by Tony Abram
Psalm 100:1-5

(Psa 100:1 KJV) A Psalm of praise. Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.
(Psa 100:2 KJV) Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.
(Psa 100:3 KJV) Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
(Psa 100:4 KJV) Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
(Psa 100:5 KJV) For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

Verse 4 “bless’ this Hebrew word is “berak” a act of worship to God. It has the meaning to kneel.

Worship has the ideal of adoration, admiration and intense love.

Hallelujah = Praise Jehovah

I. There is an order in Praise ad Worship.

(Psa 95:1 KJV) O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.
(Psa 95:2 KJV) Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.
(Psa 95:3 KJV) For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods.
(Psa 95:4 KJV) In his hand are the deep places of the earth: the strength of the hills is his also.
(Psa 95:5 KJV) The sea is his, and he made it: and his hands formed the dry land.
(Psa 95:6 KJV) O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the LORD our maker.

Notice the order of things.
1. Come before Him with singing-make a joyful noise.
2. Enter His gates with thanksgiving, courts with praise.
3. Then, worship and bow down.

II. Praise and Worship touches our Spirit, Soul and Body.

1. We were created with a spirit, soul and body
2. We use our entire being to worship God

A. Spirit
(John 4:23 KJV) But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
1. Remember, you are a spirit, you were created in the image of God. God is a spirit. You must worship Him in spirit and in truth. You have a soul, and when your soul ad spirit agree, your body will respond

B. Soul
When we make up our minds and choose to enter into praise then our soul gets involved.

1. Praise begins in the soul realm. The soul is made up of the will of man, the mind and the emotions.

a. That’s why we need to have God renew our minds.
(Rom 12:2 KJV) 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.

C: Body
(Rom 12:1 KJV) I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
1. Your body is good not bad, it’s the house of the Holy Spirit.
(1 Cor 6:19 KJV) What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
(1 Cor 6:20 KJV) For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

III. Praise and Worship demands we use our heart not our head.

A. Head worship verses Heart Worship
B. Heart worship is the resulted of the recreated spirit.
C. Out of that right standing or relationship that begins in the spirit then the soul gets involved.
D. Then our mind, the emotions, the will of man.
E. Our minds need to renewed. They need a Holy Spirit transformation.
(Mat 26:41 KJV) Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.

1. When we worship God, God the creator, the Spirit of God renews and changes our minds and opens our spirit.
2. Will we connect with the Father through our spirit or will we allow our feelings to lead us???
3.Our emotions are to fully expressed and released in order and decency according to God’s Word-But they must be released.
4. The body gives expression. In fact, He commands us to express ourselves and in so doing he’s really inviting us to enjoy Him. God enjoys us enjoying Him.

IV. Praise and Worship honors God not man.

A. We do not express these ways to be seen of men.
1. We want God to see them.

B. Some people are afraid of what others may think.
1. They are consumed with the fear of man.
(Gal 1:10 KJV) For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.
(Col 4:12 KJV) Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth you, always labouring fervently for you in prayers, that ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.
(Acts 5:29 KJV) Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.
(1 Sam 15:22 KJV) And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.
(John 14:15 KJV) If ye love me, keep my commandments.
(John 14:23 KJV) Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

V. Praise and Worship is faith in action.

A. Remember that God has commanded us to praise Him. It’s not a suggestion.
B. So if we please God we must use faith. Praise is faith in action.
C. Praise is not a cure all.
D. It is not a formula to manipulate God. It is a lifestyle of the believer.
E. As we lift Him up our faith begins to magnify Him and our problems begin looking smaller and smaller.

(1 Pet 2:9 KJV) But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
(1 Pet 2:10 KJV) Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
It is something we live everyday. Our application of daily praise in faith will cause the word to produce in our lies. Praise is faith in action. Faith and works together produces life.
(Acts 16:25 KJV) And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.
Praise is an act of faith. Paul decided to let his faith go in praise and worship.

We decide to agree with God’s Word.
We decide to give thanks in all things.
Our decision to agree with the Word will always produce fruit, whether, in worship service or on your job, In your home or wherever you are. You must have faith to please God.

VI. Singing

There are 575 scriptures admonishing us to sing. More on singing than speaking.

The first reference in the Word to singing as worship to God was the result of the deliverance of God’s people through the Red Sea.
(Exo 15:1 KJV) Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song unto the LORD, and spake, saying, I will sing unto the LORD, for he hath triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea. (Exo 15:2 KJV) The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him a habitation; my father’s God, and I will exalt him. (Exo 15:3 KJV) The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name. (Exo 15:4 KJV) Pharaoh’s chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea. (Exo 15:5 KJV) The depths have covered them: they sank into the bottom as a stone. (Exo 15:6 KJV) Thy right hand, O LORD, is become glorious in power: thy right hand, O LORD, hath dashed in pieces the enemy. (Exo 15:7 KJV) And in the greatness of thine excellency thou hast overthrown them that rose up against thee: thou sentest forth thy wrath, which consumed them as stubble. (Exo 15:8 KJV) And with the blast of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together, the floods stood upright as an heap, and the depths were congealed in the heart of the sea. (Exo 15:9 KJV) The enemy said, I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil; my lust shall be satisfied upon them; I will draw my sword, my hand shall destroy them. (Exo 15:10 KJV) Thou didst blow with thy wind, the sea covered them: they sank as lead in the mighty waters.
(Exo 15:11 KJV) Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders? (Exo 15:12 KJV) Thou stretchedst out thy right hand, the earth swallowed them. (Exo 15:13 KJV) Thou in thy mercy hast led forth the people which thou hast redeemed: thou hast guided them in thy strength unto thy holy habitation. (Exo 15:14 KJV) The people shall hear, and be afraid: sorrow shall take hold on the inhabitants of Palestina.
(Exo 15:15 KJV) Then the dukes of Edom shall be amazed; the mighty men of Moab, trembling shall take hold upon them; all the inhabitants of Canaan shall melt away. (Exo 15:16 KJV) Fear and dread shall fall upon them; by the greatness of thine arm they shall be as still as a stone; till thy people pass over, O LORD, till the people pass over, which thou hast purchased. (Exo 15:17 KJV) Thou shalt bring them in, and plant them in the mountain of thine inheritance, in the place, O LORD, which thou hast made for thee to dwell in, in the Sanctuary, O Lord, which thy hands have established. (Exo 15:18 KJV) The LORD shall reign forever and ever. (Exo 15:19 KJV) For the horse of Pharaoh went in with his chariots and with his horsemen into the sea, and the LORD brought again the waters of the sea upon them; but the children of Israel went on dry land in the midst of the sea.

A. God choose this as the first time to mention praise because of the law of first appearance-the first time something appears in the bible is important and has special meanings.

1. The people were filled with praise because He triumphed gloriously,

2.I will prepare Him a habitation.

3. This song declares God is Lord over our lives.

4. When we submit to Jesus’ lordship, we’ll give him our worship.

5. It is possible to be so active in the service of Christ as to forget to love him.

6. The word worship is a shortened form of the old word worthship, which means showing God the worth he holds in your life.

7.Fellowship with a holy God will produce holy living.

8. Some people think Sunday is Funday.

Expository thoughts from a section of Psalm 116

by Paul Christensen

I love the lord because He hears my voice and my supplications. Because He has inclined his ear to me, Therefore I shall call upon him as long as I live. The cords of death encompassed me, And the terrors of Sheol came upon me; I found distress and sorrow. Then I called upon the name of the Lord: O Lord, I beseech Thee, “Save my life!” Gracious is the Lord, and righteous. Yes, our Lord is compassionate. The Lord preserves the simple. I was brought low, and He saved me. Return to your rest, O my soul, For the Lord has dealt bountifully with you. For Thou hast rescued my soul from death, My eyes from tears. My feet from stumbling. (Psalm 116: 1-8)

I love the Lord: This is a great miracle in itself. The psalmist is expressing love toward a Person he cannot see. This is opposite to the natural order of things. We want to see the person we love, and appreciate their character and beauty. The psalmist cannot see any of these things. Therefore his love for the Lord is born from faith. This is extraordinary faith because the Law of Moses was in effect. Jesus hadn’t come and died on the cross yet. It is also special, because the Lord accepts the Psalmist’s faith and love. The lesson for us is that if the Lord accepts the approaches of faith and love from a person who is subject to the Law, how much more readily will He accept our faith and love as His adopted sons and daughters who have been saved through the death of Christ?

Because He hears my voice and my supplications. But at the same time, his love for God is not unrequited. There is a compelling reason for loving the Lord. True love is not one sided. Infatuation without an appropriate response is not true love. It remains infatuation. True love exists in a relationship between two people. If it is not returned by the other party, feelings and thoughts of love eventually die. Love does not exist in a vacuum. Talk to any young man or woman who has feelings of love toward someone who does not return it. The psalmist receives a response from God. He receives the assurance that God hears his voice and his prayers for help. We are not told how God made him know that. Perhaps it was shown in the answers to his prayers. It could have been an inner assurance put in his heart by the Holy Spirit. No matter how it happened; the fact remains that it did happen. He had the assurance that God hears his voice. Where does He hear his voice from? Astronomers are unable to penetrate the outer limits of our universe with their equipment. If God lives beyond our universe, millions of light years away, He must have some very advanced listening devices! We don’t know about that, but what we do know is that God is within earshot of the psalmist’s voice.

If God actually hears the psalmist’s voice, and understands the supplication in order to answer it accurately and appropriately (which is implied), it means that we are dealing with an intelligent God who is sensitive to the needs of ordinary people.

Because He has inclined His ear to me, The Lord decided to listen to the psalmist’s prayer. There is a great difference between hearing and listening. Ask any eight year old in my class! The Lord not only heard the psalmist praying, but He turned Himself so he could listen to the prayer clearly. The prayer attracted the attention of the Lord. This meant that He was going to give time to actioning the request. If we want the Lord to respond to our needs, we need to put our desires into actual words and say them. While it is true that He knows our thoughts, and knows what we have need of before we even say it; God responds favourably when we put our faith into action and say our prayers out loud.

Therefore I shall call upon Him as long as I live. When God answers prayer, it causes a change in the person’s life. Something happens which has never happened before. There is change of attitude toward God and others. In the case of the psalmist, the change is a lifelong change. He is going to keep praying for the rest of his natural life. But wait – there’s more. Life does not end at death for those who love the lord and believe in Him. So there can be an implication that when the psalmists enters into eternal life, He will keep calling upon God. How this is going to happen, we are not told, But this life is a preparation for the next. The lessons we learn here, will be used in eternity. They won’t be forgotten.

The cords of death encompassed me, And the terrors of Sheol came upon me. The psalmist now describes the type of problem that caused him to call upon the Lord. It wasn’t the normal, routine type of problem that one encounters. Perhaps he went into a clinical depression, Or that he had a life threatening experience. Whatever it was, it was out of the ordinary. Not something that happens every day. The problem could have crushed him – destroyed his faith. He could have blamed God for his predicament. Many people do. How many priests and ministers have expressed that they have lost their faith through a traumatic experience?

I found distress and sorrow. This was the effect on him. Distress and sorrow. Just because the psalmist had a strong faith in God, it didn’t mean that he was happy all the time. Nor did he always have joyful experiences. In this instance, he was experiencing anything but joy and happiness. This is a lesson for us. Sometimes we may think that becoming a Christian is when all our problems start. It seems like that – until we start praying. Then some of the richest experiences we have with God happen when we use our faith to bring our needs before God in the midst of our distress and sorrow. Sometimes the negative experiences bring out the most positive prayers. And the most powerful answers. For many people, this is how strong faith grows in them.

Then I called upon the Name of the Lord. “O Lord, I beseech Thee, save my life!” His prayer was specific. He asked the Lord directly what he wanted done. He didn’t beat around the bush. Some people are afraid to pray direct prayers to God. Perhaps they have a mistaken idea about of spirituality or humility. Perhaps they have never been desperate enough to pray a simple, direct prayer. But God answers simple, direct prayers when they are prayed by people in desperate situations with heart felt faith. But we don’t have to wait for desperate situations before we can pray effective prayers. If we learn to prayer honestly and sincerely now, And build up a relationship with God through our everyday prayers, When desperate situations arise, we have a good foundation to work from.

Gracious is the Lord, and righteous. Yes, our Lord is compassionate. The psalmist describes his view of the character of God. This view arises out of his personal experience with Him. This is the best way to discover God. We can read a lot about Him in the Bible and other books; We can hear about him when we go to church; We can share the experiences of Christian friends; But there is nothing like experiencing the reality of God for yourself. Then you can speak about Him with conviction. It seems that there are some people who are very open about describing the goodness of God in their lives. Sometimes they can be embarrassing with their enthusiasm. Perhaps some who are embarrassed are responding that way because they are still to experience God for themselves?

He knows that God is gracious, because the Lord is extending grace to him. He has done nothing to deserve having his prayers answered. But the Lord answers them anyway. That’s grace. He describes the Lord as being righteous. The Lord has good standing with Himself. Anyone who has anything to do with Him has to have good standing with Him. Although the psalmist has never heard of the gospel of Christ, He has good standing with God through his faith. That’s why the Lord can answer his prayer. God is also compassionate. Compassion involves feeling helpfully sorry for someone. God does more than listen to the prayer and have mere sympathy for the psalmist – He does something concrete, motivated by His feelings of sympathy. It is not enough to just feel sorry for someone. It has to be translated into action. The priest and the Levi who walked past the injured man lying in the road might have felt sorry, but they did not express compassion. The Good Samaritan likewise felt sorry for the man, and went on to do something about it. Jesus approved of the Samaritan’s action and set it up as an example for the way we should act in similar circumstances.

The Lord preserves the simple. This is not just talking about the simple minded a popular interpretation of the term. It is more of a child like simplicity that contains sincerity and integrity. It is the type of personality that results from obeying Jesus’ instruction to become as little children. It is more child like than childish. Often, it is the sinner who has a complicated personality and attitude to life. The truth is much easier to say than lies. We tend to suspect someone who tells a complicated story when having to explain themselves after some incident where they might have done wrong.

Faith is simple. All we have to do is to simply believe what the Bible says. Even if the wording and description of Biblical events seem unbelievable to experts in science and sociology, true faith accepts them. Even if it appears foolish to believe in them literally. The key here is that God will preserve those who exercise simple faith. For us, this means that we will be saved to eternal life through the death of Jesus on the Cross. Even though this is foolish to more sophisticated people in the world It is what God is looking for in people who profess to believe in Him. We are living in a time where science and philosophy is challenging the simple truths of the Gospel. Much of the opposition is compelling and convincing. Making it difficult to maintain faith without having doubts. But here is the promise. For the person who maintains a simple faith in God, and the gospel of Christ, there is total support from God.

I was brought low and He saved me. The Lord did not pass me by. Although I might be one of millions of people who have needs, The lord sees me Loves me And helps me. He does not see us a faceless people in the crowd. When the crowds came to Jesus, He saw each person individually. Most of us in the church can say that we were brought low and the Lord saved us. This shows the greatness and glory of God in the way He deals with His people. Each person who has been helped by God is a witness to His glory.

Return to your rest, O my soul. The word ‘return’ suggests that the psalmist’s soul has been in a state of rest before. He identifies it as being his, and he has the freedom to return to it. He has undergone experiences which have distressed him, and now with a sense of answered prayer, he tells his soul to return to his rest. This is only possible when there is a sense of assurance that God has answered his prayer and acted on his behalf. But to experience answered prayer, You have to spend time in focussed, direct prayer. This opens the door for your soul to return to its state of peace and rest.

For the Lord has dealt bountifully with you. When we serve God, we are serving a generous master. Think of the times when someone has been really generous to us. It was a very pleasant feeling – that someone thought so well of you that something was given through their generosity. It gives you nice thoughts and feelings about that person. How much more do we appreciate and worship God when He shows His generosity toward us? What limits the amount He can give is our underestimation of His love toward us. ‘We have not because we ask not.’ He never deals with us in a miserly way. He gives liberally. ‘Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, of the things He has prepared for us.’

For you have delivered my soul from death, my eyes from tears, and my feet from falling. The deliverance here is three-fold: Our life has been spared from the grave Our heart has been uplifted from its grief Our course in life has been preserved from dishonour. What this means to us is that the grave holds no terrors for us any more, because its power over us has been broken through the resurrection of Christ. As we exercise faith by giving our lives to the Lord that faith identifies us with the death of Christ, and the raising of Him from the dead. Through baptism we go down into the grave with Him and then rise to new life with Him. Comfort from the Lord replaces our grief and unhappiness. ‘Blessed are they that mourn for they shall be comforted.’ God won’t leave us in a distressed state for long before He does something to uplift us. ‘Weeping may exist for a night, but joy comes in the morning.’ The great thing about conversion to Christ, is that the direction of life changes. It should change – it can’t be helped if a person repents of sin and changes inappropriate habits and attitudes. The person’s life begins to give honour and glory to God.

This section of Psalm 116 gives us a set of powerful promises and clear directions. It is clearly linked to the gospel of Christ. We can see the power of Christ to forgive and reform in these verses, if we want to look for them. Anyone, anywhere, and in any condition can come to God under the terms of these verses, and expect a reunion with God, or a deepening of relationship and fellowship with Him. Have the faith to believe that God can meet your needs, heal you, or set you free from grief and despair, and give you a new lease of life in Christ.

Enquiries and feedback to the author at http://personal-communication.com

The Message of Hope

Psalm 39:1-8
by Paul George

The definition of hope, something anticipated in the mind, complete assurance and certitude regarding the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something. The Christian’s hope does not arise from individual desires or wishes but from God, who is Himself the believer’s hope. Genuine hope is not dreaming but a firm assurance about things that are unseen and still in the future; “For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it” (Romans 8:24-25 – NASB). “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of the things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1 – NASB).

The message of hope begins in the Garden of Eden with a judgment, God said, “I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise him on the heel” (Genesis 3:15).

Genesis 3:15 is the record of a judicial act of God that contains two parts, first, the physical consequences of the rebellion against God by Adam and Eve, “I will put enmity between you and the woman.” This clearly indicates there will be a deep-seated dislike or ill will even to the extent of hatred, or the manifestation of such feeling between those who pursue the righteousness of God and those who pursue the evil and wickedness consistent with Satan.

Why did God put this enmity between the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent? The first reason why He put the enmity between the two seeds is to maintain the distinctive character of the godly. The second reason, attempts to combine into a uniform body results in God’s wrath. James asked the question, “Do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (James 4:4).

If ever there has been an age when we need to heed the words of James, it is this twenty-first century. The world is slowly taking a prompt place in churches throughout the land. We need to heed what history teaches, when men have attempted to make peace with the world independently of the world converting to faith in God, it has resulted in the wrath of God.

The second part of the judicial act of God clearly indicates the coming of one who will put an end to the enmity, the “seed” of the woman. Who is the seed of the woman who will bruise the head of the serpent? “When the fullness of time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons” (Galatians 4:4-5).

When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. And she cried out with a loud voice and said, ‘Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb!’ And how has it happened to me, that the mother of my Lord would come to me? For behold, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy…And Mary said: My soul exalts the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my savior. For He had regard for the humble state of His bondservant; for behold, from this time on all generations will count me blessed” (Luke 1:41-44, 46-48 – NASB).

Speaking to Ahaz, Isaiah told him. “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign; Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14). “For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; and the government will rest on His shoulders; and His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6 –NASB).

“Since then the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, so that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and might free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives” (Hebrews 2:14-15 –NASB).

What have we to fear? God assures the success of the Promised Seed of the woman. The struggle between the righteous and unrighteous will be won by the people of God, both Jew and Gentile, through the work of the Son that was given to us, the Son of God. He will utterly defeat Satan.

We need to heed the advice John gave to the first century Christians, “Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:7-8 – NASB).

If the master of the godless cannot avoid the condemnation of God upon sin, how can his followers escape?

Although we have the assurance the age-old struggle between the godly and ungodly will end, Satan will have an hour of apparent victory. On the cross, Satan will bruise the heel of Christ. The bruising of the heel refers also to the suffering of the people of God throughout the ages, the affliction of God’s people in Egypt, at the hands of the Assyrians, Babylonians, Romans, and the persecution of believers throughout the church age.

Throughout the ages, Satan has attempted to deliver a deathblow to the Head of the seed of the woman, but all he can do is bruise the heel, the Head is safe in heaven, awaiting the appointed time of His return to earth.

The One that was born of a virgin, in a stable in Bethlehem was pierced for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities, chastened for our well-being, scourged so that we might be healed.

Through His suffering and death, Jesus Christ provided a way for us to be forgiven and reconciled to God.

The invitation is Isaiah 55:6 “Seek the Lord while He may be found; call upon Him while He is near.”