Rev. E. Anderson
One of the frequently used words that is employed in the book of Psalms is the word ‘praise’ and it is used primarily in connection with God. People, especially those who know and love God, are invited and encouraged to give praise to Him. So it is essential to understand what is meant by the word and its use.
From Wilson’s Old Testament Word Studies a number of definitions are detailed. Among them are the following senses: ‘to make to shine; to give forth a clear and distinct sound.
The twofold meaning may be combined in the signification to praise, which as relating to God, is often described as done with a loud voice; the word is usually explained, to make illustrious, glorious, to celebrate.’ It also means ‘to set composition of words and music, to sing praises, to sing psalms in honour of God’. Finally, it also implies ‘to commend, to pronounce happy’. From what is indicated it would appear that praise in action with respect to God should be a delightful exercise that reveals shining, speaking, singing flowing from a rapturous state of being.
It originates from a true conception of God and concentrates on what He has done for a person or people. There is a praising of Him because of His personal and loving interest and of the things that He has brought to pass within the life. It is expressed in blessing and honouring God for the wonderful things He does.
There is recognition of what He has done in thanksgiving and an extolling Him for the amazing acts of His goodness. Psalm 103: 1-5 gives an instance and illustration of praise in action. David knew what it was to ‘praise the Lord’ – ‘Bless the Lord, and all that is within me , bless His holy name’ – v1 etc.
He had known so many choice blessings from the good hand of God that he could not refrain from this spiritual exercise. He shone, shouted, sang and spoke out His thoughts and feelings to and in consideration of all that God had wrought in and for Him. It was something that was not forced out but flowed spontaneously to God and He was absolutely delighted with his attitude and action. So vital was this procedure that he composed countless songs and psalms to the Lord thus encouraging others to be involved in this daily ministry. In fact he makes it clear that this a paramount feature of living – ‘seven times a day will I praise you’ – Psalm 119:164.
Praise must be conducted from a happy condition and this adds to the happiness of God. He is thoroughly pleased with the person who adopts this into their lifestyle. It gives immense pleasure to Him when people praise Him in a right spirit and from pure motivation.
One of the great spin offs with regard to this when it is carried out in the way God desires is that it makes a highway for God to move on in order to bring greater blessings into the life of the one who does it. In Psalm 50: 23 it affirms – ‘Whosoever offers praise glorifies ME; And to Him who order his conversation aright ( surely in praise) I will show the salvation of God’. When you truly praise God you in point of fact cast up a road for God to come to you and work and perform in a miraculous manner. In seeing what God has done, praises rises and faith too and divine expectation is born for the experience of more glorious operations.
It was a significant fact that the tribe of Judah which means ‘praise’ headed the nation into battle. Praise should be an essential part of your daily life and programme and as a consequence pave the way for the works of God in your affairs and a greater testimony revealed of and to Him.
‘I will praise You, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will tell of His marvellous works, I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to Your Name, O Most High’ – Psalm 9:1
Make me ever full of praise of and to You so that you will be pleased with my appreciation of You