Today’s reading: Psalms 140-145.
What if the weakness of our witness is a lack of praise? We say a lot to the lost about their sin and need of salvation. We hone our personal testimonies (as I have encouraged in this blog). We are quick to point out an unbeliever’s dependence on their own works to save them. Maybe what they really need is to hear more about the glory of God. That’s what the Psalmist says.
The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made. All you have made will praise you, O LORD; your saints will extol you. They will tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might, so that all men may know of your mighty acts and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. Psalm 145:8-12
What’s the point of all men knowing of God’s might and glory? So they can be impressed? I don’t think so. So God will feel better about himself? Definitely not. One answer comes from verse 3: God is worthy of praise. But that’s just the beginning. The Psalmist says when we praise God that people come to know him, and by knowing he means that they see God and experience him personally. The power of praise is in drawing men and women into a relationship with God. Look at what that relationship delivers:
The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. He fulfills the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and saves them. The LORD watches over all who love him… Psalm 145:18-20
The LORD draws near, he fulfills desires, he hears, saves and watches over all those who call on him. They call on him because they know him, and they come to know him because they have heard him praised. There are two categories of praise mentioned in the psalm. One is the splendor of God’s majesty. The other is his wonderful works. If it helps to remember, think of who God is, and what he has done. His goodness, and his good works. His awesomeness, and his activity. His might, and his mighty actions. His righteousness, and his response. Let’s season our witness with much praise, and see what happens when our listeners see God in our words.
To make known to the sons of men his mighty acts. As the State cannot teach these holy histories the people of God must take care to do it themselves. The work must be done for every age, for men have short memories in reference to their God, and the doings of his power. They inscribe the deeds of their heroes upon brass, but the glorious acts of Jehovah are written upon the sand, and the tide of time washes them from present memory; therefore we must repeat the lesson, and yet again repeat it. The saints are the religious instructors of the race; they ought to be not only the historians of the past, but the bards of the present, whose duty it is to keep the sons of men in memory of the great deeds which the Lord did in the days of their fathers and in the old time before them. – Charles Spurgeon
Image by Ricardo Camacho on Flickr, CC by 2.0