Praise Devotionals- 1

Discussion in 'Thoughts for Today' started by jeremiah7, Feb 17, 2009.

  1. And the king bowed in worship on his bed and said, `Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, who has allowed my eyes to see a successor on my throne today.” (1 Kings 1:48)

    David here praises the Lord when Solomon, his son from Bathsheba is enthroned as King of Israel. David was old and one of his other son’s Adonijah desired to be the next king. So he got chariots and horses ready, with fifty men to run ahead of him. He conferred with Joab son of Zeruiah and with Abiathar the priest, and they gave him their support. But Zadok the priest, Benaiah son of Jehoiada, Nathan the prophet, Shimei and Rei and David's special guard did not join Adonijah. Adonijah then sacrificed sheep, cattle and fattened calves at the Stone of Zoheleth near En Rogel. He invited all his brothers, the king's sons, and all the men of Judah who were royal officials, but he did not invite Nathan the prophet or Benaiah or the special guard or his brother Solomon.

    Then Nathan the prophet asked Bathsheba, Solomon's mother, "Have you not heard that Adonijah, the son of Haggith, has become king without our lord David's knowing it? Now then, let me advise you how you can save your own life and the life of your son Solomon. Go in to King David and say to him, `My lord the king, did you not swear to me your servant: "Surely Solomon your son shall be king after me, and he will sit on my throne"? Why then has Adonijah become king?' While you are still there talking to the king, I will come in and confirm what you have said."(1 Kings 1:11-14)

    So Bathsheba went to see the aged king and reminded him of his oath to her and while she was speaking, Nathan, the prophet gave his confirmation of the same. The king then took an oath: "As surely as the Lord lives, who has delivered me out of every trouble, I will surely carry out today what I swore to you by the Lord, the God of Israel: Solomon your son shall be king after me, and he will sit on my throne in my place." King David called Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet and Benaiah son of Jehoiada and said to them: "Take your lord's servants with you and set Solomon my son on my own mule and take him down to Gihon. There have Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him king over Israel. Blow the trumpet and shout, `Long live King Solomon!' Then you are to go up with him, and he is to come and sit on my throne and reign in my place. I have appointed him ruler over Israel and Judah."

    Adonijah feared for his life when this happened and he caught hold of the horns of the altar to escape death. Solomon had him brought done from the altar and sent him home.

    Everything was done as David desired and he was happy and praised the Lord for setting Solomon on the throne.
    The Bible says, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life. (Proverbs 13:12)
    How very true.
     
  2. Praise Devotionals- 16

    Then he said: "Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, who with his own hand has fulfilled what he promised with his own mouth to my father David. (1 Kings 8:15)

    The project that Solomon set out to complete i.e. building a temple for the Lord, was a mammoth one and in the process he realized that it was not his hands that had worked out the whole thing but the hand of God. Thus he praised the Lord for the same and also proclaimed that God had fulfilled his promise to his father, David.

    Sometimes people think it is their education or skill or talent that has made them what they are; as some say, “He’s a self made man” meaning, “worked it out all on his own.” Yet, we must never forget that it’s all the grace of God that has made us what we are.

    God reminded the Israelites of this before they entered Canaan. He said, “You may say to yourself, "My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me." But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your forefathers, as it is today. (Deuteronomy 8:17, 18)

    God also advised them saying, “Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day. Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down, and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. He led you through the vast and dreadful desert, that thirsty and waterless land, with its venomous snakes and scorpions. He brought you water out of hard rock. He gave you manna to eat in the desert, something your fathers had never known, to humble and to test you so that in the end it might go well with you. (Deuteronomy 8:11-16)

    Never forget the beginnings dear friend. Always give the glory to God for all things achieved, for without him, we are nothing. Always be bold and humble enough to say, “It’s all the grace of God.”
     
  3. Praise Devotionals- 17

    When David was old and full of years, he made his son Solomon king over Israel. He also gathered together all the leaders of Israel, as well as the priests and Levites. The Levites thirty years old or more were counted and the total number of men was thirty-eight thousand. David said, "Of these, twenty-four thousand are to supervise the work of the temple of the Lord and six thousand are to be officials and judges. Four thousand are to be gatekeepers and four thousand are to praise the Lord with the musical instruments I have provided for that purpose." (1 Chronicles 23:1-5)


    Towards the end of the above passage we read that David set apart 4000 Levites for worship. They were supposed to praise the Lord with musical instruments that David had provided for this purpose.

    That must have been a sizable crowd at every worship session not counting the commoners.

    Worship has great importance in God’s presence if offered with a pure heart. The psalmist sang:” Sing joyfully to the Lord, you righteous; it is fitting for the upright to praise him. (Psalm 33:1)Praise the Lord with the harp; make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre. (Psalm 33:2)Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy. (Psalm 33:3)

    3 exhortations are given in the above verses: 1) If we worship God, it must be with a pure heart.2) Let the worship be accompanied with musical instruments.3) Let the worship be fresh and strong.

    It doesn’t mean that worship without instruments is not pleasing to the Lord. Neither does it mean that singing old songs make the worship dull. It’s all a matter of the heart. God looks at our hearts while we lift his name with praises. If our hearts are pure, our worship is acceptable. If we are not right with God or we live in disobedience to his Word, the worship becomes meaningless.

    Yet, it is remarkable that David should set apart 4000 Levites for this purpose. God inhabits the praises of his people, so shouldn’t we praise him all the more? Yes, we should.
     
  4. Praise Devotionals- 18

    David praised the LORD in the presence of the whole assembly, saying, "Praise be to you, O LORD, God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Yours, O LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, O LORD, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all. Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things. In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all. Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name. (1 Chronicles 29:10-13)

    One of the great assets in the life of David was his zeal to praise the Lord and glorify him whenever the opportunity arose. Not that one needs an opportunity to praise God. He is worthy to be praised at all times and in all seasons. Not climatic seasons, but seasons of joy, seasons of grief, some good seasons when praise comes spontaneously while some bad seasons when we may not even feel like praising him because of adverse circumstances in our life.

    One of the phrases we read here is “everlasting to everlasting” i.e. David acknowledges the eternal nature of God. In the few verses of praise above David acknowledges his God to be omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent. Yes, our Lord is all in all, yet he loves his creation and has mercy and compassion on them. David also acknowledges God as the great giver here..the giver of wealth, honor, strength and exaltation.

    David was never ashamed to glorify God publicly. In fact his zeal for worshipping and glorifying God brought some adverse comments from his own wife. All to her loss, because she remained childless all her life. We read in the 2nd book of Samuel;
    “David, wearing a linen ephod, danced before the LORD with all his might, while he and the entire house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouts and the sound of trumpets. As the ark of the LORD was entering the City of David, Michal daughter of Saul watched from a window. And when she saw King David leaping and dancing before the LORD, she despised him in her heart. (2 Samuel 6:14-16)

    When David returned home to bless his household, Michal daughter of Saul came out to meet him and said, "How the king of Israel has distinguished himself today, disrobing in the sight of the slave girls of his servants as any vulgar fellow would!" David said to Michal, "It was before the LORD, who chose me rather than your father or anyone from his house when he appointed me ruler over the LORD's people Israel - I will celebrate before the LORD. I will become even more undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own eyes. But by these slave girls you spoke of, I will be held in honor." And Michal daughter of Saul had no children to the day of her death. (2 Samuel 6:20-23)

    Notable here is David’s decision despite the insult: “I will celebrate before the LORD.”

    Some people may make a hue and cry when you set out to worship the Lord in spirit and in truth. Most of the objections come from close family and friends. Let your decision be firm and always be bold enough to say like David said, “I will celebrate before the LORD.”
     
  5. Praise Devotionals- 19

    And Hiram added: "Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, who made heaven and earth! He has given King David a wise son, endowed with intelligence and discernment, who will build a temple for the LORD and a palace for himself. (2 Chronicles 2:12)

    Hiram, king of Tyre had earlier built a palace for King David. When he heard that Solomon had been anointed king to succeed his father David, he sent his envoys to Solomon, because he had always been on friendly terms with David. When Solomon set out to build a temple for the Lord, he asked for help from Hiram.

    When Hiram heard Solomon's message, he was greatly pleased and said, "Praise be to the LORD today, for he has given David a wise son to rule over this great nation." So Hiram sent word to Solomon: "I have received the message you sent me and will do all you want in providing the cedar and pine logs. My men will haul them down from Lebanon to the sea, and I will float them in rafts by sea to the place you specify. There I will separate them and you can take them away. And you are to grant my wish by providing food for my royal household." (1 Kings 5:7-9)

    In this way Hiram kept Solomon supplied with all the cedar and pine logs he wanted, and Solomon gave Hiram twenty thousand cors of wheat as food for his household, in addition to twenty thousand baths of pressed olive oil. Solomon continued to do this for Hiram year after year.

    Hiram took great interest in this project that Solomon had undertaken and on Solomon’s request sent him Huram-Abi, a man who was highly skilled and experienced in all kinds of gold, silver, bronze, iron, stone and wood work. He worked with the craftsmen of Solomon and was a great help in building the temple.

    In the title verse, we read of how Hiram praised the Lord of Israel, though he was a gentile king. The awesome power with which the God of Israel had delivered his children time and again was well known among the nations and Hiram did not hide his admiration for the God of Israel. He acknowledges that the God of Israel is the maker of heaven and earth. He praised God for giving David a wise son and for having endowed him with intelligence and discernment.

    The praises of our God, the great “I am” flows out from all corners of the earth from the mouths of people of all nations, literate and illiterate and it will continue forever and ever. Let’s continue to praise him all the more as we see our redemption drawing near.
     
  6. I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise, and I am saved from my enemies. (Psalm 18:3)

    Is the Lord worthy of praise? Yes, he is! The psalmists definitely thought so. That's why they sang,
    Great is the LORD, and most worthy of praise, in the city of our God, his holy mountain. (Psalm 48:1)
    For great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; he is to be feared above all gods. (Psalm 96:4)
    Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. (Psalm 145:3)

    They affirmed that God was not only worthy, but most worthy.

    The writer of Hebrews says, Jesus has been found worthy of greater honor than Moses, just as the builder of a house has greater honor than the house itself. (Hebrews 3:3)

    Why? Because "He was faithful to the one who appointed him, just as Moses was faithful in all God's house. (Hebrews 3:2)Moses was faithful as a servant in all God's house, testifying to what would be said in the future. But Christ is faithful as a son over God's house. (Hebrews 3:5, 6a)

    And then this beautiful part in the book of Revelation;
    And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming in a loud voice, "Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?" I wept and wept because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or look inside. Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing in the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. He had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. He came and took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne. (Revelation 5:2,4,6,7)

    And they sang a new song: "You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. In a loud voice they sang: "Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!" (Revelation 5:9,12)

    He truly is worthy of praise, your praise. Yes; your praise will bring him glory. So do not keep silent.
     
  7. Praise Devotionals- 21

    Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD. (Psalm 150:6)

    Lot's of exhortations in this psalm. The final one being, "Let everything that has breath praise the Lord."

    Many things to be noticed here in this psalm and all about praise.
    1. Praise God in....verse 1...Praise the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens. (Psalm 150:1)

    2. Praise God for....verse 2...Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. (Psalm 150:2)

    3. Praise God with....verses 3-5...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. (Psalm 150:3-5)

    The "Praise God with.." part is the largest in this series. The psalmist is considering maximizing his praise and worship with the use of all kinds of musical instruments and with dancing. He intends to be loud with his praise and worship and also is exhorting others to do the same.

    "Praise him with resounding cymbals" he says.
    Worship is something personal to each of us. Some like to quietly worship the Lord while others like to make much noise. The psalmist here seems to be in the second category. He likes to enjoy his worship by making it lively with the use of many instruments and also by dancing to the tune. He seems to be delighting in the Lord.

    Do you delight in the Lord while you praise and worship him? Try it, it can bring you a joy that you may have never experienced.
     
  8. Praise Devotionals- 22

    Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. (Romans 15:7)

    Can we accept each other as our brothers and sisters in Christ? There may be differences in our doctrines even when they may seem sound to each of us (not talking about false doctrines--which we all must abhor) and differences in the way of worship and lots of other differences, but we should be able to accept one another because we all have the same factor that will give us eternal life- Jesus.

    The New Testament is believing in what Jesus did by offering himself as a perfect sacrifice for our sins and the resulting eternal life with him if we live for him after accepting him as Savior.

    Perhaps you may never have spoken in tongues or do not believe that that gift exists or any other gifts mentioned in 1 Corinthians 12 exists; still you should accept others who do believe in and exercise these gifts.

    You may be a pre-tribulationist and you are sure that that is the right doctrine; still you should accept others who are post-tribulationists or mid-tribulationists for that matter because Jesus does not despise them because they believe so.

    You may believe that your church or denomination has the perfect worship; still you should accept others from other denominations or churches despite their imperfections because Jesus still loves them.

    You may have faith to move mountains; still you should not look down upon some other believer who cannot exercise as much faith as you.

    Christ has accepted us with all our imperfections and he has given us the Holy Spirit and the Word of God to cleanse ourselves. We all are imperfect in one way or the other and so we should be able to accept one another as Christ accepted us. That will bring praise to God.
     
  9. Praise Devotionals - 23

    But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. (1 Peter 2:9)
    The Apostle Peter sums up why God transformed 'some' according to his liking to become a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation & a people belonging to God- To declare the praises of the one who called them out of darkness into his wonderful light.

    Is praising God justified? Yes it is. John the Apostle tells us why.
    To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood,
    and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father - to him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen. (Revelation 1:5, 6)

    Because of his great love for us, he freed us from our sins by shedding his blood on the cross. And why did he do it? To make us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father.

    The love that Jesus showed has no comparisons except what the Father also did. About the love of Jesus the Bible says,
    "Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death - even death on a cross! (Philippians 2:6-8)

    And about the love of the Father the Bible says,
    "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." (John 3:16)

    We who were once "not a people" have now become "the people of God". And having become "the people of God", our aim in life should be to sing the praises of him who called us out of darkness into his wonderful light.
    Praise be to the Lord now and forever.
     
  10. Praise Devotionals- 24

    I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. (Psalm 139:14-16)


    The word "unique" has somewhat lost it's meaning with cloning coming to the fore. Man has embarked on a strange path to defy the uniqueness of God's creation. How long it's glory will last remains to be seen. Perhaps it would end in the way "the tower of Babel" did. But God does allow man to continue in his discoveries and inventions for reasons known only to him. If he wants, he can stop anything anywhere anytime. Yet he chooses to be silent for a while.

    King David, the great psalmist of Israel praised God for having created him so wonderfully. The human body is a marvel, unmatched by all the technological accomplishments of mankind. Each organ is a wonderful creation in itself, unique in it's design, texture, function and fraility. Some organs are more important than the others. Some can be lived without. Some are indispensible. Almost all need the others to function. Some produce the toxins that only others are able to wash away.

    David realizes the wonder working creation power of God and thus declares "your works are wonderful, I know that full well.My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body."

    9 months (some less & some more) for a woman to be pregnant full term and all the while a new life is taking shape inside of her, frame by frame, organ by organ, coming to full maturity.

    David acknowledges that everything about him was known by God even before he had lived 1 day. "All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. "

    God in his creating power is unmatched and we must spend time in praising him for having created us for himself.

    Yes, God knows everything about you and me. Neither the begining nor the end of our lives is hidden from him. He is truly awesome. He deserves all the praise. May all glory be to him.
     
  11. Praise Devotionals- 25

    With praise and thanksgiving they sang to the LORD: "He is good; his love to Israel endures forever." And all the people gave a great shout of praise to the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid. (Ezra 3:11)

    After 70 years of Babylonian exile, the Israelites were back in their land, but without a temple, for the earlier temple had been destroyed and Jerusalem burnt with fire by King Nebuchadnezzar during his 3 invasions of the land.

    The elders who had witnessed the glory of the former temple built by Solomon wept and the younger generation rejoiced that the new temple foundation was being laid.

    When the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the LORD, the priests in their vestments and with trumpets, and the Levites (the sons of Asaph) with cymbals, took their places to praise the LORD, as prescribed by David king of Israel. (Ezra 3:10)

    They were starting the new project by praising God, trusting that he would help them complete.

    Who would have ever thought that the wonderful temple built by Solomon would be laid waste? It had taken 7 years to build and it was a magnificient monument. Nothing could match it's grandeur in that era. But King Solomon married foriegn women who worshipped idols and he was no longer faithful to God who had given him everything from knowledge and wisdom to riches and fame. Of the kings that followed Solomon's reign, only a few were faithful to the Lord.

    Sin had led to punishment- an exile and now they were being restored by God himself. Joy and sorrow were both witnessed at this solemn occasion.

    Many of the older priests and Levites and family heads, who had seen the former temple, wept aloud when they saw the foundation of this temple being laid, while many others shouted for joy. No one could distinguish the sound of the shouts of joy from the sound of weeping, because the people made so much noise. And the sound was heard far away. (Ezra 3:12, 13)

    They praised God vociferously hoping and trusting that what they were starting would be brought into completion by God. And God was faithful. He did not leave them nor forsake them. The temple was built. Praise the Lord.
     
  12. Praise Devotionals- 26

    Do not let the oppressed retreat in disgrace; may the poor and needy praise your name. (Psalm 74:21)

    A cry from the heart of the psalmist. The world is one of the rich and mighty and justice often evades the poor. They are oppressed and suffer. Disgrace is often their food. Yet when the Almighty rises to fight for the oppressed believer, the Pharaohs of the world sink in the Red Seas.

    All through the psalms, we read of cries for God to rise up and fight for the oppressed....You are God my stronghold. Why have you rejected me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy? (Psalm 43:2)
    Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed. (Psalm 82:3)
    ....and also the declarations that he is the helper of the oppressed.
    The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. (Psalm 9:9)
    The LORD works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed. (Psalm 103:6)
    Jesus himself said this about those who are his:
    And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?" (Luke 18:7, 8)

    Of course, faith is what is he always seeks in our lives as believer's. The Bible says, "And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. (Hebrews 11:6)

    Jesus will not let you down. Cry out to him in your oppression. He will set you free. He will not let the enemy make you retreat in disgrace. Instead he will deliver you and you will praise him all the more.
     

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