As we have looked this week at ways to praise God, it is of course very much an individual thing. We must remember that we are not to try and praise God by copying someone else’s style, but rather to give authentic praise based on how God created you.
One way of course we often show appreciation is by clapping. Nowadays at a football match when someone has died and we want to show our appreciation instead of a minute’s silence there is, in fact, a minute of everyone just clapping. We want to show our appreciation for the person who has passed away.
In the church all over the world, people meet and clap and applaud not a dead person but a person who is very much alive but who did die that we might live and I think that’s a great reason to show our appreciation. I have eternal life and a personal relationship because of Jesus and if I cannot applaud that something is amiss. So why not now just stop and give Jesus applause for what He has done for you.
Our verse this morning instructs us to do so and is taken from the Hebrew word Shabach (shaw-bakh):
Address in a loud voice O clap your hands, all peoples; shout (shabach) to God with the voice of joy (or triumph)Psalm 47:1
I have a piano and guitar and play them (badly) and that is another form of worship and praise. I do envy (I know we are not supposed to envy, but I think you know what I mean) capable people playing such beautiful instruments.
The Hebrew word Zamar (zaw-mar) means “to pluck the strings of an instrument, to sing, to praise; a musical word which is largely involved with joyful expressions of music with musical instruments”. Here are two wonderful verses.
Praise him with trumpet blasts;Psalm 150:3-5
praise him with harps and lyres.
Praise him with tambourines and dancing;
praise him with stringed instruments and flutes.
Praise him with loud cymbals;
praise him with crashing cymbals.
Be exalted O Lord, in Your own strength, so will we sing and praise (zamar) Your power.Psalm 21:13
Still, I thank God the ability or lack does not mean God does not appreciate my attempts to praise Him by guitar or piano for it is the heart He is so interested in. So if you are like me enjoy playing an instrument let me encourage you to keep doing it making a joyful noise unto the Lord. Yes in my case the word loud is appropriate.
Finally, let me end today with one other word Tehillah. It means a spontaneous new song, singing from a melody in your heart by adding words to it.
This refers to a special kind of singing. It is singing unprepared, unrehearsed songs. It is the praise that God inhabits.
Yet You are holy, O You who are enthroned upon the praises (tehillah) of Israel.Psalm 22:3
God manifests Himself in the midst of exuberant singing.
Stay safe and Blessed.