Today's scripture is Psalm 148. Go here to read it in your preferred version.
Praise ye the Lord. Praise ye the Lord from the heavens: praise him in the heights.
2 Praise ye him, all his angels: praise ye him, all his hosts.
3 Praise ye him, sun and moon: praise him, all ye stars of light.
4 Praise him, ye heavens of heavens, and ye waters that be above the heavens.
5 Let them praise the name of the Lord: for he commanded, and they were created.
6 He hath also stablished them for ever and ever: he hath made a decree which shall not pass.
7 Praise the Lord from the earth, ye dragons, and all deeps:
8 Fire, and hail; snow, and vapours; stormy wind fulfilling his word:
9 Mountains, and all hills; fruitful trees, and all cedars:
10 Beasts, and all cattle; creeping things, and flying fowl:
11 Kings of the earth, and all people; princes, and all judges of the earth:
12 Both young men, and maidens; old men, and children:
13 Let them praise the name of the Lord: for his name alone is excellent; his glory is above the earth and heaven.
also exalteth the horn of his people, the praise of all his saints;
even of the children of Israel, a people near unto him. Praise ye the Lord.
Out of these 14 verses, the word "praise" is used 13 times!
Where should we praise God? All around the earth, we should praise Him.
Who should praise Him? Angels, all the army of angels, all creation - sun and moon, stars, heavens and waters, animals, all nature, all people
Why should we praise Him? First of all, because He is the creator. The fire, hail, snow and winds all do as He commands. All nature and all people, from greatest to least, youngest to oldest, should praise the name of God because He is excellent. He is glorious, above all of us.
In verse 10, the word used for horn can be used figuratively for "strength". He blesses His people with strength and gives them reason to praise.
What does the word praise mean? Out of the 13 times it is used in this scripture, this is what it means:
To shine forth light. To be boastful (of God, of course). To glory. To act like a madman (Bible thumping, here we come!!)
Then in verse 14 when it says "the praise of all his saints", that means:
Adoration. Thanksgiving. Public praise. Praise demanded by the attributes of God.
Awesome. There are so many reasons to praise God, and so many ways to do it. We should not only do this privately, but when we are with others. We need to knock off our pride and praise Him as part of our fellowship together.
My friend Meagan sent me the next scripture for her Bible verse this morning. It's Romans 12:2 - "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
I love this verse. Conversion means a renewing of your mind which means actually changing the qualities of your soul. Your characteristics. I actually have a blog I'm trying to write about this soon, if I ever get the chance. The renewing of your soul will create in you a whole new person. Of course we know that the lusts of the world are going to tempt us, but they are temporary, and not fulfilling, and often can harm our Christian walk. Matthew Henry once said that as Christians we have to live in "singularity". This is so true because many times our beliefs are unpopular. But when we stand on our beliefs and stand up for God, we prove what is acceptable to Him and what is His will. Surrendering ourselves to God is what we are called to do as Christians.