Tag: praise the lord

“Come, Lord Jesus!”

Scripture reading for December 31st:  Revelation 22, Psalm 149-50, Proverbs 14

Key Scriptures:  Revelation 22:17-21 “The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.”  And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.  I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book:  if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.  He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.”  Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!  The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all.  Amen.”

We end this year’s devotions with the last words of John’s revelation and the last words of Jesus Christ to His Church, the Bride.  The Bride, through the Holy Spirit is praying to the Lord Jesus saying, “Come!”  I believe this simple prayer has two aspects.  The Bride is asking God to bring in the thirsty and those still to be saved.   The Bride is asking Jesus to come for them.  The Lord Jesus answers:  “Surely I am coming soon.”  The Brides answer is “Amen.”  It all occurs by grace through faith!

Faith confession:  Lord Jesus, I join the Bride in praying “Come.”   May the lost and thirsty come to You and find refreshing in the river of life and healing food in the tree of life flowing from Your glorious throne!  “Amen.”  Hallelujah forever and ever!

Psalm 149:1  “Praise the Lord!  Sing to the Lord a new song; His praise in the assembly of the godly! 

Psalm 150:6  “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!  Praise the Lord!”

Tags : , , , , , ,

Risen, Exalted, Coming Again!

Scripture reading for July 25th:  1st Corinthians 15, Psalm 148, Proverbs 24

Key Scriptures: 1st Corinthians 15:20-26 “But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.  For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead.  For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.  But each in his own order:  Christ the firstfruits, then at His coming those who belong to Christ.  Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power.  For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet.  The last enemy to be destroyed is death.” 

The church needed encouragement and explanation concerning the resurrection and the events of the last days.  Paul carefully explained how Christ was raised from the dead as the firstfruits of those resurrected.  Those in Adam–never born again in Christ, will die, but those in Christ shall be made alive and will be with Christ as He returns.  Christ will reign destroying all His enemies, the last is “death”!

Faith Confession:  I believe Jesus Christ rose from the dead and is alive at God’s right hand, ruling until all His enemies are destroyed. In His resurrection, I am made alive in Him and will join Him in His rule on earth.

Psalm 148:11-13 “Kings of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the earth!  Young men and maidens together, old men and children!  Let them praise the Name of the Lord, for His Name alone is exalted; His majesty is above earth and heaven.”  

Tags : , , , , ,

The Great Commandment

Scripture reading for January 30th:  Matthew 22, Psalm 22, Proverbs 22

Key Scriptures: Matthew 22:35-40 “And one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question to test Him. “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”  And He said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the great and first commandment.  And a second is like it:  You shall love your neighbor as yourself.  On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.””

Jesus answered the Pharisee’s question concerning the most important commandment in the Law.  He stated plainly that it was all about love and relationships.  Loving God completely and loving one’s neighbor summed up all the Law and Prophets.  The Pharisees wanted to trap Jesus, but Jesus gave them truth that stopped their test.

Faith’s confession:  Lord, I love You with all my heart, mind and strength and depend on You to help me love my neighbor as myself.  Action step:  Seek a way to show love to one of your family or close associates that you may be struggling to get along with.

Psalm 22:22-23 “I will tell of Your Name to my brothers; in the midst of the congregation I will praise You:  You who fear the Lord, praise Him! . .  .”

Tags : , , , , ,

Vision to Stand Firm!

Scripture reading for September 4th:  Psalm 147-150, Philippians 3

Key Scriptures:  Philippians 3:20-4:1  “But our citizenship is in heaven.  And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables Him to bring everything under His control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like His glorious body.  Therefore, my brothers, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, that is how you should stand firm in the Lord, dear friends!”

As Paul was concluding his letter to the Philippians, he cast vision of Christ’s return and the expectation of believers.  Christ’s return would bring the ultimate transformation of human flesh to those who trusted in Him.  Lowly earthly bodies will be transformed into eternal heavenly bodies, just like Christ’s.  This is vision that enables faith and a firm stand.

Psalm 148:13-14 “Let them praise the Name of the Lord, for His Name alone is exalted; His splendor is above the earth and the heavens.  He has raised up for His people a horn, the praise of all His saints, of Israel, the people close to His heart. Praise the Lord!”

Prayer:  Lord, we praise You and Your Horn, Jesus Christ our Savior.  We look forward to Your return for us and the transformation that will take place at that time! Amen.

Tags : , , , , , ,

Praise the Lord!

Scripture reading for July 12th:  Psalm 148-150, Proverbs 1-2

Key Scriptures:  Psalm 150:1-6  “Praise the Lord.  Praise God in His Sanctuary; praise Him in His mighty heavens.  Praise Him for His acts of power, praise Him for His surpassing greatness.  Praise Him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise Him with the harp and lyre, praise Him with tambourine and dancing, praise Him with the strings and flute, praise Him with the clash of cymbals, praise Him with resounding cymbals.  Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.  Praise the Lord.”

Proverbs 1:7  “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.”

The worship book of Psalms ends with a mighty call to praise the Lord!  Praise is due to God for who He is and for His mighty works.  Praise should come with instruments and from the breath of all living creatures.  God, alone, is worthy of all praise!  Proverbs begins with a call to wisdom marked by the fear of the Lord!  In Revelation, both come together as the wise worship the Lord of Creation!

Glory to His Name: “Great and marvelous are Your deeds, Lord God Almighty.  Just and true are Your ways, King of the Ages.  Who will not fear you, O Lord, and bring glory to Your Name?  For You alone are holy.  All nations will come and worship before You, for Your righteous acts have been revealed.”  (Revelation 15:3-4)

 

 

Tags : , , , , , ,

Universal Praise!

Scripture reading for July 3rd: Psalms 146-150

Life is to be lived in worship to the King!  Real joy and peace come from a life centered on the goodness and greatness of God the Creator!  Worship is not just singing a few songs at church on Sunday.  It is a universal duty of everything that has breath!

Psalm 146 begins with a declaration that the psalmist is going to praise the Lord all of his life!  Many are caught up in the idea of a king or politician who can save them!  But they will die and their plans come to nothing! (Psalm 146:3-4)  Only the God who created the heaven and earth can save!  He can be counted on by the poor, needy, oppressed and hungry!  He watches over the alien, widow, and the fatherless!  (Psalm 146:7-9)  God alone is worthy of praise!

Psalm 147 is a hymn of praise to the Lord for Jerusalem.  God has built up Jerusalem and gathered the exiles of Israel.  God’s people are to praise and honor Him for His mighty deeds on their behalf!  God’s delight is in those who fear Him! (Psalm 147:11)  He blesses them and protects them and deserves their worship!  (Psalm 147:12-14) He has given them His Word and laws, making them special among all nations!  (Psalm 147:19-20)

Psalms 148 commends all creation for their praise of the Lord!  Angels praise Him in the heights.  The sun, moon and stars praise Him.    (Psalm 148:3-6)  From the earth, sea creatures and fish, mountains and valleys, animals large and small praise Him!  (Psalm 148:7-10)  Man, too, praises the Lord!  Young and old, men and women, rich and poor all owe Him praise for His splendor is above all His works!  (Psalm 148:14)

Psalm 149 calls upon God’s covenant people, Israel, to praise the Lord!  They are to dance, sing, and make music with instruments!   The psalm then shifts from praise of God in their mouths to a double edged sword in their hands!  They are to praise the Lord as they inflict vengeance on the nations and peoples who have rebelled against the Lord and rejected His Love! (Psalm 149:6-9)  This is the “glory of all His saints.”

Psalm 150:6 sums it all up and closes the hymnal!  “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.”

Tags : , , , ,

He lifted me out of the slimy pit!

Scripture reading for June 11th: Psalm 36-41

Sometimes life’s circumstances overwhelm us.  Our situation and the battles we face dominate our thinking and depression takes us into a slimy pit.   I have been there myself!  Someone once told me,  “sober up–you are drunk on the circumstances!”  The psalmist recorded a personal battle where he was in a slimy pit!

King David was sick in body with festering wounds because of sin and guilt in his life.  He had back pain that penetrated his being. (Psalm 38:5-7)  He was feeble and crushed in anguish of heart.  People avoided him because of his wounds and there were those plotting his ruin.  His enemies hated him without reason and slandered him for his good works!  (Psalm 38:19-20)  He asked God not to forsake him and come quickly and help! (vs 21-22) (This sounds like Jesus!)

David stated in Psalm 40 that after patiently waiting on the Lord, God heard his cry and lifted him out of the slimy pit that held him.  He set David’s feet on a firm rock and put a new song in his mouth, a song of praise to God!   But this psalm ends with another humble prayer for help!  God’s help to David was an attitude change, not necessarily a change in circumstances!

When we are in the ‘slimy pit’, like David, we should tell the Lord how we feel.  Honest evaluation and casting our cares on Him is a good thing to do.   We should also confess our trust in the Lord. (Psalm 38:22. 40:17)   The psalmist could not help himself–he had to wait on the Lord patiently! (Psalm 38:15) (Psalm 40:1)  Even though he asked that the Lord come quickly, God’s time is not always the same as ours. (Psalm 38:22)  David sang a new song of praise before the rescue.  Praise and testimony of God’s goodness always blesses the Lord and then us!   Faith brings us courage to trust God for victory!  Action on the word of God begins our journey out of the slimy pits of life!  If necessary, give yourself a little slap to remember not to be drunk on your circumstances!

Tags : , , , , , ,

Everything that has breath: Praise the Lord!

Scripture reading for July 3rd: Psalms 146-150

The hymn book of the Old Testament concludes with some stirring songs of worship to the King!  Real joy and peace come from a life centered on the goodness and greatness of God the Creator!  Worship is not just singing a few songs at church on Sunday.  It is a universal privilege of everything that has breath!

Psalm 146 began with a declaration that the psalmist was going to praise the Lord all of his life!  He warned the people not to put their trust in princes, mortal men who cannot save!  Today, many are caught up in the idea of a president or ruler can save them! (Psalm 146:3-4)  Only the faithful God who created the heaven and earth can save!   He can be counted on by the poor, needy, oppressed and hungry!  He watches over the alien, widow, and the fatherless!  (Psalm 146:7-9)

Psalm 147 is a hymn of praise for Jerusalem, God’s holy city and it’s chosen people.  God has built up Jerusalem and gathered the exiles of Israel.  God’s people are to praise and honor Him for His mighty deeds on their behalf!  God’s delight is in His people, those who fear Him! (Psalm 147:11)  He blesses them and protects them and deserves their worship!  (Psalm 147:12-14) He has given them His Word and laws, making them special among all nations! (Psalm 147:19-20)

Psalms 148 commends all creation and the saints for their praise of the Lord!  Angels praise Him in the heights.  The sun, moon and stars praise Him.   God named them and set them in place!  (Psalm 148:3-6)  From the earth, sea creatures and fish, mountains and valleys, animals large and small praise Him!  (Psalm 148:7-10)  Men, made in His image,  praise the Lord!  Young and old, men and women, rich and poor all owe Him praise for His provision and splendor!  (Psalm 148:14)

Psalm 149 calls upon God’s covenant people, Israel, to praise the Lord!  They are to dance, sing, and make music with instruments!  The psalm then shifts from praise of God in their mouths to a double edged sword in their hands!  They are to praise the Lord as they inflict vengeance on the nations and peoples who have rebelled against the Lord and rejected His Love!  (Psalm 149:6-9)  This is the “glory of all His saints.”

Psalm 150:6 sums it all up and closes the hymnal!  “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.”

Tags : , , ,

Praise the Lord, O my soul!

Scripture reading for June 22nd: Psalms 98-103

Praise and worship must be in spirit and in truth.  (John 4:24)  We must worship from our spirit man and from a mind renewed with the truth.  I have used Psalms 101 and 103 often in my personal life and in ministering to those in various kinds of troubles.

Psalm 101 praises God for His love and His justice.  Both of these character traits work together to bring wholeness or holiness to God’s character.  Love without justice is some sentimental emotion that lacks integrity.  Justice without love is harsh and bitter.  Balanced as they are in God’s character, we worship Him and sing praise!

The holy fear of God’s justice caused the psalmist to be careful with his life and character.  He sought to live a blameless life because he did not know when God might come in judgment.  He vowed to keep his eyes from vile things.  He knew this would defile his heart.  He hated evil and sought to live in truth and surround himself with those who were faithful.  He promised to eliminate from his house any who were false or wicked.  I have Psalm 101:3 on my computer to remind me of my need to keep my eyes on what is good!

Psalm 103 begins by praising  God for all of His benefits.  First of all God forgives us all of our sins!  (Psalm 103:3)  He not only forgives our sins, but forgets them and removes them far away!  (Psalm 103:12)  God also heals all of our diseases and sicknesses, and our God does not change!  God redeems our life from the pit–a place of destruction and punishment!  We must bless Him from the depths of our soul!  He also renews our youth and satisfies our desires with good things from His house!  He works righteousness and justice for all who are oppressed.  He is full of love and abounds in mercy and compassion.  God is a loving Father and we are His special children.  His love promises us that though our life is short and fragile, we who fear Him will enjoy His love forever and ever! (Psalm 103:14-17)

Psalm 103 ends with David exhorting a chorus of angels to praise the Lord.  The heavenly hosts are called upon to praise Him as well as all His works in the whole universe!  We joyfully join in: “Praise the Lord, O my soul!”

Tags : , , , , ,

Breathing Praises!

Scripture reading for July 3rd: Psalms 146-150

Every one of these last psalms begin and end with “praise the Lord”!  That Hebrew word is “Hallelujah” and is familiar to Christians from use in many hymns and choruses.  It is fitting that this Hebrew book of worship would end in a crescendo of praise to the awesome God of heaven!

“Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord, O my soul.  I will praise the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.” (Psalm 146:1-2)   This psalm is a personal statement of the psalmist’s choice to praise the Lord personally.  It is something that comes from his soul and inspires song.  Praise is a life-long pursuit and not optional for those who know Him as “my God”.

“Praise the Lord.  How good it is to sing praises to our God, how pleasant and fitting to praise Him!  The Lord builds up Jerusalem; He gathers the exiles of Israel.  He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds.” (Psalm 147:1-3)  The nation, as well as individuals,  praises the Lord with joy and singing.  God builds up Jerusalem, His holy city, filling it with the redeemed who worship Him freely!

“Praise the Lord.  Praise the Lord from the heavens, praise Him from the heights above.  Praise Him, all His angels, praise Him, all His heavenly host. Praise Him sun and moon, praise Him all you shining stars.” (Psalm 148:1-3)  Praise flows from the angels and all of the heavenly creation to God as well.  Like a rock dropped into still water, praise resonates from individuals to the nation and then to the heavenly hosts!

“Praise the Lord.  Sing to the Lord a new song, His praise in the assembly of the saints.  Let Israel rejoice in their Maker; let the people of Zion be glad in their King.” (Psalm 149:1-2)  The saints particularly praise their Lord with creativity by composing a “new song”!  This song is a joyful song of gladness and praise to God for His mercy in redemption and for the King and their kingdom!

“Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.” (Psalm 150:6)   The last verse of the last psalm commands everything that breathes to give the Lord praise!  All mankind owes its breath and life to the One who breathed life into them.  Man alone can give God the praise that is due Him!

Tags : , , , ,