Thursday, February 5, 2009

Weapons of Our Warfare - Praise

But it came to pass on the seventh day that they rose early, about the dawning of the day, and marched around the city seven times in the same manner. On that day only they marched around the city seven times. And the seventh time it happened, when the priests blew the trumpets, that Joshua said to the people: “Shout, for the LORD has given you the city! Joshua 6:15-16

But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed. Acts 16:25-26

Earlier in the week we talked about the weapons of our warfare and the armor that God has given us. Let’s elaborate a bit on the weapons of our warfare. Today we’ll talk about praise. What does the word praise mean? Praise is the legitimate response to God's self-revelation. To praise God is to call attention to his glory. Words that are often used as synonyms or in parallel with "praise, and so help point to its meaning, are "bless, " "exalt, " "extol, " "glorify, " "magnify, " "thank, " and "confess." (Baker’s Bible Dictionary) Why is praise a weapon? Praise is a weapon because our adversary, the devil, does not want us to praise God because he knows that God inhabits the praises of His people. The devil has always wanted to sit on God’s throne. He wants to be praised, worshipped, and wants to receive everything that is due to God Almighty. The devil cannot stand to hear a believer or group of believers praise God. Why? Because when we praise God, we are telling the devil that no matter what surrounds us, what our circumstances are, that in the abundance and the scarcity, in sickness and in health, in good times and through storms, God is still on His throne and worthy to be praised! Hallelujah!! Since God inhabits the praises of His people, the enemy knows that when we praise God, we will receive strength, joy, peace, victory and he has to flee. He has to flee because when God gives us strength, we can resist the devil. When we have joy and peace, we can resist the devil so he can’t steal it. Whatever situation we are going through, when we open our mouths to praise God and lift up our hands to Him, He gives us the victory over the situation, problem or circumstance!

This is why the enemy tries to shut down our praise. He tries to keep us from opening our mouth to bless the name of the Lord. He tries to keep our hands down in defeat. But we are not defeated! We have victory in Jesus! When this happens we have to tell our souls as David did, “Bless the Lord O my soul and all that is within me bless His Holy name!” Sometimes we have to tall our souls to bless God! We have to tell our flesh to praise God! Our flesh never wants to do what the spirit wants to do so we have to make it conform to the spiritual desires. Tell your flesh “flesh, I will not give in to your desires but I will praise God and overcome you.” God honors the conscious effort to praise Him despite how we feel. We cannot be led by how we feel; if we do we will live in defeat. Our feelings are fickle, and if we allow ourselves to let our feelings dictate how and when we should praise then we will never see the glory of God! The devil uses that to keep us from praising. He will mess with your mind and tell you that you are tired, sick, sad or discouraged and that you cannot lift up your hands but he is a liar and the father of lies and if you listen to his whispering he will have won that battle over you. Stop listening to his whispering! Resist him! Tell the devil no! No more!!
God gave Joshua the victory and gave him the city of Jericho when the people shouted in praise the seventh time they marched around the city walls. Your praise is a war cry. You are telling the enemy that the Most High God is at the frontline of the battle and He cannot be defeated! Your shout means you have the victory, are in victory, and will walk in victory! Paul and Silas “were praying and singing hymns to God and the prisoners were listening to them” while they were in jail and what happened?? The prison shook, the doors were opened, and the chains were loosed!! The jail keeper got saved and who knows how many others that night! Praise ushers in deliverance! Paul and Silas were saying though they were chained and imprisoned, the God that they served was worthy to be praised and He is mighty to deliver and to save! When Shedrach, Meshach, and Abednego were about to be thrown in fiery furnace they told the king that their God was able to save them and that even if He didn’t save them they would not bow down to the image of the king. After they were thrown in the furnace the king looked through the glass and saw that they were four instead of three and they were praising God! Praise the Lord!!!! I am getting a bit excited but how can I not? We are talking about God’s awesomeness and His worthiness of praise! The fact that we have life, are able to breathe, walk, talk, and send out these messages is reason enough to praise Him!!! Glory to God!! People, do not let the devil steal your cookies! Do not let him steal your joy, your peace, your PRAISE! God has called us to proclaim His praise because He is the Most High God who alone deserves our praise, yet at the same time when we praise Him, we defeat the enemy by letting him know that no matter what our praise belongs to God and God alone. Pick up your weapon of praise beloved, and let the devil know that Christ reigns in your life and through Him, you are victorious.


Denise said...

GIRL.....this was an awesome word from God. I recognize it, because it's not your opinion, but it's the word of the most high God. I've been studying what the Lord gave me about how the victory is in our praise. So I began googling just that and found your blog. Praise the Lord, and thank you for sharing.

Chris said...

Praise God!! I am so happy that you were blessed by this word. That is what I pray for when the Lord leads me to write. God bless you sister!

Crystal said...

This is such a Powerful Word and I am so grateful to the Lord for having come across it. You are absolutuely annointed to teach and interpret the Word of God. Thankyou for fanning my flame and helping me to see and understand so clearly how praise is a weapon of warfare far more then I ever understood before and that I can affer Sacrificial Praise even when my flesh and body is weak. We are more then conquerors. God Bless You and keep wlaking in your annointing. What a Blessing. Truly.

Chris said...

All glory to God Most High!! I'm glad that you were encouraged by this word and I pray that your flame will stay lit and grow for the Lord. May you be blessed in all that you do and that God puts in your hands. God bless you!

Anonymous said...

Wow this was a great article about praise. I understand it a little better now and pray that the Lord use this understanding in my worship & praise towards Him. God bless you & may you continue to be a light.

Grateful New Yorker :)