Luke 19:39-40 | Psalms 34,1-6, 150:1 | Acts 16:25-26
Praise the Lord!
No, seriously… Praise God! For so many reasons.
First, because God is so good that he flat-out deserves praise. When Jesus made his Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem on his way to be crucified, he explained that what God was doing right then demanded praise.
But some of the Pharisees among the crowd said, “Teacher, rebuke your followers for saying things like that!” He replied, “If they kept quiet, the stones along the road would burst into cheers!”Luke 19:39-40 NLT
Along those same lines, scripture commands us to praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heaven!Psalm 150:1 NLT
When David was on the run from a murderous King Saul, he didn’t belly-ache about it. Instead, he upped his praise game.
I will praise the Lord at all times. I will constantly speak his praises. […] In my desperation I prayed, and the Lord listened; he saved me from all my troubles.Psalm 34:1,6 NLT
Paul and Silas praised God in prison. Look what happened!
Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening. Suddenly, there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off!Acts 16:25-26 NLT
Finally, scripture is full of calls to praise God. Alex and Alitheia walk you through about 10 examples in this episode. So do as scripture says, and praise the Lord!
Questions for Group Discussion
- What is the definition of praising? Is it much different than blessing or thanking?
- Can you praise the Lord without saying, “Praise you, Lord”? Is it enough to just say, “Praise you”? What does that even mean, really?
- Is “praise” a ‘church word’? Is it Christianese? If so, with what term would you replace it? Why?
Challenge: Take the “Praise” Out of Praising
We challenge you to praise God at least as well as you would your peers. Or your pet.
What do we mean by taking the “praise” out of praising? Sometimes people say, “I praise you, Jesus!” And that’s a great thought. But what does it mean? Maybe it means “I love you and I think you’re great, Jesus!”
Let’s get more specific with your praise. If you have a friend who does something great, how do you praise them? If you have a parent or teacher who does something great, how do you praise them? You can apply the same techniques to praising God.
- Remember to praise God.
- When you pray
- When something good happens
- When you face troubles
- If you catch yourself using the word “praise” in your praise, stop and rephrase. You would not say, “I praise you, Mike!” You’d say, “Mike, you’re a machine!”…or something.
- Be specific with your praise. Say, “Father, thank you for answering my prayer. You are ridiculously generous!”
- Check on yourself periodically to see if you are living up to the challenge. If you find yourself giving non-specific praise or forgetting entirely to praise God, re-visit Steps 1-3.