Summary: Written for the ladies day of prayer; examining praise and the psalms around psalm 150
Ladies Day of Prayer
Each of the last 5 Psalms begins with, “Praise the Lord,” and each Psalm increases in praise and joy until we come to the last one Psalm 150
For the psalmist, “praise the Lord” was definitely not a cliché but an ecstatic expression of uncontrollable joy!
In six short verses, we hear the phrase 13 times
Every sentence starts off with “Hallelujah” (which is the Hebrew way to say, “Praise the Lord”) and is very short ¬
It’s as if he can’t wait to get to the next opportunity to say, “Praise the Lord” again.
The word, “praise” is derived from a Latin word which means to prize.
When we praise, we are expressing our approval by valuing something or someone who has worth or merit
The word also means to “shine” or “make a show by raving and celebrating.” To praise the Lord is to prize Him and rave about Him as the only one worthy of glory and honour
The people of Cameroon have little to praise the Lord for in comparison to us here in the UK
We are a people who live in a country with good education, health care and living conditions
Yet what do we do?
We complain about the weather, the government and the younger generation
Yet the people of Cameroon, praise the Lord as if they have all the riches at their disposal
Act 16: The early disciples when thrown in prison for the name of Jesus didn’t sit about feeling sorry for themselves, but they praised the Lord despite their circumstances.
And what was the psalmist teaching us?
Where are we to praise God
Verse 1 begins with a bang: “Praise the Lord. Praise God in His sanctuary; praise Him in His mighty heavens.”
The word used here for “Lord” is “Jehovah,” which means, “the self-existent and eternal one.”
The psalmist than shifts his focus to another name and calls him, “God” or “El” in Hebrew, which means, “Strong and mighty.”
We are to praise the eternal, strong and mighty God in “His sanctuary,” which is a reference to the temple, where God used to dwell
Since Jesus died and rose again, God now “lives” within His people, choosing not to live in a building
The call to praise also extends to the “mighty heavens.”
The psalmist is calling the firmament, and everything above it, to break out into a celebration of praise
Verse 1 is really saying, “Praise God in heaven and on earth.”
And so, verse 1 answers the question, “Where are we to praise Him?”
We’re to do it everywhere
Verse 2 gives us the answer to the question, “Why are we to praise Him?”
Why We Praise
We’re called to be enthusiastic about God for at least two reasons
First, we praise Him for what He does
We see this in the first part of verse 2: “Praise Him for His acts of power.”
This is the theme of many of the psalms
The phrase, “acts of power” carries with it the idea of God as a champion because of the victory He has won