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Priority of Praise

Life is full of praise… Parents praising children, Grandparents praising grandchildren, Men praising automobiles, Women praising outfits and meals, a painter’s masterpiece,  a conductor’s symphony, a chef’s meal, an architect’s building…   Praise is a release of inner joy and excitement (Psalm 39:1-3).  It is “inner health” made audible (C. S. Lewis).  Praise is naturally spontaneous, unless we are taught differently (religion / tradition).  For example – Compliments & Cheers flow freely, not needing prompting!  “Praise the Lord.  Isn’t that beautiful? Wasn’t that delicious? Wow, what a time!”

Praising God is easier to do privately rather than corporately, but we are commanded to join in praise together (Psalm 149:1, Psalm 150:1, Psalm 111:1, Psalm 34:3).  In this instance, praise has two enemies: 1. shyness and/or self-consciousness; 2. fear of boring other, lack of participating.

Purpose of Praise

Communication!  Like a pilot’s talk button (Psalm 29:3-5, 7-9): Prayer is us pushing the button to talk to God; Praise is the other way, letting go of the button and letting God speak to us. Praise is Fulfilling because it Glorifies God (Revelation 4:11, Psalm 147:11, Psalm 149:4, Psalm 104:1) Simply put, it places us in God’s lap as His little child.  Praise is Refining – Heated silver for the smelter to skim our surface (Proverbs 27:21).  In addition, praise is Inviting – In the court of praise (Psalm 22:3, Psalm 100:4

Pattern of Praise

There are many different ways to praise… the first is non-verbal – in your heart, just between you and the Lord in silence and stillness (Psalm 149:2, 5, Psalm 138:1, Psalm 103:1-3).  Though for some, non-verbal is the extent of their communication with God, Scriptures are clear that praise works its way outward: Singing (Psalm 149:1, 5, and 3, Psalm 147:1, 7); Dance (Psalm 149:3); Instruments of music (Psalm 149:3) – over twelve mentioned in Scripture; Raised hands (Psalm 134:2, Psalm 141:2); Looking up (Psalm 121:1, Psalm 23:1); Testimony (Psalm 105:1); Clapping (Psalm 47:1, Psalm 98:8); Shouting (Psalm 47:1, Psalm 5:11, I Thessalonians 4:16).

Paradigms of Praise

Judah was conceived from the spiritual/emotional union of Jacob and Leah (Genesis 29:34-35).  His name means “praise.”  When he was born, it was enough – she left off trying to have more… She was satisfied because of Judah (PRAISE)!
Jesus would come through Judah (PRAISE) (Revelation 5:5).
Who gets to see the Son-rise first?  Those at the tomb.  First glimpse, first light (Malachi 4:2) “fear” = reverence
Judah pitched east of tabernacle, next door to the gate (Judah (PRAISE) led the way into God’s house & presence).
Judah (PRAISE) went in first; praise won the victory! (Judges 1:1-2) (See also 2 Chronicles 20:17-18, 21-22)
Judah (PRAISE) anoints and follows the King when others choose not to! (2 Samuel 2:4, 10)
Judah (PRAISE)bears shield and spear, warriors are ready (I Chronicles 12:23-40)
Caleb was Judah’s representative to spy out the land (Joshua 14:8-12) – Caleb had an excellent spirit… He was a Praiser!
Children of ‘Praisers’ are glad (Psalm 48:11, Psalm 97:8)
Judah plows the soil [Praise plows the heart] (Hosea 10:11)
Praise flows from the Holy Spirit, but never runs dry! (Joel 3:18, 20)