Once you have tasted the power of Praise and Worship, you can’t go back to lifeless, boring, dead religion.
That is religion! But Christianity (being a follower of Jesus) leads to praise and worship!
I am telling you there is something on this today and I have felt it stirring in my spirit since early this morning and I know this will unlock something in some people’s lives.
Luke 19:28-40 (NLT)
28 After telling this story, Jesus went on toward Jerusalem, walking ahead of his disciples. 29 As he came to the towns of Bethphage and Bethany on the Mount of Olives, he sent two disciples ahead. 30 “Go into that village over there,” he told them. “As you enter it, you will see a young donkey tied there that no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 31 If anyone asks, ‘Why are you untying that colt?’ just say, ‘The Lord needs it.’”
32 So they went and found the colt, just as Jesus had said. 33 And sure enough, as they were untying it, the owners asked them, “Why are you untying that colt?”
34 And the disciples simply replied, “The Lord needs it.” 35 So they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their garments over it for him to ride on.
36 As he rode along, the crowds spread out their garments on the road ahead of him. 37 When he reached the place where the road started down the Mount of Olives, all of his followers began to shout and sing as they walked along, praising God for all the wonderful miracles they had seen.
38 “Blessings on the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven, and glory in highest heaven!”
39 But some of the Pharisees among the crowd said, “Teacher, rebuke your followers for saying things like that!”
40 He replied, “If they kept quiet, the stones along the road would burst into cheers!”
BOOM! I just love it!
The first thing I notice is that they didn’t bother to tell or ask Jesus to get off the donkey! They weren’t that stupid.
You can’t get God to sit where you want. He sits where He wants!
- I am who I am!
- God has decided to sit as Eternal King, Mighty God, All Powerful Ruler and Judge of all the earth, Healer, Provider, Miracle Worker, God in Heaven and King of Kings
- He has Jesus at His right hand
Eph 1: 20 (NIV) – He exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.
So, if you can’t move God, the devil knows that – so instead he tries to silence God’s people! It doesn’t matter if God is King, the devil just wants to keep it quiet!
The problem for him is that Jesus said, if the people don’t praise me even the stones and rocks will cry out!!!
The devil would love nothing more than to silence your praise!
- He doesn’t even so much mind if God blesses you, does miracles, even touches you
- He just wants our praise not to sound out!
If we ever let anyone or anything silence our praise, we are surrendering one of the most powerful and wonderful parts of the Christian life.
Anything that tries to stifle, limit, or stop the praise of God’s people lifting their voice to praise and worship God is a tool of the enemy! Don’t let it, don’t let anything stop you praising God.
This past season isolation has been a reality for thousands of people. They could lock you in a concrete bunker on your own, but never surrender your praise of God!
There are so many reasons for this, but let’s look at a few reasons to never let praise cease from our lips!
1. Praise is about Him!
That’s why praise should never stop, because God never stops being God!
It’s not about a circumstance, an opinion, a feeling, or whether God did our Santa list or not – praise is about who He is!
This is key. It is God who deserves our praise not that we deserve to praise Him.
Praise is not about our:
- Prosperity, or lack of it
Praise is about who God is and that never changes!
Life changes, circumstances change, feelings do, situations do, but God remains, and He remains worthy of our praise!
The devil tries to convince us that we are not worthy to praise. The devil says we are not worthy to worship to connect with God in that way, but it’s never been about me or my worthiness!
I can almost hear people saying, ‘Yeah, I am not that spiritual”, but neither does God’s word specify that we need to be spiritual. God says choose to worship Him
In fact, I would put to all of us that praising and worshiping God, praying, speaking about, singing about, declaring His power and goodness, is one of the primary means of awakening our spirit.
Praise is a choice to voice who God is, what He has done, His promises, His power and His greatness. Praise should always be on our lips.
2. Praise changes what you see!
Have you ever had someone point something out that you had never seen before and now every time you look at it, you cannot help but see it?
- That post that is crooked
- That someone looks like a person you know or someone famous
- The colour that doesn’t match somewhere
You haven’t noticed it, but when you look from another angle, or see it in a different light, then all of a sudden it is sooooo obvious!
Praise is like looking at life from a different angle.
It’s looking from the God angle!
- It is seeing the same situation, but from a place where God is still in control
- It is seeing the same situation, but with who God is, factored in
When we take our eyes off ourselves, our own mistakes, problems, circumstances and we look at God and praise Him, all of a sudden, we begin to see things through the lens of praise, and it adds:
When I looked from where I am standing, it seemed hopeless. I was powerless and I couldn’t possibly see a way forward , but when I begin to praise, I begin to focus on God and who He is and it’s like God opens my spiritual eyes to see what I couldn’t see when I was looking from a different angle.
That is why when this exact word of praise is used in Romans 15. It says:
Romans 15:9-13 (NIV)
As it is written, “Therefore I will praise you among the Gentiles; I will sing the praises of your name.”
10 Again, it says, “Rejoice, you Gentiles, with his people.” 11 And again, “Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles; let all the peoples extol him.”
12 And again, Isaiah says, “The Root of Jesse will spring up, one who will arise to rule over the nations; in him the Gentiles will hope.”
13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Praise and worship is trusting God, even when, from our angle, we can’t necessarily see it and then God’s Spirit brings a supernatural perspective that gives hope, joy and peace!
Sometimes we just need to begin to praise and, all of a sudden, the power of God is unleashed into our situation.
3. Praise unleashes God’s Power!
2 Chronicles 20:20-30 (NIV) – the people of God were facing a vast army from Edom
20 Early in the morning they left for the Desert of Tekoa. As they set out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Listen to me, Judah and people of Jerusalem! Have faith in the Lord your God and you will be upheld; have faith in his prophets and you will be successful.”21 After consulting the people, Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendour of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying: “Give thanks to the Lord, for his love endures forever.”
22 As they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated. 23 The Ammonites and Moabites rose up against the men from Mount Seir to destroy and annihilate them. After they finished slaughtering the men from Seir, they helped to destroy one another.
24 When the men of Judah came to the place that overlooks the desert and looked toward the vast army, they saw only dead bodies lying on the ground; no one had escaped. 25 So Jehoshaphat and his men went to carry off their plunder, and they found among them a great amount of equipment and clothing and also articles of value—more than they could take away. There was so much plunder that it took three days to collect it. 26 On the fourth day they assembled in the Valley of Berakah, where they praised the Lord. This is why it is called the Valley of Berakah to this day.
27 Then, led by Jehoshaphat, all the men of Judah and Jerusalem returned joyfully to Jerusalem, for the Lord had given them cause to rejoice over their enemies.28 They entered Jerusalem and went to the temple of the Lord with harps and lyres and trumpets.
29 The fear of God came on all the surrounding kingdoms when they heard how the Lord had fought against the enemies of Israel. 30 And the kingdom of Jehoshaphat was at peace, for his God had given him rest on every side.
What a crazy battle plan! Let everyone know you are coming by singing and praising God.
But God won the battle for them!
Praise and Worship caused the action of heaven to engage with the earthly situation and bring about a powerful victory for God’s people.
There is something inherent in the act of worship that enables us to encounter the power of God like nothing else.
It is not effective to simply tell someone to stop worrying; stop being proud; stop being self-consumed, distracted, insecure, bound and materialistic, but it is effective to tell them to start worshiping. When we make that decision to fix our eyes on Jesus, we quickly realize that God has already begun to release the grip these tendencies can have on our lives.
Praise and Worship is a declaration of our weakness and God’s strength.
I encourage every person listening to this today, to begin to praise and worship God and watch as His power begins to fight your battles with you!
Can I put a challenge to you?
- We have a powerful and exciting weapon for life at our disposal
- We can all use it totally irrespective of our circumstance
- It changes what we see – bringing hope, joy and peace
- It unleashes God’s power!
Let’s fill our homes, fill our lives, fill our gatherings with powerful praise of the Great God of heaven!
Put some praise on in your home!
Begin your day with some time just praising God.
When darkness, or fear, or even just uncertainty tries to come into your life turn your eyes to God and use your voice to praise, worship and prayers and begin to see a powerful force at work in your situation!
Stop begging God and start praising Him.
Make sure you expose your kids to praise and worship, not fear, caution and worry.
Fill their hearts with praise and worship.
Take charge of the atmosphere and fill it with praise.
Surrendering your life to Jesus is the ultimate praise.
Suggestions for discussion
- How does praising God change your life?
- Discuss why it is so important to keep praising God in any circumstance happening in your lives?
- Have you seen praise unleash God’s power?