorn as a gift of God. Paul accepted this gift and rejoiced, became strong in his weakness and wrote letters joyfully from prison.
4 We praise because we are thankful to God
When we are willing to thank God in all our experiences, be it good or bad, then we will be able to praise God, and be joyful. God can use our experiences to become His witness before other people. So a person who is thankful will come to praise God.
Did Jesus not heal the ten who had leprosy? How many among them returned to thank Jesus? Only one! And he was a Samaritan, who came before Jesus to thank Him and praised God in a loud voice. So those who are thankful will come before God to worship Him and praise Him.
A person who loves God, a person who obeys God, a person who has experiences with God and a person who is thankful, he will come to praise God. May we become one of these person.
Abba Father who loves us, it is your grace that enabled us to praise you. Let us be able to be thankful and praise you every day, because your love to us is so long and wide and high and deep. Help us to bear good witness for you in all aspects of our lives. May others see your wonderful works and be willing to accept you, and come to praise you. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.