God has ordained that praise has a dual purpose.
Did you know that praise can be a extremely effective and powerful weapon in the arsenal of a Christian? Yes, I know that we praise God for everything that He is and for everything that He has done for us, but God has ordained that praise has a dual purpose. Praise both glorifies God and does damage to the kingdom of darkness. Not convinced? Take a look at Psalm 8:2, “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength“. Now look at how Jesus quoted this Psalm in Matthew 21:16, “Jesus saith unto them, Yea; have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise?“. The word translated as ‘strength’ can also be translated as ‘praise’, and what is an important quality for a warrior? Strength! Praising the Lord will strengthen your spirit. Nehemiah 8:10 says, “The joy of the Lord is your strength” and praising God is a good way to stir up the joy that is already inside you.
Praise brought them the victory.
But are there any Biblical examples of praise functioning as a weapon? Of course there are, I wouldn’t be writing a post on the subject if there weren’t! How about this example from 2 Chronicles 20:21-22, “[Jehoshaphat] appointed singers unto the Lord, and that should praise the beauty of holiness, as they went out before the army, and to say, Praise the Lord; for his mercy endureth for ever. And when they began to sing and to praise, the Lord set ambushments against the children of Ammon, Moab, and mount Seir, which were come against Judah; and they were smitten“? The Israelites sent their singers out in front of the army – pretty unusual battle tactics! But it worked, the singers praised God and that praise brought the Israelites the victory. When you begin to praise God, the devil is not going to hang around for very long! Want a New Testament example? Paul & Silas in the Philippian jail is a great example of praising God in the midst of adverse circumstances: “And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them. And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed” (Acts 16:25-26). Pretty effective this praise thing, isn’t it.
The power of praise should not be underestimated.
One great reason for praising God when adverse circumstances come, is that it totally confuses the devil. He certainly did not intend for the circumstance to cause you to praise God! He expected you to get all depressed and discouraged, he wanted praising God to be the last thing on you mind. Praising God when something negative arises completely throws him off balance. It also creates an atmosphere of faith, instead of an atmosphere of fear. Just as the Bible functions as a sword in the spiritual realm when it is spoken, praise is also a powerful spiritual weapon. The power of praise should not be underestimated. Remember the time that Peter walked on the water? At what point did Peter begin to sink? When he took his eyes off of Jesus and onto the circumstances. When we praise God it focuses our attention on God, and like with Peter it will stop us from sinking.
I should not need to encourage you to praise God. Praise is as essential to the Christian life as prayer or reading the Bible (and if you didn’t know they were important, they are!) What I wanted to show, is that there is another side to praise. The devil does not like praise, and if he doesn’t like something and tries hard to discourage you from doing it, that is an extremely good reason to do it whether you feel like it or not.
If you have any further questions or thoughts, please feel free to leave a comment.
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