Harnessing the Power of the Tongue
For the Glory of God
Key Verses: Proverbs 18:21, Psalm 141:3, Psalm 19:14
Lesson #11 ~ Praising
So why not post this lesson in the series on Psalm Sunday. The children praising God in the temple gets a mention in my lesson. So here goes. This is what we are supposed to be doing with our tongues constantly, if we can stop complaining, gossiping, and cutting other people down.
I. The Importance of Praise
A. At the temple. In I Chronicles 23:25-32, David reorganized the Levites even before the temple was built so that every single day there would be praise to the LORD at the temple (at that point it was the tabernacle. I Chronicles 25:1-7 explains this more. In the rebuilding of the temple after the Babylonian exile, Ezra makes careful note that the reestablishment of the Levites to sing was according to the ordinance of King David, Ezra 3:10-11.
B. Praise is a sacrifice ~ Hebrews 13:15, along with our entire body, Romans 12:1-2. One of the marks of a righteous man (or woman) is that they sing and rejoice, Proverbs 29:26.
C. God desires it ~ Psalm 69:29-33 ~ Praise pleases God more than animal sacrifices.
D. The goal is worldwide praise of God. Psalm 117 ~ Israel was supposed to praise God, then Gentile nations were supposed to join in. Paul pointed this out in Romans 15:8-12.
II. Principles for Praising
A. Children do it best ~ Matthew 21:12-16
B. Sing New Songs ~ Psalm 40:3. Praises that we have not yet sung are meant for others to hear so they can fear and trust in the LORD. Come up with new ways to praise God.
C. Continuously ~ Psalm 35:27-28 ~ How often should your tongue be doing this?
D. From Psalm 34:1-3
1. Praising the LORD and blessing the LORD go hand in hand.
2. His praises should be in our mouth, not just in our heart.
3. We should boast about God, not about ourselves.
4. Praising God is easier for those who are humble because they are not prone to praising themselves. The reason why many people do not praise God is because their conversation is centered around themselves.
5. Magnify and Exalt ~ Basically, make Him great and lift Him up.
There are so many places you can go to research praise. For some reason I chose this section of psalms (145-150) as the finishing touch for the lesson. It seems so all encompassing. Praise God!
III. Psalm 145-150 ~ A Psalm of Praise. This is most likely one long praise psalm to God. There are no headings on the chapter divisions in between.
145 ~ Verses 1-2. Every day, even forever and ever.
Verse 3. Even though God is beyond our understanding, David still praises Him.
Verse 4-6. Praising can be describing the things that God has done.
Verses 7-9. Praising God can be describing His qualities.
Verses 11-13. Talk about the greatness of His kingdom and the things over which He has power, see Psalm 96:10.
Verses 14-16. Everything is dependent upon God.
Verses 17-21. The LORD has a special relationship with those that call upon Him, fear Him, love Him, bless Him.
146 ~ Verses 1-2. Praise the LORD while you exist.
Verses 3-4. Do not trust in people, no matter how prominent they seem.
Verses 5-6. Trust in God who made all things.
Verses 7-10. The LORD has a special love for those who are oppressed, hungry, imprisoned, blind, humbled (bowed down), foreigners, orphans, widows, all the people who are underprivileged and impoverished.
147 ~ The psalm seems to alternate between acts that seem grand and acts that seem lowly. Then it demonstrates the relationship between the two.
Verses 1-3. He gathers outcasts and heals those who are broken hearted.
Verses 4-5. He names every single star and His understanding is infinite.
Verses 6-7. He lifts up the meek.
Verses 8-9. He prepares the rain for the entire earth (grand act) so that He can take care of feeding every last animal, no matter how big or small (small act).
Verses 10-11. He is not impressed with physical strength, but with those who fear Him and hope in His loving kindness.
Verses 13-14. He defends and makes peace.
Verses 15-18. He commands snow, frost, ice, cold, heat, wind, water.
Verses 19-20. He revealed His words to the nation of Israel in a way that He did not reveal Himself to other nations.
148 ~ The universal nature of praise. The following are commanded to praise the LORD: 2- angels and all the host, 3- sun, moon, and stars, 4- highest heaven and waters in the sky, 7- greatest of animals, 8- all weather, 9- mountains, hills, and trees, 10- all animals, 11- rulers and all people. When we praise, we join the universe in the neverending song of praise to Him.
149 ~ This psalm highlights the special relationship that the LORD has with His people Israel and with all saints. Praise can be describing the special relationship that God has with us and the unique things He has done for us, His people. These items of praise are not necessarily universal. They are sung in the congregation of the saints, the church, see footnote.
150 ~ Where is the LORD to be praised? And how? In every place and in every way possible.
What is holding your tongue back?
Have fun and stay busy – Luke 19:13
-The Orange Mailman
Footnote: See Hebrews 2:12 which quotes Psalm 22:22. It translates the Hebrew word qahal (congregation) as the Greek word ekklesia (church). Psalm 149 speaks of the qahal chaciyd (congregation of the saints). This should be considered a reference to the church.